Whether it’s a New Year’s Resolution or getting back into pre-COVID shape; we mustn't assume we have the same levels of strength as we did back then. Here are some tips to help you ease back into working out.
We must start slow and not feel pressured into quickly achieving the same level of activity we used to accomplish. With a well thought out plan and consistency, we gradually increase the weight and number of repetitions each workout. Especially if you are recovering from COVID-19’s lasting effects, it is important to monitor progress and watch out for symptoms such as shortness of breath, chest pain, or heart palpitations. After a few weeks of consistent exercise, you will feel improvements in strength, endurance, and most importantly confidence.
Set goals and keep them in a journal! Setting achievable goals, sticking to your plan, and monitoring your improvements will reinforce motivation. It could be frustrating to set goals and not achieve them as you planned, so keep things realistic.
Listen to your body
You may think, “no pain, no gain!” This isn’t the proper perspective for athletes finding their footing again. While muscle soreness after a workout means muscle adaptation, that soreness should subside within 24-48 hours. If the soreness lasts beyond that, you may have to decrease volume for the next workout and progress slowly from there.
Don’t feel self-conscious in the gym
Everybody is in the gym with a similar goal – to better themselves! Everybody will have different jumping off points. Feeling confident is easier said than done; don’t compare yourself to the olympic weight-lifter next you, they had to start somewhere too. Feel comfortable going at your own pace!