If, like me, you’ve ever been a member of Weightwatchers/Slimming World/Jenny Craig/ANother of the million diet plans available, then it’s likely you are being email/facebook/twitter-spammed by them right now. Don;t give them your hard-earned cash but check out www.myfitnesspal.com instead. It’s free, has more comprehensive exercise and food databases than Weightwatchers (in my opinion..) and links up to various exercise apps such as Bodymedia Fit, Endomondo Sports Tracker, FITBIT, Mio, Striiv and a ton of others plus there are apps for iPad, iPhone, Blackberry , Android and Windows Phone. My Other Half found this as he’s looking to get fitter and as it’s free i’m giving it a shot too. Can’t hurt, right?
I ran in a 5k Fun Run today. I say ‘ran’ but it was a more of a slow jog with a couple of short walk breaks. Knackering but i did enjoy it and had the honour of my wee girl running out to join me crossing the finish line. I’m also running (again – in the loosest sense of the word) a 10k in May. I’ve also been to the odd Zumba class and getting back into Yoga again too.
I’m not a natural athlete. i don’t find exercise easy and didn’t come from a sporty family so it’s never really been engrained in me to make it part and parcel of every day life. I did Saturday morning dancing when i was younger then gave it up in my teens to hang around record shops and charity shops and like most teen girls, avoided PE as often as i could (girls – You all know the excuse you used...).
At University, there were frankly too many other distractions but i walked everywhere, was out dancing a lot and occasionally did a Yoga routine i’d ripped out of a magazine (and still have – LAMINATED – as its such a good 20 minute routine) so my weight wasn’t too much of an issue until i hit my mid-20s. Lengthy pub sessions and eating man-sized portions (after moving in with my Significant Other) meant i had to start visiting a gym occasionally. We then got a dog so, much walking to even out some, though not all of the creeping weight. A couple of successful stints on Weightwatchers (then unsuccessful slipping back into old habits) plus getting back into Yoga and trying running for the first time meant that i was quite solidly that typical British size 14-16 – sometimes fit and toned, sometimes not so much.
Having a baby does quite ridiculous things to your body (particularly in your 30s when you then truly realise that yes, it does take MUCH longer to get your body back) and i yo-yo-ed between losing the weight quickly then piling it back on when just needing carbs and sugars to keep going due to sleep deprivation. However, my daughter is a few months off being 4 years old so ‘baby weight’ doesn’t cut it any more. Trying to fit in exercise around family, work etc is the subject of countless patronising womens magazine articles and mummy-blogs which i don’t intend to try and replicate here.
I just needed a good kick up the arse and Run Fat Bitch Run by Ruth Field – check out her blog here – was just what i needed. The idea of just putting on your trainers and getting outside isn’t revolutionary of course but sometimes its good to be reminded that you don’t need an expensive gym membership or tons of techy gadgets to simply get your arse moving. The frankly awesome filmmaker and author Michael Moore is also doing a similar thing but encouraging people to get their trainers on and get outside for a 40 minute walk. Check out #miketakesawalk on Twitter. See, its simple really.