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Now that lockdown restrictions are easing, gyms and fitness studios are opening back up, and things are starting to return to a new version of normal, many of you are probably thinking about getting back into your pre-lockdown fitness routines. However, unsurprisingly, for many Australians, our fitness and healthy eating habits went into hibernation during the lockdown. If that’s true for you, it means that your post-lockdown fitness is probably not where it was at before the pandemic. Getting back into shape now that you’re able to start doing your favourite exercise activities again is exciting, but there are a few things to be wary of. Here, we outline our top post-lockdown fitness tips for getting back into shape without overdoing it.

Having been in lockdown for a couple of months means some pretty significant changes to your conditioning, especially for those involved in strength training and weightlifting. Don’t be surprised if you’re unable to complete some of the exercises you were doing before lockdown, and if you’re unable to lift the same kind of weight you could back then. Reduce your weight load and reps for the time being, and slowly work back up to your pre-lockdown limits. Going gung-ho at your first sessions post-lockdown is only going to end in injury, so take it easy on yourself and stay in tune with your body to know your limits while you work on getting back into condition.

Whether or not you were seeing a personal trainer before lockdown, now is the perfect time to start. Not only will a personal trainer be able to help you get back into shape after such a long break, they will also be acutely aware of the risks posed by going at it too hard. Your personal trainer will help you develop a plan that avoids injury and helps you reach your goals as safely and quickly as possible.

One of the biggest struggles after lockdown is getting back into the health and fitness mindset and reinvigorating your motivation. It’s important not to be too hard on yourself, as it’s completely normal to feel demotivated after everything we’ve all been through recently. Rather than simply focusing on shedding centimetres or kilograms, put your focus into creating a positive mindset and building your motivation. Think about what your goals are, take some time to analyse WHY you’ve made those goals (do you simply want to lose weight, or are you interested in feeling better on the inside as well as on the outside?), and keep those things in mind when you’re struggling with motivation. One of your most valuable resources for mindset and motivation is your personal trainer, who can work with you on not only your fitness, but your headspace as well.

If your pre-lockdown workout included a 5km run, it’s likely that your body is going to find that a little difficult right away, once you’ve returned to the gym or the pavement. As well as reducing your weight and strength training limits and slowly building back up to them, you should reduce your running times and mix up your existing routine.

When it comes to working out, getting bored is just as big a concern as feeling overwhelmed or demotivated. Interval training is a great solution to each of these issues. Furthermore, interval training has been proven to be wonderful for weight loss and cardiovascular health. Work with your trainer to develop a post-lockdown interval training routine which pushes you but doesn’t result in injury.

If you weren’t much of a fitness fanatic before the lockdown, now is a great time to build a brand-new routine and begin working fitness into your daily life. Alternatively, you might have been working out fairly regularly before the last few months and have since suffered a reduction in your fitness levels thanks to the lockdown. Either way, getting back into a fitness routine after a long break often means starting from scratch. Rather than letting your fitness goals overwhelm you, take small steps to work exercise back into your daily routine. Try taking the stairs instead of the elevator, or park a few blocks away from work and walk the rest of the way. Try taking a walking break during your normal coffee break, or work in some yoga into your morning routine. Group fitness classes and one-on-one personal training sessions are also a great way to stay motivated, start slowly, and build up your endurance.

For more tips on starting from scratch, read our recent blog, The Top 6 ‘New Year New Me’ Fitness Tips from the Experts.

Whether you were focused on your fitness before lockdown or not, getting back into shape is about much more than simply hitting the gym, burning calories, and building muscle. True fitness goes hand in hand with health. And the best way to achieve great health is to take a holistic approach to your health and fitness routine. That means working on your motivation and mindset, your nutrition, and your physical fitness. If you’ve struggled with any one of these aspects before, or could use some help in better understanding them, it’s time to get some help from someone who is an expert in each of these areas. Our very own personal trainer, Todd van Namen, is also a qualified wellness coach and nutrition & weight loss consultant. Instead of focusing on ‘quick fix’ training programs which aren’t sustainable, Todd works with his clients to create structured, long-term changes which are not only manageable and realistic, but fun! Read more about Todd’s unique approach and find out how he’s changed the lives of his clients on our Personal Training page.

To get back to your previous fitness levels, or embark on a new post-lockdown health & fitness journey, get in touch with us today and book your consultation with Todd.

Michelle van Namen
Author: Michelle van Namen