Back-to-School = Gut-Bustin’ Time

If you have kids, you’re probably still adjusting to the new chaos of the first few weeks of school: forcing the kids to go to bed earlier than they have in months; morning who-wants-what-for-breakfast-and-where’s-my-notebook chaos, then the mad rush out the door followed by the staggering (and blissful) silence of the season.

Your body’s adjusting, too. Your summer clock has been obliterated and it can leave you a bit disoriented-particularly when it comes to your workout regiment.

You worked out throughout the summer, but now it seems a bit tired.

Or you haven’t worked out much this summer and you’re just-tired.

Well, just as the kids are re-engaging their brains, let’s re-engage our bodies.

Back-to-school season is the perfect time to get back to basics with our workouts.

If, you’ve been working out, use this change of seasons to embark a change of training. Here are a few ideas:

* Book six sessions with a personal trainer and charge them to kick your butt for the next three weeks, and teach you some new moves in the process.

* Take three fitness classes you’ve never tried. They’ll shock your body, which has probably become used to your regiment.

* If you live in the East, take advantage of these last few weeks of great weather by signing up for an outdoor event, such as a half-marathon, mini-triathlon or a road race. Training for an event will also kick-start your workouts because it’ll keep you focused and force you to re-jigger your routine.

If you haven’t been working out regularly, start now! You don’t want to slip another month or so when you’ll start being able to use “the holidays” as an excuse to allow your ass to swell to the size of a walrus.

Instead:

* Sign up for ten sessions with a personal trainer. You’ll need that long to survive the inevitable period when your body screams: “What the hell are we doing?!”Be honest with the trainer, but still tell them to push you. If you do two sessions per week (along with at least one workout on your own in between), you should be energized at the end of the month and ready to workout through the holidays this year.

* Take exercise classes. You’ll die. Guarantee it. But don’t be discouraged. Most classes are filled with people who’ve been taking them Merilu Henner (left) and Jamie Lee Curtis donned tights in Perfect.

* Find a workout buddy. You probably have a friend who’d also like to get back in shape. Call them. Make a pact. Make a bet. Whatever it takes to hold each other accountable and keeps you both going.

* Swim! If you can swim, find a nearby pool and get back into is. It’s a great workout and it’s one of the best ways to be back in shape after a long time off. You’ll remember the strokes and you’ll burn calories. But this time, do pushups and situps before and after your swim sessions.

* Sign up for an event. Maybe pick a run/walk 5k (but then don’t just decide to walk the whole thing! Choose, say, a 5k and set a goal of a reasonable, but challenging pace. Then train so you’ll leave that goal in the dust.

While the kids are getting their school-groove back, get your body and mind back into “you” mode.

Challenge yourself!

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