7 Ways to get Fit Outdoors

Written by: Helen

I don’t know about where you are, but this week the weather here has been glorious.  Granted, now as I write the wind is blowing and the clouds are starting to thicken so perhaps it’s changing.  When it comes to the UK who knows what’s in store with the weather.  However, that’s all the more reason to make the most of it when the sun is out.  If the idea of going to the gym makes you groan aloud then perhaps getting some exercise outdoors will be more up your street.  And if the sun is shining then there’s really no excuse.

There are plenty of ways to get outdoors and exercise.  However, here are a few:

1)Tennis

Tennis is a great workout for your legs, arms and upperbody.  It is also good for your coordination and speed.  Get in touch with your local tennis club and join in.  Or just grab a friend (you should probably ask them first) and a racket, book a court and start practising.

 

2)Bootcamp

Bootcamp fitness is group training outdoors.  It doesn’t have to be sunny as they tend to take place whatever the weather but for your first time you might want the sun to be shining until you’ve toughened up a bit!  The classes are based on military style training and aim to be fun whilst giving you a full body work out.

 

3)Running

Running can seem a little daunting.  It is a good idea to build yourself up gradually.  Go for short runs a few times a week and then aim to increase the length of your run.  You will notice that you are slowly able to go for longer.  If you are struggling then don’t worry about taking short walking breaks.  You will find your stamina and fitness increase the more you run.  The best part is you don’t really need any gear apart from a pair of comfortable running trainers.

 

adult, architecture, athlete

 

4)Cycling

Cycling is good for your heart, it burns calories and is also a form of exercise that doesn’t put pressure on your joints.  The best way to get into cycling is to start using your bike for short journeys and then gradually build on this.  Using your bike for an everyday journey such as the commute to work is great exercise.

 

5)Hiking/walking

Hiking can give you a powerful cardio workout.  If you are going to start hiking then the best thing is to take time choosing a route, wear the right clothing (ie. make sure you are comfortable and warm enough) and have comfortable walking shoes.  If you can’t go on a long hike then a gentler walk still has health benefits.  A good way of getting into this is by joining a local rambling group.

 

6)Kayaking

Canoeing and kayaking is an aerobic exercise that can help improve your strength.  There are plenty of places in the UK where you can learn canoeing and kayaking and meet other paddlers.

 

7)Outdoor exercise regime

The other way is to simply move your exercises to the outdoors!  Instead of jumping around in front of a fitness DVD in your living room, jump around in the fresh air instead.  There’s nothing stopping you from doing your sit-ups in your garden as opposed to indoors.  Yoga and Pilates are particularly nice to do outside.  Here is a link to a 30 minute outdoor workout

 

Woman in Yellow Sports Bra Stretching Near Green Grass Field

 

If you want more exercise tips check out my post about spring cleaning your exercise regime.

Do you exercise outdoors?  If so what do you enjoy doing?  Thanks for reading.  If you’d like me to notify you of my monthly posts just pop your email in the subscription box.

How I’ll Stick to my 2017 Resolutions

Written by: Helen

I’m a fan of New Year’s resolutions.  I always make them.  Granted they may have fallen by the wayside come March, but I, like many people, enjoy starting the year with writing down goals; a plan for how I would like the year to turnout.

Inevitably some resolutions I can stick to and others I can’t.  Resolutions I make that are connected to diet and exercise I tend to find the hardest to stick to.  And judging by the way gyms everywhere are full in January and then empty again in February I don’t think I’m alone in this.  For me, this is because after the usual Christmas and New Year gluttony, I’m ready to launch myself with gusto into healthy eating and a stricter exercise regime.  However, after a few months I’ve either fallen off the wagon entirely or I’m perhaps still eating reasonably healthy and doing some exercise, but not with the same kind of fervour that I promised myself at the start of the year.

So this year I’ve come up with an ingenious way to stick to my diet and exercise resolutions….I’m not making any.  Okay, so it’s not that ingenious but it’s also not a complete cop-out.  I had a baby in August so I do have some baby weight I’d like to shift and I’d also like to get back into a decent exercise routine and start running again.

However, writing down goals that I won’t be able to stick to for a whole year can leave feelings of failure.  So this year I’ve made no mention of diet or exercise.  I know the things I need to do.  I need to switch the unhealthy snacks (particularly the ones that I munch on whilst breastfeeding) for healthy ones; I need to go for a run once the baby is in bed.  But I’m going to do these things in my own time and without putting pressure on myself.  I’m going to ease myself back into exercise gradually and maybe, down the line, I’ll set myself some goals.

There will be times when I’ll stay in the warm instead of going for a run.  There will be times when I’ll put down the apple and pick up a chocolate bar.  But, overall, I’ll hopefully end the year a bit healthier and fitter than when 2017 started.  I’m just going to get there gently.

This doesn’t mean I’m not making New Year’s resolutions.  As I said at the start I loooove making them.  I’m just avoiding any that mention diet and exercise.  This year my resolutions look more like a bucket list of things I’d like to do and see this year.  I’d like to go on the Harry Potter Studio Tour (has anyone else been on this? Is it completelely magical??), I also want to see Stonehenge and I’d like to do more charity work.

So, in between nighttime feeds and dirty nappies, 2017 is about being kind to myself and setting achievable goals.  Have you made New Year’s resolutions?  How do you stick with yours?  Thanks for reading.  Don’t forget to subscribe and I’ll send healthy posts to your inbox.

What’s on in 2016

Written by: Helen

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photo from BBC Good Food Eat Well Show 2015

I’m back! It’s been a while and I hope that 2016 is treating you well. Still sticking to your resolutions? Or have they fallen to the wayside? Perhaps attending a few healthy eating and fitness events will keep you motivated.  I’ve had a look at what’s coming up in 2016 and here are some events that are taking place in the UK that you might enjoy.  I’ll be putting a few on my calendar!

 

Diabetes UK Roadshows

These roadshows take place at various locations throughout the year.  The one nearest to me is in Leicester on the 10th March.  If you want to find the nearest to you then check the website here.  The roadshows help people to find out their risk of developing type 2 diabetes and also give information to those with the condition about things such as food and exercise.

 

The Natural Food Show

This is taking place on the 16th and 17th April at Excel, London.  This show is all about natural and organic beauty and healthcare.  You can sample natural food and drink, check out new product launches and also listen to guest speakers and see cooking demonstrations.  To find out more you can visit the website here.

 

Bodypower UK 2016

This is on the 13th-15th May at the NEC, Birmingham.  It is an event dedicated to the international fitness market and you can find out more and book tickets here.

 

BBC Good Food Eat Well Show

I went to this last year and had a great time.  You can read about what went on last year here.

This year it is part of ‘BBC Good Food Show Summer in the City.’ There will be a dieticians clinic, guest speakers, book signings and plenty of products to sample.  You can find the website here.

 

BNF Healthy Eating Week

Schools and nurseries can register on the website here.  It is on the 13th-17th June and schools can focus on some healthy eating activities.

 

SFN Expo 2016

This is Scotland’s biggest ever sport, fitness and nutrition expo and will be held in Glasgow on the 27th-28th August.  You can get details on the website here.

 

The Sport and Fitness Show

This is at Hove Lawns, Brighton & Hove.  It is on the 10th-11th September.  You can discover sport, nutrition, exercise, health and fitness and be by the sea!  Details are on the website here.

If you know of any events I’ve missed feel free to add the details in the comments or let me know and I’ll add them.  Will you be going to any health and fitness events in 2016?  Maybe I’ll see you there.  Thanks for reading 🙂