I never thought I’d be the person who tried to exercise as often as possible, let alone enjoy it, but this year I have achieved that. I did have a bit of a slump in winter, but I’m back into it now and going harder than ever.
I don’t have a solution for the winter slump, but spring is finally here and my exercise is completely back on track, which is good. The only thing I can think of is that a gym membership might have helped when I was struggling with the cold, but I couldn’t afford that at the time.
What I can afford, is to exercise for free. In the past I always thought this was impossible. There was no motivation, nothing pushing me and the biggest stumbling block, what on earth to do? But as I’ve gotten more motivated I’ve discovered that there are many free and fun ways to get a workout in.
Let’s start with the obvious. It’s easy to do and as simple as putting on a pair of shoes and leaving the house. Provided it’s not bucketing down with rain you can do it in most temperatures. Most cities have some nice walks around all different areas, including hills if you’re after that extra challenge. Not up for a big one? A walk around the block is better than no walk at all.
You don’t need a big flashy mountain bike with gears upon gears, an expensive price tag and a skimpy lycra suit to enjoy the benefits of a bike ride. There are usually cycle tracks around the cities or you can kill two birds with one stone like I do and save money on gas by sometimes biking to work, to run errands or to visit a friend.
Can’t dance? Who cares! Wait until everyone’s out, queue up your favourite songs and have a boogie on down while no ones watching. I bet it’ll put a smile on your face too.
There are countless pages of exercise routines and instructions out there, from abs to arms, with or without weights, some even with posters to go with them. Find your preference, download or print it and get your heart racing.
Need a little more instruction? YouTube is absolutely packed with at home cadio, Pilates, yoga, callanetics and any other exercise routines you can think of, with music and instruction to guide you along. My personal favourite channels are Yoga With Adrienne and Fitness Blender.
As with any type of exercise, the biggest stumbling block is mental. Work up the motivation, find a source that you think will work for you and aim to start off three times a week. If that way doesn’t work, try something else. It’s hard at first but once you get into a routine exercise becomes natural and even fun and the benefits you get from it are truly rewarding.
Smiles and Sunshine