Pull Yourself Out of a Workout Slump

The New Year’s rush is over, life is (hopefully) getting more back to normal and unfortunately, you might have let your workouts slip. How do you restart? How do you not beat yourself up over it? How do you help make it a habit? 

Being in the fitness industry for almost 15 years, exercise is a part of my life because it is my job. But because it is part of my job, people often think I judge them on how much they workout. That is the complete opposite. In fact, my goal lately has been to figure out how LITTLE I can workout to see results.

Here's 5 things you can start doing TODAY to help you get moving again.

1. Gratitude

I almost made this title "forgiveness" instead of "gratitude." The reason I did not is because I feel that we apologize too much. I know I do so I have worked to change my dialogue to say Thank You instead of I'm sorry. For example, if I am late, I say "Thank you for waiting for me," instead of "Sorry I'm late." First, it makes you feel less guilty and it shows you are grateful for the person waiting for you. It is something I have had to teach myself to do a lot in my marriage as well because I am not at fault because I didn't do the dishes but I am grateful my husband did them.

How do we relate this into terms of movement and exercise? We have nothing to feel sorry for if we miss out on a day (or month) or working out. It happens. If you are focusing on the fact that you are constantly feeling sorry for yourself because you didn't workout or you ate junk food then it can keep getting you down. Finding a way to be grateful for what you have done or can do is a way to lift you up. For example, I missed out on my last week of workouts but I am grateful (and proud!) that I was able to workout twice the week before. 

Then when you fit in movement, you can tell yourself how grateful you are that you moved, that you fit it in. Gratitude has the power to lift you up.

2. Every Little Bit Counts

Remember P90X? do you know what the 90 stands for? 90 minutes. Each workout was 90 fricken minutes. Duh, you'll see results if you workout for 90 minutes every. single. day. But you will 1. probably burn out and 2. Who has 90 minutes a day to workout?! 

Give yourself permission to break up the movements. Maybe a 5 minute walk here, breath work between calls, squats while playing with the kids, a 10 minute strength workout, a bike ride to the store. It doesn't all have to be at once and it for SURE doesn't have to be 90 minutes long. Movement and exercise has a compound effect: everything throughout the day adds up. 

3. Walk

Walking is so powerful and we often forget about it as an option for movement. Humans evolved to walk and it is only in the last 100 years that walking has become less and less of a normal thing we do. Getting outside and feeling the fresh air on our faces has such a positive physiological effect on our brains. In fact, I make sure my kids go outside to play, walk, run, etc. every day in the rain, sun, snow, cold, heat, etc. because I know how important it it. 

The best part if, the effects from walking are instantaneous. Actually, the effect from any sort of movement is instant no matter your fitness level, weight, age or gender. Every time you incorporate movement and exercise into your lives, it has an immediate positive results on your health. Say you will walk for 5 minutes, then if you feel done after 5 minutes, you can be done. But you always have the option to walk longer and once you get moving, you probably will walk more.

4. Strength

I have had this conversation with so many women lately. They have hit a plateau and don't know what to do. When they tell me what workouts they do, it is mostly cardio (and there is nothing wrong with cardio, see above about walking!), but you need some sort of strength training in there. Again, start small because everything counts, then add on. You don't need a gym, you don't even need weights. You just need your body. If you are already a walker, try adding in 10 squats every 5 minutes of your walk. Then 10 lunges, 10 pushups (find a bench or wall for incline pushups), etc.

You can also do a quick strength workout of those same 3 movements, 10 each 3x through. 

Be kind to yourself in knowing you don't have to make huge, grandiose changes in your exercise routine to start feeling good.

5. Breathe

Getting nice big diaphragmatic breathes in during your day is so important. It's so important that it honestly can count as movement. You might have noticed I've been saying "movement" instead of exercise. Often I feel like the word "exercise" conjures up this image of hard core workouts and programs that totally kick your booty. "Movement" makes me think of moving my body in a way that leaves me feeling strong, rejuvenated and refreshed.

Booty, Core & Pelvic Floor is a class that really makes me feel those three things. Most of that is due to the fact that we are using our breath to drive the movement. Using your diaphragm and waking it up tells your body you are in a relaxed state. It's even a way of tricking your body to thinking it is in a relaxed state. Try taking 5 deep diaphragmatic breathes every few hours to help recenter your body. 

Try one or try all of they things out. Let me know if they work and please share this article if it was useful to you. 

As always, contact me with any questions you may have! 

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