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FORT MYERS, Fla. – The new school year is here, and with most kids going back to school on Monday, it is a great time to get back into the swing of your workout routine that for many was on Summer Vacation like the kids. Wink News Fitness Expert Mike Drumm is sharing his “Back to School” fitness tips to help you maximize your time and energy and be the fittest you can be.
I often say, “If you fail to plan than plan to fail”. Meal planning can mean different things to different people, but doing some form of it will help you meet your goals. Planning out your meals will save time, stress, and ensure that you eat healthy. Start small.
- Plan out 3-4 days worth of meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks. Pick a day (I usually do Sunday’s and Wednesday’s) to do the majority of the actual cooking.
- Use a meal planning service. I like a local company, The Lean Box (theleanbox.com)
Plan Your Exercise Routine (in advance!)
Back to school can be a busy time, and some may only have time for early morning, late at night, or fast as possible workouts! It’s important that you are prepared for your workouts. If not you’ll find it’s really easy to end up skipping them. The first step is to look at your schedule and see where you can squeeze a workout into your day. By choosing a time to workout, you’ll be more likely to stick to your workout program. Most parents need a to-do list and schedule to stay sane.
- Use Google’s “calendar” and let technology remind you it’s time to exercise!
Find Something You Enjoy
If you pick a form of exercise and you absolutely hate it, you will find any excuse in the world to avoid it. On the other hand, if you find an activity you enjoy you’ll be a little more excited about working up a sweat. So if you hate running, don’t do it. There’s plenty of other ways to get in cardio such as biking, swimming, or taking a fitness class like Zumba. By participating in a variety of different activities it will help keep you from getting bored.
- If groups energize you, join a fitness class. You will benefit from the built in accountability and friendships. Find a class that fits your schedule.
Seek Accountability (and Set Goals)
Find a workout buddy. This holds you accountable, makes workouts more enjoyable, and can even create a little fun competition to keep you going. If a workout buddy isn’t an option, find someone to check in with you about your exercising and eating habits. Knowing someone will ask is often a good enough motivator.
During hectic times especially, having small-scale goals that fit into a big-picture scheme is a helpful way to make sure you accomplish the things that are most important to you. This applies to all aspects of life. And don’t forget to reward yourself when you achieve your goals. When children work hard to make progress, you reward them, right? The same should apply to you.
PLAY With Your Kids
You’ve heard it before and you’ll hear it again, PLAY with and enjoy your kiddos. Even if you’re tired. My parents were never really into fitness or exercise, but they were always outside playing with us, whether it was backyard volleyball, frisbee, or kicking the soccer ball… Even if you aren’t athletic, it can be great quality time and a chance for you to MOVE!
- Play an “active” video game, take a bike ride, even walking is a good option.
No one is perfect, even if their Facebook or Instagram page makes you feel like they are Just remember that your kiddos need healthy parents, so exercise and eating healthy are great places to start. By making this a priority it will show them a great example.