Don’t Let Back to School Stress Derail Your Fitness

Nowadays, it’s not just kids who are getting the back to school jitters.  It’s parents too!  A recent survey conducted by Care.com revealed that 55 percent of parents feel more stressed during the back to school season and more than 30 percent experience significant anxiety over it.  

By September, bonfires, BBQs and beach days are just warm memories of a great summer.  For many the fall means rigid schedules, new logistics to juggle and heavier workloads.  And, with about 70 percent of kids participating in extracurricular activities according to Pew Research, family schedules can fill up so quickly that it can seem almost impossible to have time for anything else.

For anyone trying to stick to a fitness routine, back to school can be especially challenging.  It’s easy to put off working out in favor of another activity or event that may seem more important.  Of course you can’t be in two places at once and sometimes something has to give.  But skipping multiple workouts can put you on a slippery slope that’s hard to climb back up.  

Follow these guidelines keep your fitness on track:

  • Schedule your workouts:  Choose a time for your regular workouts and stick to it.  In fact, put them on your calendar in indelible ink!  Schedule 4-6 fitness “appointments” each week.  These could include workouts that happen at the gym, in your home or outdoors.  But, regardless of where they happen, the key is carving time out of your schedule to make your workouts a priority.  
  • Put time into food prep:  It’s so easy to make poor food choices for yourself and your family when you’re pressed for time.  That’s why investing a little time in advance for food prepping is important.  Keep washed vegetables, fruits and pre-cut meats on hand to make preparing lunch and dinner easier.  Sketch out a schedule of meals for the week and be sure your refrigerator is stocked with all the ingredients you need to eat healthy and nutritious meals that will keep you fueled up.  
  • Get your sleep:  People often underestimate how important sleep is for adults.  Shoot for at least 7 hours of sleep each night to give your body a chance to rest, rebuild your muscles and release the stress of the day. Skimp on sleep too often and you’ll quickly find that your body is off kilter.   
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