Miranda Avis

Is getting to the gym proving too much like hard work?

Miranda Avis
Is getting to the gym proving too much like hard work?

‘I just don’t have the time’…How many times do we find ourselves uttering these words?  On a weekly basis?  For some of us, it’s more like every day...

Certainly, when it comes to visiting the gym, it’s often tricky to ‘find the time’ – there’s always something more pressing to do; be it the washing, the children’s homework, the weekly food shop, or simply getting tea on the table.  The list goes on….

So, it will probably come as little surprise to know that Brits waste £558m a year on unused gym memberships - with more than one in 10 people saying they hadn’t stepped foot inside their gym for a whole year.  Whilst we may have the best intentions to visit the gym regularly, the reality is often somewhat different. 

However, all is not lost.  Thanks to technology, social media and affordable fitness apps, getting fit ‘at home’ is becoming a real hit for mums.  Indeed, a fifth of UK adults say they now use online videos, apps and wearable tech instead of going to the gym or seeing personal trainers. 

Take YouTube, for example.  A quick search will offer up hundreds of free video tutorials from strength training and full body work outs to yoga and mindfulness.  Likewise, Pinterest is awash with workouts and advice to encourage getting fit at home, in your own time - and it needn't cost a penny.

As we know, social media is a powerful and prolific tool these days, with Instagram alone having a massive fitness and wellbeing community.  Thousands of passionate fitness bloggers post their journeys, encouraging others to do the same.  Kayla Itsines, who I thoroughly recommend, has a brilliant, easy-to-use fitness tutorial guide called the Bikini Body Guide, which encourages subscribers to chart and share their progress on social media sites as they progress through her 28 minute workouts.  Now, whether you elect to share your progress with others is up to you but, regardless of this, you'll likely find the fitness community on Instagram both positive and uplifting.

Setting up a gym at home is far easier than it may sound.  Clearing a space somewhere (I use a corner of the living room) and investing in a few of sets of weights (3/4/5KG to begin with) and a yoga mat is initially all you need.  Once you’re feeling a little more confident with the programme you’re following, buying a step-up box and medicine ball could be beneficial. 

Of course, electing to work out at home saves heaps of time.  No commute, no queuing for equipment and no need to pack a bag each time you exercise.  And, what’s more, there’s no need to feel pressurised into buying the latest gym attire – you can wear what you want - so long as it’s comfortable and supportive. 

Many people choose to exercise outside; fresh air, bird song and vitamin D are all great for the soul.  So, if you’ve got a gym membership that’s not getting much use, consider 'bringing fitness home', it could be the best move you make this year!