Become an early morning gym person

Where you’ll find me a lot of the time at the gym

I’ve always preferred training in the morning but by morning I used to mean around eight or so. Since I started at my new job I’ve started going to the class at 6.45 in the morning. It wasn’t an easy change but it has given me more time in my days. It’s the best way to start the day to squeeze in an hour gym session before it’s time to head to the office.

At first when I started going to G5 I truly admired those people who got up at 5am in the morning to go to the gym for the 6am class. I’ve always been a morning person and this is also when it comes to training. However, even I thought 5am is very early! I thought the workouts at G5 were a bit too intense to do first thing, I also thought I wouldn’t be able to have my porridge for breakfast which I love or have time for any kind of breakfast for that matter. I then had to pack for showering and getting changed. The first  underground leaves at 6.30am which meant I would be a little bit late to the class, not good. Basically just a lot of shit excuses as to why I shouldn’t go. It was me trying to talk myself into why this was never going to happen for me. Does anyone else relate to this?  Trying to justify something in your head whilst it really is just you trying to make yourself feel better.

At the end of the day that’s what all those thoughts were, excuses to why I shouldn’t just do it. Trying to have my own back because I was comfortable in my routine. Have those couple of minutes that I arrive late to every class made a difference? Did it somehow affect my workout? No. Something I have learnt in life is that if you want change you are going to have to get uncomfortable because otherwise you aren’t doing something different from what you are already currently doing, you’re not changing. There will always be loads of reasons in your head to why you shouldn’t do something, we are experts at justifying our current situation and routine because it’s familiar and it’s easy. Doing something different and new, that can be extremely difficult and scary. Why do something that’s difficult and scary? When it’s easy to just be the way we are? Because what if we’re missing out form not even trying!

With starting work again I realised that going to the gym in the evenings took up a lot of my time and wasn’t the most effective way of using my time and time for all of us is precious! I realised that if I got up an hour earlier in the morning, got myself organised the night before, sorted all my meals and packed my clothes and other bits for getting ready afterwards, I would get all this extra time in the evenings to spend with Jamie when he was off, see friends or creating content for the blog. How much more effective would that be than lying in bed for an extra hour? It’s made balancing work, boyfriend, friends, blog and training a lot easier. I wouldn’t have found this out if I hadn’t tried so now I wanted to share some tips that hopefully help you make this switch a bit more easily.

1. Pack the night before
Organise all your meals in containers the night before so it’s just a matter of putting them into your lunch bag in the morning. I even measure the exact amount of oats I need and put it in a bag so I can easily make breakfast at work. The less things you have to remember to do in the morning the better. Trust me, when it’s before six in the morning you don’t want to be worrying about whether you’ve remembered to pack your towel or clean underwear. I know it’s not the most exciting way to spend your evening packing and getting organised (trust me, there are some evenings it’s the last thing I’ve wanted to do) but it will make all the difference in the world. This also means you can sleep a bit longer in the morning and you’ve made sure you won’t forget any essentials. It’s the worst standing in the shower at the gym realising you’ve forgotten your towel…

2. Go to bed early
Might sound simple and very logical, if you’re getting up earlier you of course need to go to bed earlier in order to get enough sleep. But, I think it’s worth mentioning as sleep is very important and is something a lot of us (including myself) don’t prioritise, unfortunately it’s something we sacrifice in order to do other things in life whilst it is essential for our wellbeing. I’ve admitted in the past that I am bad at times at prioritising my sleep and hand on my heart really need to get better at this. Not only that, if you go to bed earlier it will make getting out of bed when alarm goes off a lot easier than if you’re lacking sleep so you’ll avoid the snooze button. It’ll also make you feel more energised at the gym and the rest of the day if you’ve had a good night’s sleep.

3. Book into a class
Before G5 I used to just do my own thing in the gym which I really enjoyed but it didn’t make me jump out of bed at 5.45am, let’s be honest. Since going to classes and booking in the night before I know I have to be there instead of sleeping in a bit longer. When you are just going to the gym doing your own thing you can go whenever whilst if you’re going to a class you need to be there. At G5 if you cancel too late or sleep in you get to do penalty calories on the assault bike, trust me, that thought makes sure you’re there and don’t miss out.

