You were on track, working out 2-5x a week.  Eating well, happy with the direction your health and fitness was heading or in some cases, FINALLY heading.  Then, WHAAM!  Holidays, kids got sick, work started kicking your ass, your back hurt, etc.  Suddenly all the motivation, self love, and positive mindset start to go out the window.  You start to doubt what you are capable of, you aren’t sure how to get back on track, I mean you can’t even remember how to eat well.

Does this sound familiar?  Of course it does.  Whether it was for a week, a month, or years.  We are human and go through lapses.  Life happens, and we need to be ok with it.  Almost 4 years ago my routine started to change.  I went from competing at a high level, to occasionally working out, to being a self loathing, bare minimum type of person.  My body fat went from single digits to high teens, I wasn’t happy with myself and I knew I could be better.  So I finally got back on track.  It was hard, the first workouts were lackluster.  But then, they got better.  I definitely am not as strong as I was, but I am happier.  I have more energy, my mood is better and I am more present in life.  I was able to change my mindset, readjust my expectations, and now I am enjoying training more than ever.

The reason why we stop isn’t super relevant.  In the long we will always look back and realize we could’ve been better, done a little bit more.  But we can’t beat ourselves up for life happening to us.  We need to take action and start making life happen for us.

I want to address some common issues about making a comeback, and as I am in the middle of mine, I hopefully can help, or at least resonate with many of you.

  • You won’t be as strong, or as good, or as capable.
    Yes, but the longer you wait, the harder it is.  Do not let this become an excuse, I promise that it will be easier than you make it in your head.  The first week or two will be tough, but you will love it again.  For those just starting it is a similar feeling.  Not only that, but we can gain what we’ve lost, MUCH faster than what it originally took to get.
  • It will be different.
    That is ok! My goals went from competing to just being healthy.  It can be hard to move your personal goal posts, however, being honest and realistic can make a world of mental difference.  Plus, once you get your groove back you will be surprised by how quickly you can shift them back.
  • My situation has changed and there is nothing I can do.
    I refuse to accept this. The problem is we think the way we did it before, or the way we were successful before is the ONLY way to do it.  We need to remain open minded.  Yes, we may not have the time to train for the same goals.  So instead of an hour 3x a week, maybe we can find 30min 4x a week?  Instead of feeling powerless, try to find small ways to take back control and gain your power back.  This is hard, change is hard.  But settle into that new routine and let yourself try something new.  For me, adding Sunday yoga has been a ton of fun!
  • Find help and accountability
    A little secret about people who we find more successful then us is that they had help! Find a friend, a coach, a mentor.  Lean on them, find something you love to do and learn about it.  Have someone hold you accountable.  You are not weak for wanting help, you are strong for being aware enough to seek it out!
  • Take time to practice and remind yourself why YOU need to be a priority.
    None of the above, and nothing you do will stick if you do not put yourself first. There will be hard days in the future.  Days like the ones that made you stop.  Days that have sick kids, and bad days at work.  Days where you will tell yourself it will get easier in the future.  The fact is that in 95% of cases it won’t get an easier.  Life will undoubtedly throw you another curveball.  But we can learn, we can practice, and we can gain the confidence to hit the next one out of the park!

Life has many ups and downs.  But taking care of ourselves, and constantly evolving and growing as a person needs to always circle back as a priority.  I get it can’t be always.  I am reminded of an awesome quote, “Don’t tread water for so long that you forget how to swim.”  Whatever you are holding yourself back from starting again, remember that at one point you loved it.  And while it may not be the same, you will find more of yourself trying to get it back then by letting it go.