The other day a friend of mine asked, “Exactly how in the hell do I get back on track with my fitness?!?” It seems that over the past several months he has been slipping further and further away from her previous healthy lifestyle. I totally get it, There are days we would much rather have the chicken fried steak smothered in gravy (I’m a country boy at heart) than a kale and quinoa salad. Go to the gym or out for a run and get all sweaty and out of breath? Um, no thanks, I will be right here binge watching Netflix like it’s my job. We all go through ups and downs and periods where we are fired up and passionate about wanting to take better care of ourselves and then there are times when practically zero fucks can be given.
Sometimes there are extenuating circumstances which we will use as reasons why we can’t workout or take care of ourselves. My company downsized and I just lost my job, I just found out my brother has cancer, the cat just discovered how to take all the toilet paper off the roll and thoughtfully distribute it throughout the entire house. Sometimes it’s just a matter of not wanting to (excuse me Nike) “just do it.”
However, with either scenario, we are faced with the potential of a dangerous slippery slope, because the fact is, whatever is deterring us from making those healthier choices that we know are good for us, the longer we spend off track, the harder it is to get back on. If it’s just been a few days or so since you’ve darkened the doorway of your gym, most likely a quick trip back will have you into the groove again. Tell yourself you’ll go for just 10 minutes even, most likely once you’re there you will stay longer and wonder why you didn’t feel like going in the first place.
If it’s been longer than that though it may take a little longer to get back on course. I suggest starting with adding one habit that you can commit to doing for the next few weeks. Maybe it’s going to the gym 2 or 3 times a week, or cooking a healthy dinner at home twice a week. Whatever it is, make it a priority and make it happen, because the success you have with starting your new habit will help to establish a pattern of success for your next challenge. In about 4 weeks after having successfully implemented your new habit, tackle another one. Keep celebrating your wins and adding to them until you get back to where you want to be. But remember to keep it simple and realistic. Wanting to drastically change everything overnight is a surefire way to set yourself up for failure.
So, get rid of the chicken fried steak leftovers, turn off the Netflix, pry yourself off the sofa and start making a plan to get back on track!