Have you had an exercise break because of lockdown or holiday season? Want to get back on track with your fitness goals this September? Jessica Ennis-Hill shares her advice on how to get motivated, even when your schedule says otherwise
What with lockdown, home working, home-schooling, holiday cancellations and last-minute staycations, this has been a surreal time for all of us. And it's no wonder that our motivation to exercise has gone up and down like a yo-yo.
If this sounds like you and you want your fitness focus back, there are a number of mind tricks you can play on yourself to help you stay committed.
“I know how much of a struggle it can be to exercise when you lose motivation, you're busy and there are a million and one other things you need to do,” says Jennis founder, Jessica Ennis-Hill. “But there are lots of tips and tricks I’ve picked up over my career that really help me make the time to fit in those workouts.” Here, Jess shares a few of those golden nuggets.
1. Call exercise ‘me-time’
Avoid thinking of your workout as a chore and reframe it in your mind as something that’s just for you: essential time for you to step back from any stresses. If you do that, I promise you’ll be more likely to prioritise it.
2. Think about the way you’ll feel afterwards
Instead of focusing on the effort it takes to get your kit on and get started, always focus on the way you’re going to feel after your workout. That buzz you get after exercising and the feeling of achievement when you’re done makes the effort well worth it.
3. Something is always better than nothing
When you’re tired or there’s a lot going on, you might not feel like going for a run or doing a full 30-minute circuit. And, at the same time, you may think there’s no point just doing five minutes. However, even if you can squeeze in just five minutes of activity, it’s better than nothing at all – and, according to scientists, it can have a huge impact on your body and brain.
To help you out with some fitness quickies, I’ve shared my favourite five-minute workouts in the Quick Blasts section of my Fitness app. There are also 20, 24 and 29-minute sessions, so whatever time you have, there’s a circuit to suit.
4) Think of this as a warm-up period
Don't put pressure on yourself to view this as all or nothing. Instead, think of this period of short but efficient work-outs as a warm-up for the main event. After that, your muscles will be ready for whatever challenge you want to throw at them.
Want help refocusing your fitness over the next 30 days?
Jessica Ennis-Hill has created fitness challenges in her Jennis app that will help you do exactly that. There are three to choose from (30-day kick-start; 30-day ab challenge; 30-day bum challenge), so you can pick whichever challenge reflects your fitness focus. And for each challenge, Jess coaches you through what you need to do each day. She packs in tons of variety and helps you stay motivated by varying the intensities and times of your daily sessions.
Want to reclaim September? Find out more about the Jennis 30-day kick-start plan