I’m trying really hard to like running. I’ve never been very good at it, but one day I’d really like to be able to run a 10k race or something. With this long term goal in mind, I’ve recently downloaded the ‘Couch to 5k’ app, which is helping me on my way; but until that’s done with, I’ve been a bit stuck on the cardio front.
Having completed the Body Coach’s 90DaySSSPlan (read all about that here), I understand the importance of HIIT training when it comes to fat-loss. However, although I can sprint on the treadmill (I’m crap at long-distance but I’m fairly competent at sprinting now), it gets a bit samey when you’re doing it five times a week. I tried using a bike and it made my bum go numb, I tried using the rowing machine but I just didn’t enjoy it. Things were looking a bit bleak: it can sometimes be very hard to motivate yourself to get off your arse and do some exercise, but it’s even harder when you know you’re going to hate every minute of it when you do eventually get to the gym.
And then, lo and behold, enter Box Fit: a class at my gym that combines different elements of boxing with interval work. I did a bit of martial arts training when I was younger (I actually quit the Brownies to join Ju Jitsu), and, as it turns out, I’m quite good at hitting things. I must have a lot of pent up rage or something, but I have found that I’ve not only found a form of HIIT that I’m good at, but I also enjoy doing it. Which is the key to exercise really (and life, I guess): what’s the point in slogging away at something if you don’t really like it?
This class works me just as hard as treadmill sprints do, but I also get to interact with other people: because the session is mostly partner work (each of you taking it in turns to hold/hit the pads), I’ve had the opportunity to meet some lovely people, and it’s nice to have a laugh whilst trying to knock seven bells out of each other. Don’t get me wrong, I still find time for the odd treadmill HIIT, but now I go boxing twice a week and it’s great not to be stuck in the same boring routine.
I suppose the point of this post is that if you hate the exercise you’re doing, then move onto something else. There’s loads of stuff to try: even if your gym doesn’t run classes, or you don’t even have a gym membership, there are millions of ways you can mix up your cardio until you find something that suits you. Even if you want to avoid HIIT altogether (and I honestly wouldn’t blame you), as long as you move then it really doesn’t matter: just find something you like and get going!
Ta for reading,