I haven’t updated this blog in a while because I keep falling off the ‘wagon’, and keep putting on weight. I have lost a lot of weight but it’s always fluctuated and sometimes it’s easier to focus than at other times. For this reason I have tried to go with the flow of what’s happening but after months of good living, good loving and everything else in excess, it is time to step up to the mark, get back on the wagon and firmly stay there.
Having the idea in your head is easy enough; who doesn’t want to lose a bit of weight? But having the focus to stick to it is something else. I had to think back to the past and assess what worked at a) getting me back on a healthy eating plan, and b) staying on it. I have come to one conclusion – exercise – as much as I may want (and even need) to lose weight without resorting to getting sweaty, the time has come to admit defeat and step back in the gym.
If you ask a lot of people, they will say they hate the gym – peacock men, sweaty bodies, germs and a stuffy atmosphere are all reasons why many people stay away. I, on the other hand, love the gym and always have. It’s what got me fit and active, it’s what helped me to lose weight and get my life back on track. I have nothing but lustful emotions for working out in the gym.
The problem has been that because I have Chronic Fatigue Syndrome high impact exercise has been nigh on impossible. However, now I am out of the acute phase, I am actually in a position to get back into it. It is with this in mind that I joined my local Easy GYM chain and had my first session a few days ago.
The sign up was very easy to do. I just entered my details online and gave my bank details et voila. I was lucky enough to sign up while they have no joining fee attached, which was a very attractive offer to me. I was given a number to key in when I arrived, which would give me entry and the rest was up to me.
It is a budget chain, so you get the basics and if you want any more you have to pay extra. You are entitled to an induction but if you want individual training, accesses to classes or entertainment extras on the machines you have to pay a bit more. I received an entertainment trial with my package.
It told me to get a locker padlock myself (which you can buy inside of the gym) and a towel and to just turn up – so this is what I did.
I was nervous about going for the first time, I always am when I haven’t been for a while. There was no need however, it was simple to navigate with a friendly and welcoming atmosphere. I got in the gates with my new code with no problems and found the changing area. There was a sign saying “no towel – no workout” which I was impressed with as many people just do not bother taking a towel when they should, me included. I was lucky that no one noticed and I was able to fully enjoy the experience.
It may be a budget chain but it seemed anything but once inside. I have been to a number of medium-end gym chains such as LA Fitness and Fitness First but the inside of Easy GYM seemed better than either of those. The building, which had just opened with the Easy chain (although it was a Fitness First prior to this) had clearly been done up with all new machines, equipment and bathroom features. I was very impressed.
Getting on the machines
I have been in gyms a lot over the years so I did not need an induction, it was just a case of getting on with my thing. The machines initially looked complicated but they turned out to be very easy to navigate and were very enjoyable to use. They had the latest technology, worked well and had a number of different workout programmes to tailor to your individual needs. You could log on and it would keep a record of your workout in your account. I forgot my password so couldn’t use that feature but I will definitely be using it in future sessions.
Fitter than you think
I haven’t been in a gym for a year or so and was therefore sceptical about my fitness levels. When you couple in the fact I suffer with extreme food intolerance which causes fatigue, I wasn’t hoping for much. However, I have been doing a lot of walking over the last few months, sometimes up to 10 miles, and this has clearly stood me in good stead. I managed a good half an hour interval training and felt great afterwards!
Once the cardio was done and dusted I headed over to the weights area. There are two locations within this massive gym where weights could be done: a free weights area and a machine weights. As a female, I felt more comfortable in the machine area – not that I ever use the machines, but they do have dumbbells and bouncy balls, which suits me down to the ground!
The last time I was using the gym I’d built up my weight tolerance quite high and although my capabilities were still quite impressive, I do have a way to go to build back up to my optimum. I had to be careful as I have a tender right arm at the moment from sleeping in cramped conditions. Still, never one to be put off by physical ailments, I proceeded and really enjoyed the experience – all except needing to constantly look in the mirror to make sure my form was correct.
Lots of orange t-shirt wearers
I have been a member of other budget gyms in the past and staff members – fitness instructors – were thin on the ground. Often I’d have to go into the office to find one! That is definitely not the case here – there seemed to be quite a lot of staff members on the floor, talking, walking, working out through boredom, and just being accessible. I really like this. I am not someone who feels a need to go and ask advice these days because it’s hard for them to understand how ME/Chronic Fatigue is affected by exercise, but its re-assuring to know there are people there if I need them.
In conclusion, I have to say I am very impressed with Easy Gym and am super excited to be getting my teeth into exercising in there. If you are thinking of joining a gym and have an Easy GYM near you, I wholly recommend it.