It's June 18th, and we are still in quarantine, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel, somewhere....or maybe water. Sorry, just missing my water park visits.
I am not here to discuss politics about the current state of the country, or anything like that. I feel I need to write that first before moving forward. I live in New Jersey, which was a "hotspot" of Covid-19 and we went on lockdown in mid-March. As my state slowly opens up, there are many different feelings and since this is my blog, I can only write to my own thoughts and concerns. Gyms and fitness facilities are not included in the first two phases of reopening and the concrete dates for these phases are not available. So what does that mean? We need to keep working out at home! You can also go outside! Many gyms are doing their group classes in a local park, so do check your local facilities to see what they are up to. It may be a gym you haven't visited before, but I am sure they would welcome new potential members!
So, let's keep it up the momentum!
As I said in my last blog, establishing a routine has really helped me get through my feelings about the situation. Exercise helps with physical AND mental health. I don't think anyone would argue that. I know some people (and I was one of them back in the day) that need the accountability of gym/fitness facility. I was one of those people "If I am not paying, I am not going". Seriously. Let me digress for a moment. Let's go back to Nineteen ninety ahem....
I just graduated college and I landed my first job. I majored in English in college (which I know would make most parents cringe these days), but I landed a job in publishing two months after I graduated. Heck yeah, a job actually related to my major. Take that doubters! My company offered a FANTASTIC deal where employees could use a gym just across the street for two dollars a visit with our employee ID. No, that is NOT a typo. TWO DOLLARS PER VISIT!! Did I go? Sometimes. The thing was, I had no financial incentive to go. If I didn't go, no money lost. At that time in my life, money was my motivation. I had NO routine, I went when I felt like it, and honestly, I was just in Ok shape for being 22. If Covid-19 came around back then, I would be doomed for staying in shape. I had no accountability and no routine. (Ok, most people would have been in the same situation since there was barely an internet...but not the point). It sounded crazy to my friends but I joined ANOTHER gym. I know, crazy but my motivation was money. If they were going to be taking money from each month, I was going to get my butt there. And I did. At that time I really loved group fitness so that is how I scheduled my visits. I was single and living on my own planning workouts around a gym's schedule worked just fine for me.
Ok, flash forward to today. I personally do not pay for a gym membership (yay for perks of being a fitness instructor), but before lockdown I had a regular routine between teaching classes and my own workouts. Money was no longer my motivation. I lived for my routines now. I became my OWN accountability. As I mentioned in my last post, working out with friends virtually has been an enormous help, but I still do some on my own. In today's media centered world we can easily create our own accountability. But it all starts from within. As the saying goes, it all starts with you...or something like that. There are tons of fitness, nutrition, wellness, weight loss programs out there all at your fingertips, but nothing will work unless you initiate it. I have to tell myself this ALL the time. No one is going to do this for me. Yes, I can have lots of help like workout videos and meal plans, but I am the one that needs to get the ball rolling. I am in charge of my own goals. It is so much easier than done.
So what else do I do? Remember, this is all about me. Ha ha.
When I really want to focus on my eating habits, I actually set an alarm on my phone to remind me to write down what I have eaten that day. Just seeing it down on paper (yep, I still like pen and paper) helps me see what types of food I am consuming. I do this for drinking water sometimes too. That's just something that works for me. Maybe you put menus on your fridge that helps you stay on track so you don't "just order pizza" just out of apathy.
If it's fitness you want to track...there are tons of apps and programs to keep you accountable. Recently I started running again and I have been working on just building up a running base. I am about to start digging back to a half-marathon training program I used a few years ago. When I print a training program out and hang it up on a wall it's as if I carved it into stone. I keep to that plan like glue. I don't know what it is, but something about checking out all those workouts as I go just motivates me. I am just a pen and paper person overall. I even have GASP a actual notebook planner. I got into the bullet journal this year, but that is a post for another day. This could be any workout plan. One of my favorite youtube fitness trainers posts tons of fitness videos,but she also includes a four week plan each month and links to the video to do that day. How awesome is that? You need to check out Karen at Workout Hotel. Seriously, she rocks. But it all starts with you...
Please do share what motivates you, or what do you need to do to keep motivated For me it is hanging a plan up and checking off workouts. Since I have been running a lot outdoors, I like seeing those miles add up on my Garmin watch...but that only tells half the story. My running plan that hangs on the wall also includes any cross-training I include. It's good to see the big picture. But what motivates me and keeps my momentum may not work for you. Or maybe you can inspire someone else with what works for you. It's not always just one thing. Like I said for me it is my printed plan as well as my Workout Buddies that keep the momentum going. This post is all about me (yup such a narcissist) but your motivation is about YOU!