Expert in sports and exercise? Who? Me? Oh no, no, no. I’m very far from it. I mean, unless eating counts as an exercise? No? I thought so. Ah well. So why am I writing a health and fitness post then? Mostly because I thought it might be encouraging for other fans of not exercising to read about my routine (or lack thereof). To be honest, a lot of posts written on the subjects come from experts or those who have been in the health and fitness niche for a while. And their toned bodies look like an unachievable dream to most of us. Sometimes I find that discouraging (after all in this “instant” world we want to see the results straight away and when we don’t, well… it’s easy to give up).
Tips and Tricks to Help You Push Yourself to Exercise
My motivation levels when it comes to exercise are zero. Most of the time anyway. A couple of years ago I used to run about 18 miles each week and I was in the best shape of my life. I had the body I was actually happy with and I felt full of energy and zest for life. Three times a week I ran home from work and I did a long run at the weekend. But… I wasn’t alone. My colleague who lived in the same area was my running buddy, so when I felt like sneaking out and jumping on the tube, she was there to push me and vice versa. At the weekend I ran my favourite route by the river and because I loved the area where I ran, it was very easy to keep pushing myself to go farther and farther. My tip number one?
Have an exercise buddy or make sure you exercise in a place that motivates you (in my case that’s anywhere near water).
And Then We Moved
Our house move was the best thing that’s happened since I moved to London (apart from meeting Ben of course), but it also took me too far from work to keep running home and I swapped my river route for a hilly one. Needles to say, my running routine quickly came to an end.
At that time I knew that exercising helps me feel happier and I tried to find something that would work for me in our new environment. Hello Zumba. Back in Slovenia, I used to go to Zumba classes twice a week and it was my favourite part of the evenings. My friends went to the same classes (gym buddies are important), the music filled me with energy and I felt like I can actually move. Belive me, if you ever saw me dance, you’d find the last sentence hard to believe. Based on that logic I thought Zumba is the answer to keeping my exercise regime up and running.
Well, I think I went to maybe about 20 classes. The problem? My expectations were really high. My old instructors were incredible, they pushed us to the limits, we followed the new releases, which always kept us on our toes, so the new classes had quite some big shoes to fill. Unfortunately, the new classes didn’t always keep up with the new releases, the choreography was simplified (also based on the people who attended), so I quickly lost interest. I didn’t feel challenged enough. Tip number 2?
Make sure your exercise regime challenges you and gives you a sense of achievement.
Half a year down the line and all I did was walk to the tube station
Yup, I lost all motivation to exercise and couldn’t get myself back into a routine. And believe me, once your body is used to exercising and you stop… The muscles disappear quicker than you can say “gym” and all of the sudden you start berating yourself over your flabby body parts. And that is not ideal and only results in you feeling miserable. Time to do something about it.
Try A New Sport
During my break from any type of exercise a gym opened around the corner. A 24 hour gym nonetheless. I decided to give it a go remebering how paying for classes actuallly forces me to attend as I hate wasting money. I didn’t just want to go on a treadmill as I knew I’ll quickly lose the motivation, so I booked myself into spin classes.
Was it the perefect solution? Definitely not. I felt overwhelmed and a bit useless as everyone around me seemed to be in a decent shape. But the instructor was encouraging and her attitude made me want to come back. Slowly I started noticing a bit of a progress. I was less out of breath and could use a heavier gear. I felt happier, my sleep got better and I could concentrate better at work. Two years down the line, I’m still at the gym and still spinning. Tip number 3?
Don’t be afraid to try something new and don’t be discouraged by how well others are doing.
Feeling Good Matters
Maybe this one is a bit silly, but motivation can be drawn from the clothes you’re wearing. Which brings me to my tip number 4.
Invest into comfortable gym clothes.
They don’t have to be top of the range. Not everybody can afford a Yoga tee at £60. Comfortable gym clothes don’t need to break the bank. I recently tried a brand that’s breaking into the UK market and while I’m always a bit sceptical if I don’t go bankrupt while shopping, Lapasa was a pleasant surprise. With prices under £13 for Yoga pants, you can make sure you’ve got enough stylish items to keep you motivated. There’s a men’s and women’s range and while I have always been a monochrome fanatic when it came to exercising, I fell in love with the pink and purple space dye.
To help you get motivated, you can now shop Lapasa online via Amazon and if you use the code Damsel01, you’ll get additional 10% off. All to get you going. And that’s not all. One lucky reader, will also receive a pair of Yoga pants (capris or thighs) for free. Just follow me on Twitter and Instagram for more info on the giveaway.
What else do you need to get started?
You’ve now sorted the place and the exercise buddy, you are challenged by the fitness regime and you’ve got clothes that drive your motivation. It may still be difficult to get the routine going, but believe me, pushing yourselves will only result in you feeling proud of what you’ve achieved. And your body will be grateful. Plus you’ll be able to have that large glass of wine, because after all… you’ll work it all off.