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My Fitness Journey and Experiences
Back in 2013 I was so into fitness that I decided to train as a fitness instructor. It wasn’t my plan to create a career out of my new qualifications, but it was just a way to feel more connected and knowledgeable about my hobby. I’ve always been a very active person and I spent several years working out on a daily basis. Over the years I have tried many workout routines, including weights, running, HIIT, traditional aerobics, kickboxing, yoga, and more. When things are going well and I have few disruptions in my work or personal life, staying on track and working out regularly is easy. But as soon as things go wrong and I have to work harder to fit in time to exercise, my motivation decreases. There have been times when I’ve woke up at 5.30am to complete a 5km-10km run before working for 8 hours and then completing an Insanity DVD later in the day – and I used to that 6 days a week! On the other hand, I have also been the kind of person who has procrastinated for hours over a quick 8 minute HIIT workout. I want to share with you 3 important lessons that I have learned throughout my fitness journey with which I am sure you will be able to resonate.
My Favourite At-Home Exercise Programs
I've been a huge fan of at-home exercise videos since 2010 when I realised what a great variety of home workout programs were available. You don't have to splash out on costly gym memberships. You don't have to leave your home. In some cases you don't even have to buy any additional equipment and even if you do, it's only usually a pair of light dumbbells. Throughout the years and depending upon my personal fitness goals, I have experienced amazing results with at-home workouts. Here are some of my favourites that I strongly recommend you try:
- For an overall great workout for weight loss, toning, and stamina: Insanity by Beachbody
- If you like Insanity, but want a shorter 30-minute workout: Insanity MAX: 30
- If you're training for a marathon or if you enjoy traditional cardio: Nell Mcandrew's Ultimate Challenge: Ultimate Results
- The workout where I gained noticeable results in very little time: Jillian Michaels - 30 Day Shred
- Enjoy having a celebrity personal trainer in your own home: Tracey Anderson's Dance Cardio
- For a fun and easy-to-follow dance workout: Beachbody CIZE
- A fast and fun kickboxing workout: Jillian Michaels - KickBox FastFix
3 Ways Stay Motivated in Your Fitness Regime:
Find an Exercise Routine that You Love
Every time a new workout trend arises, there’s all this pressure on us to do that one rather than others. Having tried many different exercise programs, I've come to realise that it is better to try and find a workout that you enjoy and then it won't feel like exercise. Exercise can be tough and even the most motivated people can sometimes struggle to get up and go to the gym or go for a run or hit play on their at-home workout video. If you're trying to lose weight, build muscle or transform yourself in one way or another, you're going to have to leave your comfort zone and it's much easier to do that when you're doing a fitness routine that you like. One of my life mantras is: "It's better to do something rather than nothing!" And I believe that's true of exercise in this case.
Wake Up, Dress Up, Workout!
Buying the best and nicest looking pair of trainers isn't going to make you the fastest runner. If you're good at sport, you'll be able to achieve the same results in an old pair of shorts and a scruffy t-shirt and unbranded trainers. However, that being said, if you are looking to find motivation to workout, wearing something nice will make you more likely to want to exercise. There's such a lovely range of workout clothes available on the market now so there's something to suit everyone!
Give Yourself a Break!
Finally, give yourself a break! Take breaks between workouts and always allow yourself at least one rest day per week. It’s also not a good idea to exercise if you have an injury, so make sure you get some rest and treat your aching muscles should this happen. I’d recommend keeping pain relief gel in your gym kit, so you can take action quickly to reduce swelling if you pull a muscle or over-do it. But also, don't put too much pressure on yourself to complete a workout if you're not feeling it. There is a difference between giving yourself a little push to get started and really not wanting to workout on that particular day. I've spent many a days wasting time procrastinating over whether or not to workout or not and in the end, it has turned into a very unproductive day. My attitude towards exercise now is that I try to be active as much as possible, I workout when I choose, and I make sure I do something that I enjoy!
Do you workout? What are your favourite sports or types of exercise?