ad – this post contains gifted pr products but all thoughts are my own
In December, I decided to start a new fitness program and I’ve absolutely loved it ever since. I’ve always loved sport and exercise but a combination of anxiety disorder and just generally getting a bit lazy changed how much exercise and movement I was doing for some time. Last year I made that positive change by hiring someone – who knows what they’re talking about – to help me get fitter and healthier again.
And right now, I do feel the fittest and strongest I’ve felt in some time and it feels amazing. There’s still loads I have yet to work on but the fun thing about fitness and exercise is that it’s a continuous process. There’s always something new to learn, discover about yourself or goal to hit.
My fitness coach has created HIIT workouts specifically designed for me to do each week, which are great and really challenge me (and also leave me wanting to kill her on occasion, too!) But she also encourages me to think about movement further than just following those workouts like a robot.
It’s because of this healthy lifestyle based approach to her program that I’ve seriously fallen in love (or back in love) with 3 additional exercises and activities that are bringing so much value to my life, my health and my fitness right now. These activities I don’t think of as exercise because I enjoy them so much.
Here are the 3 activities that have completely transformed my physical well-being this year, with a little help from adidas!
The first activity is swimming. I hadn’t been swimming in perhaps a decade before October 2021. Swimming was never something I was very good at. I’d never been a particularly strong swimmer. BUT I’ve always loved being in the water. So I thought maybe I could try swimming. I knew it was great exercise and there’s no harm in trying.
That first session had me absolutely hooked. I fell in love with swimming from the instant I submerged myself in the pool. During that first lane swim session I did, I could only manage 14 lengths and I found in EXCEPTIONALLY difficult. I was very slow. I was constantly worn out. But I kept at it.
Now, I can comfortably manage 40 lengths in the pool and rarely feel worn out during my swims. I enjoy breaststroke and backstroke and as well as knowing I’m getting an amazing workout for my body, being in the pool is also a time that’s really beneficial for my mental health too. The water really does ground and calm me.
I took this opportunity of working with adidas to get myself some really great high quality swimwear. My current costume is okay but it has a really elaborate criss cross tie-back which is pretty but not convenient when you’re swimming for exercise! So my first pick was the Tape Swimsuit in black.
I really love this suit – it’s so comfortable and fits perfectly. It also doesn’t ride up your bum, which is a HUGE win for me because I find that so annoying haha! I love the thick straps and how close and comfortable they are to the skin, without leaving dig marks at all. My second swimming pick were the Adilette Comfort Mickey Mouse Slides.
I am absolutely IN LOVE with these! I will wear them to and from swimming as well as around the changing room in replace of my current flip flops but I know I’ll get a lot of use out of these in the Summer and just around the house, too. Obsessed.
Yoga is something I’ve been talking about on this blog for years but there’s ALWAYS periods of time where I fall slightly out of love with it. Well, not out of love as such. But periods where I don’t give it the attention it deserves or practice as often as I should – sometimes down to laziness and just not prioritizing it.
But I know I should. I know I feel amazing EVERY SINGLE TIME I step on the mat. I know the remarkable physical benefits and mental benefits that Yoga gives me. Sometimes it just takes a little outside push to get me back on the mat, to remind me of how wonderful it is.
This fitness program with Lauren definitely made me do that. I wasn’t practicing Yoga nowhere near as much as I should have. But now I can barely go a day without it. I’ve even signed up to the Yoga With Adriene Find What Feels Good Membership for even more Yoga content!
My next two picks are perfect for Yoga (and general workouts). These aren’t a set but they go great together anyway. Starting with the Don’t Rest Alphaskin Bra, this sports bra is proper comfy. I don’t have big boobs, so I’m lucky in that I’ve never had much of a problem with sports bras but even I’m finding this more comfortable to work out in!
It’s breathable and fits mega close to the skin. I’d likely wear this under a lot of clothes, too! Next is the FORMOTION Sculpt Two-Tone Tights. Now these are something else. Initially I thought I’d ordered a size too small. It was QUITE a bit of effort to get these on. BUT once they were on, good grief, it was just like wearing a layer of skin (as gross as that sounds).
I’ve never known my wobbly bits to be SO STILL in my life. These leggings really do hold everything more still than you’ll have ever seen before. I love the pattern of these leggings and they are so damn flattering. I never want to take them off. adidas do such a great range of women’s clothing!
