A person’s journey to fitness is rarely straightforward. There will be highs and lows. Everyone can experience rapid progress as well as performance plateaus. And even as you persevere, you can change or develop new motivations for working out.
But above all, life will continuously throw unexpected challenges and disruptions your way. They can cause you to lose momentum, focus, or motivation. After all that hard work, the last thing you want is to fall back into old habits and unhealthy patterns. Here’s how you can avoid the dangers of fitness regression.
Bring positive influences into your life
Pet owners today know that taking care of their little friends is a sizeable endeavor. Whether it’s a caterpillar or a cat, you have to feed it. There are potential allergies and diseases to consider, and you have to look out for parasites. On the other hand, those vermin are practically impossible to get rid of.
Like pets, the things we often desire positively contribute to our lives, but equally require effort to maintain. Whereas it’s well-known in pest control that unwanted critters not only come uninvited but fight against your efforts to keep them out.
Negative influences and bad habits tend to come creeping back and take up residence in our lives. They do so because people don’t take measures to clean up their overall lifestyle.
You have to keep your house clean and orderly so that pets thrive and vermin stay away. It’s the same thing with physical fitness and your lifestyle influences. If you’re always in the company of people who never exercise, have unhealthy habits, or ridicule you for trying to improve, you’ll keep getting dragged down.
Surround yourself with positivity. If you can’t convince your friends, family, or colleagues to adopt a healthy lifestyle, it might be time to keep your distance and associate with better influences.
Always exercise with proper form
Our bodies have evolved to be capable of a wide variety of movements. But over the centuries, as we’ve grown more civilized, people have increasingly taken up occupations that don’t require physical activity. Our leisure activities have also followed suit. As a result, modern lifestyles are highly sedentary.
But when you seek out a more active lifestyle, you probably don’t engage in exercises that are as simple as standing, sitting, or walking. Your body can execute a push-up or a squat, but these are complex movements. You need to re-learn how to engage all the right muscles.
Physical fitness trainers always emphasize the correct form for good reason. If you don’t observe proper form when attempting an exercise, your body tends to over-compensate. Stronger muscles carry more of the load than they should. It puts them under more strain than usual, resulting in fatigue and a high risk of injury.
When you feel excessive soreness, are too tired to go about your everyday activities, or get injured from working out, you’ll inevitably suffer setbacks on your fitness journey. Never skip your warm-ups and stretches before you exercise. Spot yourself in a mirror, or consider bringing in some help. A good trainer or workout buddy will never let you carry on training with poor form.
Mitigate the effects of disruption
Health should be everyone’s top concern in the long term. No matter how much you earn or how many great experiences you’re enjoying, if those things come at the detriment of your health, you’ll be short-changing yourself.
But we’re all prone to slipping up at times. Maybe you stay out late or party too hard. Or your job requires you to be on the road most days of the week. In the morning, you don’t feel well; there are days when you get sick and are running low on energy.
Disruptions of this sort can be inevitable. Thus, part of your approach to fitness must include the discipline and consistency necessary to mitigate their effects. Otherwise, a missed day can become a week of skipping training. A holiday can turn into an entire month of consuming back the empty calories you’ve worked hard to burn off.
Feeling under the weather can preclude strenuous activity. But it doesn’t mean you should stay in bed all day. Low-intensity exercise, such as walking, can help you recover while maintaining your rhythm. Likewise, being on the road can keep you from hitting the gym. But you can do bodyweight exercises or yoga sequences even in the most sparsely furnished hotel room.
Getting fit isn’t a sprint. It’s a lifelong journey. How you progress can vary, but you have to make sure that you keep taking steps forward, not backward.