Guys, something happened to me this year.
We’re nearing a quarter of the year in (lol) and I’ve actually kept up with some semblance of a fitness routine. I regularly post snippets to my InstaStory and I thought today would be the perfect time to introduce you to my current routine, a few tips to getting going and staying motivated, as well as show you some of my newest gym gear.
I’m not a gym goer. Never have been and I’m actually still not one now. Instead, I joined a barre class in the New Year and loved it so much that I joined another class from the instructor (PiYo) and mix it in with some at-home workouts. This way, I get to spend time outside of the house – which was my main goal! – spend as little money as possible and, actually, feel energised and a touch healthier.
Barre and PiYo
There isn’t a Barrecore studio in Hertfordshire. In fact, the nearest one is in London and whilst London is close, it’s a touch far for a class, eh? Instead, I took to Google and found a local, qualified instructor who teaches a class called BarreConcept. And I love it. I’m currently that annoying girl who talks and talks about her classes like they’re everything in life. A fusion of ballet, pilates, yoga and body conditioning, I find the hour-long classes fun, rewarding and engaging. They’re taught in small groups of 8 and to music, taking inspiration from key ballet positions which makes you feel like a prima ballerina! After the first class, you’ll feel the burn but that dissipates once you’re regularly attending classes. And after 2 months of classes, I 100% feel stretchier, leaner, a touch fitter and just a happy lil clam! PiYo, on the other hand, is a more classic workout class, set to music but focusing on traditional pilates and yoga. It’s one that you absolutely ‘feel’ the benefit of and is brilliant for getting you started with some cardio!
Once or twice a week, I like to use an online workout. My favourites are Fitness Blender, Ballet Beautiful and the infamous Blogilates, and I like to drop in on Sweaty Betty’s free workout playlist once in a while too although these are not as easy to follow. Plus, I’ve compiled a YouTube playlist (right here) with some of my favourite workouts. I tend to pick enough videos to create an hour-long workout with variety, i.e. tackling all parts of my body, grab my yoga mat and a bottle, have some weights on hand and take over the lounge. However I always struggle to ensure my form is correct with online workouts, so that’s always something to consider. The best part? Being able to draw the curtains and just go ham by yourself 😉
Nike+ Training Club
When I was a dancer, some 8-9 years ago, we did a weekly hour-long circuits session, which is pretty much the HIIT phenomenon. It absolutely destroys you but you reap the benefits in double time, making it perfect for busy millennials. In comes the NTC app. I’m a huge fan of Nike’s running app and so decided to give this a go… (Just) Do it. You can tailor workouts to suit your needs, so whether you’re a total novice or you want to focus on enhancing strength, endurance or mobility, there’s something perfect for you. Simply enter your goal, some key details about your lifestyle, and the app maps out a complete workout plan for you as well as automatically setting notifications so you can download the appropriate workout, grab your mat and get going. You can drag and drop workouts throughout the week so, working late on Monday? Move it to Tuesday. Don’t fancy three rest days? Move a workout forward. Best of all, it keeps track of how many minutes you’ve done so far and how many calories burnt, giving you a more tangible result.
New In to the wardrobe
What is it about workout wear that makes it so ridiculously addictive to buy?! For someone that balances all of their belongings in two arms to reduce the number of times required up to her room and down to her office, I’ve found myself shopping up a storm for workout gear. I picked up an ELLE Sport yoga mat at TK Maxx after my old one didn’t survive my flight home from Hong Kong. It’s pretty comfy and oh so bright, the perfect motivator for at-home workouts and to Instagram evidence of said workout 😉 It’s a touch thinner than I usually opt for but does the job for now. I’m totally pining after this Victoria Sport one! At TK Maxx I also grabbed this comfy sports bra. I only have high impact ones for running in so this light impact one (black is sold out but the violet is available) is great for my Barre classes. I adore the multi-crisscross straps at the back!
I also picked up a couple of workout tops via ASOS and New Look. This pink one was from Nike via ASOS and clashes terribly with my yoga mat, heh. I probably could’ve sized up to make it easier to stretch in but it’s pretty true to size, whilst this black marble print top from New Look is the perfect fit. Go for your usual size for a relaxed fit; the mesh back is perfect for breathability and it’s my favourite top to workout in.
Finally, I picked up some gripper socks from Sweaty Betty and new Dri-Fit leggings from Nike (pretty standard). Gripper socks are an absolute essential for Barre – some studios don’t allow bare feet but even if they do, gripper socks are great for barre work where you might need a little extra grip. PS. You can enjoy £25 off your first order at Sweaty Betty if you shop through my link here!
Let me know some of your favourite workout classes and videos? And please keep up with my fitness journey over on Instagram – I’ll make it worth your while with bonus puppy photos and other sweet photos!