My regular Instagram followers will know that my IG stories is a space where I often share pictures of me at the gym. IG stories is a way for me to track my progress and keep me accountable (to myself) but also a way to show that it is, absolutely, possible to make the time to work out in amongst the business of life as a mum of three (and a home educating one at that!).
I was asked, a few weeks ago, why I work out. It sort of took me by surprise. Why wouldn’t I enjoy working out? Another friend asked me if I really did enjoy going to the gym as much as I did, and I’ve had comments from strangers on Instagram that I really ought to ‘get out more’ if going to the gym for 5:30 am is considered fun.
Don’t get me wrong, it is hard going to the gym some nights, especially now the nights are cold and dark, and I really didn’t enjoy scraping the ice off the car last week when I went early. But, as my husband notes, my mood definitely elevates if I’ve been to the gym or worked out, and I really enjoy seeing the progress I am making.
I started working with a personal trainer a month or two ago, and one of the things I was keen to work on was my strength, particularly in my core. over the last seven weeks, I have really worked hard on putting into practice the things I’m learning and my strength, coordination and fitness have all come on lots – I can really notice the difference now and I’m now able to make sure the time I spend in the gym is productive. There are evenings when I attend classes, days when I work on AMRAP circuits, days when I have other circuits and I am getting more confident at creating my own workouts to help push myself to reach ever greater goals. The only downside is that when I do some of the heavier weights on consecutive days I am noticing my hands getting sore so I need to try out some gloves. I don’t like using the gloves all the time but I have them in my bag for those days when my hands are really feeling like they need a little-added protection.
I enjoy working out for lots of reasons, and the benefits of working out are well documented. I certainly feel less tired now and I sleep better at nights. I have more energy and more patience with the children. I enjoy having space away from home to focus on something for me – finding that time at home is hard as there are always jobs to be done.
On days I can’t make it to the gym, or days that are ‘rest’ days (usually one day at the weekend and a Tuesday) I make sure I do a home workout. I have an app on my phone that has a range of workouts and I use these as the basis of my at home routine as they don’t require any weights. I tend to do a legs workout and abs workout, and add extra things in too. When I’m at home I don’t have weights but I do add in resistance bands to some of the workouts – these make the movements a little harder so it feels like I’ve worked out more. I like these once from TapouT as they are well priced and there’s two in the pack (meaning the children can ‘help’ me workout too!). Even just doing these short 10-15 rounds of exercise at points in the day when I find time help me feel better and like I’m achieving something.
There are always lots of reasons to not work out, and working out doesn’t need to be endless cardio and running on treadmills (I don’t remember the last time I ran on the treadmill). It can be something as simple as jogging around the park when the children are playing, downloading an app and getting the children to join in with you, or going to the gym and lifting weights. I find by setting myself targets to achieve and surpass it really helps keep me motivated, as I can see the progress I am making each week.
I am really pleased to be able to offer one of my readers the chance to win a set of resistance bands and some weight lifting gloves. To be in with a chance of winning, please complete the Gleam widget below.
Please note I was sent the weightlifting gloves and resistance bands in exchange for this post.