I am often asked what my thoughts on exercise are and what I do to try to keep myself reasonably fit.
My answer? ‘Anything that is fun, enjoyable and preferably free!’
Having a somewhat low boredom threshold where repetition being the point of the exercise is concerned, I prefer to mix up all my exercises and do my own thing! My ‘mish-mash’ approach allows me to practice strength and flexibility plus cardio vascular fitness as and when I feel like it.
I know that the recommendations are that you should get puffed out doing some sort of exercise at least 3 times a week, if you can do that then DO IT!! But I think that if you can find things that you genuinely enjoy doing and actually look forward to doing, you will most likely exceed that ‘rule’ and become fitter on your own terms without it becoming a chore.
After many years of being an aerobics and gym bunny, I came to realise that it was no longer fun for me so needed to find some other ways to exercise.
Having never been particularly competitive or sporty, (indeed damaging my feet after an entire weekend spent on roller skates, I had to drop out of sports completely for a couple of years at school.) I did however love swimming and diving off high boards, for which I won my only sporting accolade in the form of a tiny silver cup, (unless of course you include my blue ribbon awarded for coming 2nd in the egg and spoon race!) I have tried running but my knock-knees do not like the pounding of pavements and 4 years ago tried pole fitness, which was great fun but, being a bit of a ‘weakling’, was hopeless!
So mixing and matching for me, means doing something every single day, be it for just 10 minutes or an hour or whatever I feel like doing! I play occasional tennis when invited to do so, walk when the weather is clement (as I no longer have a dog) cycle on rare occasions (I am terrified of being killed), practice Yoga or Pilates almost every evening, but when short on time, skip with my skipping rope or bounce on my little trampoline in a bedroom. If I don’t feel like doing any of these, I just ‘dance’ to loud music for 10 – 20 minutes. The time passes quickly and I feel amazing afterwards!
I recognise that everyone is individual and that different kinds of exercises suit different bodies, personalities and abilities. Some people are flexible and agile, while others have huge amounts of stamina and train themselves to do marathons having not been that sporty previously. (Hats off to them!)
So when you are thinking that you don’t have time, or are not really sporty and certainly would prefer to exercise in private, that’s ok! Do what you like do, make the time to do it when it suits you and have FUN. You are far more likely to continue exercising once you find that it can be fun and that you feel better for it, mentally and physically.
Go on, go for it! Get a skipping rope, hula hoop and or a mini trampoline or just have a boogie!!
Obviously you must be safe, so ensure the area is suitable and the floor is strong enough for jumping. My recommendations are that if you are new to these and have a medical problem please check with your doctor before doing them. I would also suggest that a pair of trainers is a good idea. (It is my personal choice to not always wear trainers every time.)
PS Just for fun……moi 4 years ago!! (I just wanted to give it a try!! I have never had so many bruises in my life!!)