While we are spring cleaning our houses, why don't we also give our fitness a good deep clean as well. The approach of spring time always puts a little spring in my step. Temperatures are going to start rising, maybe the sun peeks out a bit more, and the school year (if you have children) starts coming to a close-and FAST!
It's a great time to put your 2014 goals back on the front burner, make the necessary changes to encourage more FITting FITness in your schedule, and get ready for swim suit season feeling confident in your own skin.
Here are some ways you can spring cleaning your FITness Routine:
1. Sign up for a race: you might think it odd I put this first. Here's the rationale: it gets you motivated to FIT it in, FITness, that is. If you've had some dull, hard winter months sign up for a race that will be sure to get you moving so that you can cross that finish line feeling confident in your accomplishment. If you've been working out throughout the winter, maybe sign up for something that will push you to go farther or harder. If you are in the Bay Area, you can join me here: Mermaid Run East Bay. Let me know if you'll be there!
2. Stay hydrated: If you are following me on Twitter you know randomly ask you to do a water check. Make sure you are drinking enough water. Don't like the taste of water? Add fresh lemon, cucumber, mint, raspberries, strawberries, orange slices, or even apple slices to give it a hint of flavor. My favorite it lemon and cucumber together. Make it a priority to get enough water in your body to keep all your systems working at their very best. As it gets warmer, you will want to pay careful attention to your hydration level even more.
3. Choose a new activity: Are you tired of your same routine? Try a new class at the gym you belong to. You know the one, the class that totally intimidates you and you think you will pass out before even being able to finish it! Just give it a shot, you can make it. Always wanted to try rock climbing? Go take a class or find someone who will be an adventurous partner and try out a local gym. It will get you excited and you just might find a new passion-whatever it is.
4. Clean out your pantry: Go through everything in your pantry and refrigerator. See, you can do this while spring cleaning the kitchen! Double up on the rewards with this option. Everything that is not a real food, you can just toss. Fill your pantry with real food-say goodbye to packaged food and hello to a world of even more delicious and nutritious food waiting to be discovered. Fill the refrigerator with fresh vegetables and fruits. Tip: don't go hog wild filling it to the brim only to throw away 3/4 of it because you couldn't eat it all. Buy in quantities that are realistic for you and your family. Toss those frozen meals-(or donate these items to a neighbor or someone you know that is in need)-and stock with frozen veggies and fruits. Have sources of protein and a variety of grains to choose from. Re-think you menu planning with this post.
5. Schedule a physical: What better way to start spring than with a clean bill of health or taking the first steps to getting a clean bill of health. Not many individuals get a physical every year, but you can join the ranks of those who keep careful watch of their health. I am scheduling mine for June, not spring, but it works for me. Find when works for you and get it scheduled.
6. Refresh your wardrobe: Seriously, what makes working out more fun? Stylish attire, of course! Everything from the tops to the shoes. Lucy is one of my favorites, but I can't always afford their cute clothes. Athleta is another of my favorites for workout and regular clothes. I have also had a lot of luck with TJ Maxx. Find a local running store or athletic shoe store that will really work with you to find the correct shoe for your foot type, exercise choice, and gait. Some stores will do a free gait analysis to determine the best type of shoe for you. I encourage you to take advantage of those places to save your feet and joints down the road.
7. Find a partner: are you just not as motivated to workout if you don't have someone waiting for you? Find that workout partner that will be the committed force you need, and they probably need as well. Work out a schedule that will suit both of your needs. Whether it be walking, running, hiking, or becoming gym rats together, you will need to decide how to make it work with your schedules. Over the last couple of years my running partners have evolved and the schedules have been altered and the workouts have changed. We go with the flow and try to hit everyone's preferences and abilities. We have had a lot of success that way.
8. Music Mix Up: Are you getting so sick and tired of your same play list or have a song that reminds you of that awful 5 mile run on the treadmill in the dead of winter? It's definitely time to change it up. Uplifting and motivating music will certainly get you through any workout that is proving to be hard and will keep you going strong on those great days. Give your old playlist a rest and rejuvenate with some new found tunes.
9. Re-schedule: the days when children will be out of school is fast approaching. If this is something that is going to mess with your regular workout schedule, you probably want to consider coming up with a plan that will accommodate FITting it in now. If it's a 5am wake up call to get it done, maybe you want to start getting into the habit now. Maybe it's a matter of finding a babysitter or finding a friend to swap with. Try to set up something soon so that you won't be scrambling at the last minute to try and get that much needed workout in. If you are anything like me, a nice mom is a FIT mom!
Do you have any more suggestions on spring cleaning your FITness plan? I'd love for you to share them with us.