4. Go with a friend
It’s the same idea behind this as with my previous point. If you have a gym date with someone and are expected to be there for a certain time, you need to get your ass into gear and actually go. It’s great to have someone to feel accountable to because if you decide to snooze and your friend has made the effort to go they won’t be very happy with you. Doing that for one another can make such a difference! Get in to that gym early and tell each other how awesome you are for doing it. Getting to the gym is one of the most difficult things you’ll have to do when it comes to a fitter lifestyle. Those days when you just don’t want to get out of bed or are not feeling it, if you have someone who you know is waiting for you can help. You know what the weird thing is? Once you’re there it gets easy, you’re already there so you might as well do something.

5. Think of the benefits
One thing that really helped me get used to getting up early in the morning to train was to list all the reasons in my head as to why I should get up earlier. First of all, I have the workout done and out of the way for the day, I start my day on a high doing something I love, I get to see and hang out with my friends before work (how amazing is that?), my evenings are free so I get to see Jamie more when he’s off in the evenings, I have time for my friends and my blog and I’m flexible if something fun comes up in the evening randomly I’d like to do without skipping out on my workout (meaning you don’t have to choose! You can do both). There are so many reasons as to why you should get that early morning sweat session in and if you remind yourself  of why you’re doing it, it will really help. In my head it then makes sense to go in the morning if it means I can do more things in my day, you’re giving yourself extra time, how luxurious is that?

I hope these five tips can help you! At the end of the day changing habits and lifestyles is incredibly difficult. There will be slip ups along the way and days when I stay up later and end up having to go to the gym in the evening instead and that’s fine. It happens and we can’t control everything that happens in life but if you at least get into the routine of going in the morning you’ll realise how much more time that frees up in the evenings. Then of course that’s not always be possible! We need to be flexible too. There are some evenings I’ve been up later and I sit and contemplate whether I should go to the morning class or not I then look at the time and think of how many hours sleep I’ll get and tell myself I’m being stubborn and stupid if I get early for the gym with that little sleep. That’s not good for my body so I then go to the evening class. No big deal!

Of course it is up to you at the end of the day what you decide to do. As long as you are getting those workouts in that’s all that matters. Are you a morning or evening gym person?

Who does this?!

Just watching Faye having, what friends are for haha. I look awfully indifferent.

We survived!

What a team!

Hi lovelies! Two days with the blog at a stand still. Not ideal but sometimes life happens as much as I do hate to disappoint by not putting content on here. I haven not forgotten about you I promise! I apologise in advance about how long this post is but that’s what happens when I don’t get to express my thoughts for a while!

After working at SFN EXPO all weekend a little while ago now, I have two days my bosses have given me to take off at a later time. Faye and Kate asked me if I perhaps wanted to take a half day on Tuesday this week to go to lunch class at Fly and then have brunch. With the three of us having very different schedules: Faye being a student, Kate working at lululemon (retail job meaning she works weekends a lot) and me at voomfit (office job working weekdays and off during the weekends) doesn’t make us meeting up the easiest task. So of course I wanted to join in on the Tuesday fun.

Fly’s lunch time classes vary in what they are, this particular Tuesday it was their Assault bike class. I’ve explained what an assault bike is before but for those of you who are new to the blog, it’s essentially a bike where you use your arms and legs to get the bike spinning. Sort of a weird crossover between a crosstrainer and a bike. Sounds alright still doesn’t it? Usually you count the calories on the bike as a benchmark or score to reach during classes, so like 20 calories on the bike. Doesn’t actually mean that’s the calories you burn but you what to work towards. The evil thing about an assault bike is you want to accomplish these calories as quickly as possible and you need power for the calories to start ticking up. However, the harder you pedal the more resistance you get, but at the same time if you don’t pedal hard enough you’ll be on that bike forever. It’s vicious circle of pain haha.

Assault bikes are tough and the thought of being in a half an hour class when usually we only are on it for a couple of minutes at a time and feel dead made me nervous. I probably wouldn’t have gone to this class if Kate and Faye hadn’t suggested it. I don’t think anyone of us was particularly excited about this but we’d told each other we were going there was no backing out. That’s why friends are so good for accountability. Ross decided to join in for the class as well so that was four of us going making it even more difficult to back out haha.

