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Planning Fitness Goals For The Year Ahead & My Current Routine

Because it’s about time I mixed it up…

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Ahhh fitness. I’m a sucker for #NewYearNewMe content. However this year I have found myself reciting the phrase whilst chowing down on my eighth pig in blanket (we had a belated Christmas Dinner with my family last weekend and my Mum bought 36 sausages wrapped in bacon for seven people and I had more than my fair share). Heading home after a rather indulgent honeymoon has meant that I’ve sort of missed the boat for a clean slate and instead have had to ease myself back into the timezone, let alone a routine that included any kind of vegetables.

In a way I think that this gradual shift has been a good lesson for me. I’m notoriously someone who is all or nothing – I’m either eating a homemade green soup for lunch, or I’m having my second bowl of Coco Pops for the day – so it’s been different to have to slowly tweak and ease into the idea of looking after myself from the inside out again, after eating a diet of lamb and Arnott’s Mint Slices for so long. Over the past week I’ve deep cleaned the flat, which is something that bizarrely happens like clockwork at the beginning of every year. GET EVERYTHING OUT OF THE LOFT! I NEED TO CLEAN THE BACK OF THAT CUPBOARD! I’ve unpacked, even though it took me well over 24 hours to do so. Then I got back on top of emails, blog posts, filmed videos, updated my diary. I shaved! I moisturised! I did face mask after face mask! I slept for 11 hours straight! It was only then that I was truly ready to think about my plans for fitness for 2018.

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2016 was the year that I properly got into the gym. I lifted and squatted my way to a level of fitness that I’d never even been close to before. I loved it and would happily trot off to do thrice-weekly sessions with my personal trainer and would prod my new-found arse regularly just to marvel at how much it had grown (for a pancake butt girl, this was very exciting). In 2017, I mixed it up a bit. I realised that although I enjoyed building muscle and increasing my cardio abilities, I was as stiff as a board and I missed the chilled vibes that at-home yoga used to give me (you lot know I’m a Yoga with Adriene fangirl – I even have her merch). I researched Reformer Pilates because I’d done a couple of classes up in London before and really enjoyed them, then found that there’s a studio within walking distance that ticked all my boxes. Didn’t cost the earth? Tick. Clean and friendly? Tick. Chilled out vibes? Tick. I began to alternate my workouts between the two and appreciated how doing Reformer made me feel. Yes it’s always a workout, but after a session I felt taller, my posture improved and it took about eight months for me to comfortably touch the floor when I bent over. As someone who could only previously just about grab at their ankles this was a BIG DEAL.

Over time the scales tipped towards Reformer and right now I’m at a place where I haven’t visited the gym in three months. And I’m alright with that. Previously I would have felt guilty, but my goal fitness-wise for 2018 is to just feel GOOD. I want to feel flexible. I want to feel stretched. I want to feel as un-tense as is physically possible for me. Imagine going for a massage and therapists not wincing at how your shoulder blades have tied together in one big knot? THE DREAM. I just want to gain strength in a way that makes me feel relaxed and more importantly, that I enjoy. Because ultimately that’s the key here; if you enjoy whatever method of exercise you partake in, you’re going to partake in it more frequently. Speaking of which…

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Five Tips For Sticking To A Workout Routine In 2018

1) Carve out time. Before you even think about working out, you need to address where it will fit in your schedule. Is it worth waking up an hour early to go before work? Or does it make more sense to pop to the gym on your lunchbreak or after work? Perhaps it’s weekends that work better for you? Take a look at your diary and see what needs to be re-jigged to make time for it.

2) Gather your kit. If you feel banging in your new workout threads then you’re more likely to want to hit the town and show them off. Don’t give yourself the chance to wiggle your way out of a workout because you haven’t got the right gear. Do your research and make sure you feel comfortable in your new purchases.

3) Diary that s**t. Add your workouts into your calendar or to-do list like you would any other item. The chances of you actually going through with it are higher because it looks and feels like more of a priority. Honestly this tip changed my life. Whether it’s classes or you’re working out on your own – make it feel important.

4) Go with a mate. My favourite Reformer classes are the ones that Mark goes to with me (he loves it too and goes twice a week!). Not only do I get to chuckle at his facial expressions as he attempts to stretch out his rather resistant hip flexor, it’s just a good laugh and we’re less likely to cancel because it messes up the other person’s plans.

5) Find something you love. It might take a couple of weeks of trying a gym’s class schedule, or a good chunk of time of Internet research – but when you find something that you really enjoy, working out is no longer a laborious task that you’d rather poke your own eye out than do. Try something new this year – you might bladdy LOVE IT?


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So what’s my fitness routine (hopefully) going to look like in 2018? Well I’m back at it with the Reformer. It’s funny how quickly you loose your strength when you’re not using it as the sessions I’ve had recently have made me sweat and shake in a way that feels like I’m going back to the beginning, but it’s still an hour of my day that I look forward to. I try and squeeze in sessions four times a week if possible and hope to continue that. The one area that I’m lacking in though, is cardio. EW CARDIO. It’s the worst because I’m crap at it and it makes me heave and breathe in a way that makes me feel like I’ll never be able to breathe easily again. Panting ain’t a good look on me, but I’ve been checking out local bootcamp-style classes because I feel like over the past year I’ve really enjoyed the motivation and friendships (I’ve made a Pilates friend!), that come with group classes. So I’ll keep you updated on that one. But right now if I could just get back to the point that I could touch the floor again without my hamstrings screaming at me, then that would be fab…

Photos by Lauren Shipley

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Comments

  • I’m a ‘all or nothing’ person as well! 💪 I like those goals, I might pinch it. I have spent so much time worrying about losing baby weight that I sometimes forget to enjoy it
    Happy New Year!

