How To Start Exercising Again After A Setback

Share This Post!

Share on facebook
Share on twitter

Have you stopped exercising for a few weeks or months, or maybe even years? i

In this video, I’m going to tell you how to get back to working out after a long break.

It’s Ivana helping you get fit healthy and strong at any age.

If you’re new, please do subscribe and hit the bell to be notified whenever there’s a new video every week.

I’m an Online Fitness Coach and a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist, and I’ve been helping people get fitter and stronger for over 20 years.

If you want to start exercising again after a setback, then I’m going to give you specific guidelines to help you navigate your way back into exercise again.

So whether you’ve been sick or injured, or you just couldn’t get motivated, or you couldn’t get to gym because a lockdown or isolation or quarantine or whatever you want to call it.

Not everybody wants to do body weight workouts at home. And yes, eventually they do get really boring. I want to help you get back into working out after a setback. And at the end, I’m going to share three important tips so you can keep that momentum going and you won’t get off track again.

Start Off Easy When You Start Ex

So the first thing is start off easy. That means lighter weights, chill, relax, work your way around the gym again. And don’t train to failure.

Don’t try to make yourself throw up. You may do it anyway. So don’t really push yourself the first time that you get back into the gym. If you’ve worked out before and you’ve got some muscle memory on your side to help you build back up again more quickly. So you’ll be able to do those exercises you could before. You’ll probably feel a lot more sore afterwards than you normally would, and you might not be able to do the same weight, but you’ll be able to get back up to your maximum weight, much quicker if you’ve previously trained.

Make Sure The Workout Is Balanced

The next thing is to make sure it’s balanced.

So start off with a warmup, preferably a dynamic warmup.

I have a video with a dynamic warm-up, if you want to use that to start your workout.

I’m thinking weights primarily.

That’s what I recommend that you do when you’re start exercising again.

And then at the end do a bit of a cool down and a stretch for the tight areas of your body. It doesn’t need to be a full body stretch, but just the areas that you know are tight. So generally it’s going to be hip flexors, your chest, probably the front of your shoulders. Also the hamstrings tend to be pretty tight, sometimes the glutes. Those kinds of things work on the stretch at the end. You have a good balanced workout.

This is the opportunity for you to start from scratch and develop a balanced workout routine.

Keep It Short

The third one is keep it short. Work your way up to it gradually. It takes time to build up your work capacity when you start exercising again.

So it’s going to be very difficult for you to do a long, hard session. You can do a long session, but it’s going to have to be very, very gentle, or you can do a hard session, but it’s going to have to be very short. I prefer to do a shorter session. That’s sort of moderate intensity. That’s probably going to be the best way for you to build up your muscle mass again, anyway, and then you can gradually work your way into slightly longer sessions.

Thirty minutes, three times a week is just fine.

That will get you back into things. Then use your recovery and how you feel afterwards to guide you into how much longer a session you should do, perhaps work your way up to 40 minutes the next week, and then see how your recovery is.

So it’s all about monitoring yourself, seeing how you’re coping with it and progressing gradually full body workouts are a great way to get started. It’s often what I do with my beginners, especially you don’t need to do the bodybuilding part splits.

You don’t need to do chest one day and then legs one day.

It’s a good idea to mix it up just to have some upper body and some lower body activity happening on each session when you’re getting into things. So 30 minutes, three times a week, full body sessions of a moderate intensity.

Keep It Simple

My fourth tip is keep it simple when you start exercising again.

If you’re just getting back into exercise after a setback now is not the time to do cluster sets or drop sets or pyramid sets. You don’t need to add chains to the end of your barbell. I mean, if I’m being honest for most people, unless you are a powerlifter or bodybuilder or a professional athlete, those kinds of things don’t really need to be done at all.

If you’re coming back to the gym after a long break, pick a few exercises that you’re comfortable with do three to four sets and then go home…after your stretching, of course. So keep it really simple. See how your body adapts to the training and then think about progressing from week to week and month to month.

Make It Fun And Sustainable

Number five, make it fun and sustainable. Pick a few of your favourite exercises and incorporate those into your first workout. In your first couple of weeks of workouts, you want to establish a positive association with exercise again, so that it becomes something that you want to continue to do.

Let me know in the comments what your favourite exercise is and the one that you can’t wait to get back to.

Obviously there’s two situations here.

Maybe you’re someone who had to, to stop exercising. You had a setback, kept you from exercising, but you love to exercise.

And there are the other people who exercise because they feel they should, or because they need it to lose weight or they feel that it’s something that they should do for their health.

Which it is absolutely it is.

But for me, it’s really important to develop that appreciation if not the actual love of exercise, because if you don’t appreciate what exercise does for you, then you’re always going to have something that’s going to take you away from it.

Three Tips To Keep The Momentum Going When You Start Exercising Again:

Try Not To Think Of It As “Getting Back Into Shape”

Number one, try not to think of about it as getting back into shape. This really makes it seem like a very arduous process and you’re reaching for something you’re climbing. And sometimes it feels like it’s unattainable.

So really when you start exercising again, after a setback, you really just want to appreciate the fact that you can exercise the way that exercise makes your body feel the way you feel afterwards.

Don’t look too far into the future.

Just try to think about going through the motions.

You’re back in doing the exercises rep after rep after set day after day.

So it’s gradual, and then you’re going to see those results coming anyway. And eventually you’re going to look at yourself and go, Oh wow. Now I’m back in shape again. And maybe even in better shape than you were before.

This is an opportunity when you’re coming back to start and do it things properly to kind of get out of the rut that possibly you were in as well. So use it as an opportunity.

Focus On Consistency And NOT Perfection

Number two, focus on consistency and not perfection. Perfection just doesn’t happen. So you might as well get your results by focusing on what you’re doing on a regular basis.

Consistency is actually what will lead to successful longterm commitment to exercise, as well as weight loss and fat loss.

If you’re successful with those things, it’s because you’re consistent with the behaviours that are needed for that to happen.

Don’t Rely On Discipline Or Willpower

Finally, don’t rely on discipline or willpower to keep exercising. Put it in your schedule and take it as seriously as your other appointments.

It is a part of having a healthy lifestyle. That’s part of you feeling good, of you being energetic, and you feeling strong and active, make it a priority.

If you struggle, then find yourself someone that you can hold yourself accountable to like an online coach. I know a really great one.

You can check out the link in the comments afterwards, but it’s really important that you don’t leave this to chance.

I hope this video was helpful for you. If it was, please do hit that like button for me. And make sure you subscribe and hit that notification bell.

And I look forward to seeing you next week.

Ivana Chapman

Share This Post!

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Ivana Chapman

Ivana Chapman

Ivana Chapman BSc BA CSCS is a Canadian fitness and nutrition coach, happy wife, and mom to an energetic 8-year-old boy. She is a YouTuber, writer, published fitness model, speaker, 3rd Dan black belt in Shotokan Karate, former World Cup Karate Champion, one-time marathoner, and CBBF National level Natural Bikini competitor. She loves weight training and chocolate, not always in that order of preference.
Related Posts

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Like what you’re reading?

Enter your email for weekly nutrition, fitness, and lifestyle tips!


Want help putting together a nutrition and exercise plan to reach your goals?

Shopping Basket