I was at G5 in the morning doing some snatch practice and all morning in the office afterwards leading up to the class I was quite nervous. I thought I was going to throw up in the class because those bikes are intense. The clock ticked closer to 12.30 and I headed over to Fly. I loved seeing the amazing Fly crew David, Ross (Fly Ross not Motivational Dude Ross, I know too many Ross’s in my life, it can get confusing haha) and Lorna. Those guys are the best people and it makes me so happy seeing them. They make that gym such a special place.

It was time to get on the bikes. I was not feeling it at all but sometimes in life you just have to bite the bullet and do stuff even though you’re not feeling it. As we sat down on the bikes I thought, who on earth takes time off work to do something like this?! Haha what is wrong with me? If you love fitness, you love fitness I suppose. The class started and I had no idea what to expect or what we would be doing for the next half an hour and I think that made it worse, because you expect the worst. The class was a mix of intervals (that felt never ending at some points).

We got some minor breaks in between the different sections. It was incredible sitting next to a guy who goes regularly to the class, he was insanely good. It might’ve been easy for me then to feel rubbish because I was struggling but instead I felt inspired and thought if I would go regularly to those classes maybe I could get that good? It would be pretty cool. It proves that it is possible to get better when you’re sitting there struggling with your thoughts and all you really want to do is roll off the bike onto the floor and just lie there. BUT, I didn’t. None of us did. We persevered and survived! To put this into perspective, usually 20 calories or so in one go is quite tough. At the end of this class we had done over 200 calories!

Afterwards I was reflecting on my experience and whether it lived up to all the thoughts in my head and the fear of what it would be like. Was it as bad as I thought it would be? No. That doesn’t mean it wasn’t tough, it was brutal and it was an inner battle with my mind saying I can’t do this at some points. Which happens in some workouts when you’re being pushed out of your comfort zone. However, it was not as bad as I thought it would be and the feeling afterwards, when you had fought through those inner barriers and you continued despite that really uncomfortable feeling of wanting to stop, you felt amazing. We were all so happy we had done it and felt almost invincible. I’d been dreading this class for a while and just sitting through it and now knowing what it’s like now I feel so great about myself.

So if you’re sitting there reading this and you’re thinking oh god, after her explanation of this class I never want to go. Please don’t take that thought away from this post. I wanted to share this because yes it was difficult and I struggled and it wasn’t pretty but the feeling afterwards is amazing. When you fight through it and come out on the other side. You feel amazing. So if you’re hesitating going to the gym class you’re or doing something else you’re curious about but too scared to do. Just do it, what is the worst thing that could happen? You’ll gain so much more from trying than not trying.

If you are reading this and want to go to Fly’s assault bike class just remember you can scale it to your ability. Everyone is on their own path to health and you should take the one that works for you. Don’t think about what other people are doing in the class. you have no idea what their story is. You have your own which has led you to this point and you being there is going to help you on your journey. There is so much pride involved with being fit and I know a lot of people feel embarrassed when they aren’t as good as the people around them. I’m the same and sometimes it comes back. I’ve tried to let go of my pride as much as I can and just embrace the stage I’m at with my fitness and that it’s a working progress.

Truth be told, there’s always going to be someone who’s better than you or more unfit than you. That’s always going to be the case. Let the people who are better than you inspire you and learn from them. Let go of that inner person who feels bad that they’re not as good. It’s not helping you in anyway and just embrace the fact you are on a journey. It’s not always going to be easy but see the light and the happiness in the fact that you are on it and that you are trying. Just enjoy the ride and don’t let fear stop you.


M xxx

SFN goodies

I promise! The SFN blog posts are coming to an end, so if you’re tired of them you’ll be glad to hear this is probably the last one for the time being.

I couldn’t leave SFN without some goodies. There were loads of other amazing stuff I wanted to buy but I stuck to the things I knew I really needed.

