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Back to the future

All Areas > Health & Beauty > Looking Good, Feeling Great

Author: Will Mbanga, Posted: Wednesday, 26th August 2020, 08:00

With gyms and leisure centres re-opening, many of you will be excited to go back – after all, gyms are a sanctuary for many of us physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually.

Whatever you’ve been doing exercise-wise over the past few months, the announcement and subsequent re-opening of training facilities would have filled you with a mix of emotions. Joy that things are returning to ‘normal’, a sense of hope that the worst is behind us, and perhaps you’re a bit nervous of going back to the gym after so much time out.

Online training was very popular during lockdown

Many of you turned to online training, apps, walking, running or perhaps consulting with a PT via email or phone, while some purchased home gym equipment. Whatever you chose to do is fine, provided you were consistent and committed. Of interest has been the growth and popularity of technology to fill the gap that was left by lockdown, as the use of apps and online training options grew significantly during this time.

It is important we remain vigilant

With so much uncertainty and fear – both genuine as well as tabloid/social media fuelled – alongside the clear and still present danger of infection, it is important we remain vigilant as we support local gyms, PTs and leisure businesses.

Between Government regulations and their own commitment to providing hygienic environments, I’m confident Leisure and Fitness providers will go above and beyond to keep us safe as they welcome clients back through their doors.

Here are ten tips to help you train confidently on your return:
1. Start slowly. The temptation to go ‘all out’ straight away is powerful. To avoid injuries, start slowly and build up to your ‘normal’ routine.

2. Mobility and flexibility. Spend time focusing on quality movement preparation to improve mobility and flexibility, particularly if you haven’t been training consistently for a while.

3. Re-build your engine. Engaging in progressively challenging exercise will increase your endurance, resulting in positive benefits for your overall health.

4. Prioritise rest and recovery. Ensure you get enough sleep, adequate recovery between sessions, and use recovery methods such as foam rolling, deep tissue massage and stretching.

5. Nutrition. Many of us have developed an intimate relationship with our fridge during lockdown – not always in the healthiest way! Change any negative eating habits and feed your body healthy foods to sustain your health and exercise demands.

6. Wash your hands and wear your mask! Practice good hygiene wherever possible. By being careful, we will each contribute to lowering the chances that gyms or leisure facilities have to close again in future.

7. Play the long game. Your health and fitness journey is a marathon, not a sprint.

8. Get back into a routine. A good routine will optimise your training and maximise your performance and results.

9. Set goals, then smash them! Revisit the reason(s) why you train – it’s important to have clear, defined goals to work toward.

10. Above all, enjoy it! Get fit having fun.

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