Garry Kerr from British Military Fitness should know a thing or two about getting fit. He shared a few of his top tips to fight the Christmas Pudding bulge.
Nom, nom, nom…extra eating: During the winter and especially over the festive season we typically eat more than we would normally and exercising is a great way to burn those extra calories and keep yourself in shape so when spring finally arrives you’re in tip-top shape! Here are some tips to help you beat the Christmas flab!
1. Keep a fitness journal!
A workout log can help keep your exercise routine on track when you’re struggling to stay motivated because it will show you how far you’ve come since you started, and therefore how worthwhile it is to keep going.
2. Commit yourself.
Get moving! Just do it! There is no time like the start of a New Year. You’ve got the indulgences of Christmas behind but it’s important you commit. Why not write all the classes you can attend in your diary so they are viewed as actual appointments and you’re less likely to cancel.
3. Set short-term goals
Having something specific to aim for, such as losing a certain amount of weight or entering a race / marathon, for example, the Major Series (www.majorseries.com) in the Spring will help you stick to your training plan. But make sure your goals are achievable. Setting and failing to reach outlandish targets will put you off.
4. Find the fun in it
Exercise should not feel like torture. After all, you have made a conscious decision to do it. You can take great pleasure in overcoming challenges and progressing with your fitness alongside other people.
Does that mean that it will be easy? No. In order to change your body, you need to experience ‘overload’. This means that you need to keep challenging your body in order to increase your fitness levels. You will, however, improve your fitness levels if you rest and recover properly after each workout.
5. Reward yourself
Once you’ve hit one of your targets reward yourself. By training and committing to your training you’ve earned the right to spoil yourself. Whether it’s a new item of clothing or fitness-related gadgets or clothing – enjoy your achievements.
6. Use visualisation
If you don’t believe that you can do that final burpee or make it through those final reps, you certainly won’t be able to but by picturing yourself doing it before you try it, you’ll create a mental template that can translate into success.
7. Eating right
Food is 90% of the health and fitness battle. You can make great changes just by making small adjustments to your eating habits alone. While changing any habits may seem like a daunting task, there is a wealth of resources available to guide you. By eating a regular mix of proteins, fats and carbohydrates you will reap the benefits of your physical training routine. You will have both the energy to perform and the nutritional foundations needed for recovery. This exercise and nutrition relationship will help you to achieve your goals
8. Be realistic
Rome wasn’t built in a day. Unfortunately, while over-used, there is some truth in that saying.
A healthy approach is to aim to improve on yesterday. By repeating this process you will start to feel like you have made great improvements over a course of weeks, months and years. It is also important to consider where you want to be.
9. There is gain without pain!
While exercise should be challenging in order to encourage the body to adapt and therefore improve, it should not lead to any injuries.
Many people, particularly those new to exercise can become over-enthusiastic because of the physical changes that they experience. Our bodies can only truly complete exercises at 100% intensity for a number of seconds. Exercises completed over the course of an hour-long session are performed below maximum intensity. You should, therefore, focus more on your technique and try to work as hard as possible but not push yourself to the point of nausea.
10. Abandon an all-or-nothing attitude
Don’t think of exercise with an all-or-nothing approach. If you unexpectedly miss a session, don’t beat yourself up. Just get back on track tomorrow. Remember; exercise and fitness is a way of life, it’s not a destination.
British Military Fitness (BMF) is the UK’s number one provider of outdoor fitness classes. BMF was the first, it’s the biggest and it’s the best. Come rain, shine or snow, BMF runs over 400 classes a week in over 120 parks and outdoor spaces across the UK. www.britishmilitaryfitness.com