The September Fitness File

Friday, 2 October 2015

So I joined a gym! Certainly a statement I never thought I'd say..

My figure was always a part of me that I was comfortable with, until recently anyway. After putting on weight and a few months of not feeling comfortable about my body anymore I said I had to just get up and make a change. I have always said that there was no need to join a gym, if I wanted to exercise I would just go on a run, right? I felt it so difficult to motivate myself to do this and after hearing so many people rave about gym classes I thought I would buy a 3 month membership and see how it goes. After a month of gym- going and (my best attempt at) healthy eating I thought I would give you a round up of my thoughts and what I have learned over the month.

//You never feel worse after the gym
One of my friends told me this after one of the classes a few weeks ago and it really stuck with me, because it is so true! I use this to actually get myself off the couch because no matter what mood you are in, you may feel drained after the gym, but you'll certainly be glad you went. I know there is a science behind exercise as it stimulates endorphins and all that but if nothing else, you'll feel better about yourself that you got up and did some exercise.

//Cutting out bad habits 
Something that I knew I had to do was cut out bad eating habits, the main one being eating the whole packet of biscuits with my tea! I thought about cutting tea from my diet in general but it is so embedded in the Irish culture that I couldn't escape it, plus it is coming into winter, I need something to keep me warm! Thats when I said I would try to cut out eating snacks with my tea and it had made such a difference. At the beginning it was tough and I sometimes caved however lately it has been going very well. I decided to cut them out completely as I know myself that 'one or two' will turn into half a packet very quickly. Just making this small change has improved my diet so much, especially because when I was eating all of the crap, I generally wasn't even hungry! 

//Ditch the scales
Oh the deadly weighing scales.. It is so easy to become consumed with the number on the scales. I personally don't weigh myself anymore, purely because I know how discouraging it can be. In my opinion you should weigh yourself before you make the change to a healthier lifestyle but you shouldn't weigh yourself on a regular basis. It takes time for your body to change, up to 4 weeks before you see a change from healthy eating and exercise so it can be very discouraging in them first few weeks when you aren't seeing results. I personally go by how I feel about my body myself and not going by a number. 

//Don't calorie restrict
Counting calories although can work in some cases, it is just not for me. Calorie restricting can sometimes lead to binging later on in the day which is really unhealthy. I use an app called 'My Fitness Pal' which I absolutely love however I do not use it to count calories I am eating. I use this app to log what I eat (bare in mind I don't do this everyday, maybe once or twice a week) to see if I am getting the correct nutrients. It is also really good for telling you how bad for you a certain product is which I find really helpful. I studied nutrition for 6 years in school so I had a pretty good idea about what is good and bad for my body and in what quantities but when you have to log everything you eat it really puts what I'm eating into perspective.

//Listen to your body
This is something that I find really important. If you're hungry, EAT! Just chose the right foods to eat.  There is no point in starving yourself because it is not healthy and does you more harm than good. I have always had the mindset that if you eat good foods, your body will thank you for it (not that I put this into practice all the time!!).

//Balance
Changing to a healthy lifestyle is difficult so making small changes is the way to start. The past month has definitely been a journey for me with lots of ups and downs however this can't consume your life. You may have really good days where you eat really healthy and go to the gym, and there might be days where you sit in bed watching Netflix all day and eat too much pizza.. Both are ok! You shouldn't feel like this lifestyle is ruining your life, enjoy it and don't feel too tied down by it.

Overall I'm feeling a lot better about myself. As I mentioned it takes time, it is a long process but I am happy with what I have achieved only in the last month and I'm looking forward to what I can achieve in the future with a bit of motivation and hard work.

I hope you enjoyed this really rambly post! It is quite out of the ordinary for me but it is something that has grabbed my interest over the last month and I had so much to say on the topic. I hope you have a great weekend!