The first weeks of school are mayhem. As the homework piles up, it is easy to push exercise habits out the door even though you know that you would more motivated and energized by staying active, so here are five tips to help you prioritize fitness in the craziness of back to school.
1. Have a routine. The first step to sticking to a routine is having a routine in the first place! Pick the days of the week that you plan to work out and stick to them. I workout every other day and sometimes I swap it up a bit, but I try to have those set days. Having a set routine that your mind and body get used to helps you stay more committed to exercising.
2. Exercise before a meal when your stomach is empty (or at least mostly empty). Doing this helps burn fat faster and can improve your performance. I tend to exercise right when I wake up before I eat breakfast, but after school or midday before lunch are also great options.
3. Make staying active fun! Sometimes I get so stressed with other responsibilities that working out just becomes another chore. Try to find a few things that you love to do and work them into your exercise plan. I love playing soccer, so sometimes I’ll do soccer drills. Things like canoeing, running, or hiking are also great options. Just come up with something that you love and don’t forget to enjoy it.
4. Stay active with a friend. I feel this one is pretty self-explanatory. I’m an extrovert and I love to be with people, so for me, I love to workout with friends. I find that working out with friends is helpful as we can help keep each other accountable, and have a conversation while exercising.
5. Encourage yourself. I love to encourage others, but I sometimes find it hard to encourage myself, even though sometimes I really need it. I have found that the simplest of things can encourage me. Just remember that it doesn’t have to be a giant thing. I like to leave sticky notes with quotes and bible verses all over. One of my favorite verses to do this with is Philippians 4:13, it says, “I can do all things through him who gives me strength” (ESV).
I hope this was helpful to you. Good luck this school year, I’m rooting for you!