Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Some fitness kit ideas for Christmas

You don't need an expensive gym membership this Christmas.  You just need a few bits of kit and a bit of motivation and you can work out at home.

My favourite bits of kit....

1. Sports bra - absolutely essential for the ladies.  My favourite is the Shock Absorber Max Sports Bra top which is good for running and high impact sports.
2. Good trainers - running specific if you intend to run.  Gym or aerobic if you are working out. I like www.sportsshoes.com - cos they have great sales.

The above items are essential.  What comes next is down to personal preference.  Of course, you can workout in your baggy trakkies and cotton t-shirt but if you look the part, you will feel the part.  .  The right kit makes working out so much more comfortable. Cotton gets wet as you sweat and a good technical top wicks away the sweat. There are loads of websites and shops that supply technical clothing. Check out the link for the trainer site above and just browse through the clothing and you'll see what I mean - hundreds of makes, colours and styles.

1.. I love lycra.  My basic running kit comprises of Ronhill tights, new balance t-shirt and a pearl izumi running jacket.
2. Winter gear - if you are exercising outside - hat, gloves and more layers. I have Ronhill running hat, gloves and a Helly Hanson long sleeve top which I wear underneath everything.
3  Inside - shorts (again I prefer lycra) and a technical top.  I have sleeveless for summer and short-sleeved for winter.
4.Socks - you can't beat proper socks.  Usually costing around £10. I like 1000 mile, Hilly or Thorlos.  They wick sweat so your feet stay comfortable.
5.  I also find it useful to have a waterbottle belt.  This holds a waterbottle and has a pocket for keys and a phone - great when I go for a run.

So, that's the clothing sorted out.  What about the exercise equipment?  You can do amazing workouts with just your own bodyweight and, of course, you can go for a run which doesn't require much equipment.  But, for a bit of variety, a little bit of equipment can make things more exciting.

1. Dumbbells.  Inexpensive sets can be purchased from Argos or Tesco or have a search online.  Start with at least 1.5 to 2kg if you are new to exercise or bigger if you are already reasonably strong.  I workout with 3kg dumbbells usually but it has taken me some time to build up to that weight.  With dumbbells you can do an endless variety of resistance work and also incorporate them into your interval training.

3. A skipping rope.  Great exercise.

3. A gymboss.  I love my gymboss.  It is a little gadget with you can preset for interval training.  For example, if I wanted to do 10 exercises of 40 secs with a 10 sec break inbetween, I would just set the gymboss and it would beep at me - saving me looking at my watch all the time.  Available from amazon.  I think you can also get a gymboss app on your iphone.

4. You might want a mat if you have hard floors.

That, I would say is your minimum equipment and all you would need to start with.  If you have the space and the inclination to jazz up your workouts with more kit.  I would go with a step and a stability ball.

I have a Reebok Deck which doubles as a step and a bench in one and is a really useful piece of kit which I use with clients and in my own workouts.  I also have a stability ball which adds a bit of variety.

Those are my favourite bits of kit. I hope they have given you some good ideas for Christmas, either for yourself or for the fitness fanatic in your life.  If you are starting from scratch, don't complicate things, go with the minimum equipment, get yourself some nice workout gear and get going.... Good luck!







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