Starting out on a fitness journey, whether you are just starting to exercise or planning a new challenge, can be daunting. While there are many different factors that will decide whether you succeed, there are some basic building blocks you can adopt straight away to give yourself the best chance of achieving your goals.
We know that there is a link - rarely discussed - between mental health and obesity - but asking if people are 'down in the dumps' not only suggests that the government is once again down-playing mental health needs but also implies that being a certain size will fix all your problems.
It may sound a trifle boring but there is actually a tremendous lot you can do using calisthenics. For start I bet you didn't realise that you can work every main muscle group with just these four mainstream, household exercises.
I've been a gym bunny for well over a year now and I am amazed at how much my body has transformed through exercise. Along with eating healthily the majority of the time (apart from booze-fuelled holidays in Portugal and when I'm feeling sorry for myself during the time of the month), my mind and body are healthier thanks to my fun exercise regime...
This is probably the question I got asked the most. In this day and age everyone has a basic understanding about the importance and need to take some regular exercise. However if this involves more than walking the dog then there is stuff to know and learn IF you want to do things properly and get benefit.
Life is all about choices, on this we can all agree. There is an increasing dialogue around food, there is an obesity epidemic, people in Ireland are getting fatter and that is a fact. Since World War Two, our waistlines have been expanding and now it has more than crept into the next generation as childhood obesity is at record high.
It's quite controversial to admit that being your goal weight didn't work for you, and that it wasn't something you wanted to attain, but it's a topic that should be discussed more often in the fitness community, especially when it comes to promoting body positivity.
It's not vastly complex but nevertheless competent training can be a tad complicated. However the one great benefit of this is it completes dispels the ludicrous lean in 15 and get fit in a week style plans, which are bandied about all to frequency as quick fix solutions.
Whenever anyone embarks on a new journey in life they throw themselves into it head first, full of motivation and nervous excitement, with a mind to succeed. The problem is, we often find that these feelings start to fade as we feel our goals are being pushed further and further away.
I think about my grief, my guilt, and whether my thoughts are normal and how they can be healed. I think about my speed, how far I've run, and try to push myself to keep going when I feel like giving up.
It is so easy to make excuses. We are fallible human beings, primed for survival. We will always take the easy option. Don't believe me? How many labour saving devices do you own? You are reading this on one of them.
It's safe to say that no physique is complete without a set of steel-cut abs. Big shoulders and a barrel chest will help you fill out a tee shirt, but if you want a body that catches the eye when you're wearing nothing but a pair of swim trunks, you need abs that you can grate cheese on.
People love to talk, tell stories and often people love to talk about other people. A great woman by the name of Eleanor Roosevelt once said "Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people." I think this sums it up quite well.
No-one knows your body better than you and if you only listen to your instinct, it will tell you loudly and clearly if you are on the right path. If you take time to tune into how you feel after eating particular foods or doing particular exercise, you will have a very good idea of what works for you.
Next time you're at the gym, canvas the weights room and look at the other guys who are training. Chances are, you'll easily spot a few with decent sized biceps, a well-proportioned chest, and probably one or two with a good set of abs too.
I never thought I had the will power to make a change to my lifestyle and eating habits but a bad breakup and lots of heartache was my turning point. I didn't want to just lose the weight that was holding me back but I wanted to work on my self-worth and learn to love myself before meeting anyone else.