And finally, walking. Now walking isn’t a new activity to me, obviously. But I’ve never been a huge fan of walking. If I was ever going anywhere for the day, like to the zoo or to a race track, I would always dread the prospect of having to walk everywhere all day long. Ugh I hated it.
But again, this is something else I’ve learned to love over the last few yeas and in particular whilst doing this exercise program. I started going for daily walks during the pandemic (like most people) and found it so beneficial for my mental health. However I wasn’t getting a particularly large amount of steps in.
We’re now focusing on getting my steps up for the day and I’ve started to REALLY enjoy going for longer walks – particularly on my own. I basically walk everywhere now! I’ll walk around town, home from town, around the park a few times, to Tesco – anywhere I have the chance to walk to, I will.
Introducing more movement into my days and weeks has had such a huge physical and mental health benefit for me. I love the variety of movement I get into my weeks now as well, it definitely prevents me getting more with the same exercises as it allows me to switch it up depending on how I feel!
This is great to read! I love the positivity in this post. I’ve enjoyed doing yoga and hiking for the past couple of years, even though I may not at the moment do it on a regular basis. I still try to do it when I can, and I’ve noticed getting a few clothes or useful tools really help me feel more motivated. I hope you enjoy swimming! Keep it up!
Yes great to hear that!
Its great that you are seeing the benefits. I’ve just started swimming again too and am loving it.
Thank you 🙂 I just adore swimming right now x
I love swimming but I couldn’t be regular with it since the pandemic. I’m glad you found a fitness routine that works well for you. The swimsuit looks great!
I only started when the pandemic was dying down x
I do miss going swimming, I walk a lot though, always strive to get to those 10,000 steps a day, even if I have to walk round in circles to hit the target x
God I wish I could do 10k a day that’s amazing!
Great post! I was actually just getting back into swimming in 2019 and early 2020 before Covid but then it went to bookings and the times just didn’t work with my schedule – plus mainly were booked because I am assuming everyone wanted those times! But I agree that first swim was hard, I got in the pool like yeah this will be fine but I was worn out so much more than I thought! I definitely need to get back into it. Also I try to walk every day and that is so helpful to me too xx
Hahah yes that first swim was outrageous. I was swimming for 10 minutes and was like “wow I need to stops” haha. Swimming gets booked up so quick at my gym too x
I’ve just gotten back into walking, such a simple yet satisfying way of getting into a healthy habit! I am after some great leggings, so definitely need to check Adidas out!
Absolutely! These leggings are amazing and so comfortable x
As silly as it sounds I really need to get back into walking more. I used to make an effort to go out on a walk most days after work and it made me feel so much better. I’ve definitely got no excuse now the evenings are getting lighter too. It’s definitely something I need to get back on with. I love the Mickey Mouse sliders too!
I think it’s a lot easier to exercise when you have more hours of day light to do so! I can’t wait to go for evening walks x
Good for you for meeting this goal and working with a fitness coach. From what you describe it sounds like it is really helping. And LOVE that suit. Also just want to say you space looks like it probably really cool.
Thank you! It’s definitely helping 🙂 x
I love swimming! I would love to do it more often. I take Leo swimming lessons once a week but that’s more holding him, than me actually swimming. I LOVE that costume. Adidas is a great brand, I have lots of items from them.
Haha Awh bless! I often see the kids swim sessions when I go, it’s so cute!
Wait what. 14 lengths on your first try of swimming! I don’t know why but when it comes to swimming, I might as well be swimming in treacle, because that’s how it feels, and I’m usually exhausted after a couple of lengths.
Anyway great pics too. Looking great!
Haha oh no! Tbf that’s how I felt when I first went, I felt like I wasn’t really moving anywhere. My mum was the same when she came for the first time a few weeks ago but each time she’s got better and better.
One thing I need to get back into is swimming, I love it and it’s so good for my lungs! Also you look great in these photo’s Jenny, I love the leggings and the swimming costume! x
Lucy | http://www.lucymary.co.uk
Yes amazing reason to start swimming again!
I also love being in the water, although I’m not a great swimmer. It’s such wonderful exercise as it works out your entire body! I’d love to spend some time this summer getting back into it. Great post, thanks for sharing!
I know it’s amazing isn’t it! I was never a strong swimming, still aren’t really but I just love it so much!
You look wonderful! It is important to wear things that make us feel good about ourselves…I like to swim, but I only swim in the summer. I would like to swim year-round if I could. Walking is wonderful, especially if you are out in nature. And, yoga, at any level, is good for everyone! Great post! Very inspiring!
Thank you so much Linda!
