- You can be one of those people who talks about the fact they have been to the gym. "Oh, sorry I'm late, I got caught up at the gym", you'll say, breezily, whilst meeting your friend for coffee. "GOD I'm aching today, that gym workout was PUNISHING!" you'll casually mention at work, with a smile. Basically, the gym becomes a positive part of YOU: much like a trendy haircut, or knowing how to cook souffles.
- Unless you are a multi-millionaire then you will never be able to access as big a range of exercise equipment, classes and things to do as you can access at the gym. It's a good place to start to find out what you like, for example.
- Everyone at the gym that is thinner than you will inspire you to keep going. Everyone at the gym that is fatter than you will make you think "well, if they can do it, I have no excuse." You will never have as much range of inspiration whilst exercising.
- The cost. £40-£50 a month, which you can expect to pay basically anywhere these days unless you're a student, is astronomical for what you are actually getting. Even if you religiously go to the gym 3 times a week EVERY week you're still talking a good £3 + per visit - what a joke!
- You have to actually be bothered to leave your house and go to the gym. The fact is, sometimes, you won't be bothered. The price per visit increases.
- You have to actually have the time to go the gym. The gym is more time than other forms of exercise, as as well as the exercise itself, you have to get there and back, get changed before and after, queue for machines... Overall, if you work full time going to the gym is going to take up a fairly significant slice of your free time. Is it worth it?
- Running is free apart from the cost of trainers which you can get from Sportsworld for like, under £20.
- It will take you places you wouldn't normally go. I have enjoyed many lovely coastal runs and also have seen many nice lovely sights of London whilst running (That, and parts of Hackney too...).
- You're on your own. All you're doing is running. Nothing else matters. Your mind is blank apart from the process of "one foot in front of the other". This is SO RELAXING.
- Once again, you can be one of those people who "goes running." "Just did a 5k run!" your facebook status will declare, and everyone will be impressed.
- Side note: I spend approx 1hr 50 minutes every day on public transport. This means I have a lot of time to indulge in 'Public Transport Fantasies'. These are wide and varied (the most detailed is my X Factor final duet performance) (Bad Romance with Lady Gaga) but one of my favourites is the one where I have just run the London Marathon. As I have explained before, I have yet to break past week 1 on the couch to 5k as I keep stopping and starting again, BUT, one day that goal will be mine and every PE Teacher I have ever had will cry at their complete failure to spot my amazing potential.
- Running's a real seasonal thing. I don't know about you but I don't fancy running when it's cold and dark and you're freezing PLUS your personal safety is at risk, hence why I haven't gone since early October.
- Watch out for traffic etc.
- Better be careful you don't get lost.
- When other people run past you faster it is very depressing.
HOME EXERCISE EQUIPMENT
- Cost-effectiveness. Our home exercise bike cost us under £100. That's less than 3 months gym membership. We've had it for nearly a year and also actually use it more regularly than I've EVER been to the gym, even when I was unemployed and had LOADS of time.
- You can watch TV whilst exercising and can forget the whole thing is happening.
- You can wear what you what! Exercise in your pyjamas, or a formal gown, no one cares!
- You don't have to bother going out so it's a lot easier to get motivated to do it.
- Lack of variety.
- Initial outlay is expensive.
- Takes up space in your home.
EXERCISE DVDs/ Wii GAMES/ ETC
- Cheap. You can get the 30 Day Shred online for around a fiver and it will pretty much last you a lifetime.
- Games are interactive and fun - sometimes when on Just Dance I'm having so much fun jumping up and down to One Direction it actually doesn't even feel like it's exercise (This is rare to me.)
- Once again, you're at home, wear that Armani suit for all you like, no one cares.
- Once again, you don't have to bother leaving the house.
- You will come to hate Jillian Michaels with the passion of a thousand fiery suns. If you have ever done the 30 Day Shred even once you will know exactly what I mean.
- It can get repetitive and boring especially as you can't really even listen to music when you are doing it, etc.
- You need the space, easier said than done in my life at least.
I've only ever done one fitness class but I've been doing kickboxing through my work since May 2012.
- It's kind of like PE but fun and not mentally scarring. If you've got great fitness instructors like me they will show you what to do, there will be lots of different activities, time will go quickly.
- It's a great way to meet new people (or in my case, break the ice with colleagues, there's no going back once someone's seen you tomato red in leggings is there).
- You can do things you wouldn't otherwise ever be able to do. I can't even tell you how much I enjoy kickboxing, as much as I actually dread doing it on the day and can't wait til it's over while it's happening, at the same time it's one of the highlights of my week. That's the thing with exercise.
- As someone's actually there guiding you telling you what to do you know it's at least one workout you're doing properly.
- Can be expensive.
- The eternal problem of actually being bothered to do it.
- I can imagine if you had bad instructors it not being much use, but what can I say, I've been lucky!
I have an exercise plan for the future:
- Going to keep up kickboxing.
- Thinking of taking up another exercise class as well - Maybe Zumba? Any recommendations? I'd be going on my own so the darkness of embarrassment is a factor.
- In April I am going to start and eventually complete couch to 5k!
In other news I have to announce the sad sad fact that my work is closed tomorrow (!). I am stuck at my mum's so Monday morning weigh in is postponed to Tuesday. I am also a horrendous human being as being unable to track properly I have just EATEN THE EARTH......hopefully this is rescuable......
Much love x