Health & Fitness, Get your fitness back

Getting back in shape: Choosing the right activity in 3 steps

In order to return to sports in a sustainable way, it is essential to choose the correct activity. By following our step-by-step advice, discover which sport to choose according to your objectives, your current desires and your physical abilities. We also explain how to persevere and keep motivated in the long term by establishing certain habits.

Define your fitness goals


To get back into physical activity with the right discipline, first take stock of your goals. Why did you decide to return to exercise? Different criteria can help determine your choice:

  • To stay in shape: Are you not very sporty, but want to fight a sedentary lifestyle, reduce stress and enjoy the benefits of physical activity by increasing your energy expenditure? Then, for you, the recovery should be gentle, with simple exercises and progressive muscular work, sparing your joints and allowing you to gradually improve your cardio-respiratory capacities. Start with short sessions and focus on regularity.
  • Weight loss: Exercising is one of the best ways to lose weight, making sure that you burn more calories than you take in through nutrition. There are two solutions: Do a cardio endurance activity with sessions lasting more than 40 minutes to force the body to tap into fat reserves to produce energy, or opt for HIIT – a short and intense workout, ideal for burning calories quickly and even continuing to burn calories following the exercise session.
  • Strengthening your muscles: To increase your muscle mass, become more flexible, stronger and more resistant to injury, muscle-building exercises are the best way to do it. Circuit training or cross-training are good options, but most sports activities help to build muscle. Depending on the muscle groups you want to work on, you can choose different disciplines. You can also turn to bodybuilding.
  • Relaxing: Doing sport helps to relieve stress by reducing cortisol levels and promoting the secretion of endorphins and dopamine, hormones linked to alertness, pleasure and relaxation. If you are looking for excitement and are in good physical condition, why not opt for an extreme sport?

Define your sporting activity according to your desires and your physical condition


Once you have defined your goal, consider your preferences in terms of which activities you would like to participate in. In what context do you visualise your future workouts? Ascertaining this will ensure that you get quick results and stay motivated over time. Here are a few tips to help you choose the right discipline according to your current desires:

  • If you like to exercise on your own and are looking to improve your cardiorespiratory capacity: Opt for running, cycling, swimming, or a rowing sport, such as paddling or kayaking. You can also enjoy home fitness, allowing you to train at home at your own pace.
  • If you like combat sports: Judo is ideal for flexibility, self-control and balance. Kick-boxing combines cardio, speed, reinforcement and breathwork. There are many options available to you.
  • If you enjoy team sports: Find out about sports clubs and associations in your area. Volleyball, football, basketball, handball or even synchronised swimming or water polo are all great options. If you like to be in the water, there are different team sports in each community, so it’s up to you to find one closest to you.
  • If you wish to practice a sport in nature: Hiking, running, climbing, canoeing and cycling could bring you a lot of joy! Gliding sports, such as skiing, snowboarding or surfing, also offer outdoor thrills.
  • If you are looking for a very gentle sport to get back in shape after childbirth, rehabilitation or following a sports injury: In consultation with your doctor, turn to walking, yoga, elliptical cycling, stretching, tai chi, water aerobics or even aqua biking, according to your preferences and physical condition.

Our advice on keeping fit in the long term


Once you have chosen the ideal sporting activity for you, these few tips should help you persevere over time:

  • Even if you are pursuing a sporting goal, never forget to treat yourself first! This is the only way to stay motivated in the long term.
  • When you return to physical activity, remember to adapt your nutrition to your new objectives: If you want to lose weight, make sure that you consume fewer calories than you spent, calculate the necessary calories per day according to your basic metabolism and your activity, hydrate yourself well, etc.
  • Choose high-quality equipment for yourself: Shoes, clothing, exercise monitoring accessories, home fitness equipment and so on. Give yourself the right means to achieve your goals!

Check out our Health & Fitness page for more advice.