Year-end celebrations are over, you have plunged into the new year, but finding it hard to shake off the holiday slump. Here are tips on how to get back to exercise routine after the holiday season.
2020 is finally over! As we bid goodbye to the year that made us withdraw and self-reflect like never before, we are also gearing up to face all that 2021 has to throw at us. We’re of course hoping things are not as bad as last year, but just because 2020 is over does not mean that the pandemic has disappeared. It is imperative that we stay on guard even now. We understand that the holiday season has left us feeling lazy, lethargic and demotivated, and the pandemic isn’t helping. So what do we do to break out of this slump?
It’s okay if all that you did in the last 10 days of 2020 was sleep in, eat a lot of cake and party with loved ones. The smaller breaks from routine don’t make a failure, they make you human. The most successful people in the world slip up on their habits, and when it is festive season even the best of us cannot be motivated to stay on track.
Having said that, if you still feel you need a vacation from your vacation here are four strategies that will help you get back on track.
Take it slow
When you have taken a long break from your usual routine it is always a good idea to start slow – you don’t want to rush into 5th gear without any momentum! It is quite overwhelming to suddenly jump into the thick of things after a long, lazy break, which is why we recommend that you take things slow.
For example: If you have not worked out for two weeks, start with yoga or a brisk walk before getting into the routine. If your carb intake has increased in the last two weeks, slowly reduce the quantity every day, so that you are back to your usual consumption within a week. If you haven’t been meditating, start with 2 minute breathing exercises every day. Give yourself the first half of the day on your first day back at work to go through emails and plan out your week.
Make a schedule and stick to it
It’s important to give your habits a specific space in your life. You can list down your habits on a calendar so that you remind yourself to take out time to exercise, paint, dance, read, travel, or do whatever it is that you like to do. Making a schedule is only 30% of the work, the real deal is sticking to it. What if you suddenly realise that you don’t have time for a workout because a meeting has over shot its time? Instead of going to the gym, go for a run or do some yoga! You don’t have enough time to write that personal blog post? That’s okay – write a paragraph. You don’t have time to meditate for 20 minutes? Take 2 minutes for a guided breathing session. The point is to find a way to stick to the schedule no matter how small it is.
Indulge in positive self-talk
Positive self-talk will help you stay on track and prevent you from getting overwhelmed. Tell yourself that after the year that you’ve had, it is important to take a break to enjoy doing nothing. Focus on how this break is making you feel, and celebrate this feeling of rejuvenation. ‘I am enough’, ‘I am doing my best’, ‘I deserve that break and it makes me feel grateful’ are some of the things that you can tell yourself.
Always remember: If one workout is not enough to give you six-pack abs, missing one workout is not going to undo all your progress. If one meal cannot make you ripped, one meal cannot make you gain weight either. Remind yourself that this was a break and not your usual routine.
Yes, even after coming back from a long break you deserve to take breaks during the day. Don’t let guilt force you into believing that you have to work yourself into the ground just because you were away. Remember to be kind to yourself. Take a 5-10 min break every 3 hours to relax. Focus on one thing at a time.
Here’s hoping you get back from the holidays in the mood to recommit to a fitter, healthier, and happier lifestyle!