Hitting the Gym

Me and the gym are a relatively new relationship… we started as a casual thing last year but things have definitely turned more serious since the end of 2017 when I began paying an outrageous monthly cost and worse… justifying it! It turns out its true – exercising does make you feel great who knew!!

I use Gymbox and I absolutely totally love it – there are nearly 100 classes to choose which is my favourite way to work out mostly because I’m a goody two shoes and want the coaches to be pleased with my efforts so I work extra hard. Additionally, Gymbox is basically a club with a gym in it so there is loud music and it’s dark – perfect for those early morning sessions. Having taken about 6 weeks off over Christmas and January (oops) I am now back into a mega love-in with the gym.

My boyfriend and I are in training for Tough Mudder (why?!) which to be honest I regretted the minute I signed up… but I love a challenge and I love working towards something!

As a totally newbie to the gym I am going to update you on my progress with tips and tricks for anyone wanting to get started or has a challenge in sight!

FIVE things I have learnt so far:

  1. Paying for a gym you love being in is worth it. There is a teeny gym underneath where I live and it’s totally fine, a couple of cross trainers, a bike, weights etc. which is great and handy! I really enjoy going to that gym and its where I began to love exercise and I always said to myself I am never going to pay for a gym until I love it which I stuck to. But I found myself fighting to use equipment and wasting time trying to configure my way around the space to be able to maximise my time there. I also made some great friends all my age who live in the same estate as me – great news – except we would end up chatting and my 40-minute planned routine was more like 25 and a catch up! As soon as I walked round Gymbox I fell in love and it motivates me to go.
  1. Try a gym near where you work. I worked out that I could make the most out of my time if I woke up early and travelled to the gym and got ready for work there than if I woke up went to the gym, got ready and left the house. Travel always takes longer in those crucial moments before everyone starts work. Similarly finishing work and heading to the gym means I am not home that much later than planned. It also prevents that ‘eurgh the tube is horrible I’m so tired fuck it lets go home and chill’ conversation you have with yourself on the way home. Going straight after work means when you are actually on your way home you can feel totally guilt-free about going home and slobbing because you have earnt your right to lie about on the sofa!
  1. Go in the morning. At first this is the most painful thing. I fully believe an alarm should not be set before 6am ever. Unless you’re going on holiday. Or, so i’ve finally learnt, you’re going to the gym. I try and get myself to a 7am class. This is good because you can’t back out of the commitment. Most gyms have strict policies about not turning up so what great motivation. If I don’t have the pressure of turning up for a class, I’ll try and get myself there for 7.15. What is great about this is by the time you get to work, you have already achieved something great and you can start the day feeling positive. It also allows you to focus as you don’t have all day. Just 30-45 minutes of hard work and you know at the end of the day you can head straight home and put your feet up!
  1. Don’t feel guilty if you don’t go. Sometimes shit happens. Sometimes the idea of going to the gym makes you want to curl up in a ball and hide under your desk. Some weeks you are so busy at work or have so many social commitments that you know adding serious gymming on top of that is going drain you. Fun fact – that is ok. The last month I have had deadlines upon deadlines, not to mention my body has only just about recovered from not being slumped on the sofa eating my body weight in chocolate for 2 weeks and waking up at any time I felt like, so the gym was never going to happen. I felt so terrible about it until I thought you know what, I’m going to make myself feel worse if I try and do too much. And that’s ok. Now I’m more motivated than ever. If you have to time, go and love it. If you don’t or you cba, don’t force it. Wake up fresh the next day and start again – maybe with a few extra reps 😉.
  1. No matter how cool I think I am, I will always be the most awkward person there. The other day I motivated myself to get up and go and spend some time on the running machine because, turns out, I will have to run a lot in tough mudder. And me and running have never been friends. I regularly backchatted my p.e. teachers at school for any excuse not to participate in the annual 1000m run… anyway, the other day it was going well, I had done ten minutes, my first run of the year until… essentially my hand got tangled in my headphone lead, my phone flung across the floor (pretty sure it hit the girl next to me) so worried someone would tread on it I went to pick it up, forgetting I was on a treadmill, and fell/threw myself off it looking like an insane person in the process !! Luckily the girl next to me was super nice about the whole thing (thank you!) Sometimes you just have to laugh at yourself, and then do 5 extra minutes on the treadmill to prove that you do 100% know what you’re doing…

I’ll check back in in a couple of weeks to tell you how I’m progressing on my Tough Mudder Training. Let me know what your top tips for the gym are!

Love, A x

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