THE BLOG

Fitness that works for you!

27/03/2013 19:18 GMT | Updated 27/05/2013 10:12 BST

UK adults have spent more than £1billion over the last five years on home health and fitness equipment they rarely, if ever, use, in a bid to lose weight or tone up.

With obesity increasingly impacting the health and wellbeing of people in the UK - it's time to go back to basics.

We need to swap the latest fad diets or the newest at home exercise craze with something more substantial. I recommend starting small - making small positive changes to your lifestyle - this will help you get on a path to health and fitness that you can stick to.

Nuffield Health's new 'Equipment Amnesty' research suggests three in four of us have bought at least one piece of equipment that promises to help us lose pounds and shape up in the comfort of our own homes. As with so many good intentions though, just one in five end up using the equipment on a regular basis with double that using it when they first buy it, then giving up. That's a considerable waste - in terms of money, but also valuable space in our homes.

The survey revealed there are around 82 million items of health and fitness equipment currently in households across the UK, with exercise bikes, weights and workout DVDs proving most popular. Much equipment that doesn't get used ends up cluttering up attics and spare rooms (60 per cent), while some ends up being put to other uses, including drying washing (6 per cent). One person told us they're currently living with a cross trainer in their living room - they don't use it, but it's too heavy to move anywhere else or get rid of!

We all have busy lives and, while most of us would like to exercise more, it can be difficult to squeeze a regular fitness routine in. The temptation to splash money on a quick fix isn't surprising then, but the reality is it's unlikely to work for most people. Of those that do stick with it, fewer than a third (31 per cent) achieved what they set out to.

The problem is that a combination of factors is important in getting stuck into a health and fitness routine that you'll stick to in the long run and that will produce lasting improvements. Despite seeming handy, exercising at home can be difficult to commit to - everyday life is more distracting at home than anywhere else. When starting out, expert support and advice can be really helpful, coupled with an exercise plan that is tailored to you. We'd all like instant results, but it's keeping to a regular, varied routine that is the answer for most people - there is no quick fix!

To help with your first small step, join our free Equipment Amnesty and get help from the experts we have on hand.