Get Up & Get Moving
The hardest bit about engaging in any fitness activity is not enduring the arduousness of it all. It is getting up and getting moving. If you prefer to work out in the morning like I do, convincing yourself to get out of bed in the dead of the night is one of the biggest battles in life. Your cotton sheets with 1000 thread count are warm and snugly but the outside world is cold and ruthless. You will find yourself having an internal monologue, asking questions like “Do I really need to do this?” “Who invented exercise?” “Is Oprah happy?”
It doesn’t get any better if you are an evening person. It is highly likely that you will look for a believable excuse, at least believable only to yourself, why you would have to skip the gym. Evenings will be perfect to schedule a meeting with that elusive client you have been trying to on-board for a year, or your friend who has just come back from Colombia will want to buy you a drink and fill you in with all the juicy details of her audacious solo travel. And if you really have no meeting, you will convince yourself how you first need to pass by the house to see the kids. You will get home exhausted after working your fingers to the bone and the moment you kick off your shoes and sink into your leather couch from Odds & Ends, you will suddenly have an epiphany about how the gym or running or soccer is so overrated!
I prefer to do my work out in the morning as I am usually too exhausted in the evening to have a productive session. So, I’ll run this feature from a morning routine perspective. I would like to think that in the last two years I have led a considerably fit lifestyle. Maya Angelo once said that “When you get, give. When you learn, teach,” So here I am not really teaching but sharing what I have learnt along the way that has kept me focused on my fitness regime, though if we are being entirely honest, I do fall off the wagon once in a while.
1. Morning or evening? Identify which hours work for you and stick to them no matter how hard. Your system is highly adaptable, it will eventually adjust appropriately and embrace your new lifestyle. It took me about two weeks to comfortably get up at 5:00am.
2. Lay out your clothes/pack your bag the previous night. It’s important that you go to bed knowing exactly what you are wearing to the gym and to work, such that when you wake up, your only job is to say your prayers, pee and poop, brush your teeth, slip into your work out gear and grab everything that you need to carry with you. This should take all of 10 minutes unless you are the type that does make up even when going to the gym. If you need to leave the house at 5:00am, 4:45am would be an ideal time to wake up.
3.Invest in comfortable and fashionable fitness gear-If you love to look good, then the thought of you rocking the new Nike Pegasus or Adidas Ultra Boost shoes or even sheer tights and colourful tank tops should be enough motivation to get out of bed. But more importantly, invest in quality wear. Otherwise you will end up getting hurt while working out (refer to this post) which will be a good enough excuse to quit.
4.Have an accountability partner. It could be someone as intimate as your boyfriend, lover, partner or best friend, or a WhatsApp group that has common minded people or something as broad as social media. Let them know what your workout plans are and share your progress with them. Trust me, once you put your word out there, you will feel the pressure to live by it and do a good job while at it.
5.Start easy then gradually increase the intensity of your workout. You may have a goal of getting killer abs in a week but trust me, even if you lived in the gym for 7 days, it is highly unlikely that you will achieve that. What is most certainly likely to happen if you start heavy is that your body will undergo such severe shock leaving you with aches and pains that might deter you from carrying on with your schedule. Don’t get me wrong, you will still get aches even if you start slow but nothing that you can’t get used to.
I hope this helps to get you started. There’s never a perfect time, just get up and get moving already!
Outfits from Collabor Active Wear