It happens to all of us a some point, sometimes it's a holiday, maybe you're injured or unwell, work bogging you down or maybe you've just lost the will to do it. Often it's a mixture of some or all of them. However, the hardest is motivation, because lets face it being motivated and committed may work in the short term, but over a longer period of time, unless your job is sports and fitness related, you're motivation and commitment at times will drop, hell, sometimes it vanishes altogether.

I've just had one of those periods (possibly still am) and I have to say it's been hard to drag myself back out of it. I guess it's a bit like giving up smoking, if you get through the first 6 months it gets easier, the difficult period after that often comes two to two and a half years in where it's suddenly easy to slip back into it. I've just hit the two and a half years of getting back into health and fitness, and I think I've just hit the first real bump in the road other than injury. Firstly work projects and demanding client deadlines jumped in, then I had a short holiday, then to be honest I quite simply didn't feel it... That's sort of hard to admit, because I know when I'm feelinhg a bit low and unmotivated exercise actually makes me feel better. Yet I've had a few weeks in a row where I've just put it off to the next day, and so on.

I started off beating myself up about it, but that doesn't often help. So instead I stopped and said ok, so I'm going to treat this as a short break, I'll focus on some other things for a couple of weeks. Think through why I'm struggling to get out the door to the gym, and give myself some days to target a reintroduction.

For me, I took some time to catch up with family and friends, I went out and visited a few places I'd been meaning to. I tried to eat healthy and got some good sleep and relaxation. 

This week I eased myself back in to some short runs and the gym. I changed the time I did this to a lunch time in the week. Usually I do evenings after work and Saturday mornings. But it's way to easy to get home after work and never go out again. So for me, taking my kit into work and having a proper hour lunch break running and short gym session really worked. I'm lucky the gym is fairly close by to work. It's only a 1k run and 30 mins gym. Not a huge amount of exercise, but it's not the length of time that's important, it's setting the new routine and getting used to it again that's important.

So far this week has gone well, and I'm feeling confident I'll be back into a regular fitness regime again over the coming weeks. I'm also going to sign-up for some classes, I know that I am the sort of person who needs interaction with others to get the best enjoyment out of keeping fit. I have to say it helps that the days are now cooling down into Autumn.

If you're having trouble there are numerous short articles with usefull tips for helping to get through these dips:

7 ways to stay motivated

or the longer:

32 ways to motivate yourself

Written by Mark Wrangham - Founder of IT Games Club

IT Games Club is supported by a growing number of global IT companies, and aims to bring sport and fitness to the forefront of the IT industry. Challenging and motivating the industry to get fitter and healthier. If you are a senior IT professional who would like motivation and free entry into events around the world, then join up today, membership is free (and always will be). As we grow we will be opening up membership to a wider audience in the industry and across more sports and pastimes.