Rebound from fitness setbacks in Northern California

JUL 10, 2017
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Are you the one with good intentions and an on-again, off-again fitness routine? Have you changed jobs and lost your workout mojo? Having trouble reaching your goal?


Welcome to The Backsliders Club. Don’t worry, you’re in good company. Even dedicated athletes have bad days — or even bad weeks. And, like them, you can come back stronger.


A setback is an opportunity


Having a setback doesn’t mean you’ve failed, so don’t get discouraged. It’s a sign that you might have to rethink your fitness plan, schedule, goals, or motivation a bit.


In fact, a setback can help inspire you to explore new activities, make new friends, and adjust a hectic schedule. It may take some trial and error, patience, and a sense of humor.


Enjoy yourself


Life is too short not to have fun — and exercise should be fun. If you’re bored with what you’re doing, try something new.


If you can’t do your usual exercise, you can still enjoy yourself and get moving. Indulge in a relaxing few minutes of stretching. Walk to the corner store. Climb a hill and enjoy the sunset.


Encourage yourself


Think you’re a bad person for skipping your workout? Have you gotten mad at yourself for dropping a ball or not running fast enough?


A little competitiveness is healthy; a lot isn’t. Even if you enjoy competition, pressuring yourself can keep you from getting the full benefit of exercise. What should you do?


  • Focus on what you’re doing, not on the outcome.
  • Learn to encourage yourself with positive self-talk.
  • Remind yourself why you work out.
  • Remember the other benefits, like enjoying a lovely view, window shopping, and spending time with friends and family.

Reach out to others. Sometimes working out with others can help keep things in perspective. If you’re stuck in a rut, consider getting a health coach to help you get going again.


Reward yourself


Sometimes linking exercise with something else you like can help get you moving.


  • Want to support a charity? Sign up to walk a 5k.
  • Like to hike? Plan a trip to a national park to enjoy your new hill-climbing skills.
  • Need incentives? Promise yourself new plants for your garden, sports tickets, or a spa day.

Track your progress


You might be content knowing you’re getting fitter, but when the going gets tough, sometimes it helps to know how far you’ve come — and plan where you’d like to go next.


Explore your feelings


That little voice in your head that tells you not to work out is probably telling you what’s not working about your fitness routine. But there are things you can do to fix the problems.

That little voice Try this
I’m too out of shape.
  • Fitness comes in all shapes and sizes. Join a group or take a class with others who look or feel like you do.
  • Want to go it alone? Start with short, 5-minute sessions and add time as you get fitter.
I don’t have time.
  • Exercise a little at a time. Do 3 10-minute walks instead of 1 30-minute one.
  • Double up. Your chores can be exercise, too.
  • Fit exercise into your normal day: Walk from the train station instead of taking the bus, take the stairs, etc.
  • Trade half an hour of TV for a half an hour walk.
I’m bored.
  • Do things you like, not things you think you “have to” do.
  • Add fun to your exercise. Bring a friend. Listen to music, watch TV, or read.
  • Change up your routes and routines.
I’m too tired.
  • Keep going. The more active you become, the more energy you’ll have.
Exercise hurts.I’ll hurt myself.
  • Choose activities you’re comfortable with, especially swimming and walking, which have low injury rates.
  • Slow down. Increase your workouts gradually, and go for “all gain, no pain.”
I feel guilty taking time for myself.
  • Stick to your plans — and invite your friends and family sometimes.
  • You deserve good health, and you can’t take care of others if you’re not healthy, too. Tell your friends and family you care, and you’ll have more energy and a better mood when you’re with them.
The weather’s bad.
  • Try different indoor and outdoor activities.
  • Get the right clothes and gear for the weather conditions.


*This article was originally published on You can read the original version here.

TOPICSBacksliders ClubfitnessSouthern CaliforniaStay Active