Sunday, 8 January 2017

New Year, New Me? A message to the January gym newbies.

I wonder how many New Year resolutions have been set during the last week that relate to health or fitness? I wonder how many are still going strong? I wonder how many will still be going strong in 12 months?
 
It’s the time of year when after over-indulging over the festive period most people are keen to get back to their healthy ways if it’s something you’re used to doing the rest of the year. Or for some it’s a chance to kick-start a new healthy way of living. It doesn’t take a new year to do that and whilst I’ve seen a lot of posts questioning why you need January 1 to come around before you do something about your current lifestyle. The simple answer is that you don’t however I can understand the logic for some people, and regardless of when you start and whether it’s right or wrong to wait for the new year, many people do and that’s their choice.
 
Previously I have to admit I have been one of the regular gym goers that will moan constantly about the newbies. And I would be lying if I said it didn’t frustrate me just a tiny bit when I walk into the gym after work and it’s like walking into World War 3 with a sea of people in front of you, noisy as hell and I would say it’s organised chaos but in actual fact it’s just chaos. The general rule appears to be the guys fighting over the benches wanting ‘to look buff for summer’ (rolls eyes) and the girls fighting over the treadmills (which works just fine for me as I don’t go near the damn things). It’s generally the guys I’m battling with for the benches so I’ve been taught to use one of two tactics by my PT, to either intimidate them or flutter my eyelashes to get one haha (guaranteed one way will work every time).
 
 
When you fight for a bench and then just take selfies haha!
 
 
Anyway this year I’ve felt a bit different towards the situation. I don’t know why to be honest but I’ve had a little more understanding, patience and encouragement for the situation. Or for a certain group of those newbies, I have anyway. For the guys that are fighting over the benches, thinking they’re going to ‘get massive’ in a few weeks and when they don’t will resort to using illegal substances, you’re not included in my group, I still have zero time for you and can’t wait until you go back to doing whatever it is you do the rest of the time, in February.
 
However, for those January gym newbies who are there because you want to make a difference to your life and improve the quality of it, this is for you.
 
I genuinely hope that in 12 months you’re still there, leading a healthy, active lifestyle, having hopefully achieved some of the goals you’ve set yourself for this next year. Indeed I hope that in one month you’re still there as too often I have seen the novelty wear off in just a matter of weeks which is really sad.
 
It’s important that at this stage you set yourself realistic goals. A weight loss or fitness journey isn’t a quick-fix. Whether you’re fighting the bulge to fit into that bikini on your summer holiday or you’re hoping to get better at running and take part in a 10k during the year, if it’s something new to you, it will take time. So set realistic goals about what’s achievable otherwise you will get despondent if you don’t hit those goals.
 
12 months difference...anything is possible if you put your mind to it!
 
 
In 12 months time will you be sat here feeling proud at the progress you’ve made or will you be sat here embarking on yet another ‘New Year, New Me’ for 2018 when that time, surely it will be different? Just like every other year.
 
I can honestly say that when I changed my lifestyle by joining the gym and living healthier, it transformed my life on so many levels. April 2017 will mark four years that I’ve been at Total Fitness and joining that gym was one of the best decisions I’ve made. Previously I had been a member at a local hotel gym but I rarely went, the equipment was poor and it’s no wonder I had zero motivation when I went there. I was bored.
 
I joined TF as my friend at the time was a member there and after breaking up with my boyfriend, I wanted a new focus in life and to do something for me for a change. At first I joined purely because I thought it would be fun, especially with my friend being a member there too. I didn’t really have any weight to lose although naturally I wanted to be a bit more toned and to get fitter.
 
Over these four years my passion for training, fitness and healthy living has only grown. I just loved being at the gym; I still do now. I loved seeing changes to my body and my fitness levels and I loved the way it made me feel, right from the start. Not only did it transform my approach to health and fitness but other aspects of my life too. I was 22 when I joined TF and having previously considered joining that gym I had never dared as it was a big gym and I didn’t have the confidence. Fast forward four years and I compete on stage wearing pretty much next to nothing; I’d hardly say confidence is a problem now.
 
One of the proudest moments of my life. Photo: Fivos Averkiou
 
 
Naturally, I think as you get a bit older you care less about what people think and you become more comfortable in your own skin which is probably some of what’s happened in the last four years anyway but I don’t doubt for one second that without my active and healthy lifestyle, I wouldn’t be the same, confident person that I am today.
 
And it’s not just confidence in the gym or in my body. Over the last four years I have done so many things that I wouldn’t have dreamed or dared to do just a few years ago. Leaving my whole life behind and moving to the other side of the world to travel on my own in 2015 was such a big step for me. And the confidence that I’ve had in myself in my studies and my career has kept me pushing myself for the next challenge. Last year, just a few weeks before I was on stage for the NPA Yorkshire, I was on stage for a very different reason, to present at the Yorkshire Ambulance Service Management Conference to 200 of my senior colleagues. A few years ago I would have laughed in your face if you had told me I would do that (and probably had the biggest anxiety attack in the process). These days I’m not sure anyone would describe me as lacking confidence and it’s helped me massively in every aspect of my life.
 
Training has brought me so much enjoyment over the years and I hope it does for you too, whether that be training on your own, with a friend or in a class. I can honestly say I enjoy all three of those, for different reasons. I’ve met so many people through training, two of whom are my best friends these days. Despite it being quite a big gym I consider it my Total Fitness family as well. Whether it be the people on reception, the PTs or other members, there is always a friendly face there and encouragement. The events that have come along with it too have added so much to my life, from bodybuilding to running my first 10k last year to this year taking on new challenges with Tough Mudder and the National 3 Peaks.
 
First ever 10k smashed in under 1 hour in April 2016
 
 
Now I’m not saying that without the gym or training you can’t have a happy life because of course you can. I know many people who couldn’t think of anything worse than spending time in the gym but they also show no interest in ever joining and have other things in their lives that bring them similar enjoyment. But there’s clearly a motivation for you having joined the gym or made this commitment to yourself to get fit and healthy in 2017 and I can guarantee you that if you stick at it, your life will change for the better.
 
So for any newbies who maybe feeling a little nervous at what’s to come, I hope you this has given you some added motivation. For any newbies who join TF please feel free to come and see me in the gym if you’re struggling with anything or want any help, don’t ever feel silly asking or feel that you can’t approach me. I genuinely hope you all stick to the commitment you’re making now and that you make a positive change in your life. One of my favourite sayings is ‘do something your future self will thank you for’ and I hope you keep that in mind on the tough days during this journey. There will be no-one more proud of you than you for reaching your goals. Similarly, there will be no-one more disappointed than you if you throw in the towel.

1 comment:

  1. Our very own yorkshire wonder woman 🔥💪😎🔥

    ReplyDelete