All photos were taken before the COVID-19 pandemic and reflect life within our communities.

Jill Megna, a certified exercise physiologist at The Becoming Center, has been inspiring members’ fitness routines since 2015. Helping them become the best versions of themselves, Jill says the most rewarding part of her job is building relationships with members and being an important part of The Becoming Center’s close-knit, fitness community.

Staying on top of your fitness routine can certainly be a challenge. When gyms and other fitness facilities were forced to shut down due to COVID-19 regulations, these challenges became all the more difficult. Whether you’ve taken a complete hiatus from your workouts, or have been trying to stay fit on your own, here are some tips from our professional exercise physiologists to safely get back to your fitness routine.

We ensure safety and security for our members so you can focus on Becoming Better! We can’t wait to see you back at the gym!

The Becoming Center has been a wonderful resource to maintain both my physical and mental health. I look forward to working out there every week and I absolutely feel safe. The precautions taken by the personal trainers show how much they care about our health and well-being.

Carol, current member of The Becoming Center

Get Back to Your Fitness Routine! Here are Jill’s Top 10 Tips!

1. Take the first step.

Do not wait until the stars align to start back up with your workouts. If you wait for perfect conditions to start exercising again, you may never start. Will you always feel like working out? No, but you have to start somewhere. Take the first step by doing something active today. Think less, move more, and try it again tomorrow. You will be surprised by the payoff of small daily efforts.

2. Do what you can.

Instead of overwhelming yourself with triathlon goals, just view each day as a blank slate. Now it is your job to get some exercise somewhere in those 24 hours. Try a designated hour for exercise or break it up into four 15-minute increments throughout the day. Just do what you can. And for those of you who might be recovering from an injury or who have knee or back pain, there are still safe exercises you can do. Be sure to check with your doctor first!

3. Be accountable.

Nothing can erode your self-image faster than making promises to yourself that you do not keep. Keep every promise you make to yourself, whether it’s about exercise or food. Your confidence will get a giant boost.

If you struggle with holding yourself accountable, find a friend to partner up with as you both improve your health together. Having the support of a friend can only help. You can also keep yourself accountable by not filling your pantry with the foods that derail you. It is called creating a fail-safe environment, an environment in which you can thrive.

4. Stay hydrated and drink plenty of water.

We all know we should have about eight, eight-ounce glasses of water a day. One of the best ways to make that happen is to carry water with you all day long. Sip if you are at a desk, sip in your car, and sip during your workouts. Proper hydration keeps your body working efficiently, keeps you full longer, improves your skin, and more!

5. Try to ditch the excuses.

Ditch the couch as your only activity and ditch those excuses while you are at it! Excuses will not make your life better or healthier. Fill your life up with what you can do (reread tip two!) and walk away from those tired excuses.

6. Plan meals.

Do not waste time wondering what you should eat or how you can eat healthier, just select a healthy recipe and try it out!

Need some inspiration? Try this healthy recipe from Artman’s Director of Dining Services!

7. Get sufficient sleep.

Sleep is as equally important to your health as food and exercise. Lack of sleep leads to weight gain and other medical problems. Sleep deprivation can make weight loss an uphill battle as it affects your hormones. Have you ever noticed a craving for carbs or an increased appetite after a bad night’s sleep?

That’s because insufficient sleep can make your hormone levels of leptin, decrease and hormone levels of grehlin increase, which as a result can cause you to overeat and crave more food. To reduce overeating and cravings, aim for eight hours of shut-eye each night.

8. Plan your exercise for tomorrow, today.

If it is automatically on your schedule, you will be more likely to do it. Do not hope to exercise, plan. Scheduling is the secret to making exercise happen.

Looking for your next favorite workout? Try this yoga routine with The Becoming Center’s yoga instructor, Liz!

9. Celebrate your success.

Get out your calendar and markdown your wins. Jot down the workouts you do. Or how many push-ups you completed. Or how many seconds you held a plank. Or the three numbers on the scale that you are happy about. Just put your success in ink on paper so you can see it and crave more of it. Send yourself the visual cues of success. It works, especially when you begin to see your month full of completed workouts.

10. Sweat.

I always say find an exercise you love because that’s the exercise you are more likely to do, but there’s a second part to it: SWEAT. You have to get that heart rate up and burn those calories. If walking is your favorite fitness activity, do it at a fast pace, use your arms, or power up some hills. Go for a sweat. You will feel accomplished when you get back home and there will be no doubt that you got a good workout in.

Are you ready to get back to your regular fitness routine?

Try these warm-up exercises so you can be prepared for your next workout at The Becoming Center!

1. Treadmill, Stationary Bike, Nu Step

Engaging in a proper warm-up before exercising is important for your muscles. During this phase of exercise, your muscles are literally warming up, which is necessary for full and fluid actions.

Cold or stiff muscles do not take well to movement. With a proper warm-up, your muscles will be less prone to injury. To begin, hop on the treadmill, bike, or Nu Step for 10 minutes. Start slow and gradually increase your time and speed.

2. Bridge

Lie with your back on the floor, knees bent to 90 degrees, and feet flat on the floor. Begin by contracting your abdominal muscles as you lift your hips off the floor. Hold at the top for a moment before return back to the starting position.

3. Torso Rotations 

Stand with your feet hip-width apart and knees slightly bent. Stretch your arms straight out in front of you, and gently clasp your hands together. From here, slowly rotate your torso to one side, back to center, and then to the other side. Make sure to keep your shoulders down away from your ears and engage your core. Focus on turning from your waist, not your arms. Continue for one minute.

We hope you’ve enjoyed our pre-workout tips! For more health and fitness tips from our exercise physiologists and personal trainers, follow us on Facebook by clicking here!

The Becoming Center can’t wait to see you back in the gym! Take the first step to become a better you. Visit our website by clicking here and let’s start feeling better together!