I once wrote a piece on one of the common hardships experienced by graduates in post-university life, that of meeting a potential partner. However, having been out of the “uni bubble” for coming on two years now, I have stumbled across another hard-to-maintain activity…that of keeping fit.
Luckily for me, my family have always been in to sport. It has almost been genetically transposed in to me, meaning that I never feel quite at ease if I’ve gone a couple of weeks without doing some physical exercise. Having said this, it has become increasingly obvious to me that the time one has to partake in such activities has dramatically reduced.
I don’t know about you, but most times I return home from work all I want to do is eat and sleep. Mustering up the motivation to not immediately go to bed but to get changed in to my tracksuit and go back outside to do exercise is a challenge, and takes incredible willpower. Whatever this willpower is fuelled by, whether that be a pending holiday, approval from a partner, self-satisfaction or Instagram likes, it is important that it is sufficient to prevent you from saying to yourself “ahh I’ll go tomorrow,” “I’m a bit tired today, I’ll put it off,” or my personal favourite, “I’ll go after this last match on FIFA.”
Staying active is not only crucial for body, but for mind also. As any of you that work or have worked in a 9 to 5 job will know, your brain can feel a bit, how can I put this…decommissioned at times. What better remedy to get the ol’ brain juices flowing again than some physical activity? There’s arguably no better feeling than 30 minutes or so after you’ve finished exercising; you can still taste blood in the back of your throat your head feels sensationally clear, you’re struggling to stand on your own two feet without assistance your breathing is fresh and omg is that Natalie from the office, oh no! you feel awake and alive!
A lot of you will have had the image of the gym in mind whilst reading this, however you will notice that I’ve deliberately omitted the ‘g’ word from the article so far. This is because a common misconception surrounding exercise is that it must take place in a gym for it to count when you tell your friends.
This is not true.
In fact to many, the gym can seem rather monotonous and uninspiring. If you are one of these people, fear not as there are a bundle of activities you can get involved in that don’t involve a single treadmill or bench. Personal favourites of mine include: badminton, trampolining, rock-climbing and, of course, football. In saying this, I have begun going to the gym after work. It is infinitely easier to motivate myself when my friend also agrees to go, but as life has taught me, you can’t always rely on your friends, so sometimes you gotta go on your own (deep!).
Whatever takes your fancy, I implore you to break out of your mould and find what activity fits best with you and your routine. You’ll feel so much worse the next day better for it after you’ve finished and will quickly begin to regret every wasted moment you spent in that godforsaken gym you spent on the couch!