As we learn to navigate our new normal with this year’s health crisis, many of us emerge from our quarantine looking and more importantly, feeling, not our best. Maybe we’ve gained a little weight, or lost some muscle, or gotten out of our routines. Almost a year has gone by and what do we have to show for it? What happened to our New Year’s Resolutions?
Well, chances are this year is a little different than what you planned. It has been for all of us! Maybe you didn’t hit your goals and maybe your goals changed. That’s ok! Let’s get back on track. And when we say “get back on track” we don’t mean take a flying leap and jump all in. That’s tough, mentally and physically. And sometimes, when the first step is too big, it keeps us from getting started at all.
So instead, I want to bring to mind a few small steps you can do to get started. What I want you to do is pick one nutrition step and one exercise step and commit to them for one week. The following week, add two more or increase the difficulty of the steps you chose. Some of these steps may be appropriate for you, and some may be too simple or too difficult to start off with. So just use this as a starting off point to set your own goals.
Before we start, I want to quickly talk about how important it is to set concrete goals and stay accountable to them. Your goals are appointments you make with yourself! Think of someone in your life that would encourage you to hit your goals. Maybe it’s a partner, parent, child or friend, or maybe it’s your Fitness Together trainer. Whoever it is, I want you to tell them your goals. Make it a measurable and attainable goal, and tell your buddy. I’m gonna do this, watch me!
Let’s break up these manageable steps into two categories: Exercise and Nutrition. Both are important to your health!
Try out a virtual exercise class. Many studios offer online programs, including us. Everything from yoga to strength to cardio classes can be found online through different exercise studios, youtube, or apps. Do some research to find one that you love, but just to get you started: I’m partial to the youtube channel “Mr and Mrs Muscle” for cardio and strength workouts, and the app “Down Dog” for Yoga.
Get the recommended 10,000 steps per day. If you’ve got a FitBit, Apple Watch, or other tracker, you’re ahead of the game on this one. But for those of you that don’t, there are countless apps you can download to your smartphone that will act as a pedometer. Wear it for a while and see how many steps you’re usually getting. Each week, increase your weekly goal by 10% until you hit an average of 10,000 steps (or roughly 5 miles) per day.
Try out a new place for a hike or walk. With the weather starting to cool, more of San Diego opens up to us as prime hiking spots. Maybe you’re a beach walker, or like strolling around Balboa park, or climbing the peaks in East County. There’s limitless options! A hike or walk is a healthy activity that’s good for you physically and socially, all while allowing you to still safely socially distance.
Commit to a certain amount of active minutes per day. Use your fitbit or other tracker or just count your minutes. It is suggested to get 150 minutes of moderate activity per week or 75 minutes of vigorous activity. If you’re not close to this amount, remember to work up to it.
Ask your trainer for a home program. If you’re already a member of Fitness Together, just reach out to your trainer and they’d be happy to provide you with a home program. If not, it’s just another reason to join! We don’t expect you to train with us every day, we know you may not have the time or resources for that. That’s why we provide a workout for you to do at home using the equipment you have on hand. (And if you don’t have any at all, that’s just fine!)
Prep your kitchen for healthy eating. Yes, this means getting rid of the snacks that shouldn't be there. Stop buying them and donate what you have. Look at our past blog (here) or seminar (on Facebook), titled “Must Haves for a Healthy Kitchen” for advice to get started!
Get to the grocery store and start shopping right. Again, we’ve got a great blog post and seminar titled “Grocery Shopping” that goes over how to prepare to shop and what to do once you’re there to stay on track. Check them out!
Try out a new easy recipe. The internet is a limitless place of recipes! Pinterest is a very user friendly place to start, but Facebook groups and just a plain google search work too. If you like to try new things you can always mix it up, but if you’re just getting back into a routine pick a recipe with ingredients you have or can easily get, with tools you’re comfortable with.
Track your intake. Two easy apps with great free versions are LoseIt or MyFitnessPal, but a pen and paper also works! Tracking your workouts keeps you aware of what you’re eating, whether you’re tracking macros (carbohydrates, protein, and fats) or overall calories.
Start a nutrition program! We provide a great program called Balanced Habits. This 3 month private nutrition counseling program can be done either live in our studio or through an app from home. It includes recipe ideas, meal plans, and a large list of “approved” foods. No starvation diets here, this program teaches you how to fuel yourself so that you feel in control, even after our 3 months together is done! To grab 25% off either program, text Greg at 858-531-9548 and tell him you read this post!
Now, pick two goals, either from the list above or something more applicable to you. Commit to starting them today (today means today, whether or not you read this on a Monday!) and jump in.
That’s it! You got this. Remember to always listen to your body. The suggestions above are just that, suggestions, and may be appropriate for you or not. If you’ve gotten out of your routine, start slow. If you jump in with both feet you risk hurting yourself, which can set you back even farther! Remember to give yourself rest or active recovery days: a light walk, yoga session, or stretch is perfect between workouts.
Let us know how you do! Good luck!