It's winter, post-festive season and you're inevitably staring down barrel of those pesky resolutions. And, like a lot of us, we bet most of those are health and fitness related in a bid to sweat and cry off the calories accrued over the holidays.
So no wonder you're already dreading it. Who wants to willingly put themselves through abstinence and torture?
The truth is that we don't buy this New Year New You nonsense. It's why we set up a campaign called Say No To January.
One of the ideas we want to dispel is the idea that the only reason to get fit is to lose weight. Yes, that's one of the reasons but fitness is so much more. When done right and in the right setting, it can improve your mood no end and properly blow away those January blues in a way that a glass of wine just can't.
So how do you avoid setting yourself a impossible goal (taking up running in the dead of winter, for instance), but still keep on the path of being fit and healthy? Ideally, you want something that's indoors, but is also fun, and features a personal trainer who can keep you focussed.
This is where Frame in Shoreditch comes in. I got all of the above from a month-long bootcamp at this gym in December, and I'd do it again this month.
Frame is an indoor gym with trending fitness workouts like Barre and HIIT training. Along with an option for regular membership, Frame offer packages and a kick-start bootcamp that are great for those of you looking to focus on short-term goals or to quickly put you back on the right path.
I tried the kick-start bootcamp - four weeks, three classes and by the end I was feeling genuinely amazing.
How does it work?
You pay online and then schedule all of your classes into a timetable. Then all you need to do is just turn up and let the instructors tell you what to do.
Bootcamps are a great way to work out because they offer a lot of variation, and Frame also offers you the ability to select classes to align with your fitness goals.
You can choose to select all barre and Pilates classes if you're looking to stretch out and work on lean limbs. Or you can select high intensity cardio workouts that are great for pumping those endorphins into your brain!
I like to workout as a way of looking after my mind, so I chose to focus on cardio and strength classes.
Let's talk about the benefits
Week one, it's all about pushing through the pain and gathering your feet. Sometimes, quite literally. I stumbled through some 'Frame Work' classes as the rest of the group seemed to be perfectly choreographed. I'm no newbie to bootcamps though and I knew I had to let this week be about 'finding the toilets in the room' as Amy Poehler would say.
I used to have an athletics coach who would tell me that come a new season all you need to do is push through the first two weeks before you started enjoying the training again. By week three of this bootcamp I felt like I could confidently walk in, find my place and workout with the rest of them. More importantly though, I could start enjoying myself and letting the workout highs do their thing to my brain!
Exercise is very often referred to as one of the cheapest forms of anti-depressant and as most of us do, I tend to get quite anxious very easily.
But once I'd got into the rhythm and routine of the bootcamp I could feel my anxiety disappearing and my confidence climbing back up.
By week three I was more alert at work, more outgoing and better able to handle challenges coming my way.
People assume bootcamps are tough, unforgiving regimes but what it helps you with is mental strength and endurance to handle tough situations and keep calm while doing so.
Week three and four is where I could also feel my body changing.
I don't weigh myself or like to entertain the expectations of achieving a perfect body, so I can't tell you much about that. What I can tell you is that I felt stronger, my skin was clearer and I looked more toned. I had a moment at the end of the camp where I thought to myself "My god if you kept working out like this you just WOULD achieve any fitness goals you had."
So if you're looking at January and are already groaning that it's going to be a tough month ahead, I'd recommend getting to a bootcamp and spend the month focused on your fitness AND your mind.
To find out more about Frame Rave click here. Classes start from £9.