penny barnshaw garage fitness girl

How to Get Back in Shape in 5 Easy Steps


Lost your fitness mojo? That’s okay, it happens to most of us! Sometimes, after we’ve been off-track for a while with our fitness, it can feel too overwhelming to know where to start to get back in shape. I’ve written this blog to help simplify things for you, so that you know exactly where to start your fitness journey, with these 5 easy steps.

#1 Add strength training to your workout routine.

While HIIT (High-Intensity Interval Training) is very popular at the moment, and is great for improving cardiovascular health and overall fitness, it’s important not to forget about strength training. When we strength train, we add more lean muscle to our bodies, which means we end up burning more fat for longer because more muscle requires more energy. You can read more in this article: Why you should prioritise strength training for weight loss.

#2 Drink more water

Drinking water before a meal has been shown to decrease appetite, and it avoids the common mistake many people make of confusing thirst with hunger. Staying properly hydrated also avoids fatigue, and when we’re fatigued it is so hard to exercise! It can also help avoid excess calories when you replace any sweetened or milky drinks with water. If the only change you make is drinking more water, then that’s an excellent place to start! Aim for 2 litres per day.

#3 Keep a food diary

It’s easy to go through the day mindlessly eating and not knowing exactly how much we’re putting into our bodies. Tracking your calories through a food diary works because it keeps you accountable and helps you see what you’re actually eating. To keep a food diary, you can use an old-fashioned notebook and pen or an app like MyFitnessPal, whichever is easiest for you. I recommend just logging your food for a week before cutting calories so you can (1), get in the habit of tracking throughout your day, and (2), get a clear idea of your starting point. Despite all the different weight loss methods out there, weight loss still comes down to the calories you take in versus the calories you burn off. After a week of solid tracking, start by cutting a small amount of calories (200-300) from your daily diet. A few ways to do this easily and without noticing a big difference are: Swapping your sweet breakfast (cereals, muffins, pancakes) for a savoury one (think eggs on grainy toast); eating whole fruit instead of drinking juices; replacing your daily milky latte with a long black with just a dash of milk; and swapping fizzy drinks or cordials for kombucha or water. A few small changes here and there can make all the difference, just remember that it’s important to be honest when you track.

#4 Get your 10,000 steps in!

This might be an easy one for some, but it can be a real challenge for me! Despite working out daily, I sit for the majority of my workday and might only get in 2-3,000 steps. Getting in your 10,000 steps each day is great for your mental and physical health. It helps to burn more calories and fat, improve sleep and relieve depression. An added bonus: if you take a stroll outside, you’ll also get your daily dose of vitamin D, which many of us are deficient in (even here in Australia). When it’s too rainy and cold out, I’ve been using walking workouts on YouTube. You can follow along with my latest one here 👇 and sign up to get my monthly workout calendar to see when our next walking workout is scheduled.

#5 Keep it Interesting

Adding a variety of workouts to your workout schedule is a great way to get back in shape, because it keeps your body guessing! This means there’s less chance of you hitting a plateau with your results, and it also stops you from getting bored and skipping workouts. Move your body in ways you enjoy and if you need a plan to follow, sign up for my free monthly workout calendar that will give you the structure and variety you need. If you’re just starting out, don’t be afraid to choose 3 of the workouts each week to start off – any movement is better than no movement, and we all need to start where we’re at. Each month I pack the calendar with strength, cardio, HIIT, no equipment, low impact workouts and so much more to help you reach your body goals.

So there you have it, they are my 5 easy tips to get you started. Make sure you subscribe to my YouTube channel and tick the notification bell, so you never miss a new workout. You can also sign up for workout calendars that I send out for free every month, and feel free to follow me on Instagram and Facebook where I share heaps of fresh workouts and ideas.

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