My Gym Routine – How I stay in shape

It’s been a super busy couple of weeks both professionally and in my personal life.  Considering January is the time that most people get into the gym, I think I’ve taken my biggest break in a long while.  Over the last week in February I’ve really tried to make an effort to haul my bum there a bit more often – even if it’s only for 30-40 minutes.  I thought I’d share with you what sort of things I do at the gym – so here is my gym routine.

I recently lost over a stone and whilst I think most of that has to do with my new found zest for healthy eating, I still think the gym has played a major part in that.  I’m still a long way off from where ‘perfect’ looks in my head but I’m happy with my progress.  If you’d like to read more about my attitude towards food, check out my post Lifestyles, Diets and Being Happy.

My Gym Routine

Body Balance

Body Balance is probably my all time favourite thing to do at the gym.  The class is from the Les Mills school of exercise and is a combination of yoga, pilates and tai-chi.  As it’s slow and steady, some people write it off that you won’t burn that many calories but don’t be deceived… I’ve come out of a good Balance class feeling the pain more than two hours in the gym.

Balance is fantastic for building core muscles and stretching out the entire body.  The choreography changes every three months but it gives you enough time to learn the steps so you don’t have to closely follow the instructor as often.  I find that the next morning, I feel the class in my legs – theres lots of squatting and lunging that you hold for much longer than you normally would.

With ten minutes of relaxation at the end, Balance is the perfect was to clear the noise from your head and find a stillness that you can struggle to find in the business outside the studio.  If you’re thinking of trying a holistic class, I’d recommend giving Balance a go.

Body Pump

Another one of my favourite classes is Body Pump which has caused the most noticeable difference to my body shape since I added it into my routine.  Body pump is a weights class and whilst not always enjoyable for me, it gets the job done.  Nothing says ‘effort given’ in exercise than about 100 squats/lunges over the course of an hour using weights to increase the work out.

Body Pumps other advantage is that it’ focuses on all the different areas of the body so you know that your arms got as good as your legs (batwing prevention centre!)  Like Balance the choreography stays the same for three months so it’s easy to pick up and remember.

Running & Free Weights

I’ll be straight and say I much prefer going to classes than being on the gym floor but since I started running I’m enjoying it a hell of a lot more.  I haven’t always liked to run but since last year, I’ve found that setting and achieving distance goals has made me want to do better.  I spend about an hour on the tread mill these days with around 40 minutes of that being some kind of jog/run.  I like to warm up with a walk, a jog and another small walk and follow that up with a half hour straight run.

I hope that one day I’ll bite the bullet and enter some kind of race – whether it’s for charity or for my own personal achievement.  I’ll probably start small with a 5km but who knows where that could lead?

Swimming 

I have a bit of a love/hate relationship with the pool.  Sometimes I can get in and do fifty lengths without batting an eyelid… and other times, I just get so bored after about twenty!  Rather annoyingly, swimming is where I think of all my best blogging ideas and by the times I’ve got out the pool, I’ve usually forgotten half of them (when will they invent waterproof paper?)

I keep my swimming simple – front crawl, for at least fifty lengths – more if I can manage it.  It usually takes me around 20-30 minutes depending on how many times I need to stop for breathe – usually related to how much exercise I’ve been doing over the previous weeks.  Sometimes I use a float and work just my legs for around ten lengths at a time.

So that’s currently my gym routine.  I think it’s so important that you make exercise work for you and that it’s something you find bearable/ moderately enjoyable – because let’s face it, how many of us actually ENJOY going the gym all the time?  Unfortunately if I want to continue eating pizza like it’s going out of fashion it is always going to be a life necessity.

What’s your favourite exercise to do, whether at home or the gym?

 

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