New Year, New You – Easing Yourself into Exercise

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Christmas means three things to most of us; family time, present giving and overindulging. Although the first two are short and sweet, overindulging is something that seems to linger (specifically around our waistlines) and many of us aim to compensate for it by setting New Year’s resolutions to blitz the bulge in record time.

Going all out from the start might seem a little daunting and taking on big challenges such as cycling to work in the snow or getting up at 5am to jog in the pitch black, when you’re not quite fit enough, might put you off exercise for life. Fear not though, easing yourself into exercise by making an effort to walk more should have an impact on your overall fitness, bringing you to a point where early morning jogs or runs are a lot less challenging and a lot more fun!

Kicking off your New Year exercise routine with walking in January could see you running marathons in December and here’s why
It’s Good Preparation For The Gym
Of course, if you really want to start exercising regularly the gym is a great place to do so, but by walking initially you will boost your fitness to the point where the treadmills and cross-trainers look a lot more friendly. You’ll also get a greater level of privacy while you get through that red faced, all puffed out phase. Plus, the money saved could be used for so many other possibilities, such as pretty running clothing for when you’re feeling fitter!

It Can Get You Fit- Quickly!
If you walk briskly your muscles work harder and this can assist in burning twice as many calories as you would do walking at a normal pace. A good way to measure this is to aim to walk one mile every thirteen minutes and walk at least an hour a day – however, this does not have to be in one go. The Nike+ Sport Band is really helpful for tracking your distance, pace, time and calories burned and it can be synced to allowing you to review your weekly miles covered to give you that reassuring push.

It Doesn’t Take Up Lots of Time
57% of adults manage to fit exercise into their daily routine* which is excellent news for those of us pushed for time. Get away from your computer screen and breathe in some fresh air on your lunch break (and no, I am not talking about sitting under the air con in your office!). The Reebok Lady Easytone Ree-inspire II Cross trainers are the perfect kit for walking as they have balance pods underneath the shoe to help tone key muscles while you walk. This gives you 28% more of a workout for your bottom and 11% more for your hamstrings and calves, so not only are you burning calories but toning too. Think how much easier taking on a cross-trainer will be after that!

You Can Discover New Frontiers
Make a conscious effort to find a little green, park or beachfront within walking distance of your work and walk there of a lunch hour. Beautiful scenery is a huge incentive to keep up your exercise and you may well find some routes where you can go running once you’ve built up your fitness. Alternatively, try walking new streets you do not normally go along – you might just find a quirky cafe or beautiful bookstore. Just remember that having an extra thick, creamy hot chocolate on the way will pile back on those calories, so perhaps filling the Nathan Water Drinks Bottle with water and taking this with you is a better idea. They are made with recyclable stainless steel , feature a cute flip straw in the leak proof lid, are dishwasher safe and come in some great designs, enabling  you to keep hydrated on the move.


You Can Catch Up With Friends
Most people become hermits in the colder weather, opting to sit at home and hide from the low temperatures. Unfortunately, this means neglecting your social life and missing those all important gossips with friends, as well as doing less exercise. So, why not make walking a social event? Get a group of your friends together for a regular walking session and boost your dull winter mood instantly. Besides, talking over the telephone is not nearly as much fun as a face to face gossip!

* Taken from Mintel (Dec 2009) Sport and Exercise For The Time-Pressed Consumer


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