I stopped exercising and can't get motivated to start again. There are those of you out there that exercised regularly in the past. You were in great shape and felt strong. Then you fell off the wagon.
Don't think about why you stopped; you need to focus and how you felt, how you can fit it in and when you are going to get back on the wagon. Remember: You did it once, you can do it again. Here are some tips to get you back to moving and shaking.
You probably already know the value of a good breakfast, so focus now on your fruit and vegetable intake. If you count all the servings you typically would eat in a day, are you getting enough of those antioxidant, vitamin and fiber rich carbohydrates? The food pyramid recommends five to nine servings every day. That means sneaking them as snacks, into breakfast (like omelettes) and including a salad every dinner. Fruits and vegetables are high in nutrients and low in calories. Fill up and feel fuller with more of them everyday. The benefits are countless and the fiber helps with weight loss. An apple a day is a great way to live.
As Mick Jagger has said, "If you start me up, I'll never stop!" This should be your new motto. If you haven't tried the rowing machine, give it a try! Although the treadmill and elliptical trainers are great pieces of cardio, you might find that the change of using a row machine instead is fun. Whereas walking trains only the lower body, rowing will also tone your arms, core and legs all at once. In your strength program, add a Bosu trainer to enhance your midsection training. Using this unstable base either side up depending on your skill level, will help activate all the muscles around the spine and give you an added intensity for your core.
Yoga and meditation are great ways to reduce stress. According to Swami Satyananda Saraswati, "Most people think of meditation as sitting crossed legged and emptying the mind. This is very difficult at the beginning, if not impossible. The object of meditation is to create stillness, space. The space that you create becomes larger and longer the more you practice." Start with a simple meditation of "gratitudes." Sit quietly with tall posture on the floor or in a chair. Close your eyes and breathe deeply into your belly. "Gratitudes" were taught to me by one of my students, Mardelle. Simply reflect on your past 24 hours and think about all the moments you can be thankful. It may be a simple smile from a stranger, someone letting you go before them in line, a small child asking for help or more. Relive the flash and breathe into these moments. You will feel a sense of calmness and joy.
Andrea Metcalf is a healthy lifestyle expert, best selling author of Naked Fitness and host/producer of "Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is," weight loss tv reality show on NBC Nonstop in Chicago. She blogs to inspire and education people to live healthier lives by being healthy and moved daily. Sign up for her FREE monthly newsletter at www.andreametcalf.com for more healthy lifestyle videos and tips. Andrea has sponsored content in some of her blog postings, however reflects her personal opinions and not necessarily those of the sponsor.
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