Getting back into fitness after a brief hiatus can be both challenging and rewarding. Recently, I spent two weeks away in a place with limited internet access and food choices, disrupting my exercise routine and healthy habits.
Little did I know this experience would serve as a catalyst for my determination to regain control and get back into fitness. During those chaotic weeks, my mornings, once filled with invigorating workouts and mindful meals, turned into a struggle. Relying on others for meal schedules caused me to gain 3kgs, a stark reminder of the importance of staying consistent with my fitness regimen.
Instead of letting this setback discourage me, I chose to view it as an opportunity to refocus my efforts and recommit to my fitness goals. This month, I have devised a comprehensive action plan to re-establish my routine, incorporating regular exercise, balanced nutrition, and mindfulness to stay on track and continue my fitness journey.
The Disruptive Experience
Those two weeks were a whirlwind, and my fitness routine took a backseat, leading to unexpected weight gain and leaving me feeling disheartened. Looking back, I realize there were actions I could have taken to improve the situation.
However, my life was incredibly busy at that time, and implementing those changes would have caused conflicts within my family. This setback fuelled my determination to get back into fitness. I realised how vital it is for women over 50 to support a consistent workout regimen and healthy lifestyle.
The Right Mindset
So I got derailed, but the important thing is to get back on track. Having the right mindset is absolutely crucial on any health journey. It’s all too common to get derailed, to slip up, and find ourselves on a slippery slope. But in these moments, our mindset becomes our most powerful tool.
Having the grit to pull yourself out of that negative spiral, looking beyond the setbacks, and focusing on the bigger picture sets the stage for fundamental transformation. One setback doesn’t have to define your entire journey. It’s about perseverance and tenacity to brush off the dust, get back up, and start again.
Each day is a new beginning, a chance to renew your commitment and carry on. Remember, the most significant battles are won in the mind first, so staying positive and determined can make all the difference.
Embracing this mindset helps you overcome obstacles and empowers you to navigate the challenges that come your way. So, take each day as a fresh opportunity, positively embrace the journey, and keep moving forward. Your mindset can be the driving force that propels you toward your goals, no matter how many bumps you meet along the way.
The Importance of Routine
Missing my workouts, and planned meals and the subsequent sense of achievement after completing my fitness routine made me appreciate the power of habits even more. As a woman over 50, a structured routine ensures physical health and promotes mental and emotional well-being. Routine has been a vital part of my past success.
Establishing a routine is more than just a series of repeated actions; it’s a powerful tool that empowers you and sets the foundation for success in various aspects of life, including fitness. Routines provide structure and predictability, allowing you to manage your time effectively and make room for essential activities like exercise, healthy eating, and self-care. When your fitness regimen becomes a part of your daily routine, it transforms from a sporadic effort into a consistent practice, significantly increasing your chances of achieving long-term success.
I recently read James Clear’s book, “Atomic Habits,” which brilliantly delves into the science of habit formation and emphasises the significance of daily practices. He talks about the idea of small, consistent changes leading to significant outcomes over time. By integrating healthy habits into your daily routine, you are creating a framework for success. These habits become ingrained in your lifestyle, making it easier to keep your fitness journey amidst life’s challenges.
Incorporating fitness activities into your routine, whether a morning workout, an evening walk, or a mindful stretching session before bed, sets up a sense of commitment and discipline. As these practices become habitual, they need less mental effort, making it easier to stick to your fitness goals. Moreover, routine fosters a sense of accomplishment and reinforces positive behaviour, enhancing your motivation to continue your fitness journey.
As James Clear suggested, setting up daily practices enables you to embrace a proactive approach to your health and well-being. By consistently engaging in fitness-related activities, you improve your physical health and boost your mental resilience.
Getting Back on Track: Action Plan
- Re-establish A Morning Routine
The first step in getting back into fitness is reinstating my morning rituals. Waking up early allows you to have dedicated time for yourself before the demands of the day take over. Drink some water to wake up your system.
Then, take part in some morning meditation, which acts as an anchor, grounding your mind and creating a sense of calm and centeredness. It helps you start the day with clarity and intention, reducing stress and anxiety. This practice can enhance your focus, improve decision-making, and boost your overall mental resilience, allowing you to approach challenges with a more composed and positive mindset.
Engage in a workout session, whether it’s a brisk walk, yoga, or strength training. This jumpstarts your metabolism, boosts energy levels, and enhances your mood. Exercise in the morning also promotes mental clarity and focus, helping you approach your tasks with a sharper mind.
- Balanced Nutrition:
Nutrition is crucial for a healthy lifestyle. Focus on balanced meal plans, portion control, and incorporating diverse nutrients is pivotal in supporting your fitness journey. After 50, protein becomes the macro of utmost importance. Taking control of your diet by preparing your own meals allows you to be intentional about the ingredients you use and the nutritional value of your food. It’s a proactive step toward aligning your diet with your fitness goals.
Practising mindful eating takes this a step further. It involves being fully present during meals, savouring each bite, and paying attention to your body’s hunger and fullness cues. Mindful eating encourages a deeper connection with your food, allowing you to appreciate flavours and textures fully. This awareness prevents mindless snacking and emotional eating, ensuring that your food choices align with your fitness goals.
- Staying Hydrated:
Adequate hydration supports overall health. Staying adequately hydrated is equally important. After hours of sleep, your body needs to replenish fluids. I find that drinking water in the morning not only hydrates you but also kickstarts your metabolism and aids in the flushing out of toxins from your body.
Hydration is crucial for optimal physical and mental performance, so keep a bottle handy throughout the day. Carrying a water bottle and drinking enough water throughout the day becomes a habit. Staying hydrated not only supports physical performance but also aids digestion and promotes healthy skin.
- Incorporating Physical Activities:
Along with regular workouts, I include various physical activities in my daily routine. Incorporating brisk walks and my favourite strength training routines ensures I utilise my muscles, which is an essential practice as we age.
Listening to your body is key during this phase. Pay attention to how your body feels during and after exercises. If you experience discomfort or pain, giving yourself adequate rest and recovery time is essential. Overexerting yourself can lead to burnout and demotivation, hindering your progress in the long run.
- Tracking Progress:
To stay accountable and motivated, I continue to track my progress. I record my workouts, meals, and overall well-being using apps on my phone. These days, there are so many apps you can use for this.
If technology isn’t your thing, you can also use journaling as a way to record your progress. Additionally, journaling provides a space for self-reflection and introspection. You can jot down your thoughts, challenges, and feelings related to your fitness journey. This self-awareness can be enlightening, helping you identify patterns, triggers, and areas for improvement. It also acts as a source of inspiration when you look back and see how far you’ve come. Celebrating small victories keeps me motivated and encourages me to continue my fitness journey.
Conclusion: Embracing the Fitness Journey
Getting back into fitness after a setback can be empowering. It’s not just about shedding those extra kilograms; it’s about regaining control over your life and well-being. For women over 50, maintaining a consistent fitness routine is essential. We can lead active and fulfilling lives by prioritising our health, staying disciplined, and embracing the fitness journey.