We all do it. Slip up for a few days or weeks and get out of our regular eating and exercise schedule and it may feel impossible to get back to our good habits. Sure, we can make plenty of excuses, and some of them might be legitimate. But for the most part we are just fooling ourselves. If we really want to get back into shape and train ourselves in good habits, we have the capability of doing so. After a weeklong vacation of dining out in Maine and New York, I am committed to getting right back into my exercise routines and a healthy eating plan. Whatever setbacks or challenges you may be facing, I challenge you to overcome them and commit to changing your lifestyle as well. Give yourself a fresh start and stay focused because you can do whatever you set your mind to doing. Try these 3 steps to gain motivation and set yourself up for success:
1) Get a playlist that motivates you to work out and look your best. The following songs are currently on my playlist:
Fighter… Christina Aguilera
The Sky’s The Limit… Jasun Derulo
Drunk on You… Luke Bryan
Dirty Dancer… Enrique Iglesias
Higher… Taio Cruz
Dancing on my Own… Robyn
Last Friday Night… Katy Perry
Long Hot Summer… Keith Urban
2) Change your eating habits. This can be as easy or as hard as you want to make it. To simplify it, set attainable goals for daily eating such as eating only one serving of dessert per day. If you currently have cookies with lunch and ice cream with dinner, try taking away just one of those desserts. Other unnecessary sources of food should be limited as well, such as fried food or fast food. Your goals should limit your intake of unhealthy food and aim to increase your intake of foods that are good for you. The USDA has a lot of great options you can pick and choose from. See http://www.choosemyplate.gov/index.html.
3) Exercise more effectively. When trying to get back into shape fast and in a short amount of time, you want to maximize every workout. Thus, you should do exercises that combine cardio with strength moves. Cardio is super important during this phase in order to torch calories, but the more muscle mass you are able to gain, the more calories you will be able to burn over all. To combine the 2, try some of the following exercises as a part of your workout:
In/ Out Squat Jumps: Start in a wide squat position, feet out much wider than your shoulders. In this position, your toes and your knees should both be facing forwards, and as you squat down you should be careful not to let your knees roll inwards or outwards in order to keep pressure off of that area. Squat down low into the wide squat, being careful not to let your knees go past your toes in front of your body. Jump up out of the squat and pull your feet in to shoulder width apart while in the air. Land with knees bent and lower down into a regular squat, feet directly below your shoulders. Coming out of the regular squat, jump out to the wide squat once more. 3 sets of 40 repetitions.
Floor to Regular Jumping Jack: First, start in a plank position, hands down on the floor directly below your shoulders, toes on the ground behind you, elbows straight and body in a straight line. From here hop your feet out wide then back in to shoulder width apart 10 times then stand up out of the plank and complete 20 regular jumping jacks, sending your arms all the way up over head and your feet out wide each time. 3 repetitions is one set. Do 3 sets.
Punch with High Knees Combo: Start with a wide stance, arms up in front of your body with or without hand weights. Punch out directly in front of your body, turning your knuckles so that they face out away from you, fully extending your elbow, and keeping your hand out right in front of your chest.
Punch for 30 seconds. Make it harder by bending your knees and sinking down into a squat for the full 30 seconds. Right after you are done with your punches, with or without your hand weights, start into 30 seconds of high knees, lifting your knees up in front of your body and trying to get them into alignment with your hips. Keep your back flat with good posture throughout the whole exercise. 5 sets of 1 minute each.