My exercise challenge for last year – the results!

gym challenge treadmill 5K

 

Gather round chums, it’s my yearly exercise challenge (entirely unsurprising) reveal time!

Now, I don’t do New Year resolutions, but I do set a regular New Year goal. It’s very simply this – my goal is to go to the gym 150 times in the year.

If that sounds like a massive amount of exercise, it’s not really. When you break it down it’s three times a week for 50 weeks of the year. In theory we’re all supposed to exercise three times a week every week, so I’m actually doing less than that, since I give myself a fortnight off.

As to what I actually do in the gym when I get there, that’s anybody’s guess. I could just turn around and go home. But once I’m there, that is genuinely the hardest bit done. The actual exercising is relatively easy.

Right now I’m into treadmill running. The picture above is proof of the 5k distance I stumbled through on 30th December, the 150th and last session of my gym challenge for 2017.

I note each gym visit down in my diary and keep a running total like this:

 

gym challenge 2017 results

 

So you can see that I was pretty steady throughout the year, until I started panicking in November.

I’m coming up to the 10th year of my exercise challenge now. I started it when I was 39 going on 40, and here I am 49 going on 50 and still plugging away. It hasn’t made much of a physical difference – I still look like a chubby Eighties throwback – but I’m very sturdy and hardly ever get ill.

I have quite strong abs, though they are well-lagged by a layer of pizza and Christmas cake. I see all of this as an investment in my health for the next decade. So I guess I will start to feel the benefits of the exercise I did a decade ago kicking in round about now.  I want to stay active for as long as I can, and as far as I can see the way to do that is by being active now.

The big challenge this year has been that I moved from working from home, and having total autonomy over my time, to working in an office and being at somebody else’s beck and call from 9:30 to 6pm. So my lunchtime gym sessions had to become evening ones, which is a right royal pain in the bum but there you go.

So if you are aiming to exercise more in 2018, I have two pieces of advice for you:

  1. You don’t have to feel like doing it. You just have to do it. Many people feel like doing things, but then don’t. Or they do things that they don’t really feel like. It’s not the same thing.
  2. Try out every exercise you can, even the things you think you won’t like, at least once. This is how you’ll find the type of exercise you like enough to want to keep doing. Make a list of everything that’s available to you, from free YouTube videos to whatever classes are on in your local church hall. Then, don’t wait until you feel like it. Just do it. Make like Nike and Just Do It.

Are you taking on an exercise challenge in 2018? Leave a comment, I’d love to hear about it

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  • Jem

    I have to admit, I had a little chuckle when I saw the November figure.

    I really like this approach, don’t know why I’ve not thought of something similar. This would work really well for me, as although I’m generally fit and active there are weeks where I can’t get to the gym for one reason or another. It would be awesome to feel like I’ve not jeapordised all of my goals (I am a bit extreme sometimes) and could catch up another time – even though that’s the reality anyway.

    I am actually doing a challenge this year… well, this month as a starter, then I’ll see how I get on: I’m running every day in January. The biggest problem isn’t the running, which I’m fairly comfortable with anyway, it’s dragging my lazy fat ass out of bed at 6:30 to fit it in to my already CRAZY schedule. I’m not even sure why I’m doing it to myself either… hehehe.

    Good luck with your 150 this year 😀

    • Yes, you can practically smell the panic coming off that November stat can’t you? I think it just goes to show how hard it is to actually do 3 times a week exercise. No matter how motivated you are, life always gets in the way.

      Good luck with your January run challenge, what a great thing to be doing.

  • I actually just wrote a post on my blog on how I am planning to be more active in 2018. I am not setting myself for any particular challenge, it’s more about exercising more often for me but also about doing more outdoor activities.
    You are doing very well, well done on achieving your target!

    • Thank you Petra. I’m interested to hear more about your plans, I’ll hop over to your blog now and have a look.