Good morning All, hope you are all well 🙂
I’m hoping this post finds anyone who feels like they may want to give some exercises a try, but are not sure where to start, or are nervous. I’ve been there too, am still there! but hopefully this post might just give you a little positive nudge to explore some options 🙂
As ever, please remember dear readers, I am not a professional in health, exercise or medical stuff – I like my backside on a chair, in front of a couple of computer screens!
When I first started this journey of mine, I was determined to follow NHS guidelines for exercise and changing my diet.
We know the most successful way to find our healthy selves is with a split of approximately 20% exercise / 80% healthy food, and that we should be aiming to lose between 1lb and 2lb per week.
My journey is evolving all the time, with food and nutrition a question pops into my head, I look it up, and find ways to tweak stuff, hoping to find my optimum path.
I’m finding my exercises are being tweaked as well, I started out knowing this was going to cost me very little money, just stuff like a step platform, comfortable exercise clothes (which I ended up not needing.. yet). So, the obvious place to go is to YouTube – and what a great site it is (is platform the right word?). I haven’t looked back!
I’m not perfect, I still fall out of the habit of exercising, and there are loads of days where I feel like just sitting down and not moving, sometimes I fail, sometimes I succeed. But the one thing I do know, I’m a great deal more healthy and flexible than I was only 3ish months ago!
There are hills I’ve climbed recently that I could barely crawl up before, I can almost run up stairs, I can get out of a chair without needing help or support. For me, I’m so glad I choose to exercise as well as change my diet.
FYI – NHS recommends 150 minutes moderate activity each week or 75 minutes of more energetic activity each week. Moderate exercise means we are slightly out of breath, energetic activity really gets the heart going! And it’s recommended we do a mixture of cardio plus strength (resistance). Also worth bearing in mind, is that activity levels is accordingly to our own bodies, for instance, energetic activity for me will be moderate activitiy for Paul.
There should also be rest days involved, exercising tears muscles, this is natural, it’s the rebuilding of the muscle that helps them to grow, so rest days are important.
Being well over 200lb at the start of this, and still over 200lb now, means there is a lot of pressure being put on my joints, and that can be painful, and, well, i’m allergic to pain! However the first day I exercised it was the first programme only, 10 minutes of step, now, only 3ish months later I’m doing loads of different things.
THE MOST IMPORTANT THING!
Find something you enjoy doing! the worst thing I found is getting bored of a routine, as soon as that happens we will find reasons not to do it!
My first programme – Cardio – low impact
I started out doing step, this was something I had enjoyed on my wii fit years ago, so knew I would probably like it, and therefore not give up! This programme takes approximately 10 minutes.
I found my co-ordination for each exercise improved after just a couple of sessions , I couldn’t go as fast as the trainer, so went as fast but as safely as my body would allow, this also improved the more sessions. I did buy a step platform, only cost about a tenner though. I found I was able to do this regime two times at once very soon after first starting exercising.
My tip if you decide to try this, don’t try and keep up with the trainer, and don’t worry about the moves being perfect, both will become easier with each session – in fact there are still a couple I can’t do well.
My second programme – Strength – low impact
The second regime I started using was for strength, this is a 15 minute programme which loops 3 x 5 minute sessions with several different exercises. Again, this is a low impact programme, and quite easy on the joints. Each exercise is quite easy, not too much needed with co-ordination. There is one floor exercise, this is the plank. Yes, the plank was and is tough, but I urge you to not give up until you’ve cried that you can’t do it at least three times (I know my body’s more able to cope with this because when I first started, there was a LOT of grunting and straining noises – I don’t make them now :D)
I have bought dumbells for this programme, but I started out using matching cans of beans! After just a a few weeks I noticed I have biceps and triceps – they’re not huge, but they are there!!!! I found that totally motivating. I also noticed I have more muscle on my thighs, can’t see it, but I can feel it!
For me, I know that as I have some visible muscle, and as I can feel my thigh muscles, I know all my other muscles most be improving too. It’s good knowing the muscles are improving even if they are covered in lard!
My tips if you decide to try this, don’t rush, take you’re time, listen to the coach (I find him really motivating!). Don’t worry about dumbells until you are sure you wish to do this regularly, cans or water bottles are fine. And don’t over push yourself, listen to your body, you will notice improvement the more you do it.
My third programme – Cardio – 7ish minutes – low impact
So after a while, I wanted to try something extra, I was after something quick that I could use as a bit of a warm up to my other exercises.
The programme I found was perfect! This was a short 7 minute cardio programme, it’s low impact, no floor exercises, and it did get me out of breath!
There is one exercise I still can’t do very well, even though I’ve been doing it for weeks, not sure what my problem is with it, but hey ho, I’ll keep trying!
