Fitness 001

Hey guys, for the past couple of months I have seriously started to think about my body and fitness. I got a gym membership at the hotel I work at (St Michael’s hotel and spa in Falmouth) and was very lazy in actually going to the gym. That was until the beginning of July when I went to my first class there. And since then I have been going as much as I can. Today I wanted to chat to you generally about fitness, my personal opinions on it and the classes I have been going to and loving.

Honestly, I have become a little bit addicted recently. This might be because of the sunshine and wanting to lie on the beach in a bikini but not feeling confident enough, or the classes have given me the motivation I need and actually make exercise fun!

I have never been 100% comfortable about the way I look or confident in a bikini on the beach. I was an overweight child and after a dramatic weight loss about 5 years ago, the scales have fluctuated constantly. Even at my skinniest when I wasn’t healthy I was never entirely happy with how I looked but I never was one who massively went to the gym, I just wasn’t healthy. During the first year of uni I had a membership at the gym on campus and went to the gym almost every day, and when it came to second year, I had the amount of work for the course double and, on top of that, was working 4-5 days a week. I just did not have the time to fit in the gym enough to get my money’s worth (and it was expensive). Then in November I started seeing my boyfriend and for the first time was happy. But, with happiness comes comfort and, what some people call, relationship weight. It happens to everyone but I didn’t realise how much weight I had gained until I saw myself in a bikini when we went on a trip to Budapest. That’s when I wanted to change. I became a lot more self conscious and slipped into old habits again which was not good. I am now, however, consciously trying to swap those bad habits for a proper gym routine and make myself happier the healthy way. I just want to put this out there quickly, the only person I’m doing this for is myself because I was not happy and I’m still not, I have a long way to go on my fitness journey and want to share it on here with you.

I want to do regular updates of my journey every so often. This isn’t necessarily for you guys, its for me as well to keep track of my progress. I would also like to try and motivate you and am always up for answering emails if you need any tips or recommendations. I’m no personal trainer or fitness expert, I’m just trying to change my life positively and healthily and be happy within my body as I’m the only person who can change it.

Longest introduction ever over now, time to share with you my top classes run at St Michael’s health club.

Barre

This was the first class I went to at the gym which is a mix of Pilates and ballet moves but it doesn’t require any previous dance experience. The instructors really push you in this class so don’t think its easy because my legs will always burn during the class. I haven’t been to this class as much recently as it only really works your legs but I would highly recommend it

Legs Bums and Tums

Again, don’t think of this class as something that’s easy and you’re going to walk out with abs and a peachy bum. You’re gonna walk out a sweaty mess and probably bloated af! (Is it just me who bloats at the gym) this class is described as an aerobic resistance workout which targets (as you might have guessed) your legs, your bum and your stomach. It’s a great workout but again I don’t really go to it much anymore due to the fact that it is only on at 12pm on Monday’s and I, more often than not, work all day on a Monday. If I did have it off though this is definitely a class I’d go to on a regular basis.

Hot Stretch

This one isn’t really a massive workout but one of my favourite classes. I’m always busy doing something and when I saw St Michaels had a stretch class on offer I thought I’d try it out. I always try and make time to stretch at home on my own but sometimes it doesn’t always happen so having this class for 45 minutes gives me a break from life and a chance to breath and just be calm for a little bit.

Spin and Abs

Another class which is a killer is spin and abs – an hour class which is split in two, half is on a spin bike and the other half is focused on the abs and different ab workouts. Both kill you equally in different parts of your body. I like this class as its the only class I do which has any cardio in and also focusses on a part of the body I am most conscious about (my stomach). I have never sweated so much in my life but also felt as good as I feel after this class, actually maybe that is matched with bodypump but getting my heart rate up in the spin part of this class just makes me feel so much more awake and alert.

Body Pump

Finally, my favourite class and the one I have probably been to most out of all 5 of the classes I have mentioned. Although that could be because this one is on more often each week so works better with my rota. Body pump is probably the class you would have heard about as its a class run in many different gyms and comes from Les Mills. Body pump is a barbell workout that runs over an hour and has 10 different songs featured. Each song focuses on a different part of your body. It can burn up to 540 calories and is a complete body workout. What makes it great as well is you can chose the weight of the barbell to challenge yourself and I always leave the class wanting to come back and push it further. In each song you can do around 80-100 reps which means the weights shouldn’t be too heavy. I have learnt that this thing (the rep effect) is a formula that exhausts your muscles using light weights but a lot of repetitions and that’s how you develop lean muscles. The first bodypump class I went to was on the 3rd July and I remember struggling with 5kgs on the bar during the bicep track and 7.5kgs on the back track. Now, I have been to 21 body pump classes and do approximately 90 reps on each track with my back weight being 15kgs, my squat weight 22.5kgs, and my bicep weight 7.5-10kgs. I can’t begin to tell you how proud of myself I am for getting this far and even though I’m not where I want to be, I can see a difference in the way I look and how I feel. My bum looks better, my inside thigh muscles are a lot stronger (this I’ve noticed as I’ve always had problems with my knees due to the lack of muscle around them), my back looks more toned and mentally I feel a lot better because I’ve proven to myself I can do this.

Some of these classes I attend on my own but myself and three other girls (Amy, Suzie and Catherine) at work try and go together as much as possible, which is hard sometimes when one of you is normally working. I really like going to classes with them as we all motivate each other and make weird faces to each other to help get us through. I hated going to the gym on my own unless it was a class so having others around you with similar goals is a great motivator to actually get out of bed and get a work out in!

That’s all for this week, do you have a fitness routine you would recommend?

Jess xx

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