A beginners guide to becoming ACTIVE!

A beginners guide to becoming ACTIVE!

Let me guess, you’ve found yourself unable to remember the last time you were active, or worse, you remember this, but it was years ago! You were once healthy, but now you find yourself getting out of breath climbing the stairs to bed and you can’t even find your trainers!

So you’ve done it. You’ve made the first step and decided that you want to get back to where you were, or to create a healthier version of you.

But where to start?

Some of us opt for a diet to start with to get us going. But if weight loss/gain is not your target then this might not be the best starting point. With options for exercise from spinning to yoga to swimming to badminton it’s a tough choice.

Well, here’s my advice…

Step 1

Buy a diary. If you’ve already got one, get another one just for your “transformation”. Begin by logging in it on day 1, all the things that you would like to achieve by this time next year. This will be your starting point. Plan to start small; For example, Try 30 minutes twice a week. If you don’t have 30 minutes to spare, then how are you reading this blog?!?!

Step 2

Dig out your trainers. Start getting yourself the attire ready to do the activity that you’ve chosen. Get yourself a swimming costume, pick up a pair of joggers or get yourself some headphones. Get yourself whatever you need to be prepared for the change. Go for something which makes you feel confident and comfortable. Invest in yourself and you might find that the “because I spent money on it” approach really works!

Step 3

Decide on an activity. Do some research if you are new to this. Or find your inner self in an activity that you once enjoyed. What is on offer near you? We offer everything from Archery to Zumba, so picking what’s right can sometimes be a daunting task, so here’s what to do – Call your nearest Leisure Centre and ask for more information. Then ask to book a free no-obligation tour of the facilities and speak to the fitness team about your goals. My colleagues and I will be able to point you in the direction that is personal to you and your goals.

Step 4

Change it up. Once you have begun to schedule those two 30 minute sessions in twice a week, try mixing it up and make one of your sessions something different! Our bodies are intelligent beings with the ability to change and adapt quickly meaning we “get used” to activities and you could begin to see a decline in progress if you continue to go through the motions with the same training regime for too long. Changes don’t have to be the activity. They could be even smaller, you could try; “this week I will drink more water” or “eat more vegetables” or “go for a walk in the park at the weekend” (if its nice of course!).

Step 5

Fitness is not a destination. It is a journey and a lifestyle change. It takes time. You have to be patient with yourself and use your diary to see how far you have come. Other useful methods include taking selfies of yourself before and after, or getting yourself weighed/measured at the beginning and then again every 4-6months. Don’t worry if you hit a stumbling block at any point – Relapse is normal! Plenty of elite athletes and super fit folk often lose motivation and even fall completely off the fitness train! It is up to you to recognise this, let it happen and then “start again tomorrow”. There will always be something you don’t enjoy or an exercise you cannot do. This is all part of the journey and your new lifestyle change which you should now be more confident in making. We are here to support you though, every step of the way.

Heather Thornley

Couch to 3k