I would definitely recommend this to anyone who is nervous about stepping into the world of exercise, I find it quite gently and steady, and again, take your time with it, the instructor even tells you, if you find it too hard, slow it down. No equipment needed on this, though do clear a bit of space as there is a bit of backwards and forwards and side to side movement.
My tips should you decide to give this a go – if you want to dip your toe into exercise but are nervous, please please do give this a go. Take your time, your abilities to keep up and find your co-ordination will improve quickly.
My forth programme – c25k – Cardio
I wanted something cardioy to get my heart working harder for longer, hence checking out this.
Now at present, this is not for me, however there are plenty of people I follow who love this programme. As such, I thought this would be a great programme to share. If you would like to know about my rather funny disaster please copy this link (apologies, not sure how to get the link over) tryingtolose.food.blog/2019/09/25/couch-to-5k-and-there-my-campaign-ends/
c25k – long hand – couch to 5 km – exactly as it says on the tin!
This is a free app you can download to your phone, and then it trains you over the course of 9 weeks from not being able to jog at all to the point where you can jog for 5km. The programme encourages you to repeat weeks as and where needed, so this is something to be done in your own time, though it is necessary to make time three times a week to do it.
My tip – make sure you have good trainers, a water bottle and ear phones! If pounding the path sounds like something you can get yourself into, do find a free app on your phone and give it a go – there are too many people out there who have used this and love it for it to be a rubbish programme!
My fifth programme – stretches
I was a bit annoyed that the lunges from my second programme didn’t seem to be improving. I also didn’t feel I was getting as much out of the stretchy part, so thought I’d find something that would help me out.
This is a good 20 minutes stretching programme, I can’t stretch very far on any of the exercises at the moment, but I have noticed an improvement in my lunges so I believe the exercises are doing the job.
This is also a nice relaxed kind of programme, despite the stretching I feel, I like to do this in the morning, and am trying to get into the habit of doing it every morning.
There is a bit of work on the floor, I have new, thick carpet, so it doesn’t bother me, however if you have laminated flooring or hard wearing flooring, you might want to invest in a gym may or carry mat. There is also a leg stretch exercise which I find easier with a resistance band – they’re chip as chips! and can be used on lots of other programmes. There is also an exercise where a stool or stool height piece of furniture is used – i use a sideboard.
I would recommend this to anyone, whatever your fitness level (apart from super stretchy people – i suspect they don’t notice much with this – i’ll let you know when i get to that point :D) – you will feel the stretches, but that means it’s working!
My tips for this, is if you want flexibility, do give this a go, it’s quite a relaxing programme, insofar as the background music goes, and there are no hard and fast bits. I will re-iterate, you will feel the stretches, so push yourself, but don’t push too hard!
My Sixth programme – more intense than those mentioned above
This was an emergency and rushed find due to the issues with my airwalker! BUT it’s great! this is a quite intense 30ish minute programme, split into two 15 minute sessions, and a cool down that definitely gets the heart going.
Individually each exercise is easy to start with, but boy, you will start to feel it. There are two instructors on this, I follow the easier option, this is definitely my limit at the moment.
There is no on the floor exercising on this.
There are burpies, but copying the easier trainer, I use a side board. Dumbells are also required on this (I use 1lb). I would not use cans or bottles of water on this as the exercise movements may mean momentum can make them slip out of your hands, and as you’ll be looking at the tv or computer when doing this…. you get the picture!
My tips if you fancy giving this a go, do this if you’ve been exercising for a couple of months, or feel confident that your level of fitness can cope with half an hour of exercise. Listen to your body, there are some exercises on this where I give up on the dumbells, that is absolutely fine – if you need to you can too. If you can’t keep up, don’t worry, as with anything, if you enjoy the workout and/or the benefits going at your own pace, you’ll be more likely to carry on, and reap long standing benefits. You’ll find improvement the more you do this.
My Seventh programme – Zumba!
I wanted to try something a little different, so I clicked on a 10minute beginner workout Zumba programme – I’ve done it once, I loved it, I will do it again, I have NOOOOO rhythm!
Lot’s I can’t co-ordinate correctly, but as with any regime, that will come with time!
I don’t really have any tips on this as I have only done it once, what I will say is that I really enjoyed doing this, it was fun! so if you fancy having a little look, and you’re not worried about looking like a donkey in your sitting room, then please do give it a go!
My eighth programme – MYSTERY!
I did receive a message from another blogger recommending I check out their site, I remember thinking it sounded quite good, especially as they are adding park exercises, and who doesn’t need fresh air! I just need to find that message and or site!
So for now fair folk, do give the links a check if you want to know what’s been working for me, or just check out youtube and bloggers sites for different options, don’t be scared – I’m obese (at the moment), and a smoker (at the moment) – we’re in this together! find the thing that works for you, and do, please do, let me know what you find, what you like, and how it’s going!