Mission: Get fit!
19th March 2014
I’m 20 years old, 5 foot 6 in height and just over 8 stone (around 51kg) in weight. In fact, from a trip to the doctors before Christmas I found out that I was on the border of being underweight. I found this quite shocking considering I eat loads and don’t really exercise.
The truth is I have always had “problems” with my weight. I’ve always been skinny even though I eat as much as everyone else, if not more! 1 I even got bullied at school by people called me anorexic and telling me to eat some food. I felt upset by this but I soon learnt, through a very supportive mum, that those people were just jealous and that I could use my natural skinniness to my advantage. She showed me that I could literally wear anything because of my weight and height, and although it took me some time to get dressing in a girly way 2 I now dress for my shape.
Thing is though, there is a difference between being naturally skinny and being fit and healthy. I am in the fortunate situation of being able to eat what ever I want, but constantly filling myself with chocolate and greasy pizzas is probably not helping my body internally. It’s certainly not helping with my facial skin and my acne.
However, one of the biggest issues I have with my body is my hip. I suffer from development dysplasia of the hip, and as a result of many operations I have a lot of pain in my left hip. Really, the only solution now is for me to build up the muscle tissue via exercise. If I don’t, the pain will just stay around or get worse. It’s a future I am dreading and that I am ready to prevent, even if it means over coming some fitness fears.
So, here is my plan of action. Mission: Get fit!
Exercise at home
Over the past month or so I have been working out at my flat, focusing on strengthening my hip muscles. I have combined this with yoga to create a stress-free routine that I hope will help my hip. I’m currently doing it once a day in the evenings, but I don’t think that this alone is going to work. I need more! That’s where the next two steps come in.
I adore swimming. When I grow up, I want to be a mermaid!! Haha, no seriously. Fortunately, thanks to my fabulous university I get free of-peak access to the swimming pools in the city owned by the council. This disadvantage of this is the nearest one is a half an hour walk away through a rough area of the city. An even bigger disadvantage of this is that they are closing this swimming pool due to budget cuts. This only leaves me with one option; pay to use the pool at one of the local hotels. Admittedly, the pool at the hotel is incredible compared the council one. It’s always warm and it’s always quiet, and when you pay for a swim you also get access to the gym there. During the summer this would be ideal as I could make a day of it and use the gym and then go for a swim, but it’s the price that worries me. It’s £4 a session which is good value, but my budget is £40 a week for living, and that’s including food, and so I’d struggle to afford to be able to go more than once a week.
Go to the gym
I could use the gym at the hotel, or I could use the free gym provided by the uni. Of course, the obvious answer here is use the free gym. It’s also closer to where I live than the hotel. However, I have a fear of gyms, and in particular the student gym.
I know everyone goes to the gym for the reason, and you shouldn’t be embarrassed. But the student gym is full of people I know and full of sports science students who think they are the best thing since sliced bread. 3 I’m just worried about people laughing at me because I don’t know how to use any of the equipment or because of my hip. Are people as really as judgemental as I think they are at the gym? Probably not. I’m sure I’m just being paranoid, and once I actually go I won’t regret it.
So where do I go from here? I have some t-shirts for the gym but I need to buy some bottoms and a pair of trainers. Yes, I don’t own a pair of trainers. I stopped wearing trainers when I realised how comfy Converse are. I don’t think the gym would appreciate me exercising in my Joker Converse!
Then I need to find some time and GO TO THE GYM!! Brave my fear of the gym and get my hips strong for the first time in my life. Wish me luck.