It’s been a tough year for keeping focused, staying motivated, and sticking with your fitness goals. If you’ve backtracked on your fitness this year, you’re not alone.  Don’t give up! In the midst of uncertainty, it’s more important than ever to take care of your health and make sure exercise is a part of your regular routine. That means moving, lifting weight, and sticking to a long-term fitness plan. Here’s what you need to do to re-energize your fitness goals.

Tip 1 – Let Go of the Past

The year 2020 has been highly unpredictable and you may not have been able to stay on track with your original fitness goals. That’s completely understandable. The key is to accept where you are right now. This is your new starting point. What happened in the past doesn’t matter. What does matter is what you’re going to do today and tomorrow.

Tip 2 – Reassess Your Fitness Goals

The fitness goals you had at the beginning of 2020 may no longer make sense for you right now. For example, if your January self dreamed of running a marathon by the end of the year, but your current September self hasn’t run a mile in months, then it’s time to re-examine your fitness goals.

Be realistic about what you can accomplish right now. If the kids are learning from home or you’ve had a job loss in your family, you may simply not have the emotional bandwidth for an aggressive fitness goal.

Think about which fitness goals you can accomplish and put together some new SMART goals. If working out four times a week is difficult at the moment, consider working out twice a week. Even performing 10-minute workouts at home will help improve your health.

Tip 3 – Create a Plan

You’ve got a new and improved fitness goal in mind, but how are you actually going to achieve it? It may sound a little boring but planning out your goal can make the difference between actually following through or losing interest. 

Let’s say your goal is to work out two times a week. What does that look like? Start asking yourself important questions like:

·         What days of the week will I work out?

·         What time will I work out on those days?

·         How long will I work out?

·         Where will I work out?

·         What will I do during my workout?

By answering these questions, you’ll draw yourself a roadmap to success. If you decide that you are going to work out at 6 PM every Tuesday and Thursday at the gym for one hour, now you’ll know exactly what to do. Here is even more great information on how to develop a workout routine

Tip 4 – Plan Home Workouts

If you aren’t ready to get back to the gym yet, you can still work toward your fitness goals at home.  

Yes, you can stay in shape at home. Designate an area of your home as your fitness space. It doesn’t need to be an entire room or be filled with fitness equipment. If you can fit a yoga mat in the area, you can do a workout.

Next, figure out what type of workout you want to do. There are tons of great bodyweight workouts that will push you to your limit, especially if you use the high-intensity interval training (HIIT) method, which focuses on short bursts of movement at or near your maximum capacity.

Additionally, you can add more resistance training to your home workout by using versatile and low-cost resistance bands or by adapting things already in your home. Fill empty milk jugs with water, and you’ve got weights!

Finally, if you need some help programming your workouts, the internet is filled with free or low-cost workout videos. You can also check with your fitness center to see if your gym offers on-demand or live video fitness classes.

Tip 5 – Recruit a Workout Partner

Motivation can be fleeting in 2020 when you’ve got so many other things on your mind. If you feel your fitness fervor sputtering, it’s time to recruit a workout partner. Find someone in your orbit who wants to get (or stay) in shape, too. That may be your partner, your best friend, a neighbor, or even your parents or your kids. Make a pact to work out together.

Working out with a partner makes the time at the fitness center more fun. You’ll have someone to suffer and celebrate with. Workout partners will also hold you accountable. It’s hard to skip the gym if you know someone is waiting for you to show up!

Even if you can’t make it to the gym, a workout partner can be helpful. If your workout partner doesn’t live in your household, consider holding a Zoom workout session together, or check in with each other during workout days and share pics and vids as proof of workout completion.

You Can Do It!

Staying fit may be the best thing you can do for yourself in this challenging year. Exercise makes you stronger, lowers your risk of certain lifestyle diseases, boosts your mood, and can help you manage stress and anxiety (among many other benefits).  

Be kind to yourself in 2020. If your original fitness goals aren’t right for you at this time, modify them to be achievable for you now. To give yourself the best chance of success, create a fitness plan and figure out all the important details. Can’t make it to the gym? Don’t give up. You can still get in great workouts at home. Finally, spread the joy of fitness and hold yourself accountable by recruiting a fitness partner.