Up until I was 15, I used to regularly go to dance lessons, normally around four times a week and for hours at a time. My life was constantly on the go and time after school was always dedicated to my hobbies. Unfortunately 15 was the age that I became interested in other things – mainly friends, makeup and boyfriends, rather than hobbies. It became a drag to go to them – it was precious time lost away from my friends – and so I gave it all up.
When I was at college, one of my friend’s sisters ran a zumba class, and me and a group of my friends used to go weekly. We did this all throughout our second year of college and we even went for a swim afterwards. But again, this tailed off, particularly when it got to the point where we all left for uni.
While at uni, I barely did any exercise. I told myself I didn’t have the time, when really, what I meant was that I wanted the time to binge on netflix and drink a lot of alcohol on nights out.
Now I’m well into my second year of working in a full time job and I’ve found myself realising that I can no longer can get away with not doing anything. Not only is it bad for my physical health, its bad for my mental health. I’ve had a stressful year and I’ve realised that the only person who can change and manage that stress is me. I’ve read so many articles about the importance of time to yourself and about exercising, but it’s only the last month or so that I’ve really kicked myself into action.
I’ve majorly surprised myself with just how much I’m enjoying my newfound appreciation of exercise. One of the things I was apprehensive about was not having enough time in the day to do it. I work between 8.30 and 6 and only get home at 7, by which point I just want to chill on the sofa and relax. So that’s why I’ve fitted my workout into my lunch hour.
I’ve been really lucky that there’s a gym literally round the corner from my office. It’s inexpensive, really friendly and there’s a great choice of classes. I find that I can’t just go to the gym and work out. I need an instructor to motivate me and a bit of variation. I’ve started doing spin classes, weights classes and toning classes and I feel absolutely brilliant.
My energy levels are up, my routine feels settled, I’m more motivated and I actually look forward to going to the gym. This time, I don’t feel like it’s just a passing fancy. I actually want to stick it.
One of my colleagues has been kind enough to create me a meal plan for the last week full of protein and veg, and I’ve really enjoyed that too. I think that because I’m enjoying it, it doesn’t feel like hard work or too much effort. Who knows what I’ll be saying in a few months time but for now I’m loving my new routine.
Have you ever made any lifestyle changes? How’ve you found it?