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This Girl Can celebrates the women who are doing their thing no matter how they do it, how they look or even how sweaty they get. They’re here to inspire us to wiggle, jiggle, move and prove that judgement is a barrier that can be overcome.”

I struggle with my self-confidence. I am definitely one of those people who publicly declares that “I don’t care what other people think” and laughs off the thought of criticism, but I am genuinely paranoid of criticism and being laughed at.

When an advert includes Missy Elliot’s ‘Get Ur Freak On’ is can only be good, right? In all seriousness I am hugely in favour of Sport England’s This Girl Can campaign. If you haven’t seen the TV advert or any of the posters up around the country I urge you to watch the video above!

It is encouraging and refreshing to see real women just going for it and enjoying their exercise without fear of judgement. As pointed out in THIS article “2 million fewer women are regularly participating in sport or exercise than men, despite 75 per cent of women aged 14 to 40 saying they’d like to do more.”

The advert isn’t supposed to ‘look good’ it is about being real. You can exercise and feel good no matter your size, age, or how much cellulite you have. A huge part of this is fear of what others might think or say, and of feeling like you’re not good enough. I completely relate to this mentality.

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I was originally going to have an opinion piece on this advert and topic as whole, but the comments on the aforementioned article just upset me to be honest. It’s like when I used to go to the gym and saw people openly staring at/laughing at overweight men and women who were exercising. At least they were doing something about it – why berate them for trying, and possibly putting them off ever returning?

At the end of the day you should do whatever works for you. If that is going to the gym for an hour after work, doing exercise in your bedroom, or going for a walk around the block. Just go for it. In the wise words of Kevin G:

Mean Girls quotes aside, and before I get side-tracked, I am going to discuss my own personal fitness ‘regime’ for lack of a better word. Prior to this week my exercise was pretty much non-existent – I walk a lot, but I don’t do much else and haven’t been to a gym in over six months. However that is starting to change. I have put my yoga mat to use already, and even my cat joined in by warming it up for me (she also likes to walk around me as I am exercising and throw me some judgmental looks – typical cat!)

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After a quick Google search I found a couple of amazing YouTubers who were highly recommended by many. As my Doctor suggested Yoga and Pilates that is what I was focused on and came across Blogilates. She has an amazing free app for your phone/tablet which has recipe ideas and workouts on it so you can keep track wherever you are. There is also the Beginners Calendar 2.0 which you can print out, and I started this today. It pushes you, but that is what you need – I thought it was great.
I have also discovered Yoga with Adriene. I have been doing her Yoga For Complete Beginners and when I have fully mastered this I will start her 30 Days of Yoga. Not only does it work out your body but it is incredibly relaxing.
Because of the constant pain my body is in at the moment exercising does hurt more than it should, and I don’t want to push myself too hard. But damn the two YouTubers mentioned above have some good videos.

Looking to the future there’s a reasonably priced 24 hours gym about a 15 minute walk from my house which I am hoping to join soon. But I’ll see how well disciplined I am from home first before I commit! I also purchased a dumbbell tree from Argos yesterday which was only £20, and has already been used by everyone in the house, so I am hoping to incorporate this into my future exercise plans.

Fortunately my family and friends have all been super supportive of my lifestyle change. They know how seriously I am about sorting out all aspects of my life and they have let me get on with it, and offered help where they can (if anything, it has reminded me of how terrible I am at cooking – oops). For the past couple of days I have actually been test driving a short-term diet which I will tell you all more about next Tuesday! Also next week I will hopefully have some recipe ideas – but if you know of any good places to start looking for them then please let me know.

xx

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