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Your personal fitness plan

Want to get fitter but not sure where to start? Take the advice of the Rude Health fitness experts and really notice the difference

The first week

Carl Cautley of Health and Fitness Together in Ranelagh, Dublin
The key is to make smart, reasonable adjustments over the first week of your new exercise programme. Here’s a day-by-day roadmap to help you:

Monday Your diet is the first thing to address, so clear out all the leftover junk from your kitchen and restock on healthy produce. Try a 16-24 hour fast or juice cleanse to allow your digestive system some much-needed detox time.

Tuesday You might be tempted to start hitting the gym hard, but your joints and muscles won’t be so eager after a break. Shake off the rust with some flexibility sessions instead, like stretching, yoga or pilates.

Wednesday Now that you’re eating clean and moving again, it’s time to tackle more intense activities. Go for a run or book in for a spinning class to get your heart rate up and give your cardiovascular system a good workout.

Thursday Motivation can start fading after a few days, so recruit a gym buddy or a Personal Trainer to help keep you on track. It’s easy to talk yourself out of a workout, but letting someone else down is another thing entirely.

Friday You’ve been building the intensity of your workouts all week, so now it’s time for some heavy lifting. Head to the gym for a strength training session, making sure to get professional supervision and a doctor’s clearance if this is your first time.

Saturday If you make your new routine all about hard work and nothing else, it can sap your motivation to stay in shape. Schedule something fun today like a game of tennis or round of golf to lift your spirits.

Sunday If you’ve followed the plan up to this point, then you’ve had a very productive week. Today is a day of rest — avoid any heavy training, but continue to eat healthy and get outdoors for a stroll.

www.healthandfitnesstogether.ie

At home exercise routine

Denis Raynor from Icon Health Club
A personal training plan that can be performed at home. You need to perform the exercises one after another without a break. Then rest 45-60 seconds and perform the circuit again 4 times. Perform the workout 3 times a week, taking at least 1 day rest in between.

Bodyweight squat With your feet shoulder width apart and in a V position, lift your chest and keep your tummy tight. Lower your body into a squat position pushing your knees out to the side. With your elbows tucked into your body and your chin tucked in push through your heels to the starting position. 4 sets, 12-15 reps, rest 45-60 seconds

Side plank Lie down on your side with your elbow under your shoulder. Raise your hips off the ground. Push your hips forward. To make this exercise easier, bend one leg. 4 sets, 30 reps, rest 45-60 seconds

Bodyweight lunges Standing with your feet shoulder width apart lunge out to one leg. Make sure you keep your core tight, your chest lifted and look straight ahead. Ensure your knee stays flat on the ground and doesn’t go over your toe. 4 sets, 30 reps, rest 45-60 seconds

Bodyweight mountain climber On the ground, get into a standard push-up position. Keep your hands underneath your shoulders and your core tight. Lift your right foot off the floor and repeat with your left leg. 4 sets, 15-20 reps, rest 45-60 seconds

www.iconhealthclub.ie

Keeping motivation going

Tom Dalton of TD Fitness

Work out why Do you want to exercise for your health, your family or to fit into those new jeans you bought? This should be your motivation to keep going. Post a list or photo on your fridge or cupboard of your reasons – the more you see it, the more it will inspire you. Take a picture of yourself now and make sure to go back and look at it when you need an extra push to make it to the gym.

Set goals Whether you’re in it to lose weight, build muscle, or to ready yourself for a marathon, you need to set a goal and write it down today. Make sure your goal is actually attainable. You don’t want to set goals like ‘run 10 miles by Friday’ or ‘lose two stone this month’ because these are not realistic. It’s better to break it down into smaller goals such as ‘drop one pound this week’ or ‘hold my plank for 20 seconds longer’.

Workout buddy Grab yourself a friend and make a commitment to each other to work out on set days. Find someone positive, you feel comfortable with, and someone you can tolerate a few times per week. Don’t try to partner up with your fittest friend – find someone with a similar fitness level.

Progress selfie Pictures are awesome when it comes to motivation. Take a full-length picture front-facing and side on. After a couple of weeks, take more pictures and compare them. If you’ve been keeping to your routine, you’ll be surprised what a difference it can make.

Treat yourself After you’ve met one of your short-term goals, give yourself a treat. Make it something that will highlight your recent efforts. Maybe some new jeans or an outfit that will make you feel good and keep the motivation going.

www.tdfitness.ie

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