If you’re anything like me, then you begin each new year with a firm resolve to work out. You go and buy a cute pair of yoga pants and a matching sports bra. You purchase a pair of pink Nike Free Runs. You even buy a pink Polar Fitness watch to track your calorie burn.
You wake up Monday morning and jump out of bed, ready to begin your fitness journey. You get dressed and hit the gym, pound the pavement or pop in a fitness DVD.
You sweat. And sweat. And sweat.
You finish the workout feeling like a million bucks and vow to do it again tomorrow. And the next day. And the next.
And you do. Tuesday. Wednesday. Thursday.
You’re on a roll.
And then something happens. Your alarm doesn’t go off. Your baby is sick and keeps you up all night. You forgot to wash your workout clothes. Your body is sore and begging for a break. Or, even worse, you listen to the “experts” that swear you need a rest day.
So you take Friday off and promise yourself to get back at it on Saturday.
But Saturday rolls around and you take Saturday off too. And then Sunday. And Monday. And Tuesday.
And before you know it, a rest day turns into a rest week. And a rest month. And a rest year. Until you begin the next year with the same intentions only to repeat the cycle again and again.
Based on experience, I have learned that you cannot take any days off. At least in the beginning. When you are forming a habit you work on building that habit every day.
For example, when you’re trying to quit smoking cold turkey, you don’t go without cigarettes for the first two or three days and then take a “rest.” The same can be said for working out. When you’re building the habit of working out, you do it every day until it is a habit.
I’m not saying go hard every day, because your body does need a chance to recover. But, you should be active every day. That means going for a casual walk, hike or bike ride. That means playing catch with your kids, going swimming or window shopping around the mall on your “rest” days.
And what about when life gets in the way of your workout?
Carve out at least five minutes to take a walk, do some ab exercises or dance to your favorite song. Every little bit counts towards you being able to check your active box for the day.
It’s all about being active each and every day.
So, no days off pretty girl!