Make exercise easier for you
For the last while I’ve been writing articles on specific things. Lose bodyfat, gain muscle, importance of sleep, the dangers of parabens, gluten etc. This time I’m simplifying it, taking it back to the beginning. Not everyone out there is a gym pro, the majority of people have tried exercise of some description and given up time and time again. It’s too much like hard work, they want to lose weight before the join, they don’t like getting up early to train before work, their just too tired!
Every time you turn your head there is a new exercise class starting, a new 7 week kick start, a new diet…………… gym gear is now one of the biggest retail sectors out there, everyone is wearing it! So why are there so many unhealthy people around? I’m not saying everyone should be 10% body fat and have a stomach you could wash your clothes on but the benefits are around for everyone to see. TV, internet, radio, there’s no escaping it. What can you do to make it easier to be fitter and healthier?
Find an exercise mate. He or she could be the difference between you sticking with it or giving up when it gets tough. If possible, find someone stronger/fitter then you, from personal experience, it works, you push yourself harder.
Mix it up regularly. Don’t do the same thing week in, week out, you’re bound to get bored and with boredom comes plateauing and quitting. Take a specific class once a week on top of your other fitness regime, make it something that’s fun like boxercise or a dance class. If you’re enjoying it you’re more likely to stick with it. Your body adapts to a specific exercise in 2-3 weeks, depending on how many times you do it so after this time you will go into maintenance mode. Hire a PT once a month to change your weight programme, keeping it fresh and your body working hard.
Days off training are fine but try to not take two consecutive days off, it’s amazing how much harder it will be to get back into it on the 3rd day. Have a back-up plan. Identify barriers that may stop you training like holidays and work deadlines and make a list of solutions. Avoid an “all or nothing” scenario where you know you will miss 2-3 days training and so think, “feck it, I’ll take the week off and start afresh next week”.
Set yourself mini goals along the way. Maybe it’s 25 pushups on your feet without stopping or squatting/leg pressing with your bodyweight on the bar/machine. Reward yourself (within reason) when you reach these goals. Do mini workouts on days that you just don’t have the full time in one go to exercise. 2-3 short bouts of 30 minute intense workouts throughout the day are as good at getting you fit and healthy, but make sure that the workout is intense, otherwise you’re wasting the precious time you have.
Last but certainly not least, be aware that you might fall off the wagon and don’t crucify yourself if you do. It’s a lifestyle and when it becomes your lifestyle you can afford to fall off every once in a while. One great workout will not make you fit and healthy and one or two bad meals or a few missed days training will not make you fat!!!
Louise Kavanagh - Spencer Health Club Manager