I am often asked to write a blog about my health and fitness regime, and to be honest, so far I haven’t had the courage. Why is that? Partly because I never want to come across as boastful, partly because I feel like I got lucky with the genes lottery and partly because I still care what other people think and I can’t pretend that I don’t. Negative comments upset me, and the mere thought that something I write or a photo that I post might offend, upset or simply annoy someone will often stop me in my tracks. I am still not at peace with calling what I do a job and ‘Influencer’ and ‘Followers’ are both terms I’d like to eradicate from the dictionary! Some of you are probably thinking ‘Get over yourself’ at this point, but there I go again. I am making assumptions about what others might think and I need to stop. Perhaps penning this piece is the first step?
I fell in love with ballet at the age of 5 and I danced until I was 18. I think this created a blueprint of muscle memory in my body which almost set my body shape for life. It also taught me how much I loved the feeling of connecting with my body through movement and when I stopped ballet, I replaced it with other forms of exercise such as tennis, running, dance classes, yoga, pilates and boxing. I am a firm believer that exercise should never feel like a slog, and it’s really important to find something that you enjoy. After our gym closed last summer for a major refurbishment and change in ownership, I had to find ways of exercising on my own without friends or instructors and I really struggled to stick to anything for very long. I tried running in the park but I found it so uninspiring and lonely. It upset my routine of hair washing every three days (!) and left me with sore knees and sweat induced breakouts… Perhaps you are runner or you aren’t?! I am not sure, but I do know that running isn’t my jam! When running didn’t work out, I joined a boxing class, which I thoroughly enjoyed but it wasn’t close enough to home which meant a 2.5 hour chunk out of my short working day. So I started exercising at home with the aid of fitness DVDS, apps and Youtube videos, but I found that I always ended up stopping short of the full workout or not giving it my all. Perhaps it was all those years of taking ballet classes with others, but I get such a buzz from being in a class with other people, an instructor and good music.
Our gym re-opened yesterday and I did my first class last night. 45 minutes later, the happy drugs (endorphins) were rushing around my body. I was on such a high and so full of energy that I couldn’t get to sleep! My point? If you find something that gives you that feeling, you are more likely to stick to it.
When it comes to eating, I think my approach has always been to maintain a fairly balanced diet and I tend to eat until I feel full, rather than when my plate is clear. I don’t deny myself much and I will admit that I am completely addicted to sugar. I find that I am not satisfied until I have consumed sugar after a meal. It doesn’t have to be much, but I have a very sweet tooth and love it far too much to cut it out. I know that this isn’t particularly healthy and sugar is not good for me, but I think it’s important to be completely honest with you. I’d rather have a chocolate bar than a glass of wine! Does that make me a bit odd? Probably… I don’t really drink alcohol unless I am drinking socially, which usually means I only drink at the weekend. I have never dieted, and I don’t weigh myself, but whenever my weight has been measured by a healthcare professional it has always been the same. So I do feel very lucky in that respect and I put it down to a good metabolism, good genes and good old muscle memory.
And that’s really all there is to it. I love good food and I love exercise. Both make me feel good and as we only get one stab at this thing called life, I think it’s important to have fun and not to take it too seriously…My girls have inherited my passion for dance and we often put the music on full, clear a space and dance like no-one’s watching…Can you tell from these pics?!
Now I am going to hit the publish button and try not to overthink this post!
Thanks for reading.