Coming out of quarantine and getting back to exercising can be a mentally challenging task. Not only is your body not ready to take load, but your mind too has become accustomed to the sedentary lifestyle. Yet, the need for exercising gets reinforced when you stand up in front of the mirror and realise how much you have let go of yourself during this period.
While the motivation might be there, bouncing back in a wrong manner can and would do you more harm than good. After a long break, it’s important to consider some points before going out and trying to lose all that extra weight in one go. Here’s a few things that I think you should keep in mind when you’re starting to re enter your fitness routine.
- Start by keeping the exercise volume low
It’s understandable that you would want to push yourself to return to your old workout routines but it’s important to consider that our bodies haven’t acclimatised to this new lifestyle yet. Therefore, it’s important to try to gradually increase the volume, rather than going for the heavy weights right off the bat.
Some good starting points are as follows:
a) If a runner that’s out of practice, consider starting with walking before slowly increasing your speed and distance.
b) Keep your exercise frequency as low as 1 or 2 days per week.
2. Increase your NEAT
NEAT (Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis) refers to all the activities you do when you are not working out. Due to the lockdown, not only has the rate of working out declined, but the overall activities have also taken a hit. In pursuing this goal of fat loss, its very important to increase your NEAT. Remember, you may only exercise one hour our of 24 hours, but what you do in the remaining hours, counts too!
3. Be patient
I know it sounds cliché, but from a progress standpoint, being patient is more important now than ever. Understand that you will not be able to workout with as much intensity as you could a few months ago. Don’t beat yourself up for it.
4. Don’t cut your calories drastically
Keep your target of losing weight as low as 1-2 pounds per week. Cutting your calories and getting into a huge caloric deficit might help you lose weight, but it has its own consequences. Your metabolism will slow down making you feel less energetic, and you will not only lose fat but also muscle mass. Moreover, once you attain your desired goal by huge deficit, you will let yourself lose again, which leads to creating a cycle of losing and gaining weight. Thus, cut you calories off smartly. A 200-250 caloric deficit is always a good option.
5. Don’t compare yourself with others
You may meet some people, who have become fitter during the quarantine. On the other hand, some people might be more unfit than you. It’s very crucial to keep your focus solely on your progress. Comparing yourself with others may deviate you from your goal.
These are some important points to remember before coming out of quarantine. Follow these easy steps and in the next few months you will thank yourself for being consistent.
Prateek Mani Tripathi (www.stayfittogether1819.blogspot.com)