How to pull yourself out of an exercise rut and find your love for fitness again

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Amy Lewis
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We’ve all been there; you took a week out from your fitness regime to tackle a heavy work week or see some friends, but before you know it a week has become a month, and the no-exercise rut has started to spiral.

Will you survive the first session back? Do you even know where your sports bra and leggings are? The questions are many, and the guilt heavy.

But rather than beat yourself up about the weeks, months or years spent in a ‘between things’ fitness rut, dust off your gym bag and follow these top tips to get back in the game.

Start slow

There’s no point in rushing straight back into your regime of old, only to end up disappointed and lacking motivation when you can’t meet your high expectations, or worse - injured and on another enforced exercise break. Ease yourself back into things and don’t push too hard, too soon. Try one or two sessions a week, reduce the intensity of your previous routine until you’ve built your fitness level back up, and take plenty of rest.

Draw up a plan

Whether you’re heading to the gym, to a group class or the swimming pool, it’s good to draw up a plan of attack, either for your upcoming session or the week ahead. Knowing what exercises you want to get done during the session for example will help you to stay focused, while planning which days you’ll exercise on will make things easier to stick to.

Get excited

The best way to stick to an exercise regime is to do something you love. If your last block of exercise faded out because you got bored, that’s a sure-fire sign it’s time to try something new. Look for innovative new classes that fuse different disciplines, take advantage of deals offered by companies such as Class Pass, where you can try out lots of different things to find your passion.

Set yourself a goal

Forget your previous records or PBs, and set yourself brand new goals. Whether it’s a new time, a number of repetitions, a new distance or an event you’d love to take part in, having something to work towards will keep your keen and motivated.

Buddy up

Make fitness a more social activity by joining a club or group, or pairing up with a training buddy. Not only is it a great way to make your sessions more fun, but you’ll also have support on hand when the going gets tough, and somebody to hold you accountable if you try to skive off.

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Amy Lewis

Amy Lewis is a freelance writer and editor, a lover of strong tea, equally strong eyebrows, a collector of facial oils and a cat meme enthusiast. She covers everything from beauty and fashion to feminism and travel.