Good motivation is essential for a happy and healthy life, find out what you can do to boost yours.
Try out a new class
Working out in a group with an instructor will keep your energy up and ensure you get a good workout. There are so many classes out there, so this month promises to try out at least two.
Invest in a new piece of kit
The Reebok Easy Tone Step (£79.99, www.reebokfitness.info) is our top pick.
If you like working out at home, some new equipment will help keep your routine fresh.
Join a different gym
If the pool is always closed and the classes are dull, don’t let it put you off. The facilities gyms offer vary and another centre might have something that suits you better, like a dedicated spin studio or squash courts.
If the bustle of the gym has become irritating rather than motivating, head outdoors – park benches, steps and logs can all be useful fitness equipment.
Exercise with a friend
Sometimes the oldest advice is the best. Get a buddy on board to keep you focused and interested. Just make sure it’s someone who has similar goals to you – and doesn’t simply fancy a chat! – and will commit to all, or at least part, of the program you have in mind. Someone who always drops out at the last minute or takes it easy when they do turn up won’t help you reach your fitness goals.
Refresh your music
Listening to the same old songs as you push yourself through the toughest stages of your workout can leave you feeling a little lackluster. Ask your friends to share their favorite workout tracks and compile a selection that will get you raring to go.
Try personal training
Yes it can be expensive, but if you’re struggling to reach your goals, it’s often worth it. Most personal trainers offer one free session to start with, so you can work out if it’s right for you. To find a fully qualified PT, check whether your gym offers personal training or visit the Register of Exercise Professionals (www.exerciseregister.org). There’s nothing like a bit of dedicated one-on-one attention to get your motivation back on track.
Head to the shops
Gym kit can wear out quickly and that sweaty, damp smell it acquires is not at all appealing! Everyone feels a bit rubbish in old, tatty gear, so spoil yourself and invest in one new piece of kit this month. That way you’ll have to go to the gym at least a few times to justify the purchase!
Buy Comfy Sneaks
You shouldn’t buy kicks that hurt bottom line! “Your shoes should feel comfortable from the first step,” says Andrew Kastor. So shop in the evening—your feet swell during the day and stop in the late afternoon, so you want to shop when they’re at their biggest. Also make sure the sneaks are a little roomy—enough so that you can wiggle your toes, but no more than that. They should be comfy from the get-go, but Kastor says they’ll be even more so once you have a good 20 to 40 miles on ‘em.