With gyms and studios being allowed to open from today in England and Wales there will be a lot of you ready and raring to go. Breaking up the home workout routine we have known for the past 4 months. If this is you I wanted to share a few things to remember:
1/ Scale it back
You have had a few months off this type of training so the chances of you being able to do what you could do then are slim. AND THAT'S OK, strength and fitness can be gained back but ease yourself in to it. Weights may need to be lighters, reps may need to be less and you may struggle at times but it will all come back over time.
2/ Don't go overboard
With a load of new equipment to play around with the temptation to use it all may be high. Don't do this, it won't be beneficial to you at all instead treat it like any other session. Pick a few exercises to do and the equipment that you need, the rest will still be there. You don't need to use every kettle bell, barbell, slam ball, box, battlerope and pull up bar in the place. The same goes for classes don't sign up to every single one that you have missed since lockdown because A/ your body won't know whats hit it and B/ there is no benefit to you it will just make to fatigued and sore.
3/ Remember to rest
During the session and in between sessions. Rest is so important in our recover and your body will thank you for it. No one needs or wants 5 day DOMs because you went too hard to fast. That isn't what exercise is all about.
4/ Still have some kind of plan
Whatever your goals are (if you have any) still create a plan for this. What exercises do you want to do? What exercises will benefit that goal today? What classes are you gonna do ? Consistency is key no matter what if you want to improve in something.
Also ask for help if you need it, there is absolutely nothing wrong with asking a PT to assist you or an instructor to show you and exercise to get the technique right. That is what we are there for and I am certain everyone will be wanting you to get the most out of your time back as you can
5/ Fuel yourself
You are about to increase the intensity of your workouts in one way or another so prepare your body properly for this. Making sure you are eating enough, drinking enough water and getting enough rest. These will all contribute to a better and safer session both physically and mentally.
6/ Keep it fun
Just because everywhere is opening doesn't mean you have to lose anything you have gained over lockdown. If you found a new love for yoga keep it going, if you loved running keep running. If weight lifting as a massive thing pre lockdown but you actually want to focus more on the bodyweight training you learnt over lockdown then continue doing it. You don't have to go back to the gym or studio just because they have opened. It's all down to personal preference.
And finally respect other people, abide by the social distance and cleaning protocols and remember we are still in a pandemic so be careful.