Is it okay to hit pause on your exercise routine?

Once in a while it's okay to hit pause on your exercise routine.

I didn’t feel like running this last Monday, so I didn’t. And the world didn’t end. I had been on my feet almost all of Sunday at our Dog Training Club obedience trial – working, not exactly having a good time with my dog – it was hot, and I just plain didn’t feel like it. I was tired after running errands in the 90 degree heat, and I just decided not to work out. Every once in a while, it’s okay to hit pause on your exercise routine.

It’s okay to hit pause on your exercise routine as long as

As long as you pick right up where you left off.I knew that if I resumed my normal routine the next day I wouldn’t get too sore. If your muscles are screaming after a workout, indirect ice helps to soothe the area, and gentle stretching helps, too. At the start of your exercise habit-building routine, though, the best way to avoid sore muscles is to build your speed and poundage gradually. Likewise, I wouldn’t lose my speed or endurance just by missing one day.

Habits are hard to form

A habit is formed by weeks of focusing on it. An exercise habit is helped along by scheduling and stacking behaviors. If you put your exercise clothes out the night before, you’ll be reminded that you’re scheduled for 8 am to work out, for example. When you’re forming an exercise habit you have to really think about how to incorporate it into your life. And change is not easy.

But established habits are hard to break

But once that habit is formed, like exercise is for me, you feel kind of lost if you don’t do it. Even though I knew that I’d be perfectly fine, I felt kind of guilty about not exercising that day. I had to keep telling myself that I’d put on lots of miles on Sunday, which is usually a rest day for me. And everything would be all right. It’s okay to hit pause on your exercise routine once in a while.

Keep in mind, though, that if exercise is still new to you, that you have to really make an effort to resume your new healthy habit. You’re probably not going to feel guilty, like I did, if you miss a workout. So make sure you schedule your workouts. Not only that, specify the workout that you’ll be doing. And keep that date with yourself. Remember your motivation for starting your exercise program in the first place – your reason for getting healthy and strong.

Author: Fran

I believe in everything! In moderation, of course! I keep fit by working out a little most days, eating right (mostly), doing balance exercises (every day!) and trying to keep a sense of humor.