The lovely Farel Hruska wrote and shared a blog post on the F.I.T. Principle back in February and I think it's important enough to bring up again.
The F.I.T. Principle stands for Frequency, Intensity & Time and is a simple set of guidelines to always have on your mind as you exercise and plan your workouts. I want to touch on the "F" piece of the F.I.T. Principle as I think it's the hardest to commit to.
When it comes to exercise, it's important to keep consistent. How often do you exercise each week? Is it sporadic or do you maintain a fairly even schedule? Do you call a buddy for accountability or do you work out solo? Here are some tips for increasing your Frequency to make your workouts "fit" your needs.
1. Write it down. Perhaps Sunday night is your night to plan the week ahead. Take some time, write down your workout plans & goals. Whether you use a wall calendar, your phone or stick Post-its all over the fridge, writing things down makes them seem "real." Plus, these written plans are gentle reminders that you'll see everyday.
2. Call a friend. If you plan to work out with a friend, you will hold each other accountable. Plus, you can motivate one another and enjoy a smoothie together after class (you can even visit Tropical Smoothie Cafe at One Loudoun, one of FIT4MOM Ashburn's favorite partners!)
3. Set realistic goals. Key word = realistic. There is no "one size fits all" for working out, especially when your baby's schedule can change at a moment's notice. Some days you might be able to get a workout in before baby wakes up. Other days, the hour long workout you had planned ceases to exist after a missed nap, a sick kid, or the ever exciting "Diaper Wars." Don't be hard on yourself if you've missed a planned workout. Regardless of that mommy guilt that may creep up... it IS okay.
4. Commit to a monthly membership. Whether you visit a gym, fitness studio, or (my favorite) go to Stroller Strides, you want the best bang for your buck. Drop-in fees are not often budget-friendly and can deter you from making weekly exercise plans. Most monthly memberships are unlimited, allowing you the flexibility to choose what works. This is a fantastic option, especially if you want to take things slow and increase your frequency later on.
5. Journal. I don't currently do this, but I'd like to start. Write down how you feel before and after you work out on a regular basis. Chances are you'll feel better, have more energy and feel a sense of accomplishment. (Toot your own horn for once, too! You did it!)
6. Reward yourself. Did you meet your fitness goals? How are you feeling at the end of the week? There are plenty of great ways to treat yourself (and they don't have to be food-related, either!)
Remember, as you strive to reach your fitness goals, you are making a lifestyle change and it starts with a single step.