Learning to love the gym – yes I know, the gym!

Step back 3 years and the idea of me loving (yes a strong word here!) the gym would have seemed alien. They were scary places full of people far more fit than me and equipment I had zero idea on how to use. I use to step on the treadmill or the bike, ‘workout’ for 30 minutes, maybe swim a bit and that was it. Now I train 6 times a week and haven’t gone near this equipment since. I spend most of my time lifting weights and it was the best thing I’ve ever done. It’s fantastic to see so many ways people can learn how to lift weights these days and it’s becoming more and more mainstream for women. 

In the last 18 months of training, here is what I’ve learnt;

• Trainers are worth the money. Even if you just get one for a short while, they help you to achieve your goals and show you how to do the exercises properly.

• Got a niggle or an injury? See a physio. If you train on it, it’ll only get worse. Trust me….

• I know how to deadlift correctly and I’m going to hit that 100kg. 

• Olympic lifting is bloody hard BUT I will conquer it.

• Scales mean nothing. I’ve dropped two dress sizes but still weigh the same….

• I can confidently walk over to the free weights section and not feel intimidated by the grunty, sweaty men.

• I know when it says ‘woodchop’ in my training book, what that means (it has nothing to do with a hairy lumberjack man)

• I can memorise training plans and know what to do without my book – although I never go without it because sometimes at 6am my brain just doesn’t function!

• I know what weights I can lift, where’s my limit and when I should push myself.

• I can wear skimpy gym wear and feel confident as hell – ok I’m not walking around in a sports bra but I do have leggings with flames on them which is a big step forward from all black, figure engulfing clothing.

• I can actually box. We’re not talking boxercise here. I mean properly box. I know sequences, I have a seriously strong cross and I’m starting to get the foot work. If you want to feel empowered then do this with your trainer!

All these things make me feel confident in myself, especially when for years on end now I’ve been knocked down and let down. No point feeling sorry for myself. Who ever gets through life by doing that? Having a strong body helps me to stay strong mentally as well. The gym and weightlifting takes me to my happy place where I can let go of everything and concentrate on me. In the end, all you have is yourself and if you’re not happy with it then no one else will be 😊

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