When you have always been a bit of a fitness fanatic, it can be really hard when all of a sudden, time for your favourite hobby just seems to evaporate. At university you worked to your own deadlines, your own timetable – the uni gym was accessible, cheap and open long hours.
But oh how things have changed. Now you have a great job in London and you are really happy and settled. But you can’t help noticing your once trim waistline is beginning to creep over the top of your belt. Too much time spent as a desk jockey, tapping computer keys and pushing bits of paper around – what you need is some regular exercise to sharpen you up, slim you down and get your fitness levels on the rise.
So what positive changes can you make to introduce fitness back into your daily regime? Read on for tips…
A demanding stressful job with long hours is not the ideal gym partner. But when you have stress at work, one of the best ways of alleviating its effects, is physical activity. Why not start the day off by running, walking or cycling to work instead of taking public transport?It’s not as if a daily commute on London transport is a pleasurable part of your day. Find out if there are shower facilities at work that you can use – these are pretty common now because so many people cycle into work.
If it isn’t practical for you to get to work on your own steam, consider getting off the tube or bus a stop earlier and walking the rest of the way to work. A burst of physical activity before you hit your desk will energise you, bring fresh oxygenated blood to your brain and have you firing on all cylinders right from the off.
Create Excuses to Move
Try and stitch as much physical activity into your day as possible. Got a meeting across town? Don’t take a cab, walk through the park. You work on the tenth floor? Deny yourself the elevator and take the stairs. Offer to go out of the office on the sandwich/coffee round – it will get you up from your desk and moving about.
Medical experts have designated sitting as the new smoking and predict a medical time bomb in the future. We can avoid such nasties by making sure we get up regularly from our desks to move about, stretch etc. Standing desks are becoming a regular sight in offices as ergonomic audits are performed by companies. They are finally waking up to the fact that the more comfortable staff are, the less sick days they take.
Join a social sports league that meets up on a regular basis after work. These structured, well organised events that take place all over London are the perfect way of letting off steam after a day cooped up in the office. One of the best and most popular sports for all round fitness is football. Try five, six, seven or eight a side football at www.5aside.org , all matches are played on synthetic pitches in venues spread over London, so there’s bound to be a game going on near you. Go to 5aside.org to sign up today for a season of regular, competitive matches against other London teams. It’s fun and sociable and it will give you the regular physical workout you need.
Exercise on Site
Sometimes you may be lucky to have a gym at your place of work. Fitting in a bit of circuit training in your lunch hour or a few miles on the exercise bike could be the perfect way to keep an edge on your fitness. Alternatively, rent an apartment in a block that has a gym on the premises. Some places offer swimming facilities too – when it is nearby and convenient you are much more likely to take advantage of such perks.
Invest in wearable fitness tech that measures your physical performance. Being aware of your heart rate, foot step count, calories burned etc, is a strong motivational tool that encourages you to push your body harder.
A London life with long hours at work can spell disaster for a healthy fitness regime. But with a few tweaks to your routine you can make time for changes that have a positive impact on your well being.