A few weeks ago I hinted at the turbulence that had been going on in my life recently.
This November was quite possible my worst ever.
I can't share the details as they are still very raw and very personal and don't just involve myself but suffice to say that I had a lot on my plate!!! As the vest top says though "Frankly my dear never give up" and by jove I bloody well won't.
I'm super lucky and blessed. I could not have got through any of it without the reassurance, moral, emotional and in some cases financial support of my very nearest and dearest friends, family and as it turns out, wonderful neighbours too. People have an amazing capacity for love and empathy and sometimes that's all you need. To know that people are ultimately there and ready to step in and support you when you really do need it the most gives you such strength of character to keep fighting the good fight. I'm known for being a tough old Northern Bird and can take on a lot of lifes' pressures but I'm not ashamed to say that even I cracked a bit last month.
But hey ho - we're in December now so that's old news right!
Besides the unwavering love and support I've talked about above, for me, fitness is also a huge source of comfort and release. And red wine - yes, red wine helps take the sting out of most things too!
Ironically, when its the winter months and we're all covered up in our baggy winter woolies, I'm usually rockin' my most banging bod!
Its no huge secret. For me its all about discipline, consistency and routine. When the sun isn't out tempting me to sit on the grass with a glass of something cold in my hand, I hit the gym instead.
I also try to really mix up my workouts - apart from a couple of key obligatory tried and tested compound moves which will always feature heavily in my workouts, I will give most things a go when it comes to fitness.
I've been easily distracted lately ; so many pressures and so much on my mind (also a serious lack of quality sleep). So changing my exercise, switching things up, joining different classes for extra motivation and being spurred on by meeting new people too has really helped me stick to my winter fitness goals. I feel like I have my little #squads wherever I go! If only I could seriously stop the red wine, I might be un-veiling a mini 4 pack for Xmas. Its actually coming along rather nicely under the layer of Malbec resistant blubber just coating my main central belly area! My obliques are finally starting to show! Maybe 2017 will be the year that I do "get my abs out for the lads!"
I like my exercise challenging - short, sharp and sweet - like me (especially the "sharp" bit - acid tongue me! Notably when I have PMT looming)
A long distance marathon runner I am not. However, I can blast out interval training, bouts of boxing, heavy weights sessions, metafit classes and I bloody love a BURPEE! Can't stand squat thrusts - I seem to be anatomically challenged when it comes to this exercise. Must be dodgy hip flexors. You'll normally find me fiddling with my shoe laces for an inordinate amount of time when its time to blast out the pesky squat thrusts!
The latest and most recent addition to my exercise regime has been Barre work.
I have to say I LOVE IT! I'm really enjoying seeing the longer lean muscle definition that is coming through. Even my stocky legs and chunky Northern knees are looking slimmer and dare I say it, LONGER!!!! Its hard to explain because on the surface it doesn't seem like its going to be punishing, but 55 mins on your toes doing plies really does work. My 45 year old ass is looking pretty darned peachy thank you very much (even if I do say so myself!)
I've also been doing dynamic reformer based Pilates too - a major contributing factor I would say in the emergence of said obliques. I find that this more concentrated core based exercise is perfectly complimenting the weight and resistance based training that I do with my much loved PT, Anita.
It has really helped to iron out some of those niggles and aches and pains that come with doing weights and being of a certain age. It also helped me recover from a "seasonal splits" related injury and got me back to my former flexibility.
Yes people, in case you didn't already know, my party trick has always been to do the splits. I don't even have to be drunk either!
However, these days, attempting to do them without warming up, in a pair of 5 inch Jimmy Choo heels wearing a full length frock, turns out, is not such a good idea after all!!
Only went and pulled a muscle in my bum didn't I! Took about 6 months to work its way out - just in time it so happens for this years silly season to start again!!
Now, all I need is to be invited to a party........
Tis the season my fellow FFF's. So let's all be grateful and jolly for our friends, family and fitness.