28.10.14

Tips for Keeping Fit Over The Cold Months
























Before we get started, I want to make it clear that I am not a gym bunny, fitness freak, power lifter or anything else of the sort. I'm more what you would call a 'reluctant exerciser'. And an inconsistent one at that. I've always done activities of some kind, much to my parents exasperation, as after six months of trampolining it was synchronised swimming, after that it was rock climbing and in between the odd horse riding session would be thrown in. 'Sport' sports though? No thanks!

When I was at university I was a cox in the rowing club, and regularly watching members of my crew nearly throwing up from over-exertion didn't do much to tempt me into the realms of fitness. It just seemed kind of gross and uncomfortable. It was a shift in attitude that changed my mind. All of a sudden, I realised keeping fit wasn't to do with having killer abs and long legs, but about health and wellbeing and looking after what was inside as well as out. Well, perhaps my revelation wasn't as poignant as that... try getting to the top of a flight of stairs and gasping for breath... yeah, that.



With all this in mind, it's taken me until the age of 22 to figure out a plan that works for me and isn't completely horrible. The bonus feature is - none of it costs a penny!

At Home Pilates

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I tried yoga. I hated yoga. I tried wii yoga. I hated wii yoga. Someone told me it's meant to be relaxing, but someone slowly counting down from 10 whilst my muscles are screaming at me to stop was the most stressful thing I've ever done. Also, if you've ever had back trouble, Pilates is amazing for it. It doesn't require you to hold poses and all the movements are fluid so won't strain.

All you need is a comfy piece of floor or an old camping roll mat (or an actual yoga mat if you're fancy, and a laptop, tablet or phone. The best thing is that you don't even need to leave the house when it gets really chilly outside!

Youtube has countless Pilates videos, which are just as good as going to a class yourself. Most are around 20-45 minutes long, which is great as you can make a playlist to suit your time frame/competency level. Here are my favourites:

| 1. Pilates 20 minutes workout

| 2. Pilates Abs and Thighs workout 30 minute workout

| 3. Pilates Ab Attack 30 minute workout

| 4. Pilates Butt & Thigh 30 minute workout

| 5. Pilates Essentials 30 minute workout

Running (For the Reluctant)

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Don't click off just yet! My feelings about yoga shy in comparison to my feelings for running. I try running on average once every 10 months, which I have learned is just enough time to forget how much I hated it before. For some reason trying to run a long distance with no practice and low fitness levels doesn't leave you feeling positive about the whole 'running' thing. That was before I started a Beginner's Training Schedule, and let me tell you it's changed my perception completely!

The schedule aims to get you to the point where you can run continuously for 30 minutes, with week by week suggestions for interval sessions.

Here's an example for Week One:

WkMonTuesWedsThursFriSatSun
1Run & Walk
Run 1 min
Walk 2 min
Repeat 10X
Walk
Walk easy 30 min
Run & Walk
Run 1 min
Walk 2 min
Repeat 10X
Walk
Walk easy 30 min
Run & Walk
Run 1 min
Walk 2 min
Repeat 10X
Run & Walk
Run 1 min
Walk 2 min
Repeat 10X
Rest

See - not so scary is it? I downloaded an interval timer app (there are loads on the App Store), so I get bleeped when its time to change up or down through my headphones.

Each sessions is only around 30-40 minutes so it doesn't kill your spare time. Go on, get your trainers on and breath in some fresh air. For me, it's been lovely seeing the trees turn and leaping over patches of thick mud in the woods - much better than a boring treadmill! I'm only three weeks in, but I'm not even considering giving up. Result!

Hula-Hooping

Yes, you heard right! Investing in a weighted hoop was one of the best things I did in my final year of university. Netflix on my laptop, half an hour hula-hooping and you don't even realise you're getting fit!

Hula-hooping works out your abs as well as giving you a full-body workout. Excellent. It also helps burn off visceral fat, which is harder to lose the older you get. 250 calories every half an hour doesn't sound bad to me!

Working an intense internship with verrrry little money coming in has meant being a little creative when it comes to keeping fit.

I hope these tips have helped you out, and if you'd be interested to see more about running progress or healthy snacking over the winter months, do let me know!

Do you have any good fitness tips for winter?



4 comments:

  1. Love these tips - I do want to start doing some more at home work outs so I will try some of the pilates ones! I love running when it's colder, I think it's so much easier! x

    Jasmin Charlotte | UK Lifestyle Blog

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    Replies
    1. I also heard you burn more energy the colder it is - and the outdoors is so pretty in the autumn/winter months!
      x

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  2. Great tips, I am so bad at exercise! The pilates looks good though

    Bethan Likes

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Definitely - your back will thank you!
      x

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