How To Get Out Of Your Pandemic Exercise Slump 

Jun 4, 2021, 5:08 PM | Updated: Jun 5, 2021, 4:30 pm

SOUTH JORDAN, Utah — The pandemic threw off our routines and schedules, and for many of us, one of the first things to go was regular exercise. One South Jordan woman found a way to re-prioritize her health through goal setting and discipline.  

Like many other working moms, when the pandemic hit last year, Rachel Love started homeschooling her kids. Everything else, she said, went out the window.  

“I couldn’t go to the gym anymore and that was really hard because I was pretty extroverted,” said Love.

She was used to going to the gym at least four times a week in her pre-pandemic days.

“I would drop off my son, and then I’d either go to the high fitness class, or I would bike or I would run the track,” said Love.  

With no gym or childcare options, her workout routine hit a wall.

She also started incorporating baking and cooking lessons into her son’s homeschool plan.

“Then we were cooking a lot and eating a lot, and that caught up to me really quick,” she said.  

Both her physical and mental health suffered.

“It was pretty discouraging, and it was also confusing because we didn’t know when the end would be in sight,” said Love.  

One of Love’s friends invited her to run their first half marathon in July.

“But the half marathon was really hard. We took lots of walking breaks. We didn’t have a very fast pace by the end,” she said laughing. “I had points where I was like, ‘I don’t know if I can do this.'”


Then, another six months went by, and Love said she hit a plateau again.

“By the end of December, I weighed myself on a whim and was shocked at what I was on a scale. I had no idea that I had to let myself get to that point,” Love described.  

In January, she decided to make a change.

“This is not how it needs to be. I have the choice right now to either continue to not exercise, or make this a priority,” she thought. “I didn’t expect myself to lose the weight super, super fast. I was gonna make gradual changes, do my best, and try to just be consistent and stick to it.”  

Love set a new goal: “I want to run another half marathon, but I want to run it faster!”  

She found a new gym, started training and improved her diet.

“I started running more, but taking fewer walking breaks while I was running, just to try and bring up my speed,” she said.

When race day came, Love shaved 15 minutes off her time. 

“It felt really good. I like teared up at the end. I was like, ‘I did it!’ It was so exciting!” she said. “[I] was shocked at how much easier it was this time around.”  

Brittany Irvin, exercise therapist with Intermountain Healthcare, said exercise goals should be both enjoyable and realistic.

“I would tell someone at first to start small and to find something that’s sustainable for them,” she said.  

Find someone to hold you accountable, Irvin said, such as “a friend, or go into a gym and meet people there, or even hire a personal trainer.”  

Most importantly, Irvin reminded people to maintain a healthy perspective.

“Just to be patient with themselves and just to be kind to yourself,” she said.  

Irwin also reminded people they weren’t the only ones who lost sight of their goals during the pandemic.

She urged people to just start.

“There’s going to be failures, there’s going to be setbacks, but that’s part of life and just … keep moving,” she said.  

She said people will see results, even from making small changes such as, “having more energy during the day, being able to get better sleep.”  

For Love, the results paid off.

“I’ve lost almost 20 pounds since the beginning of the year,” she said.  

She said she feels happier, more energetic and confident.

“I’m wearing clothes that I wore pre-pandemic, that during the pandemic, I was not comfortable wearing,” she said laughing.  

Love told others it’s not too late to make a change.

“Try different things and fall in love with something and just run with it,” she said.  

She encouraged others to not be afraid of trying something new and keep pushing through.

“I was really nervous to try to run a half marathon, but then I fell in love with it,” Love said. “Even though it’s hard — to not give up and not to be afraid of doing something that’s hard.”  

Irvin encouraged people who are headed back to the office and worried they won’t have as much time to exercise to set a reminder on their phone to stand up, stretch, or go for a walk throughout the day. 

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Your Life Your Health

Harmoni Memmott went through seven months of chemotherapy at Primary Children's Hospital to beat a ...
Ayanna Likens

2-year-old beats cancer after receiving care at Primary Children’s Hospital

September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, and one 2-year-old in Tooele battled cancer and beat it after treatment at Primary Children's Hospital.
2 months ago
FILE PHOTO (Maryland State Police)...
Ayanna Likens

How to make sure your child’s car seat is properly installed

It's Child Passenger Safety week, and it's crucial that your kids are properly buckled in before you hit the road.
2 months ago
A program at LDS Hospital is bringing support and a distraction from those receiving treatment for ...
Ayanna Likens

Joy and Wellness Program provided support for those battling cancer

A program at LDS Hospital is bringing support and a distraction from those receiving treatment for blood cancers.
3 months ago
Intermountain healthcare launched a new mental health resource that will visit children and teens i...
Ayanna Likens

A new free mental health resource in Utah will visit children in their moment of crisis

Intermountain Healthcare launched a new mental health resource for children and teens. The Stabilization Mobile Response unit (SMR) is designed to go to your home in a discreet way to help your child in crisis. The service is free.
3 months ago
Max Thomas Richins (right) and Dr. James Hellowell (left), the man who Richins credits with saving ...
Ayanna Likens

Ogden man shares how naloxone saved his life

In honor of International Overdose Awareness Day, one Ogden man said naloxone saved his life — and many of his friends, too.
3 months ago
Mom of three, Abby, working out....
Ayanna Likens

Creating healthy habits for families as kids return to school

Summer has come to an end, and school is back in session, which comes with a big adjustment for both parents and kids.
3 months ago

Sponsored Articles

Hand turning a thermostat knob to increase savings by decreasing energy consumption. Composite imag...
Lighting Design

5 Lighting Tips to Save Energy and Money in Your Home

Advances in lighting technology make it easier to use smart features to cut costs. Read for tips to save energy by using different lighting strategies in your home.
Portrait of smiling practitioner with multi-ethnic senior people...
Summit Vista

How retirement communities help with healthy aging

There are many benefits that retirement communities contribute to healthy aging. Learn more about how it can enhance your life, or the life of your loved ones.
Happy diverse college or university students are having fun on their graduation day...
BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

How to choose what MBA program is right for you: Ask these questions before you apply!

Wondering what MBA program is right for you? Take this quiz before you apply to see if it will help you meet your goals.
Cloud storage technology with 3d rendering drawer with files in cloud...
PC Laptops

How backing up your computer can help you relieve stress

Don't wait for something bad to happen before backing up your computer. Learn how to protect your data before disaster strikes.
young woman with stickers on laptop computer...
Les Olson

7 ways print marketing materials can boost your business

Custom print marketing materials are a great way to leave an impression on clients or customers. Read for a few ideas to spread the word about your product or company.
young woman throwing clothes to organize a walk in closet...
Lighting Design

How to organize your walk-in closet | 7 easy tips to streamline your storage today

Read our tips to learn how to organize your walk-in closet for more storage space. These seven easy tips can help you get the most out of your space.
How To Get Out Of Your Pandemic Exercise Slump