On 12th April, approximately 9 million people will be dusting off their membership cards and getting back to the gym.
But with some of us having not visited for more than a year, how can we ensure we get back into our routine effectively, and most importantly, stay injury free?
Becky Bowman, Personal Trainer with corporate wellbeing platform Gympass, gives her 5 top tips.
Warm up – unless you have a fully kitted out home gym it’s likely that your lockdown fitness programme differs significantly from your gym routine. In the gym you will be recruiting muscles you haven’t used for a while which is why a proper warm-up – getting the blood flowing to those muscles and preparing them for work – is essential to avoid injury.
Quality not quantity – focus on quality, technically correct exercise rather than aiming for distance covered or time completed.
No one’s going to be giving out badges for achievement, and the real winners will be those who stay free of aches, pains and injury!
Refresh your knowledge – for some of us, it’s been over a year since we were in a gym so don’t be embarrassed if you’ve forgotten how to work the treadmill or set up the leg press machine.
Ask a gym instructor for a quick refresher, or better still book in for a programme review or PT session to reset your gym-confidence.
Don’t fixate on your pre-covid fitness – going in and out of lockdown has severely disturbed all our fitness routines.
Try not to compare your 1000m rowing time or bench press pb with what you could do a year ago.
Within a few weeks you’ll be right back to where you were before, but going too hard too early could result in pain or injury and set you back even further.
Recover – don’t binge on the gym! We’re hopefully through our last national lockdown and it’s not going away again.
Recovery is an essential phase on the road to peak fitness so if you need a rest day, take it.
Gympass has lots of great options such as access to live classes, a whole range of apps such as Yogaia or the ability to book one to one sessions with a personal trainer to help you with recovery.