So, January has been and gone. Did you think about joining a gym? Or perhaps you joined, went once or twice, not really understood what you were doing, before retreating back to the comfort of the sofa.
I’ve been guilty of both scenarios. Every January I start the year wanting to get fitter, with good intention of looking like a ‘90s Hoff by the summer, but it never materialises. The busyness of life is often my go-to excuse, but a more recent justification is that gyms seem quite daunting these days, don’t they? A quick scroll on social media and the abundance of gym-goers taking selfies in front of the mirror make me feel like I’m being shamed via cyberspace as I sit there tucking into a tub of ice cream watching Dave. Just beholding their toned physiques makes me get a stitch. The last time I went to the gym, I did a few sit-ups, ran a bit, wore the shorts I mow the lawn in, and selfies didn’t exist.
So, I guess I have some real inhibitions about joining the gym, or #gymhibitions if you will. I want to fit in, I want to get fit, but don’t know how to achieve my goals. In fact, on reflection, perhaps I don’t even know what my goals are.
When Nuffield Health offered me the opportunity to take part in a Health MOT, I jumped at the chance. If I was going to join the gym again, I wanted to know what would be best for my 37-year-old self, rather than just working on my Baywatch muscles.
Arriving at the Wokingham branch, I was immediately impressed with the facilities and the general family-orientated vibe. Beyond the reception was a large café, full of families with children refuelling after swimming lessons. As I made my way through the impressive gym to meet the PT who would be assessing me, I scanned the facilities and everything reassuringly felt clean and modern.
I was taken into a private room where the Health MOT was explained to me. The MOT consisted of:
● Height and weight
● Body Mass Index and Waist to Hip Ratio
● Blood pressure
● Aerobic Fitness
● Resting Heart Rate
● Blood glucose
● + a conversation about sleep, hydration, alcohol and caffeine
Some of those tests might set some further gym-hibitions into overdrive, but in all honesty, the entire process was relaxed, professional and incredibly useful. There was no physical activity involved, no nasty needles for blood tests (just two tiny finger pricks), no awkwardness, and no questions were beyond limits. I was thoroughly impressed with the process as my assessor stopped to explain every test and every result in layman’s terms so that I could start to think about some bespoke goals.
All of my results came back with normal or good results. I’ve got to be honest, this came as quite a shock, but I’m aware, that at 37 and living a life that doesn’t involve any real exercise, if I came back in 5 years’ time, my results might not be so positive. Now’s the time to act to ensure those results can be maintained and even improved. Thankfully, the Health MOT is repeated every 3 months to track progress, and I believe with the assessment as a date to work towards, it will help me stay on track.
Before the end of the assessment, we talked about setting some goals, because as I mentioned I wasn’t quite sure what they should be. I’m not interested in big muscles or being able to run five marathons on the bounce. I simply want to start a positive change with a confident mindset around going to the gym, so I can stay healthy for my family and importantly, for me.
Whatever your goals are, or if like me you might be unsure of what you should and could be achieving, don’t let any gym-hibitions stop you from getting to the gym in 2019. Get online and find your nearest Nuffield Health now!