MissFits Nutrition Vegan Vanilla Protein Powder: I’ve been using Neat Nutrition’s vegan protein powder for so long but after their courier has lost one order I had and then for some reason all of a sudden couldn’t find my office in the middle of Glasgow, which they have delivered to before I got a bit tired of of all the difficulties and felt like I wanted to try something else. They did send me another pouch (which of course arrived the day after I bought this protein but oh well, now I’ve got loads).

I’ve seen MissFits pop up in different on social media and liked the idea of it being specifically for women. After talking to them at the expo I thought I would give it a try. I liked their simple ingredients list and that they try to keep it as natural as possible. With me eating a more plant-based diet I was very happy to see it had B12 in it, something that is usually recommended to supplement if you don’t eat a lot of meat. I was choosing between them and Free Soul (they were right next to each other) and ended up going for Missfits because I feel vanilla protein powder is more versatile and Free Soul only had chocolate and berry flavour which made the decision quite easy. I did get some chocolate pouches from MissFits too to try so we’ll see if I get converted. I’ll let you know what I think of the powders once I’e tried them properly.

Maple Drink: As I mentioned previously, this lovely company gave me two maple waters to try out and write about. I had a little sip of a sample at the expo but am so excited to give them both a proper try. I’ll be of course sharing what I thought here.

Smart powerbank: You can tell WordPress is a blogging platform because they were giving away the ultimate bloggers dream tool, a portable powerbank so you can charge your phone on the go. This is a godsend for a social media nerd like me. I’ve already tried it once and it’s a game changer for me not having to worry about having charge on my phone. I love it so much!

Wrist straps: I’ve been looking into getting a pair of wrist straps for a while but it’s one of those things I haven’t really been bothered to look into and been a bit too lazy to order. When they were right there in front of us at the expo for five pounds at Strength Shop, Faye and I thought it would be a good idea to get some. I’m excited use them and see hot it feels.

I think that’s everything from the show, I also walked around and tried loads of food and snacks as well of course.

Now it’s time to get ready to go and see Zara Larsson at O2 Academy with Emma. I’m so excited, I think she’ll brilliant live!

Have a lovely evening,

M xxx

SFN EXPO day 2

Shona Vertue’s class

Talk about women and weightlifting

A really fun Q&A with the guys from Lean Machines, John and Leon

I was over the moon that I had to the chance to listen to and talk to inspiring guys like them

These beauties Linsey and Gwen came to say hi and try out the hang challenge. Was so lovely to see them!

Faye challenged me to a hang off, team Faddie style 😛

At this point I was so exhausted and my hands were sweaty so couldn’t hold on. Plus Faye is ridiculously strong! One day I’ll beat you Faye! Haha

Had an acai bowl at Acai & Co

Then SFN was all of a sudden over and it was time to pack up and leave. Faye and I headed to Jamie’s work for a tea and to give them some of the leftover doughnuts we were giving out at the expo.

Hi guys! It was a bit quiet here yesterday. I was going to post this but it got late and it was Jamie’s last evening before he left for Kentucky so I thought it was way more important to spend time with him than stressing over a post. Also because the days he’s away it’s our five year anniversary. I’m sure you understand. I’d rather do both things properly, spend time with Jamie and then writing a quality post. I think I’ve made up for it with this ridiculously long post… Sorry it’s so long! There’s just so much to be said.

Yesterday was a bit of a back to reality day. It’s almost as if I’ve been on holiday and had such a great time and now I’ve got that feeling of going back to normal life. SFN EXPO was amazing and I really felt like I was in my element, surrounded by incredibly inspiring people doing amazing stuff in the health and fitness industry. It made me feel so happy and Jamie said when he has seen me this past weekend he could see a real spark in my eyes. I felt so much joy I couldn’t contain it in any way. I wish I could go to more expos like these but it would require me going down to London which I unfortunately can’t really afford to do very often.

