So, you’ve conquered the ghosts of new years past and you’re ready to take that leap of faith into 2017 with a new mind set and the body to match. Once you’ve psyched yourself up and stocked your closet with the latest active wear fit for the streets of Bondi, you’re left with the hardest part – the bit where you actually have to exercise. This is when sh’t gets real and your active wear gets christened in sweat rather than coffee stains from your favourite café.
“But where do I start?” I hear you ask. Your journey toward achieving J-Lo’s buns or Miranda Kerr’s thighs starts with choosing the exercise that’s right for you – something that you will enjoy – or tolerate rather, and something that suits you as an individual. This will help sustain your long-term commitment to the cause and ensure you’re getting the most out of your work-out. You might even find you’re a match with multiple types.
Personality type: The lone wolf
Characteristics: Naturally driven or stubborn tendencies, ability to easily motivate themselves
Types of exercise to try: Swimming, jogging, gym sessions, high intensity classes, cycling
Some people are just naturally more self-motivated and if you’re the type of person that enjoys time to yourself then these activities can be your ticket toward a leaner fitter you. To keep you motivated, make sure you continue mixing up your routine. Virgin Active suggests switching up the type and duration of your workout which could be as simple as doing shorter sessions which include high intensity activities one week and longer sessions the next with lower intensity activities like light weights training to build muscle tone. It’s a good idea to mix both high and low intensity workouts to strengthen your entire body and reduce body fat.
Personality type: The social butterfly
Characteristics: Thrives in the company of others, enjoys team sports and group classes
Types of exercise to try: Dance classes, sports teams, group gym classes
At times, the sheer feeling of motivation can be linked to obligation. And that’s perfectly fine – what ever gets your ass off that couch and moving. If you enjoy torture, I mean ‘exercising’ with another person, get yourself a gym buddy or running partner. You could also consider joining a sporting club who meet on a regular basis to train. Playing sports, particularly team sports can be a great way to keep you motivated and keep your competitive edge. Simply chasing a ball gives you a purpose to run so it becomes meaningful and you’ll forget about the pain of having to run for the sake of losing weight.
Personality type: The on-the-goer
Characteristics: Time-poor, incorporates exercise with normal daily activities
Types of exercise to try: a cycling, jogging or walking commute, exercises in the office, lunch time classes
Most of us juggle multiple life commitments and finding the time to exercise and focus on ourselves can be a struggle. It’s important to avoid burning yourself out or letting yourself get run down because although you may soldier through life’s grenades, your immune system will likely suffer in the long run, opening you up to more bouts of illness. The good news is, being smart about exercise and incorporating it into your every-day activities will help you avoid feeling the dreaded FOMO (fear of missing out) from skipping a workout. Try cycling to work or if it’s too far, just cycle, walk or jog to a train station that’s along the way. Exercise during your lunch break, as hey, you have to be at work any way right, and best of all, it doesn’t cut into your morning or evening. Walk to the grocery shop and use the walk back as a combined weights session if you’re carrying multiple shopping bags. In fact, research has shown that it’s better to keep moving throughout the day. Fitness First has some sweet tips to keep you moving in the office.
With endorphins flying high, make sure you take note about how you feel at the end of every work out to keep you motivated. Just remember your goals and celebrate those little wins, whether it’s shedding a kilo off the scales or fitting into that dress you once found too tight.
Before starting any kind of new exercise regime, it’s a good idea to check in with your doctor to assess your current health.