Get Fit (Not Skinny)
Earlier this year I ran Round The Bays (ye-yah! Go me!), I wanted to keep that motivation going, not only to do a single achievement like run a race, but create healthy habits that fit in with a real lifestyle of being a busy, full time working mum with (what feels like) a million side projects.
I’m a gal who enjoys food and wine (or a G&T) with friends, sometimes I eat just toast for dinner, occasionally (ok, maybe more than that) love a take out of Thai or KFC and microwaveable popcorn is sometimes a realistic meal option once the small person is taken care of. Don’t judge me. But I digress… Between all that, I eat pretty well with a balanced diet. I’m naturally a slim person (which has it’s downsides) but I’ve managed to keep some good stuff going for longer than a few weeks. I want to be fit and healthy, not skinny!
With Spring about to kick in, the days are lighter for longer and the temperature isn’t as cold, so you might be thinking of getting out and about more. Before I ran Round The Bays, I hadn’t done any exercise and was pretty much starting from scratch, and I think the starting part is the hardest. So how did I start, well I’m glad you asked!
- GET SOME GEARS: I am in no way saying exercise needs to be fashionable, but you want to be comfortable and part of that is feeling like you don’t look silly or out of place. DO get proper shoes for what you’ll be doing (this link is handy). Having shoes that fit right makes the whole process more enjoyable.
Get some clothing that is just for exercising; think of it like a uniform, it helps you get in the right headspace. I have these Under Armour compression capris and LOVE them. I don’t feel jiggly (legitimate problem), there is a handy little zipped pocket for my house key and they are super comfy. Keep the girls in a supportive bra and chuck on a t-shirt.
If like me, all your music is on your phone, an armband is really useful as it also doubles as a place to tuck coins or your house key.
- TUNES! You know I love my music. Put together a playlist that is up-tempo and keeps you motivated. I’ve added mine to Spotify if you want to give that a try.
- APPS: I’ve tried a few apps for tracking my fitness, I personally really like the Nike+ app as it links to playlists on your phone, it pauses your run when you stop (to cross the road for example) and keeps you posted on distance/speed. Apps are a a good way to map your progress. I’ve used Runkeeper and Couch 2 5K, but still prefer Nike+.
- SLOW & STEADY: Don’t compare yourself to other people, just compare yourself to what you did last time. It’s a one person race y’all. Start slow with long walks to ease into it, then maybe do a run/jog/walk after a few weeks. I started doing 3km at a time with brisk walking a bit, then running, then more brisk walking. I’m still doing that and managing about 3-5km each time.
- CHOOSE A ROUTE: I like to mix up where I go each time, I live in a beautiful neighbourhood with beaches everywhere. Jump on Google Maps and map out a route that is the distance you want. Try and keep it flat, it can be a loop or back the same way, maybe on the other side of the road.
- STAY SAFE: be aware of driveways, people are oblivious of pavements/sidewalks when they leave their houses. Be aware crossing the road when you have headphones on. You’re a smart person with common sense I’m sure.
- WHAT ABOUT THE KIDS? If like me, you are a single parent and can’t leave the little ones at home alone – take them with you! G will come along on her scooter and race me between markers like power poles or street corners. She’s a lot of fun to go with (and is like a miniature slave driver).
I’m one of those people now that really enjoys getting out for a run, and when I can’t, I get antsy so have to do something. There are of course times when I can’t get out and you have to get a bit more creative! More on that another time.
So, do you think you might get out and about soon?
Images are from my Instagram: @foxesblog TOP: pause mid-run at Takapuna Boat Ramp, shots of the Nike+ app etc.