The second day of SFN was just as fun! My amazing colleagues knew that I was dying to take part in some classes and talks and were so nice and understanding and said I should just go for it. So in the morning I arrived quite early for Shona Vertue’s class. I hadn’t booked in and the class was booked out but I was hoping I would fit in somewhere, which I did luckily. The lovely Leanne who was hosting the Sisterhood area where Shona was teaching who I’ve met before a couple of times said it shouldn’t be a problem and yes I fit in. Wohoo! Shona’s class was fantastic and she said the reason why she has shaped her form of training to combine include both yoga and HIIT style training into one is because you tend to neglect the things you like doing less and by including it all in the same class you can’t avoid it, which I thought was a very interesting and great take on it all. It’s very much in line with my beliefs that you need both strength exercises in form of weightlifting and cardio in combination with yoga, mobility and stretching. Both aspects compliment one another and will benefit your training the most in the long run. The class was great and very sweaty. My triceps could feel it yesterday after all the narrow push ups we did. Her chat was amazing and made me crack up several times throughout.

After the class I stayed for her talk together with Niko Aligieri who is the owner of a gym down in London called Equilibrium. The talk was about why women shouldn’t fear strength training, something I’m very passionate about. The audience brought up some super interesting questions, which both Shona and Niko had some great insights into. There were some PE teachers there who asked about how they could help their kids realise that being strong is important and I thought it was incredible for them to be there and ask for advice to help influence these young children to have a healthier relationship to their bodies and to fitness. Go you PE teachers! People like you are going to change lives for these kids and in turn change the world.

I was then technically meant to go back to the voomfit stand but the guys that I really wanted to listen to were going to have a talk, Lean Machines. I love John and Leon’s Youtube channel. They train Crossfit down in England and their videos are so inspiring, insightful, positive and upbeat. Their approach to fitness feels so fresh, healthy, fun and easy. I thought I’d stay for a bit of the talk and have my lunch and then sneak off. Before the talk I was sort of on the fence whether I should go up to them and tell them how much I appreciate their presence online and in the end I decided to get over the fear and just do it. I went up to them and said I watch their channel and love their video content.

They were so nice but as the talk was about to start I went and sat down with my lunch box. It must’ve looked good because they asked if they could have some haha. I felt so bad when I had to sneak away and silly of me, I sat at the front and couldn’t smoothly sneak off without being noticed and made a scene haha. I felt bad but I think they understood. Back at the voomfit stand I was saying to the team I was so sad I couldn’t finish listening to the guys talk. So they told me to go back as nice as they are so I did. I tried to be smooth again but I’m not smooth so sort of interrupted the talk again when I came back and the guys got thrown off entirely and forgot what they were saying. Oh dear haha, at least it made everyone laugh.

I even managed to ask a question, something I don’t always dare to do and I got some really great tips. It was in regards to staying inspired with content with social media channels and providing quality content consistently. They said taking a break sometimes really helps to get you inspired again, and don’t fear taking a break, which I do because I hate letting you guys down as I know you guys want new stuff everyday and I do like writing everyday even though I’m busy. This is what I love to do. It felt reassuring that they also face this dilemma and that it’s okay to take a break and leave your social media blank for a while to ensure it’s quality things you’re posting. It’s a fine balancing act between posting consistently on social media and providing quality content because quality usually takes longer time, time that I don’t always have unfortunately when I only do this on the side of my full time job. Afterwards I got a photo of them, which made my day. They are such lovely guys and I was so happy to have met them. Thanks Leon and John for being so inspiring and amazing! I couldn’t believe it when they started following my page on Instagram as well, so crazy. Meant a lot to me!

The rest of the afternoon I was at the voomfit stand cheering people on for the hang challenge! Faye was there and Ross helped us out for a bit on Sunday as well. It was so much fun having them both there! Some of the G5 crew came along as well as Faye’s mum Carole. We went and watched the Throwdown again for a bit and it looked so intense but I felt extremely inspired by the teams who showed such great effort! It’s good to see and get into the competition spirit again seeing as I’ll be doing Rainhill before I know it.

I finished off my day at the expo with buying some goodies which I will share with you in another post because I really feel like I’ve been rambling on for forever, which I have. Sorry about that but I just had to share how amazing this weekend was and I wish it didn’t have to come to an end. I need something new to look forward to now! What I loved the most was how there was something there for pretty much anyone and it definitely felt welcoming to all types of training and perhaps even people who are not very into their fitness but are looking to get inspired.

Okay okay, I’m going to stop typing now because this post is becoming an essay. Sorry guys! Don’t even know if anyone is still reading this haha.

I hope you all have a beautiful day,

M xxx