The idea of me passing on words of wisdom that are anywhere near the neighbourhood, suburb or stratosphere of fitness advice seems mildly criminal. Why, you ask? Well, let’s just say that I would describe my current body type as ‘out of work plus size model’ and current fitness level as ‘post-mortem.’ If you hooked me up to a heart monitor it would probably just estimate a time of death.
That’s the current fitness level that I’m dealing with here people. So, what gives me the right to attempt to give fitness advice?
Well, as someone who is not naturally athletic in any way, shape or form, and is yet to experience a runners ‘high’ (I still maintain it’s a myth), I get so frustrated when people offer fitness advice such as: “run 7kms every day and you’ll just start getting used to it.” Yeah, good fucking luck. I was once unable to answer an important question from my manager because I was out of breath from walking up a flight of stairs, how the fuck do you expect me to run a ‘casual’ 7km? Dick.
Alas, I thought it was my turn to dip my pinky toe in the Lorna Jane/green juice fitness pool and see what all the fuss was about. Here are my handy tips for attempting to get fit when you really CBF.
1. Try a bunch of stuff
This seems obvious, I know, but I think when you’re new to having to move your body for more than just the necessities (rolling over in bed and reaching for the snacks), you assume jumping on a treadmill for thirty minutes is your only option. Whilst this can work, there is no way in the name of our saviour, Oprah Winfrey, that I could do that every day until my pants actually fit me. Give a bunch of activities a go!
Some I’ve done that I haven't totally hated have been: bushwalking (It’s a great time to reflect on poor life choices), weightlifting (It makes me feel butch) and doing laps in a long pool (it’s the perfect excuse to wear a kaftan as a modest cover-up. I love kaftans).
2. Find a fitness pal
If you’re anything like me, you will be able to find several thousand excuses to stay horizontal watching reality television. However, when you have committed with someone it’s much harder to say no. There are only so many times you can say your dog is sick before you get slapped and dragged to a cross fit class. If you can, find a buddy and set aside a few times a week where you meet to do something active. Once it becomes part of your routine, it will feel like catch-up time with a friend and not inhumane torture.
*WARNING* Your fitness pal should have at least 6-7% more drive than you - NOT EQUAL AMOUNTS. In an attempt to go to a spin class, my friend and I, who had the same level of desire to sweat on a stationary bike, hid in the car for over three hours to miss every single class. We stayed in her car for so long the battery died and we had to call NRMA. This too will be your outcome. You have been warned.
3. Slow and steady
In the past, my fitness existed in cycles. I would decide to start “tomorrow”, eat several McDonald’s family boxes as my ‘last supper’, exercise excessively for three days straight, have a rest day, then have to repeat the cycle three months later. I have scrapped this process. I learnt that if exercising isn't for you, take each stage step by step. Start with 30 minutes once a week or whatever you can manage then slowly build up. Go at your own pace. In the long run you’d rather be active consistently and build up strength than just doing random bursts.
4. Calm yo’ tits
Fitness, for me at least, always meant getting skinny enough to pull off male crop tops just incase they make a comeback (we’re all prayin’ that they do). But I learnt hating your body until you get to a certain goal is complete bullshit. It’s fantastic to have goals and aspirations, but we can’t go loathing ourselves along the way. I feel weird being this positive and preachy but fuck it, enjoy the journey and calm the fuck down.
If you’re already a fit person, this will all sound like total rubbish probably, but if you’re like me I hope it helped. Making a start into this stuff can be terrifying, so get yourself a cute pair of overpriced Nike’s and take it step by step.
See you guys at Zumba.
Daniel is a 20-year-old student living in Sydney. His personal mantra is, “Oh god why did I eat that”. He is currently working on his goal of becoming famous enough on Instagram to promote weight loss tea. Please help him reach that goal by following @daniel_hayek