Shaping Up: If you’ve fallen back in the winter, it’s time to spring forward

Graham takes part in one of his own boot camps.
Graham takes part in one of his own boot camps.

If you haven’t met your weight loss or fitness targets over the winter months, don’t beat yourself up about it.

Winter can be hard to stay on track; with the dark nights and cold mornings it can be difficult to stay motivated.

But that’s in the past now. Don’t dwell on it if you’ve not been as successful as you’d have liked.

The spring is here and the lighter nights are just around the corner, so set yourself some new targets.

Summer is not far away so use that as motivation to get going again.

Use the milder weather as motivation to increase your activity levels and aim to get at least three workouts per week in.

There are plenty of ways to get back on track. Why not try one of my recommendations below.

WALKING

Walking is a great way to stay active and get some fresh air. And it’s a lot easier when the weather is a little milder.

If you would like to meet new people and see some new things, then why not try the Walk For Life at Seaham.

It’s a guided walk around the Seaham area, meeting at Seaham Harbour Marina (in front of the Heritage Centre), every Wednesday 12.45pm.

RUNNING

The Sunderland Park Run is a great way to get into running. It takes place every Saturday, 9am at Silksworth Sports Complex. It’s suitable for all fitness levels. It’s a 5km course that you can run or walk at your own speed. It’s a great little event. You need to register online at www.parkrun.org.uk/sunderland
Or alternatively, put your running shoes on and hit the pavements on your own. You don’t have to be able to run 10km straight away. Start with small goals and build it up.

If you’re a beginner, a good way to start is interval training. Jog one lamp post, walk the next and repeat for 15 to 20 minutes. The next time, try jogging two lamp posts. Over time, increase the distance and before you know it you’ll be jogging for 20 minutes without stopping.

BOOT CAMP

There are boot camps all over the Sunderland area. However, most people are put off by the phrase ‘boot camp’. They expect them to be military style beastings, pushed and pressured until the point of exhaustion. It’s most people’s idea of hell.

But most of them are not like that at all. Especially at East Coast Fitness. My members are encouraged to work at their own speed. There’s no pressure, no screaming and shouting. Just friendly encouragement and guidance. Being in a group is great for motivation.

If you would like to give it a go, check out my ‘7 Day Trial’ offer at www.eastcoast-fitness.com/7daytrial

LADIES ONLY SIZE 16+ CLUB

If you’re not confident enough to join a boot camp then you may want to consider my 16+ Club. It’s a small group programme for women size 16 and over.

The workouts are low impact so it puts very little pressure on your joints.

The intensity is relatively low so you won’t be completely out of breath. But, we target all of the larger muscles so that you still burn lots of calories. If you have low fitness levels, or you’re not confident enough to go to intense gym classes.

For more info go to www.eastcoast-fitness.com/plussizefitness


YOUR TRAINER

Graham Low, owner of East Coast Fitness, is an award-winning personal trainer based in Seaham. The ex-professional footballer was nominated for the Small Business of the Year and Leisure Awards at the Sunderland Echo Portfolio Awards last year. Graham won the Leisure Award at the North East Hotels Association Awards while working as gym manager at Seaham Hall in 2012. For personal training, boot camps, small group training and online programmes email graham@eastcoast-fitness.com or visit www.eastcoast-fitness.com