The Value of Movement with Matalan

We all know that keeping active helps to keep our bodies and minds healthy but it’s not always easy to find something that works for you and your lifestyle.

I’m the first to hold my hand up and admit that I’m not terribly good when it comes to exercise. When I do start some form of exercise, I also can quickly get defeated for varying reasons!

Like many people, I get deflated fairly easily if I don’t see results quickly and it’s those results that actually spur you on to carry on with exercise.

I’m active in the fact that I don’t sit on my bum all day and I’m not a lazy person but I’m not often active enough in the way that you need when you have a good cardiovascular workout. I really do hate workouts on the whole and the way that I feel during them but the feeling afterwards is undeniable – it’s great!

I need motivation for things to work for me and I often make excuses up if that ‘incentive’ isn’t there. A couple of years ago we booked a holiday to Lanzarote and more or less as soon as we had paid up fully, I made a commitment to myself to start eating better and do some form of exercise….and to my surprise, I stuck with it!

It goes without saying that a commitment like this needs to be something achievable because otherwise it’s a waste of time. Exercise and healthy eating go hand in hand and I knew that if I put my mind to it, I would see the results that I was wanting to achieve.

With my husband’s participation, we both ate better and cut down drastically on our sugar intake and when I could squeeze in sessions, I carried out some HIIT workouts (high intensity interval training) at home. Within a week I really started to notice a difference to my waistline and eating better became more natural to me and I didn’t feel the need to eat sugary processed foods.

HIIT workouts appealed to me as they are so short and they’re relatively easy to slot into your day. I found them initially pretty gruelling on the muscles at first and that my stamina would need to be built on but the fact that you have short intervals of exercise, followed by rest intervals, meant that mentally and physically I felt that I could cope.

So I was really keen to get involved in Matalan’s Value of Movement Campaign and show how important it is for us all to keeping moving.

You have intervals of 30 seconds working out and then 30 seconds to catch your breath. It’s intense but not in an overwhelming way. It consists of running on the spot, squats, burpees, jumping jacks and lunges.

I recently attended a spinning class (for the first time) and although I had always wanted to try a class, I knew that it would be physically demanding and perhaps not the best type of exercise for me. It ended up being 45 minutes of pure hell and although I know that I can’t have been expected to keep up on my first session, I knew that the relentless pace was never going to be an enjoyable form of exercise for me. As my days at work change I also knew that I wouldn’t be able to commit fully and doing a class like this on a working day simply wouldn’t be good for my health.

However, the fundamental aspects of HITT workouts have made me realise that short burst of activity along with other forms of exercise liking running, is what suits me best.

Having the right fitness wear or any fitness wear at all, also makes a big difference. If you’ve not got the right gear, you’re unlikely to have the motivation to get started with an exercise routine.

I like to feel the part and if I’m wearing an outfit that I actually like and feel comfortable in, then I’m going to use it for what it’s intended for – working out in.

Matalan have introduced their Souluxe range of fitness wear which is really affordable and stylish too.

Full outfit from the Matalan Souluxe range

Ribbon side sports leggings – £14

Two tone racer back gym vest – £7

Zip through sports fleece – £12

Knitted trainers – £18

Nb. Collaboration with Matalan.