Are we really doing enough?

Are we really doing enough?

If you’ve been to the YMCA Club, you’ll undoubtedly have seen Hamit Buhara running around in his busy role as Fitness Manager. Today, however, he’s taken a minute to sit down and discuss something that’s been on his mind… are we all really doing enough when it comes to achieving our fitness goals?
 
‘Sometimes I think we’re scheduling very specific amounts of time and work out sessions but after that we forget about them. We really need to reflect on how much exercise we’re actually getting done. But not just that, it’s also about how we’re eating every day and what are sleep patterns are,’ says Hamit.
 
The main message Hamit is keen to hammer home is consistency, consistency, consistency.
 
‘There is a huge barrier with being consistent. We tend to be really motivated and dive into gym for five days non-stop. We push hard, jump around, go crazy, pummel our body. Push push push... But a few weeks later we’ve given up and we’ve gone back to going once a week or even given up completely.’
 
We’re probably all guilty of lacking motivation sometimes. So what does Hamit suggest? Positive habits and of course consistency (he says that a lot). So here are Hamit’s top tips:
 
 
1.  Exercise - every missed workout is a missed opportunity
 
‘What can you do all the time? What habits can you keep? What mechanisms can you put in place to make sure you get things done?’ asks Hamit.
 
If you know you’re not going to get to the gym when you had planned to, Hamit suggests going for a walk or doing something to make up or it rather than just saying ‘I’ll just go next week’.
 
‘What is truly important to you? Your body and your health needs to be high on the list. At times, we put this at the bottom of the list. It’s important that we look after ourselves.’
 
Fitness is a commitment and Hamit explains that it’s about making a commitment to yourself. He makes time during his lunch breaks to work out and let off steam and then rewards himself with a weekend off. He understands we can’t all always get to the gym and offers tips like getting off the train a stop earlier and power walking home or even power cleaning….
 
‘If I am entertaining I get flustered and run around like a mad man, scrubbing and cleaning and making it nice. I am dripping with sweat by the end. Do chores with vigour and that’s a workout in itself.’
 
 
2. Food and nutrition - address your barriers
 
Just as we need to stay consistent with workouts, the same can be said for food.
 
‘Say we want to make a smoothie and we’re chucking everything into that £150 Nutribullet. We’re given recipe books by friends and for two weeks we go crazy for it and then we give up. We need to be consistent. Find ways to make sure it's regular. If you can’t do it on a regular basis, find out why. Look at the barriers and address them.’
 

Hamit discusses his routine and the importance of meal planning. He explains that Sunday is the day that he washes, chops and prepares all his fresh fruit and veg ready for the week ahead.
 
‘Think about your meal planning. Think about all your meals. Where is my protein? Where are my healthy fats? Where are my fruit and veg?  Where is my fibre? Where are my carbohydrates coming from? It’s not easy trying to live a nutritious lifestyle without planning.’
 
Hamit knows this is tough, meal planning is one of the hardest things for his clients - life gets in the way. But it can have high benefits - like cost effectiveness, food awareness and reduction of preservatives and additives – all these contribute to being more tailored to your overall fitness goals. Buying last minute means you’re spending more than you should be on food that will not be as beneficial if you prepared it yourself.
 
 
3. Sleep - switch off the box sets and get your head down
 
‘We’re not getting enough sleep. We need at least 7-8 hours of sleep every night. Some of the lucky ones can get away with six but not everyone. Don’t stay up watching box sets. It’s not good enough to have five hours just to finish the last episode of The Walking Dead. In the end we lose out. The brain and body needs to rest to replenish, recover and re-energise,' says Hamit.
 
He goes on to explain that sleep is our time to recover. He doesn’t completely ban that cheeky Friday night out when you stay up partying until 3am ‘we all need to have a good time’ he muses. But advises that 90% of the time ‘let’s get enough sleep’.
 
So really, the question is, what do you want to achieve and how important is it to you? Are you consistent? If the answer is no, find out the why and ways to address this, otherwise you won’t reach your goals. Remember why you’re doing it all and use that as your motivation. Put yourself at the top of the list.

ymca | 2 June 2016