I was slightly perplexed at a response I had recently from a new client. Admittedly, it doesn’t take much to perplex me!
When I take on a client, the first thing I do is ask lots of questions. One of these questions is “Do you have a gym membership and what equipment do you have to train with?” The client’s response was “No gym membership but I will join when I get fitter”.
This got me thinking, wondering and scratching my head. Did they think there was a minimum fitness level to go to the gym, were they worried about not knowing what to do or what others might think? Or that they’d get more value for money if they could use more of the equipment? Did they think everyone that goes to the gym is super fit and that they wouldn’t be able to keep up? I wasn’t really sure. It turned out to be a mixture of all these reasons and a few more.
To get better at a pretty much anything you need to do it. Practice makes perfect or it certainly makes you better. Home workouts are absolutely fine but if you have access to a gym then it opens up a whole load more options.
The minimum standard at every gym I’ve ever been to is that you pay. That’s it. I don’t know of any that require you to pass a fitness test. And as I’ve said before, nobody cares what anybody else is doing in the gym.
There is so much scope, especially at modern gyms, for all abilities, fitness levels and preferences. You’d definitely get your money’s worth. Just go. Simply start. With consistent effort, improve you will.
High Intensity Interval Training or HIIT is a form of training that involves short bursts of intense exercise followed by periods of rest or very low intensity exercise.
For example 40 seconds of exercise followed by 20 seconds of rest. Here is how a HIIT workout might look:
3. Push Ups
4. Jumping Lunges
5. Tricep Dips
6. Mountain Climbers
Complete each exercise in turn for 40 seconds, resting for 20 seconds between each exercise. Repeat the whole thing twice more! The work to rest time ratios can be adjusted to make the workout easier or harder.
Benefits of HIIT:
* Increased fitness
* Quick & convenient
* No equipment required
* Effective at burning calories
HIIT can be done with a variety of exercises and combinations of exercises. Running, rowing and cycling sprints or various bodyweight moves like squats, lunges, push ups and the dreaded burpee can all be utilised for HIIT sessions. It is generally best to avoid complicated movements. HIIT needs to be fast and furious. You want simple moves you can do with your eyes closed once you start to tire.
With HIIT, the clue’s in the name: HIGH Intensity. Many people simply do not work hard enough during a HIIT workout. You really want to be going all out, maximum effort during each exercise interval. If you can have a chat about the soggy bottom on last night’s Bake Off, you ain’t working hard enough!
We could probably all do with upping our daily vegetable intake. Public Health England recommends eating 5 portions of fruit and vegetables per day.
My busy client was struggling with getting his veg in - not just eating it but buying it too. If you only go shopping once a week then after 4 days in the fridge that spinach is starting to look a bit ropey!
🌽FROZEN VEG IS THE ANSWER!🥦
I am determined to make frozen veg cool. Its cheap, versatile and lasts for ages in the icy depths of the deep freeze.
Add it to soups, stews and stir-frys. Chuck a handful of frozen peas in with your rice or pasta for the last couple of minutes of cooking time. Drop some frozen spinach into your pasta sauce and let it simmer for a couple of minutes. EASY!
I always keep the freezer well stocked with the following frozen veggie wonders:
* Broad beans
So when you're next at the supermarket be sure to "Go wild in the frozen veg aisle!"