One commonality we probably all share is falling off the fitness track occasionally. Life is dynamic, creating as many twists and turns as our mountain roads do in the High Country. Relocating, changing jobs, losing a family member, divorce, financial issues, illness and injury and significant travel may cause or contribute to our ability to remain committed, focused and adhere to our fitness program.
And finding our road again is not always a simple task. Therefore, due to the challenges created by these life changes, it makes sense to prepare for change. But, how do we do that when we do not often know what the change will be or when it will occur?
Using a financial metaphor may be helpful. Responsible budgeting requires making sure you have enough funds in your savings account to handle the unexpected expenses that will arise. And when you withdraw funds from the account, you plan to replenish those funds in preparation for the next crisis.
If we deplete our fitness program “account” with no plans to replenish those “funds,” we may end up “broke.” Consequently, setting up fitness program plans for the challenges we may face, enables us to respond to life rather than just reacting to it. Therefore, whether you have strayed from the fitness road or not, consider following the four strategies when life takes a different path than expected. As always, prior to beginning any exercise program, consult your physician.
1. For both those cruising along in your fitness program and those just getting back on track, immediately formulate a series of plans that will take into consideration and resolve potential pitfalls. An example would be that you know you will be traveling on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday of next week, so you have a travel exercise plan and a set appointment to begin again once you return. Travel can seriously sabotage a fitness program. Therefore, plan ahead to return a day early if possible so that you will not have the excuse of being too tired to make it to your exercise session upon returning. You may not have as much time on your trip, but you will return ready to step right back into your program.
2. Create a means for measurement of your results. Either a simple handwritten journal, on-line downloads from your heart rate monitor or other fitness applications, are essential for tracking progress and staying on the fitness road. Choose a metric and use it.
3. Seek out fitness programs that are well located, priced for your budget and timely. Consult with a qualified, certified and experienced fitness professional who will listen to your specific story and design a program that will consider all you have experienced and what outcomes you are striving to achieve. Whether this will mean in-home, one-on-one or group training, will depend upon your goals/objectives.
4. Visualize how you want to look and feel 365 days from today. An improvement in physical health, completing a 5K run or bike race, increasing physical/mental energy, happier, able to perform your daily activities fully, playing often, laughing and loving more are all excellent goals that fitness programs may provide, improve or enhance.
Jackie Wright is the owner/manager of Mountain Life Fitness in Granby. She may be reached at her website at http://www.mtnlifefitness.com and her email at firstname.lastname@example.org.