Stuck in a fitness rut and looking for tips to get out of it? Let's be honest- we've all been there. Maybe you hit the ground running with a new fitness routine and were absolutely killing the game....until you weren't anymore. Maybe your fitness rut has been more like a ten year stint since no longer being forced to workout during high school sports practices. Or maybe you're a yo-yo fitness person. You go from thing to thing, get burnt out and then get in a rut before finding your new thing. No one likes to feel like they're stuck in a rut, in any area of life. But I'd argue that being in a fitness/wellness rut can actually affect your productivity and overall wellbeing in just about every other area of life! This is why we tend to feel more confident, more clear-minded, healthier, and more capable when we are in a consistent fitness routine.
So before I dive into my top tips for getting out of a fitness rut, let me start by making this disclaimer: There will be seasons of life when fitness simply cannot be your #1 priority. Situations like losing a loved one, healing from injury/illness, seasons of intense emotional stress, etc. will all take precent over crushing it in the gym. This article isn't to say you should beat yourself up if you're coming out of a season like that, or that fitness should always come first. My goal in writing this is to simply uplift anyone who is in a place of readiness to take action towards a healthier, more fit life!
Tip #1: Baby Steps
One of the top reasons people are generally hesitant to get started with a fitness lifestyle is because they put so much dang pressure on themselves to do EVERYTHING all at once and be perfect. Going from 0 days working out weekly to 6 may sound great in theory, but how realistic is this right out of the gate? This would be the equivalent to picking up a new instrument and expecting to be able to play full songs without error immediately. Like with any new habit or skill, give yourself realistic standards and timeframes. For example: I tend to advise my clients who are wanting to enter into consistent exercise to nail down 2 days per week of exercise. That's it - but be diligent with it. Why? Because I want you to be so consistent with two days and build some confidence before building on that. When we jump the gun and try to workout every day after not working out at all, we set ourselves up to fail. This only perpetuates the yo-yo fitness cycle I mentioned above. Take it one habit at a time, and slowly add.
Tip #2: Find something you don't totally hate
While it's true that not all exercise forms are created equally, the reality is you are FAR more likely to be consistent with something you somewhat enjoy. Think about it this way: Someone can hand you the world's most ideal fitness program for optimal results. But if you can't follow that program because you hate it, it is essentially useless. The solution: Find a form of exercise that you can tolerate and maybeeeee even like! And be open to this changing from time to time. There's a possibility that you're in a fitness rut because you're trying to force yourself to do the exact same boring exercises you've been doing for years and it's not *sparking joy* anymore.
Tip #3: Seek an encouraging community
Chances are, if you're not spending time around people who prioritize wellness/fitness, it will make it increasingly difficult for you to prioritize it. This is why having an accountability partner, a community, or a coach is SO crucial. Even just having one person in your life who inspires you to keep showing up for yourself makes a massive difference. My advice: Cut the excuses about purchasing a program, hiring a coach, or getting a gym membership. The extra cost is investing in your health. I'd say it's worth it!
Tip #4: Find your grit
At a certain point, you have to buckle down and make the decision that fitness IS an important part of your life. A non-negotiable. Period. Motivation and inspiration will come and go, even for the most fitness-devoted folks. This is when you have to just decide that despite bad days. lacking motivation, and less-than-ideal circumstances, you will show up. And truthfully, no one can do that for you! Not your coach, your accountability partner, your spouse, or your fitness-enthusiast friend. No one can do the work for you. So my question to you is: are you ready to find your grit?
Tip #5: Take action NOW
This brings me to my final tip: take action immediately instead of waiting for a more cookie-cutter start date. Don't wait until next month, January 1st, or even until Monday. This only perpetuates the idea that there is, somewhere in the future, a more ideal time to start when everything will be easy and fall into place. FALSE. How many times have you heard people say that they will hit it hard in the new year, once they get less busy, after vacation, or when ____ happens? This is because putting things off is safe. It makes us feel good knowing that we will take action....just not yet. The trouble with this mentality is it often leads to inaction. Because that start day just keeps getting pushed back. Because life gets busy. Because it's always going to be hard to have your "day one". So take action. Get day one out of the way and keep going. There is no perfect start date!
If you're looking for a practical, step-by-step checklist to start eating healthier, check out my 7 Step Guide to Healthy Eating OR join my fitness community by starting a 90-day exercise program. If you have any questions about this article, comment below! I hope you feel inspired to hit the ground running and pursue a healthy lifestyle you feel confident about!
Your coach + friend,