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Getting Back into Shape After Years of Inactivity

Part 1 by Myesha Hossain


Having been indoors for as long as we have is shocking! Our lives have changed drastically as we work remotely (unless we are essential workers). We are cooking more than ever, washing our hands more frequently, wearing masks upon leaving our door and walking less than before. Speaking of walking, it is a fair claim to say that a majority of us are less active than before, simply because we are staying indoors. With gyms being closed, it is harder for bodybuilders to maintain their physique as leaning out is inevitable. It is difficult to make the level of progress we hope to since gyms are closed and it can be discouraging to exercise in the same place we eat, sleep, shower, get ready, and have family members around. However, there are steps we can take now to get fit once quarantine is lifted, which will also jumpstart the progress we see once we hit the gyms afterward.


You must continue to work out at home - even if you are only using bodyweight exercises. Not only will it keep your muscles active, but it will also keep your sense of kinesthetics in good working order. As someone who would squat and hip thrust 145 pounds at the gym, I can sympathize with the sentiment that home workouts are simply not the same. However, I still pull out my resistance bands and ankle weights every other day because I want my body to be able to keep that muscle memory alive and fresh. And when you do go back to the gym, it’ll be easier to pick up from where you left off or make progress very quickly since your muscles have been in an energetic state. You’ll also experience fewer injuries as you have been practicing form and developing endurance.

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Never underestimate the power of a picture because it is a true image of your state at a certain moment in time. It will reflect the physical changes your body is undergoing in current times. Whenever I start training with my girlfriends, I implore them to take that initial picture because it will document how far they have come in their fitness journey. Some look back two months later, in complete and utter shock, and notice how much they’ve slimmed down in ways they would not have if they never took that first picture.


With fitness saturating social media, it can be difficult to go against fitness gear as a fashion statement itself. Save your wallet for your actual nightwear and going out clothes. Yes, you should feel good about what you wear at the gym; however, it should be a small investment. The bigger investment is making the time in your schedule to go to the gym. You can buy the best quality Gymshark leggings and sneakers, but if they are cooped up in your closet because you cannot make it to the gym, that well-intended purchase goes to waste.

Invest in gym clothes after you have reached a certain level of progress. By that point, you might want to buy some new clothes anyway and it will make sense once you have reached a certain body or weight goal. I usually wear some of my oldest t-shirts and sweatpants to the gym, because let’s be real, the gym is not your cleanest place. If there isn’t obvious sweat on your bench or seat, the dried remnants remain, unless someone had the courtesy of wiping down after every use.


First, make sure you have access to a gym or fitness center. It is also important to know what workouts you plan to do. No one wants to be the person at the gym just standing there, thinking about what to do next. If you plan to hit the treadmill for 25 minutes, make sure you aren’t at a speed of three miles per hour for the entire duration. Plan those minutes out so you are breaking into a sweat and getting your heart rate into the ideal target zone for your weight and height. If you plan to workout your upper or lower body, know which workouts you are going to do - have a starting weight for each machine or dumbbell workout so you are slowly increasing the weight every few workout sessions. If you plan to go with a friend, communicate that early and make sure your friend is truly committed to joining you. Also, make the intention that if your friend bails, you will still go and give your 100% effort.


You can workout at the gym or do lots of cardio, but we know the ideal body also needs lots of support from the kitchen. When you go to the supermarket, count how many items are fresh versus processed. If you have more of the latter, it might be time to re-evaluate your dietary habits and make a gradual switch. Start your morning with fresh fruit - this should be simple. Try some berries, apples, figs, pineapples, watermelon…the options are endless. Drink even more water since you will be outside, and with a change in your routine, your hydration suffers. Incorporate some leafy greens with every meal - the fiber will keep you full and restore balance to your metabolism over time. The combination of working out and a healthy diet won’t just give you the body you want, but it will bring clear skin and healthy hair, which are only wins.


What really motivates me to workout is knowing how good I will look when I finally wear those fashionable outfits. Let’s be real - we want our workouts to count. We know exactly how we want to fill out in certain clothes we wear, especially if we spend a lot of money on them and are dressing to impress. Maybe you are looking to gain some weight so those pants can snug you in the right places. Or maybe you are looking to lose some weight, so your favorite dress fits you again. Whatever the motivation is, keeping those outfits at hand will let you see your progress in full fruition once you have attained that goal.

Browse through some of your favorite brands to see what they have in store and treat yourself once you reach a certain milestone. Or buy it in advance in the size you aspire to achieve and wear it to celebrate! Double Icon has some great summer pieces and crop outfits that are perfect for flaunting your progress. If you aren’t convinced, look at this Moonstone Set. With the right accessories and statement pieces, this outfit is perfect for bringing attention to your waist and legs. For those who prefer their black attire, you still cannot go wrong with the Own the Night Set, which will bring a focus on your long legs and torso. Both appear to be simple looks but can go a long way when they fit right after working out. Don’t believe me? See the photos below of me flaunting these looks! Browse through to see what else Double Icon has to offer to update your wardrobe, and for wholesale accessories, check out Wholesale Fashion Trends, my absolute favorite! Whatever it is you need to do, get prepared for becoming the fittest version of yourself.


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