Friday, 18 January 2013

I've joined a gym! Plus an update on me.

On the 9th January, this year, I joined a local gym. I was a bit hesitant at first, because the last time I joined a gym, I lost interest pretty quickly, wanted to quit, but ended up having to pay £26+ once a month for a whole year as it was a yearly contract.. But this gym is very different. It's only a 5 minute walk from where I work, so pretty convenient for me really. It's a rolling contract, rather than a yearly one - at any time I no longer want to go, for whatever reason, I can give one months notice and leave, with no further payments! Also it's the cheapest gym in town - £15 per month, plus two one-off payments of £20 - can't go wrong with that really. It's not too big or two small, it's well equipped, it's open 7 days a week, and the staff are incredibly welcoming, friendly and knowledgeable. It's a very laid back atmosphere, which I really like. It also offers lots of different classes per day (such as spin, pilates, zumba, self defence, boxing, etc.), which are free to MyGym members - so I've been taking full advantage of those since joining. On the whole it's one amazing gym that's great value for money (an absolute bargain in my eyes).

Since joining I have been to the gym about 4 times and I have really enjoyed myself. So far, I have tried classes such as spin, LBT (legs, bums & tums) and boxing basics - I enjoyed them all but my favourite is definitely spin! It's hard work but makes me feel really great afterwards. I spend a lot of my time in the gym on the crosstrainer, the treadclimber, the exercise bike, the rowing machine and sometimes the stepping machine. I went to lunch with my friend, Tom, and he helped me decide on some kind of routine to stick to, to begin with. He has also advised me on good foods to eat before/after workouts. Tom, along with my boyfriend and family, are supporting my decision to do this all the way, which is great and helps to keep me going! :)

Starting weight/measurements:

My starting weight for the gym is: 8 stone, 13 lbs.

I put on weight after my first week at the gym - I was NOT a happy bunny. But I didn't let it get to me too much and I've already lost all of the weight I'd put on! :)

My starting measurements for the gym are (in inches / cms):

Bust = 30" / 76.2cm

Waist = 28" / 71.1cm

Hips = 32" / 81.3cm

Neck = 13" / 33cm

Left bingo-wing = 9.7"/ 24.6cm

Right bingo-wing = 9.7" / 24.6cm

Left thunder-thigh = 21.5" / 54.6cm

Right thunder-thigh = 21.8" / 55.4cm

The majority of these measurements have improved ever so slightly since my last measurements (click here for post), but one has actually increased and one has stayed exactly the same. Finding this out was a little heart breaking as I worked so hard all year to get these measurements down.. But oh well. I will measure up again soon and update you all on any changes.

Starting/"before" photo:

I want to lose the bit of fat at the bottom of my tummy and I want my thighs to be a lot smaller, as they are a part of my body that I particularly dislike. I then want to tone up absolutely everything. I WILL acheive that bikini body this year! I've got this far with next-to-no exercise, so imagine what I can do if I introduce it into my healthy lifestyle (this thought is my main motivation)! I will post updates on how my body changes after a while of going.

An update on me:

What I haven't mentioned is this last week or so I have been feeling extremely weak and over-exhausted on such a low amount of calories (1200 per day, plus slightly more with exercise), since getting back into my calorie counting super strictly again at New Years. Well I had to go to the hospital for blood tests because I was feeling so bad and looking so ill and very pale. But I found out that my blood tests came back perfectly fine, and it's probably being caused by anxiety.

But before receiving my results, I had a chat with my spin instructor about my health, what I'm eating, my calorie intake, my sleeping pattern and such alike.. He advised me to up my calorie intake to at least 1500 per day (well he actually said he'd prefer me not to count them at all any more, but I just can't break the habit). He also said to turn my TV off at night to help me sleep as I should be getting at least 6 hours of sleep per night to be able to go to the gym (I usually sleep with the TV on and only get around 4-7 hours sleep a night). He also said to eat 5 meals a day rather than my usual 2-3, as my body will start to starve itself otherwise and I need the energy if I want to go to the gym regularly (I've attempted this change but I'm only managing around 3-4 meals most days). I also need to eat a meal, full of protein, within 1 hour after finishing any work out (this is the one step I'm struggling most with).

Since I've tried applied these changes, as much as I can, I have been feeling slightly more energetic than usual and I no longer look really ill and pasty all the time. I feel my body has a bit more power, to push myself further, when I go to the gym. I'm still counting calories religiously, but I have upped my daily allowance by 300kcal, from 1200 to 1500 (this has been extremely hard to get used to)! So hopefully making all of these small changes will help me get bigger and better results from the hard work I put in at the gym.

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