So today I want to squash a common myth - 'go hard or go home'
It is often believed that all workouts should result in a sweaty, breathless, useless heap on the floor, but I disagree! And this is why:
Moving the body in ANY way is beneficial, this might be going for a leisurely walk on the weekend rather than watching another hour of TV, going for a swim, getting up from your desk and taking a 5 minute walk, or simply just stretching the body out after a long day. These are all low impact, easily accessible ways to move that won't leave you feeling fatigued.
By believing said mantra, you are ignoring your bodies natural signals and could be denying much needed rest and recovery, which is vital for all round health and fitness.
You are not going to have peak motivation, or circumstances which allow 100% commitment to any programme all of the time, fitness should be part of a healthy lifestyle, but not your entire life!
There is no doubt in my mind that exercise can be addictive, the endorphins you get after a good workout feel amazing, but exercise does not have to be aggressive to count, nor do you need to be dripping with sweat for it to be effective, and crippling soreness does not equal a better session.
Inevitably there will be days when you are just not feeling it, and that's ok! We are not machines, there have been many times that I have got in to the gym and just not been able to get in to my programme, so rather than forcing myself and having a negative experience, I have either changed it up and done something I have had the energy for, or occasionally I have walked right back out and gone home.
The take away? Sometimes it is absolutely ok to not go hard, but to go home instead!
Find something you enjoy, this really can be anything that is achievable for you to include in your lifestyle
Don't beat your self up if you have to take an unexpected break, adaptations take time, you will not lose progress by taking an occasional extra rest day
Exercise should not only be categorised as being physical, but can (and arguably should) be used for the mental clarity and benefits for the soul too!
Of course, if motivation stays low for some time, and you are struggling to get back in the groove then it may be worth looking at the bigger picture for the reason why this might be happening.
I hope some of you take heed of the above, and stop being so hard on your selves, life is for living after all.....