Ever wondered what it’s truly like to start getting fit in January? One of our client’s employees have kindly agreed to tell their story through the ups and the downs, the good and the bad, and all of the healthy changes they are trying to make. Here is week three of Employee X’s fitness journey in January:
Monday 15th January
Monday morning always comes around fast…
I take ten minutes out of my workout session to chat to my PT. Because I want to know if I’m just doing like everybody else in January… I’m starting to wonder why I am putting myself through this torture. We have decided that I shouldn’t have a clear end goal. I shouldn’t be trying to lose a specific amount of weight, run a particular distance or look any different. Simply I want to be fitter so I can do more activities with family and friends.
It would be good to lose some weight but I’m unsure as to why. I need go away and have a think about what my fitness goals are. If I don’t know what I want to achieve then how is my PT supposed to help me… She can’t read my mind or guess what I want out of the sessions. We agree to try going for another run and this time we go the same distance of 0.5km four times. Each round, we knock a few seconds off. My feet hurt but I managed to finish the run without any incidents.
Tuesday 16th January
Today I am resting from my fitness journey and there is no running or exercises. I am instead concentrating on making some healthier lifestyle options. Walking more, drinking more water and eating less sugar.
Now that I know all melons are very high in sugar, I am avoiding them. I have begun taking a little pot of blueberries or raspberries to work and a bag of mixed nuts. Instead I am eating wraps of sandwiches. I’ve noticed other people in the office are doing the same so I am not alone… Although I don’t feel ready to discuss this with anyone at work yet. I still feel a little embarrassed by it all… Despite having accepted that I am overweight and unfit I still feel uneasy about it. At least I am doing something about it.
Wednesday 17th January
I’m back in the gym today but didn’t sleep well last night at all. I think I am worried about not succeeding in this fitness journey. Although I knew it wouldn’t be easy but I didn’t expect it to be so emotional. Yes I went into this with a fairly easy-going attitude. Deep down it matters more to me than I first thought… After another chat with my PT, she reassures me I am in fact on the right track. The little health differences I have made and my commitment to 8,000 steps every day is helping me become more active. I need to give 100% in these gym sessions to make that bigger difference.
Today we are doing the Surge. It’s a clever little thing you use when lunging or squatting to add some more resistance to your core. Every time you get used to an exercise, something new comes along to add to it. You can never rest on your laurels! We even got hold of some Slam Balls and no, that’s not a shot you order in the pub! Slam Balls are soft medicine balls you pick up and then hurl towards the ground as hard as you can. It is harder than you think, especially when you have difficulty picking things up off the floor! I think I have #OldManSyndrome… If you think of someone you dislike it will give you a sense of purpose.
Thursday 18th January
I expected to ache a bit this morning and the DOMS didn’t disappoint! Now I am starting to see what the ‘good pain’ means, as Wednesday I had no pain at all. Today after a brilliant gym session yesterday, I ache all over like I have been hit by a tank. However, I’m upbeat and ready for the day ahead. Tomorrow is boxing which I can’t wait for as it is my favourite workout!
Randomly I have been drafted into playing Badminton with a colleague as her friend has let her down. Other than my basic gym kit, everything was provided by the leisure centre. I haven’t hit anything over a net in years. Although it was frustrating when I messed up a decent rally, I got better and better as the session went on. It was a really hot and sweaty workout, and not what I would have expected from a game of badminton. Obviously, I lost the game but I’m prepared to offer a re-match in a few weeks… My colleague from the finance department was an excellent opponent. That last comment was typed through gritted teeth because as Andy Murray said “winning is the biggest motivation”.
Friday 19th January
It’s boxing day today! I already know it’ll be jabs, upper cuts, body hooks and head hooks with punch combinations. This is definitely my favourite day of the week and I find the punching of the pads to be therapeutic. Today we combined all of the above with a few of the usual core exercises such as crunches, planks, bicycle kicks. My old favourite the ‘Time Warp’ are all introduced. We end the session with a routine of 10 squat thrusts, tricep dips, then 8 of each, 6, 4 and finally 2. I’m glad we didn’t work back up to 10 as I hate squat thrusts. Personally, I think they were probably designed by Satan himself.
I don’t know what it is about the Friday fitness sessions. By the time it hits the afternoon all I want to do is go to the pub! It is a cultural thing that we do after work on a Friday – the weekend starts at the pub! However, I actually can’t believe I left the pub after just one pint of orange juice and soda. It feels weird to leave the pub without drinking! A good weird maybe…
Saturday 20th January
I’m off up to watch a football game today. My arms are a little bit stiff but that is it! On the plus side, I don’t have a hangover and I’m not dehydrated, I haven’t had any unhealthy food for breakfast. Today I feel so much fresher than I usually do on a Saturday and I have woken up in my own bed for a start too! So, I think I deserve a beer today.
Sunday 21st January
I’m up early to go for a run today. It is the second day in a row where I have woken up feeling refreshed and energised. This is because I ignored the temptation to drink yesterday or eat a burger from the van. Instead I came straight home from the match and had a delicious curry instead. I opted for the usual chicken madras but I went for a Chapatti as opposed to a massive portion of rice. It was strange having a curry on a Saturday night whilst coherent and upright, which is why I went for a run this morning.
Having a week without beer has given me a massive energy boost. It might have appeared as a boring decision originally but I’m still not seeing any difference physically and nobody has noticed I have been working out. I’m just going to have to try harder with my fitness journey!
Read how Employee X got on in week 4 of their fitness journey in January.