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Is it okay to take a break?

You’d been doing really well with your fat loss attempts, getting to the gym regularly and planning your meals in advance. But it’s got to a busy time at work and you’re going to need to work overtime for a few months. So, what do you do?

There’s no way you’ll have time to keep up your gym routine, especially if you want to show you’re the best candidate for the promotion that’s coming up. So, what do you do? You take a break from exercise completely, telling yourself you’ll re-start when work quietens down again.

When life gets hectic, it’s all too easy to put exercise on the back burner. Wanting to take a break when you’re busy is understandable and exercise can easily become the lowest priority on your ‘To Do’ list when you’re working overtime, moving house, starting a new job or have a new situation to deal with. But taking a break from exercise completely can damage your progress towards your health and fitness goals.

Taking a break from exercise and re-starting once life quietens down a pace or two sounds intuitive but it can hold you back from making progress again when you re-start. Getting back into an exercise routine takes time and effort and it’s harder to get going again once your body gets used to doing no exercise. Taking a break whenever life gets crazy means you take one step forward towards your goals, then hit the stop button and end up one step back. By stopping and starting, you’re cancelling out all the hard work you did before you took a break.

The next time life gets in the way of your regular exercise routine, ask yourself ‘What can I do to cope with this situation without stopping completely?’

Here are a few suggestions of how to ride the wave of busyness and prevent yourself from ruining your progress towards your goals:

  • Try not to adopt the mentality of ‘If I can’t do everything, then I’ll do nothing’
  • Do what you can. It might not be everything you want to do but at least it’s not stopping
  • Make sure you’re eating healthily if you can’t exercise as much as you’d like to
  • If you don’t have time to work out for 45 minutes, work out for 15 minutes instead
  • If you can’t make 3 gym sessions a week, try 2 instead

Remember that doing something is better than doing nothing! A little bit of exercise squeezed in between two meetings is better than no exercise at all. It may not seem like it’s worth doing so little, but when life has calmed down again, future-less-busy-you will thank you for not taking a break!



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