Tuesday 14 May 2013

Getting in Shape

   I've been trying to lose weight for years, now. When I was a teenager I used to draw my bedroom curtains, turn up my music and just dance it off. At the time it felt like I was at it for ages, but thinking back, I don't think I did more than an hour and a half every weekend. I also never saw the results quickly enough, so I gave up quite quickly. This would go on for months. I'd exercise for a week or so, give up for a few months before trying again. The problem was that I never had the dedication.
   Funnily enough, it was when I got involved with Seeg 3 years ago that I found the confidence and dedication I needed. He loves me how I am, he always has, and I think it was because he helped me to love myself a bit more that I was able to better grasp what I wanted. In the old days, I just wanted to be skinny - you know, the typical teenage stick. I know much better now. I want to lose weight, yes, but I'd rather be strong than weak. I'd rather have a toned physique than a thin one.
   Seeg bought me a Wii a few years ago, just after I bought my first exercise DVD. Before then, all I had was an aerobics step I used to use while I was watching TV. It didn't do much for me, it was very repetative, and it wasn't fun at all. But when Seeg gave me the Wii and Wii Fit Plus for my 20th birthday, that's when everything got started. It introduced me to BMI, the balance board weighed me much, much more accurately than my bathroom scales, and it recorded everything for me. It also gave me lots of new exercises, and even step aerobics which had more rhythm than when I just watched TV with it. I also think that, because it cost so much money, I felt I had to use it. I'm not sure how long I used it for before I moved on, but because of that Wii, which Seeg bought me purely for fitness, I've not given up. I think it was about 6 months, but I still use it today to weigh myself.

   I started using 10 Minute Solutions DVDs. The first one I bought, before Seeg got me the Wii, was from HMV. It was £3, which I thought was reasonable enough to take a chance on, and it was called "blast off belly fat". It wasn't very amazing, though, because it was just muscle work. It was better than the Wii, purely because I had grown quite used to all of the Wii's exercise options, but it wasn't quite what I wanted. I then had a look on Amazon and found that, actually, there was an enormous range of 10 Minute Solutions DVDs, and I eventually ended up buying all of the dance DVDs, which is my absolute favourite work out style.
   I'll review 10 Minute Solutions and explain the concept of the DVDs at a later date.

   Eating has always been a problem for me, too. I love chocolate. I honestly do. And I struggle to tell the difference between hunger and boredom. Whenever I think of diets I always think salad, salad, salad - and not nice salads either, just leaves, really. I've grown to realise that diets aren't all always like that, but at the same time, I can't afford to change the way I eat by buying loads of raw ingredients like that. Diets like Slim Fast and Weight Watchers are all equally too expensive, which I can't help feeling is extremely cheeky to charge so much for things like that. You lose weight, but more of it comes off of your bank account than anything else.
   But what I have found is that I can make little changes - less chocolate and fatty things, smaller meals, eating slower and so on, and it makes a difference. I'll touch on the matter of eating slower at another point, too. I thought it was rubbish but I swear it works. You don't have to buy all these ridiculously expensive meals to eat healthily, and there are plenty of simple "super" foods you can incorporate into your normal diet and lose weight and get healthier just from that. The best thing I've found is green tea.

   I've also found that adding weights into your workout can also increase your work rate, because it forces you to use more muscles, and use them harder. This can mean adding a few sets of weights during your break, or it can mean adding hand and ankle weights to your ordinary workout. I have a pair of weighted gloves that I wear while dancing, and I can't imagine doing it without them anymore. Sure, it makes changing DVD discs a challenge because my hands are heavier than I expect them to be, but while I'm actually working, I'm not seeing any hinderance any more. Not to mention the fact that I feel a little more serious about my workout and fitness while I'm wearing them.

   I've got a lot of experience with certain aspects of fitness now, after a few years of it all, and I've decided it would be a good idea to share them. I'll be reviewing fitness products that I own, sharing tips and recipes, and posting anything I can think of that might help people looking to lose weight and get it shape. Hopefully it’ll be of use to someone, so watch this space, and the Fitness tab on my sidebar, and you’ll get everything I have to throw at you.
   I'm also going to try doodling some diagrams for these posts, so that should be, um, interesting.


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