These are honestly all my favourites too. I love listening to music when walking, I love the peace and pace of yoga and I love the consistency of swimming. You just swim up and down, doing laps and no one bothers you or wants to talk to you. It’s great.
Yes absolutely! That’s a great reason why I love swimming too, completely in my own world!
I love, love, love that this is about how mentally beneficial you’re finding rather than just physical changes. Amazing to hear you’ve been doing well with your trainer too. And I think it’s incredible that you decided to swim even though you thought you weren’t great at it because you loved the water. I’m sure everyone would have a healthier attitude if they picked their workouts of choice that way and saw it as a window to improve rather than something to fail at. The pieces you’re wearing all look fabulous too! x
Thanks so much! Yes absolutely, I’ve found amazing benefits from swimming, not only physical!
This is SUCH a positive post to read, Jenny. I’m so thrilled for you that you’ve found some activities that work for you and that you enjoy too. I have to be honest, I’m not a fan of exercise, I’m inherently lazy, but I’ve been looking at trying to incorporate more walking into my day to day life – anything for a break from sitting in front of a laptop all day! Also, those sliders are FAB, so much better than flip flops 🙂 xx
Thank you Lisa! If you’re not a fan of exercise then it’s even more important to do things that you like! Walking is such a great thing to do 🙂 xx
Great job getting yourself on a fitness plan that you like and are sticking with! I am more in the ‘talk about it’ stage. I need to get to the ‘be about it.’ stage. Personally, I have always wanted to be one of those people who does yoga. There’s no reason why I can’t, I just feel a little self-conscious. I am definitely going to be incorporating more walking into my life. I’m at a point where I need to do it for myself and to be a positive example of well-being for my daughter. Thank you for sharing your journey and getting me to think about mine.
~ Cassie | letsgrowmom.com
There’s absolutely no need to feel self conscious! Try yoga at home. I do at home Yoga, I taught myself from YouTube – was the best thing I’ve ever done!
You are doing so well; it’s brilliant to read that you’ve found things you enjoy and get a lot out of. I’m in the process of discovering this for myself; this was very encouraging to read!
Thank you and so glad you found this an encouraging read!
The Mickey Mouse slides are so cool! I walk or do gardening for exercise, though haven’t gone walking as much recently as what I was in 2020. x
I know, I love them a lot! I want to do more gardening this year, for exercise and mental health!
Great post! It’s amazing what a difference physical activity makes for everything, including mental health. These are such great tips thanks for sharing! 🙂
Absolutely- I think the mental benefits outweigh the physical sometimes!
I love swimming and used to go every weekend to swim. I would love to get back aand do it again.
Hope you go back soon!
These are good and healthy physical activities. I’m now starting to enjoy walking. I need to be doing yoga and some kickboxing as well.
Ooh I’d love to try kickboxing!
You look absolutely amazing! I love that you’ve found something that works for you and your enjoying it. Before I became wheelchair bound, I use to love sport, especially swimming. I use to swim for hours – I love how relaxing and enjoyable it is. Thank you so much for sharing this with us lovely Xo
Elle – ellegracedeveson.com
Thanks lovely 🙂 swimming is great xxx
Walking is such an underrated activity, it can be great for your mental health too. I would love to get into swimming as well.
Absolutely so many physical and mental benefits!
I’ve taken up running and I absolutely love it. Having started with the Couch to 5k and building up slowly I find I can go longer each time & not feel so out of breath. I’m even training for 2 half marathons! 😱 LOL!🏃🏻♀️
I also like swimming but rdont go as often as I’d like to, perhaps I’ll pick it back up once the sunnier weather finally gets here! 😂🏊
That’s great! I absolutely hate running but I did it but it just wasn’t for me! Hope you can start up swimming again soon xx
Firstly, can I just say you’re looking absolutely fabulous, and I adore those leggings!
I loved this post. I’m currently 39 weeks and 3 days pregnant so I’m not doing much in the way of fitness at the moment and it’s something I’m really missing as I was previously an avid walker and would do at least 10-15k steps a day so I’m itching to get back to it.
You’re doing amazing with the swimming! That’s something I haven’t done since I was younger that I would love to get back to, especially to take the wee one with me when he’s here, I’d love to be able to do 40 lengths! You’re killing it girl!!
Loving all of your blog posts as of late. It’s always a joy hopping on to your blog for a read!
Thanks lovely! 10-15k steps a day is INSANE! How do you do that? That’ll be so lovely to take the little one swimming xxx