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Consistency

Do you remember the story of the tortoise and the hare? It is really easy to try to be the hare.

Start something new. Jumping in with both feet, not looking past today. Go too fast, trying to keep up with the people who have been doing it for years.

Whatever activity it is you feel exhausted after and go home to collapse.  

The next day you are sore and feel terrible.

How long does that go until you give up?

Why do something that makes you feel really terrible?

If you are more like the tortious then you might stick with things longer, and improve at them, and find an activity that you Love!

Let’s take swimming as an example.

You have not been swimming for years.  So you can show up to the pool and swim the fastest you can for as long as you can, then get disappointed that you are not doing as well as the person your senior who was here before you and still swimming.

Your body is not used to the movement, you are using muscles you have never used before.

When you are finished you could just curl up and go to sleep.  In fact you go home and sleep. Then the next day your muscles are sore and it is difficult to move.

People will tell you that if there is no pain there is no gain.

Oh so wrong.

Be slow and steady, ok it is less instant gratification but longer lasting. If you are going to do a new activity you can find out what muscle groups it uses and work on those a bit before.  Stretch bands are great for that.

Starting the activity slow is so much better. Feel good but a little tired when finished.  The next day you may have the soreness of muscles that have not been used like that but it should not be really painful to move.

So to start swimming the tortoise way is to start a few days or weeks before by using stretch bands to work on the muscles for the type of stroke you are going to use in the pool.

Then going to the pool for a short session, maybe only 10 minutes at first, then the next it could be 12, then 14 et cetera.  At the end you should feel a little tired but not exhausted.  You certainly should not be in pain or have problems moving.

If that is not the case, and you are sore after you work out then try to reduce the time or go slower.

Find your speed.

Then keep with it for a while, like a week or two.  Before increasing a small amount.

Over time you may catch up or even pass the hare.  But even if you don’t at least you are out there and exercising!

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Clear out those clothes

When you are large a lot of people want to give you advice on how to lose weight, but for me a lot of it was not practical.  Some plain odd.

A friend did give me some great advice and it was because she had lost weight, but it was not how to lose weight.  Or what exercise to try, it was something that stuck with me and really helped.

She said that as you lose weight get rid of all your big clothes.  Then it is more of an incentive to keep the weight off.

I was travelling a lot as I was losing the weight so I started off well.  Clearing my wardrobe every month.

I had kept 9 large boxes of clothes of all different sizes and over the years had organised them into sizes, so each month I would open the largest size clothes box and try on clothes.

It was such a high!

Then I would go through my wardrobe and put in a bag (or 3, or more) clothes that were too big.

Many trips to the charity shop was made and I still have bags of clothes to go out.

The feeling you get the day you can shop in a normal sized clothes shop is amazing.  You end up starting to shop, shop, shop.  Picking something off the rack and buying it without trying it on is not a gamble anymore.  

It can be difficult to pull back especially when you buy something you really love but then only get to wear it twice before it is too big.

For clothes that you really love, getting them altered to fit your new size allows you to keep them and get more use from them.  Anything that is too big, remove from your closet as soon as you can.  It can be useful to keep one outfit in your largest size but you don’t have to keep it all.

Celebrate being your new shape and size, wear clothes that fit and that you love!

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Keeping Active During Social Distancing

During this time of Social Distancing, we can feel isolated and stressed, returning to old habits.

Sitting on the sofa watching tv, eating sweets and comfort food.  Staying indoors with our pajamas or sweats on. Doing our hair becomes rare.

The pounds increase as well as our unhappiness.

I have been tempted.

My first full week working at home I started the week out with a tight deadline, having to sit on my sofa working all day, barely taking breaks.  Hoping that I could meet the deadline even when nothing went right and it was a struggle to get technology to cooperate.

I did get dressed each day in business clothes.  No makeup.

By Tuesday evening I was tired and stressed, I did not last long.  I ate the Pringles I had and was looking for sweets and snack food.

I could have popped to the grocery store, as we know popped is not the term we can use these days, I could have stood in a long queue 2 meters away from everyone else waiting to be let into the shop.  Only allowed to buy a maximum of 3 of any item.

My rule of no sweets unless I have exercised was falling away.

Old habit returning.

Since we are allowed to leave the house to exercise once a day at the moment, I got up Wednesday morning and went out for a run.  I was in a grumpy mood but as I ran, ok jogged very slowly. My mood improved.

Most people I talk with say that it is easier to do exercise if you have to go to a class or meet up with people, that is a bit hard right now, isn’t it?

It is easy to say that we are isolated and alone.  Poor us, we can’t go out and have to sit and watch tv or read.

NO

We are in the 21st Century.

We can still meet up with people to exercise, just not in person, a virtual class.

So many people are offering exercise classes on Facebook, their websites, YouTube.  We can try new types of workouts, without the horror of doing it in front of a group of people, like a friend who took a class a few years ago and fell, taking out two other people with her.

I started out too embarrassed to join in classes in case I could not keep up.

No fear of that if I can do a class in my living room.  My cats are the only ones judging, and they are usually looking at me strangely if I am not paying attention to them or getting them food, so no difference there then.

I am sharing links to trainers with online classes, so try them out, you could be choosing the same class as me and we can do the class together in our respective homes.

When you try a class post what you thought of it on my Facebook page.