How to Get Back to Training When You Fall Off

Posted: April 13, 2018 in Motivational and Life Coaching, Sports and Fitness, Strengthening and Conditioning
Tags: , , , , ,

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In a fitness enthusiast’s ideal world, this would be the every-day checklist forever:

> Wake-Up
> Workout
> Repeat

Unfortunately, that world doesn’t exist.
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Our schedules get messed up, we get sick, projects take longer than expected, injuries and emergencies happen, and so on. It doesn’t even have to be a negative reason to miss workouts.
I have had clients who miss weeks and months of training due to work promotion or because their business is booming, or because they have to welcome a new family member, or simply because they have to go on a nice vacation on a sunny island.

There could be numerous reasons for this fantasy checklist to not exist.

Sometimes it gets frustrating especially when you were keeping up a pretty impressive routine, then it suddenly had to stop.

Thankfully, you don’t have to sulk in despair – it won’t do any good, anyway. If for any reason you had to take a recess from training, here are some things to keep in mind when it’s time to get back on track:

1.) Go Easy.
I know, you want to jump straight to when you left off. You weren’t away for so long anyway, so why not?
You may be familiar with the Training Principle called “Progressive Overload” which states that your strength and conditioning increases slowly and gradually as you keep overloading the stimulus (exercise). Well, you may not have heard of the Principle of Reversibility, which as it name implies, means that any adaptation that has taken place as a result of your training will be reversed once you stop training!
The speed at which reversibility happens depend on a lot of factors, but even pro-athletes are not exempted! On average, training loss occurs at about one-third the rate of the gains. Some sports skills can be lost in one to two weeks.

The good news is, reversibility stops once you get back to training! But the best way is to take the Principle of Progressive Overload into consideration.

Start easy but challenging, then go from there.

2.) Build your Base.
Base strength refers not just to how much your muscles can lift, or how long your heart can keep pumping, but also includes your ligaments, tendons, joints, and bones. These guys take a little longer time to adapt and recover to the stresses of training, and are more subtle. Avoid high-intensity movements that involve a lot of jumping, plyometrics, fast movements, or heavy maximum lifts. If you took the time off because of an injury, you should even be more careful.

3.) Take your Time.
The longer your break was, the more time you need to give yourself to come back to where you left off. Unless you have an upcoming competition, or a deadline to show your six-pack, you don’t need to rush! Other factors such as fitness level, age, body type, health history, and so on affects the time it will take for you to get back. Remember that exercise is also physical stress to your body, and doing it too much too quickly can cause more harm than good.

Make small progressive increments. Consistency is the key to success, and patient hard work pays off.

********************

It happens to everyone.
Even elite athletes fall off their training.
Life just has its ups and downs.
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Remember that the goal of your training is to improve your quality of life. If life happens, then so be it. Get back to training and you know that you’ll reap the rewards of a physically active lifestyle in its time.

“Squats are like life.
It’s about standing up when something
heavy keeps you down.”

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