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Why You're here
If you've landed on this article, chances are, you've recently enjoyed a summer holiday and, like many of us, are facing two interrelated challenges.
Firstly, your fitness regime has taken a bit of a hit. Those early morning runs or after-work gym sessions have been replaced with leisurely lie-ins or late-night celebrations. And you know what? That's okay. Holidays are a time for relaxation and indulgence. But, here's the crux: if a short summer break has significantly disrupted your routine, then perhaps it's time we reconsider the nature of your fitness regime because on the face of it, if you don't get right back into training and eating well on auto-pilot then the chances are these were never truly engrained habits you can rely on, this should all be second nature if you're going to be able to maintain it.
Secondly, you may have returned home with a newfound drive to get back into shape. As much as that motivation is commendable, it's also a red flag. If you spent your holiday uncomfortable in your swimwear, if the thought of going to the beach filled you with dread, then we're dealing with more than just physical fitness – this is about your self-confidence, your comfort in your own skin.
Both these challenges hint at a common issue: an approach to fitness that is inconsistent and unsustainable, that avails short-term wins over long-term wellness, and leaves you in a cycle of peaks and troughs, starts and stops and ultimately leaves you victim to the all or nothing mentality.
This is neither healthy nor enjoyable. So, let's discuss a better approach, one that focuses on habits you can maintain and that positively contribute to your self-esteem.
Establishing Long-term Fitness Habits
Short-term goals, like getting in shape for a summer holiday, can be powerful motivators. However, they can also lead to unsustainable habits – extreme diets, exhaustive workout regimes, and the inevitable post-goal slump. The key to long-term fitness is consistency, a measured approach that you can maintain throughout the year, come rain or shine, at home or on holiday.
Here are some steps to help you establish such a routine:
- 1. Identify activities you enjoy: Exercise doesn't have to be a chore. In fact, it shouldn't be. Whether it's dancing, hiking, swimming, or cycling, find physical activities you love and look forward to.
- 2. Set realistic goals: Focus on progress, not perfection. Instead of setting a drastic weight loss goal of 10 kilos in a month, aim for 1/2 kilo a week. Remember, slow and steady wins the race. It it’s done in a maintainable way, there will be no bounce back and lost weight won’t be regained.
- 3. Plan ahead: Have a workout schedule. Knowing what you'll do and when helps maintain consistency and minimises the risk of skipping workouts.
- 4. Make it part of your lifestyle: Incorporate physical activity into your daily life – take the stairs, walk to the shops, do a yoga routine in the morning, or try my short daily mobility flow here
- 5. Listen to your body: Rest is as important as exercise. Overworking can lead to injuries and burnout. Find a balance that works for you.
The video below outlines my method for making exercise a daily habit:
The Emotional Component of Fitness
Fitness isn't just about looking good; it's about feeling good. It's about walking into any room – or beach – confident and comfortable. If your holiday was marred by self-consciousness, it's time to shift the focus from how you look to how you feel. Embrace your body, appreciate what it can do, and treat it well, if you do this consistently the aesthetics will take care of themselves.
One of the biggest insights about fitness I've tried to teach in my personal training career is that we often spend so much time trying to get motivated that we fail to see that it's acting on us where we are all the time. We decide to or not to take action on anything, including our fitness goals depending on how much discomfort we feel with the current state of affairs. The reason you feel motivated to get in shape after a summer holiday is generally because you in your internal dialogue, whilst you were there, you felt that you'd like to have been in better shape, more comfortable and confident. It isn't discipline making you look up exercise solutions right now, it's the desire to avoid future discomfort and pain. It's powerful, utilise it and allow it to help you take action.
This Video explains the truth about how motivation works in health & Fitness:
A Vision for Next Summer
Picture this: it's next summer. You're planning another beach holiday, but this time, there's no panic, no crash diets or last-ditch exercise programs. Because you've spent the year taking care of yourself. Because you can take a beach holiday at a moment's notice without worrying about how you'll look in your swimwear. Because your fitness habits are so ingrained, you've even kept active on your holiday. You're not just complying with a routine; you're living a lifestyle that enhances your well-being.
Sounds good, doesn't it? It's not just a dream; it can be your reality. With the right approach, with sustainable and maintainable habits, you can become the best version of yourself. You can walk into next summer – and every season thereafter – feeling and looking great.
So, let's make it happen. Consider scheduling a consultation call with me. Together, we can create a fitness plan that suits you, that you enjoy, and that leads to long-term wellness. Don't just get in shape for a holiday. Get in shape for life.
Let's start your journey to wellness today. No more yo-yoing. No more post-holiday slumps. Just consistent progress towards a healthier, happier you. I look forward to helping you achieve your fitness goals.
Let's make it happen!