Some of us have had a well-deserved rest during lockdown, whilst others have continued to smash goals with outdoor activity and home workouts.  

Whether you chose to go back to the gym straight away or waited a little longer, there are some important things to consider. 

Social distancing, wiping down of equipment, hand sanitizing and wearing masks in certain areas of the gym is vital. Make sure you follow the rules your gym has implemented to keep yourself and others safe.

Be aware that you will probably have your temperature checked on arrival and due to limited capacity, you may have to book a time slot to use the gym/pool/attend gym classes. Expect equipment to be spaced out (2m apart) and for some cardio machines to be out of use.

We’re still in the middle of a pandemic so manage your expectations about what your gym may look/feel like when you return. 

2. Mobility
Spend a bit of time warming up before going straight in, this will prevent injury. If you haven’t used much equipment at home, your body has had a huge break from using regular gym machines and lifting heavy weights - it will be a shock to the system!

Spend some time cooling down after a workout too, your body will thank you for it the next day. I know this is something many of us like to skip because we ‘can’t be bothered’, but the benefits of stretching before and after a workout are significant. Whilst we’re working out, lactic acid builds up, which is broken whilst we stretch. This allows our muscles to recover and allows blood to circulate to the muscles once again. 

3. Don’t rush back into regular routine
If you took a break during lockdown, you might not be as strong or as fit as you once were. That old saying ‘don’t run before you can walk’ is totally relevant in this situation.

Ease yourself back in, lower your weights, lower your rep range, take plenty of rests between sets and build up your strength gradually. Make a note of how long it takes you to recover from a workout and use this information to slowly increase the weight that you’re lifting. This will also prevent injury from happening. 

4. Focus on technique 
It’s a good idea to make sure your form is on point before you start lifting/squatting/deadlifting. If you have forgotten or are not sure if you’re performing something correctly, don’t be afraid to ask a trainer on the gym floor. They are there to help! Good form and technique will again, reduce the chance of injury. 

5. Fuel your body correctly
Being back at the gym means you’re probably partaking in higher intensity training than you were at home. It is important to make sure that you’re fuelling your body with the correct nutrition to help your muscles recover. 

The most important part of returning to the gym is enjoyment! Get your favourite gym kit ready, create a spotify playlist, set some short term goals, work towards them and have some fun whilst staying safe! 

For more fitness/nutrition tips, follow me on Instagram @rosiegetsfit_