  • Yes, you loose your strength quickly, but once you get back into the workouts you will regain it much quicker this time. It is as if the body remembers!

    Anne|Linda, Libra, Loca

  • Hi Anna, not sure you’re reading your comments, but my advise to you would be not to restrict yourself from the food you love. Just minimise it! I’ve been going to the gym for the past 5 years, lost 10kg and builded much-needed muscle. What I’ve learned is not to go on diets and keep going to the gym! I think there was only once when I took a 2 week break because your body sometimes needs it.

    Most importantly, you need to feel good! If your goal, as far as I understand, is to feel good – going to the gym once or twice a week would be perfect. However, if you want to lose sustainable weight with yo-yo effect, you’ll have to stick to a routine.

    Keep us updated with you regime!

    x Mariya
    http://www.brunetteondemand.com

  • Em

    Routine is totally the key and making it a priority. I have fallen in love with Aaptiv’s workouts after being a classpass fan for years. It now is just something I do every morning. 🙂
    xo,
    Em
    http://www.organicallyemily.com

  • Claire Greig

    Ooo I really fancy trying reformer Pilates but a bit scared as a total newbie. Is it suitable for vet inflexible beginners??x

  • I’ve never done a reformer Pilates class but am dying to. Maybe this year I’ll finally find a location near me! – Kristin | It’s Kristin

  • Melissa Darcey

    I’m a big fan of reformer pilates too! For some cardio, I like to toss in a spin class here or there. Spin can be grueling, but it can also be so much fun when you find the right studio that is energetic and motivating.

  • amy3po

    Just wanted to say thanks for always being so motivating! I’m hoping to get more on the fitness train this year, even while dealing with questionable knees. Cheers 🙂

  • I love going to the gym and my goal of the year is to go to 1 to 2 spinning classes a week. I know I can never do 2 every week but i will commit to one. When I am able, I’ll attend a second class. And so the goal would be to workout three times a week. Let’s see how it goes.

    The Lisa’s World

  • Love love love Reformer Pilates to the point that I am training to become a Pilates instructor. During weekdays, I alternate between Reformer Pilates with Barre classes and on Saturday morning I do boot camp sessions, to tick off the cardio bit. If you haven’t tried Barre, I’d highly recommend it!

  • Veronica Jones

    There a reformer Pilates place on my street and every time I drive or walk by it screams my name. I think this is finally the year I get my butt in there.

  • Flo la vita

    I’ve been trying to work out more lately, I should probably set myself some goals too xx

    http://www.flolavita.co.uk

  • julia

    what are you wearing? i am in love with your outfit!

  • Jessica Thoma

    2018 will be the year I finally take up a yoga class (which I’ve been wanting to do for ages but never took the time to see what’s on in my area) and get back into running more regularly! And this post has motivated me even more to stick to them goals 🙂 xx

    Jess | http://www.jess-inretrospect.blogspot.com

  • I’m have just started Kayla Itsine’s BBG <3
    Miki x

    https://littletasteofbeauty.blogspot.it/

  • Lisa Autumn

    So motivational Anna! And you are right it’s all about FEELING good!

    xx Lisa | lisaautumn.com

  • Jude Rivers

    Love this post! This is the year I start some cardio! xx

    http://www.juderivers.com

  • Adding your workouts to your to-do list/diary is great because it helps you get in the habit of doing it consistently. I also like having a calendar for each month in which I write in the days where I worked out, and what workouts I did, and at the end of the month I can see how many days I’ve been exercising. It helps me keep track of each month’s progress and I couldn’t recommend it more!

    Julia x
    Last Post: On Resilience and What 2017 Taught Me | http://juliaspeaksbeauty.blogspot.co.uk/2018/01/lifestyle-on-resilience-what-i-learned.html

  • This really speaks to me – I found something I love and now I don’t dread working out!
    http://www.aglassofbovino.com/

  • Meghan Dillon

    I loved this post – I think it is SO important to find a workout that you actually enjoy. For a couple years I would slave away on the elliptical – but I HATED it. I love strength training so much more, so I stick with it more. <3 great post!

    http://www.musingsbymeghan.com

  • Sepideh

    I made my gym time a non-negotiable (unless I’m very sick) and I schedule ahead of time which days I’ll be going to the gym that week.
    I also made it ‘easier’ for myself – instead of going home and then heading back out (which..in the middle of winter in Canada..SUCKS!) I have a nice Lululemon backpack with all my gear in it so I don’t have any excuses NOT to go!
    Seppy | http://www.elleisforlove.com

  • I’ve come into this year with a very different view of what fitness means to me … for as long as I can remember it has been all about the aesthetic results, I’ve wanted to look skinny, strong and everything in between. Instead, this year it is all about how I feel after years of suffering with stomach issues and intolerances. I’ve decided that not hitting the gym 5 nights a week is OK, as long as I’m fuelling myself right and feel better for it (and of course out 100% when I do go). I also want to spend more time on ‘me’ too and that means a lot more yoga, more Lush baths and of course a little more writing time too.

    Emma | HarmonyBlaze.co.uk