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Start here: four weeks to get fit | Holistic Rehab

Start here: four weeks to get fit

H

ow long has it been since you did some exercise? A few weeks, months, more? As with any change in life, the first step is the hardest, but it really doesn’t take much to get you back in action. I know how it feels to be off the wagon: there was a point in my career when I felt the same. I was an

Olympic Team GB heptathlete

, used to training six days a week. When I retired in 2012, I could rest for the first time in 18 years. Six months went by and I realised I had to get moving again. It was time to get back in the gym. At one point, it was the last place I wanted to be, but after just a few easy sessions, I got the bug again. Now I’m a personal trainer and have clients from all over the world.

The 2 Week Diet

diet, fitness, anxiety relief, holistic, rehabilitation, home health remedies, detox

I have developed a four-week programme that will prise you gently off the sofa and get you feeling fit for the first time in ages – starting with just 10 minutes a day. You might think you don’t have the time for exercise, but most people can find 10 minutes in their day. After all, what could be more important than getting more energy?

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Video: Louise Hazel’s workout in 30 seconds

A goal really helps you focus, so start by thinking about what fit and healthy means to you. Is it about being able to climb the stairs at work without getting out of puff? Or going for a long walk without your legs wobbling? By finding a personal “finish line” – one that is about you, rather than other people’s standards – you will give yourself the motivation you need to keep going. And simply by turning your attention to exercise for the next month, you will become fitter and healthier – it’s as simple as that.

This training plan is designed to help you fall back in love with exercise, easing you into a manageable and sustainable routine. It combines bodyweight exercises (promoting increased strength and fat loss, and improving general conditioning) with progressive cardio workouts that are designed to improve general fitness. The most straightforward exercise in the programme is jogging, but you might prefer swimming, cycling or using a cross-trainer. I have suggested the length of each workout, but if you start and find things too easy, do increase them. For example, you may find that a 10-minute jog is a challenge, but a 10-minute swim is not.

The plan includes four workouts a week, with two rest days. You can swap the rest days if you need to, but make sure you do have two days without exercise: they are there to maximise the results of your training. If you are unsure about whether to start physical activity, please ask your GP for advice first. And if you feel unwell, dizzy or in pain when performing these exercises, stop immediately.


The four-week plan

Let us know how you get on, using #guardianworkout on

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and

Instagram

.

Bicycle crunch 1

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Bicycle crunch 1. Photograph: Sophia Evans for the Guardian


Week 1

10-minute workouts


Monday

Complete

the Gym 1 routine

, doing each exercise for 30 seconds at a time.


Tuesday

Do 10 minutes of continuous cardio exercise at 50% intensity (ie, half as hard as you could). This could be jogging, swimming, cycling or cross-training. Slowly ease yourself into the session. Then complete

the core workout

.


Wednesday

Rest day.


Thursday

Complete

the Gym 2 routine

, doing each exercise for 30 seconds at a time.


Friday

Choose your cardio exercise and do 30 seconds almost as hard as you can (90% intensity), followed by a minute standing still to recover. Repeat this eight times. Then complete

the core workout

.


Saturday

Follow

my stretch routine

or do a yoga or Pilates class.


Sunday

Rest day.

Modified press-up 1

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Modified press-up 1. Photograph: Sophia Evans for the Guardian


Week 2

20-minute workouts


Monday

Complete

the Gym 1 routine

, doing each exercise for 30 seconds at a time. Repeat once more.


Tuesday

Do 20 minutes of continuous cardio exercise at 50% intensity (ie, half as hard as you could). This could be jogging, swimming, cycling or cross-training. Slowly ease yourself into the session. Then complete

the core workout

.


Wednesday

Rest day.


Thursday

Complete

the Gym 2 routine

, doing each exercise for 30 seconds at a time. Repeat once more.


Friday

Choose your cardio exercise and do 30 seconds almost as hard as you can (90%), followed by a minute standing still to recover. Repeat this 10 times. Then complete

the core workout

.


Saturday

Follow

my stretch routine

or do a yoga or Pilates class.


Sunday

Rest day.

Side plank

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Side plank. Photograph: Sophia Evans for the Guardian


Week 3

30-minute workouts


Monday

Complete

the Gym 1 routine

, doing each exercise for 30 seconds at a time. Repeat a total of three times.


Tuesday

Do 30 minutes of continuous cardio exercise at 50% intensity (ie, half as hard as you could). This could be jogging, swimming, cycling or cross-training. Slowly ease yourself into the session. Then complete the core workout.


Wednesday

Rest day.


Thursday

Complete

the Gym 2 routine

three times, doing each exercise for 30 seconds at a time.


Friday

Choose your cardio exercise and do 30 seconds almost as hard as you can (90%), followed by a minute standing still to recover. Repeat this 12 times. Then complete

the core workout

.


Saturday

Follow

my stretch routine

or do a yoga or Pilates class.


Sunday

Rest day.

Hamstring stretch

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Hamstring stretch. Photograph: Sophia Evans for the Guardian


Week 4

40-minute workouts


Monday

Complete

the Gym 1 routine

, doing each exercise for 30 seconds at a time. Repeat a total of four times.


Tuesday

Do 40 minutes of continuous cardio exercise at 50% intensity (ie, half as hard as you could). This could be jogging, swimming, cycling or cross-training. Slowly ease yourself into the session. Then complete the core workout.


Wednesday

Rest day.


Thursday

Complete

the Gym 2 routine

, doing each exercise for 30 seconds at a time. Repeat a total of four times.


Friday

Choose your cardio exercise and do 30 seconds almost as hard as you can (90%), followed by a minute standing still to recover. Repeat this 10 times. Then complete

the core workout

.


Saturday

Follow

my stretch routine

or do a yoga or Pilates class.


Sunday

Rest day.

This is is a syndicated post. Read the original at www.theguardian.com

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