January 4th, 2016 is right around the corner. What is so significant about this date? It's the first Monday of the New Year. This is when all of the New Year's resolutions kick in and people flock to the gym to get back in shape. In other words, I call this day 'Black Monday'.
If it has been some time since you last exercised, you might benefit from some of the prior posts on this site about planning, setting expectations, and reinforcing new habits.
To recap, increase your odds of successfully 'getting back into shape' by following these two simple guidelines:
- Planning Ahead
- Setting Realistic Expectations
Your resolution to get back in shape should start long before you show up to begin your first exercise in the form of a PLAN. Know which exercises you want to do, and know how to do them. Write down some alternatives in case the stations you want to use are occupied. This will result in a more efficient use of your time and energy, and reduce the chance of injury.
Setting realistic expectations through your plan will encourage you to capture some 'quick wins' and give you a sense of accomplishment on which you can build. Remember, it took months, years, and even decades for most of us to fall out of shape, and it wouldn't be fair to expect one to recapture fitness over a day or two. Keeping your expectations tempered is a way to condition yourself to experiencing exercise as a fun, positive outlet, over the long-term.
These two simple tips will keep you motivated, allow positive results to be experienced quicker, and increase the odds that an active lifestyle becomes a permanent habit!