Tag Archives: fitness

Motivational Monday #5

17 November 2014

fitspoJudging by the lack of Motivational Monday posts over the past couple of months, you’d be right in thinking I wasn’t feeling particularly motivated. However, with the weather finally getting colder and days getting shorter, I’m back into sorting out my rolls. A lot of people seem to be more active in the summer but I HATE getting hot and sweaty and feel like summer is a bit of a jolly so any serious exercise tends to take a back seat. I love running when it’s cold out (less sweat) and dark (people can’t see me) so I have been ON FIRE the past two weeks (realising you only have a few months before your wedding day and you still have to get through Christmas tends to jolt you into action). It hasn’t been easy but I’ve learnt a few things to keep me on track when I’m on the verge of giving up.

(Quick disclaimer – what I do might not work for everybody. This has just been my experience!)

Meal preparation

This is key. Ironically having a fridge packed full of food makes me super careful about what I shovel down my gullet. Every evening, I’ll assess the contents of the fridge and use My Fitness Pal to plan out the next day’s meals and snacks, and box up everything I need to take to work. Knowing exactly what my food ‘bank’ contains for the day is essential for keeping me on track. That means I can dip into my supplies as and when hunger strikes, safe in the knowledge I’m not going to overeat. If I fail to do this then the chances of me grabbing something carby and calorific on the go skyrockets, and screws up my mindset for the entire day.

Having a goal

Focusing purely on weight loss is only going to end in tears and disaster. Some weeks you’ll feel like your exercise regime has been enough to rival Usain Bolt’s and find you haven’t lost a single gram – I’ve been there and it’s quite frankly, soul destroying. However, I’ve found by shifting my goals from ‘I need to lose 20 pounds” to working on a fitness goal to be much kinder on the brain. I’m currently training for a sub-50 minute 10K by February, and tracking speed and distance progress is a lot more exciting than watching the scales. Don’t get me wrong, I still weigh myself but I’ve prioritised getting more exercise into my life over losing two pounds a week. It’s a much healthier way to live and by genuinely challenging myself, I make sure I don’t miss any runs on my schedule – which makes me feel great. The weight will come off but I try not to obsess over it.

You never regret a workout

This is what I tell myself at 5:45am when I’m snug as a bug in a rug and the last thing I want to do is get out of my pit. The level of regret I feel when I miss a workout is astronomical and I feel guilty about it all day. As much as I feel like I don’t want to get out there, it’s 100% true that you never EVER regret a workout. Just getting out of the damn bed and getting on with it ensures I’m at peace with myself and puts me in a healthy mindset for the rest of the day.

The early bird catches the worm

This ties in with my previous point. If, like me, your power animal is the sloth, waking up at an unspeakable hour to workout seems like a tall order. But it’s because I love nothing better than getting into my jammies at 6pm and cutting myself off from civilisation that my early morning workouts are vital. I’ve learned the hard way that as much as I promise myself I’ll go to the gym after work, it NEVER happens. A tiring day at the office and a stressful commute home put me in a foul mood and in no state to leave the flat until the next day. By getting my exercise in at 6am, I’m still half asleep when I leave and am much less likely to talk myself out of it. Plus, like I said, a healthy start to the day makes for a continued effort the rest of the day.

So, those are my little nuggets of advice. If anyone else is on a health and fitness journey please leave a comment – I’d love to know what you’re doing to keep yourself on track.

Motivational Monday #3

11 August 2014

motivational monayI don’t want to get my hopes up, but I think I’ve got back into the habit of doing regular exercise. Well, when I say habit I mean I’m ravaged by a crippling guilt if I go more than one day without doing any exercise. On the days where I haven’t felt like doing anything more than lie on the sofa feeling depressed, I’ve taken my own advice from last week and just put my damn gym clothes on. Unsurpisingly,squeezing myself into unspeakable amounts of lycra and seeing the result in mirror is enough to get me in the mood for exercise.

I also for the first time ever, went for a run in hot weather. I’d been using the heat wave as an excuse not to bother but decided enough was enough and got out there. I hate feeling hot and bothered but doing the 30 Day Shred has gotten me used to being literally dripping with sweat. So, I had a run round Wimbledon Common after work one evening and it was actually ok. There were times when I thought I was going to pass out from heat exhaustion but I didn’t and now I know I can run in any weather conditions without dying.

The 30 Day Shred DVD has been getting a good amount of use. It does get a bit repetitive but I’m a little bit in love with Jillian Michaels so it’s all good. On saturday morning I took the plunge and attended my first class at my new gym. I had no idea what to expect from Body Conditioning but it was similar to what I’ve been doing with young Jillian. Lots of squatting, lunging and push-ups.

Meals this week have been easy to keep healthy but it’s the snack attacks that get me. If I need something, I’ll have a bit of full fat Greek style yoghurt with a few berries or a sprinkling of granola. My scales have been crucial, it’s amazing how easy it is to underestimate a portion – I’d totally recommend getting some if you haven’t already. You don’t have to go all Nadine Coyle and take them out in your handbag to weigh out your 50g of sashimi but they’re definitely handy to have when you’re prepping meals and snacks at home.

Weight loss this week: 2.2lbs / 1kg
Total weight loss: 2.2lbs / 1kg

Motivational Monday #2

4 August 2014

Fitspo

It’s Monday again and time for another motivational boost. I was at my good friend’s wedding over the weekend which turned out to be three days of celebratory eating and drinking (although I’m sure I burnt off the weight of a small child on the dancefloor). So perhaps stepping on the scales this morning for the first time in three months wasn’t the best idea. The numbers weren’t great but at least I have a reference point and it’s given me a suitable shock to kick my ass into gear.

It’s funny, it’s only been a week since my first Motivational Monday post but I can already feel the benefits of documenting my progress publicly. Apart from Thursday, Friday and Saturday’s dietary shenanigans and exercise drought, I feel like I’m back in the health zone.

There have been a few things helping me along the way, including the My Fitness Pal app. I tend to plan my day’s food in advance alongside the app to make sure I’m fitting in the right foods. Sounds anal but by having a checklist of things to eat spaced out throughout the day means I’m less likely to be tempted by the constant supply of biscuits and Haribo at the office. Ice, lemon and sparkling water have also been extremely handy at staving off the snack attacks. When it comes to working out, having a clean set of gym gear laid out the night before means I can get straight into them either first thing in the morning or when I come home from work, rather than frantically turning my wardrobe upside down trying to find a bloody sports bra. They say (or, could be just me) that if you put on your workout clothes, you are 70% more likely to actually do some exercise.

I’m not usually one for inspirational quotes but the one above has really hit home and it’s kept me going when I haven’t felt like going to the gym. So, once again:

“It’s easier to wake up early and work out than it is to look in the mirror each day and not like what you see.”

Anyway, here’s a quick run-down of what I’ve been doing.

Last week…

  • I finally cracked open my 30 Day Shred DVD and did the first session which absolutely annihilated me
  • I joined the gym and have been twice this week, doing a 20 minute run and 20 minutes of weights
  • Filled the fridge with good food and planned each meal, tracking calories and keeping a close eye on carbs (I aim for around 50-70 grams per day)

This week…

  • I’ll do 3 sessions of 30 Day Shred
  • Check out a class or two at the gym
  • Continue planning and prepping meals

I’m feeling optimistic this week. My social calendar is looking pretty scanty for the first time in weeks so I shouldn’t be riddled with crippling hangovers for once.

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