While the kids get ready to go back to school, the grown-ups get back on track with their routines, which often includes getting back in shape. Like with New Year’s resolutions, fall fitness enthusiasm tends to start strong (in September) and fizzle out (as early as October). Don’t let that happen to you! In fact, I won’t let it happen to you. To help you get started and stay active in the long run (both literal and metaphorical), I encourage you to take my Back to Fitness challenge. Starting now, I’ll get you set up to start working on your plan and then follow up over the fall with tips, ideas and exercise to-do’s. If you’re not up for a full challenge, you can still use the tips and advice as you please.
I solemnly declare to set one fitness goal, make a plan to accomplish it, and follow Katya’s plan for 12 weeks. No excuses — just pure commitment to work, hard.
Use this time to re-connect with your active self and make your plan of action. I strongly recommend recruiting friends to take the challenge, too — strength in numbers! You can set a common goal or simply encourage each other through individual plans. Either way, it’s always more fun with a buddy or two.
Fundamental 1: Set a challenge goal
Decide what you’d like to accomplish during the fall season. remember: choose just one precise, realistic goal. Think to yourself, “For the next 12 weeks, I will hit the gym three days a week” rather than “I will work out regularly”; “I will learn to run and train to complete 5km without walking,” etc. Once you’ve decided, write down your goal and share it with someone you trust to make it official.
Fundamental 2: Make your action plan
What do you need to do to reach your goal? What type of activities and/or lifestyle changes can you handle? Where can you find support? Plan and maintain a steady fitness schedule. You want to create a routine that is easy to follow and that works with your lifestyle. If you know you are unlikely to go out again after returning home from work, be sure to squeeze in your fitness between work and home. If you’re not a morning person, don’t fool yourself into believing you will wake up two hours (or even 30 minutes) earlier to work out. You know it as well as I do: the hand that slaps the snooze button will win, every time, and your workout won’t happen.
Fundamental 3: Commit to your challenge
Promise yourself you will stick to your plan. If you have a bad day (or two), let it go — and go back to your plan. If you need to tweak your plan/schedule/regimen to better suit your needs? Tweak away! Do what you need to do to get through the challenge. The key is to never give up on your plan, your challenge or yourself.
Write it all down, share the info with supportive friends, and keep reminder copies on the fridge, at your desk, in your purse — anywhere and everywhere.
I, [insert name], solemnly declare to set one fitness goal, make a plan to accomplish it, and follow my plan for 12 weeks. No excuses — just pure commitment to work, hard.
You are ready to get started! Find some quiet time to reflect on your goal and plan, start putting it together, sleep on it, finalize it and then get moving. Feel free to share your goal and plan in the comments — I, too, can be part of your support network! Don’t forget to check back here for tips, advice and moves to help you out over the weeks to come!
Katya Mohsen is a personal trainer with over 10 years of experience in fitness and sports training. Catch her practical fitness advice Thursdays on Slice.ca.