Christmas – food, fun, family, and friends…what’s not to love? The holidays are a great time of year, but in the aftermath of all that merriment and a little (or if you’re like us A LOT of) overindulgence, many of us are left feeling sluggish and a little lost. It’s another year until Christmas and stretching before us is a bleak and cold January. So what should we do? We should start the new year as we mean to go on and decide to shed those well earned extra Christmas pounds by getting fit.
Turning over a new leaf in January is not an original idea and regular gym goers will be accustomed to seeing an influx of ‘gym newbies’ in the weeks following Christmas. The cost of joining a gym can be enough to put some people off though so we’re going to show you how to get fit for less, and how to enjoy it every step of the way.
1) Start running.
One of the simplest things you can to do to develop your fitness without spending a penny is start running. Run to work, run home, run down the street – there are no limits to this and running is an excellent way to develop your fitness and stamina. All you need is a decent running playlist to really get you motivated and a good pair of running shoes. If you don’t already have a pair this is the only thing you would be well advised to invest in. Running in the wrong shoes can give you blisters, sore feet and even sore shins. You can see our range of running shoes here and check out some of our top tips for running here. If you’re a complete beginner, the NHS offers a fantastic running plan called ‘Couch to 5K’ that will gently break you in. With three runs a week it aims to help you develop gradually and gently builds you up to running a little more each week until you reach the goal of 5K. If you don’t feel ready to progress to the next week then you can simply repeat the runs until you want to move to the next stage.
2) Online Training Videos.
Whilst running can be great for some people, others find it too monotonous. If this is you then why not shake things up by trying a few HIIT sessions on Youtube? High-Intensity Interval Training – or HIIT – has been taking the fitness world by storm and it’s easy to see why. 20 minutes of working out instead of an hour and a half? Yes, please! Popularised by people like Joe Wicks (aka The Body Coach), the idea behind HIIT sessions is that by alternating between intense bursts of exercise and short rests not only will your body burn more fat than a longer session of regular cardio, but it will go on doing this for the next 24 hours. If you find it hard to make the time to exercise then this could be the perfect option for you. There are masses of free HIIT workouts you can access on Youtube and do in the comfort of your own living room. This can actually be a bonus as although short, the sessions can be demanding and are more than likely to leave you looking like a sweaty mess. The post-workout buzz you will be left with more than makes up for this though and you certainly won’t get bored.
The Body Coach isn’t the only fitness guru you can follow. Although one of the most popular with his Shift, Shape and Sustain plan, and able to provide you with some seriously scrumptious food along the way if you invest in his recipe books, there are multitudes of fitness bloggers and vloggers out there. If you spend a little time researching which one suits you best you’re far more likely to stick to your goals of a fitter you. Try checking out Kayla Itsines, Lazy Girl Running, Madeline Bourke and The Grit Doctor for an idea of some of the different approaches to fitness out there. The most important thing to remember is that it has to be fun and enjoyable for you.
3) Create your own home gym.
If you prefer to exercise with equipment then this is still something you can do at home, it just requires a little more investment and space. Cheap home gym equipment such as rowing machines, cross trainers and bikes can usually be picked up fairly cheaply on second-hand sites such as eBay and Gumtree. If you’re looking to spend even less why not invest in a skipping rope or an exercise ball? They might not sound as impressive but if you work out with either of those properly we guarantee you will be able to feel it after one session. There are plenty of books, DVDs and even articles you will find on the internet that can inform and inspire your workouts. Mix it up each time and combine your equipment with some simple body workouts to keep it varied.
4) Cycle to work.
What’s even better than exercising for free? Exercising and saving money at the same time! Depending on where you work, you could incorporate exercise into your daily commute by cycling to work. If you usually drive or get the bus or train to work not only will this save you money but it won’t eat into any of your free time either. Many employers offer cycle to work schemes that allow you to save even more money. Basically, your employer will loan you a bike and make deductions from your monthly salary meaning it is tax-free for you. If your company offers this as a benefit it is well worth looking into and an excellent way to get fit and save at the same time.
5) Healthy living.
One final thing to remember is that a healthy lifestyle is just as important as a fitness routine. A good diet and plenty of rest will also contribute to making you feel great so don’t forget to check out our top tips for a healthy new year.
Or if you are looking for ways to ensure you stick to your New Years resolutions then check out our great Daily Wyn post with expert tips.
Can’t wait to get going? Get your trainers for less from Wynsors!