4 ways to hit your fitness goals without working up a sweat
What if we told you you could be stronger, better at running or have more stamina for skiing, without setting foot in a gym? Here’s how
If you’re anything like me, you might have had some fitness based New Year’s resolutions. Mine are to close the exercise rings on my Apple Watch every day (so far so good) and to finally run a 10 KM (proving more difficult!).
To help me reach my running goal, I’ve been hitting the gym hard to up my stamina (spin classes are my new BFF) and I’ve been pounding the pavements, adding extra bits onto my five KM route to get me up to 10 KM eventually. But a chat with Marlborough and Devizes based movement experts the Hatt Clinic made me rethink my regime.
While of course a basic level of cardio fitness is essential for running, there’s so much more to hitting my 10 KM goal, as the Hatt Clinic explained. In their intimate studios they offer everything from physio to gait analysis and I realised that the clinic’s offerings are surefire ways to help me hit my fitness goals, without needing to set foot in the gym.
1. To improve your running: Have your gait analysed
Anyone who’s bought running trainers from a specialist shop is likely to have run on a treadmill in store to analyse their gait. This is because your gait (how you walk) is key to walking and running comfortably.
Your gait could be responsible for shin splints and back pain during and after running or long walks. Gait analysis looks at how you stand, walk and run to identify what could be causing the issue and helping to eliminate the issue to get you back up and running, so to speak.
2. To get better at yoga: try manual therapy
A bit like sports massage, manual therapy addresses muscle tension or stiffness. It’s more active than a massage at the spa, in that you might be sitting up rather than lying on a bed, but it’s still a relaxing treatment.
Manual therapy helps to improve flexibility and posture and helps relieve muscle tension and tightness. If you’ve taken up yoga, manual therapy will help you contort into those pretzel shapes thanks to the boost in flexibility, but it also helps you to recover faster from injury if you’ve hurt yourself but you’re raring to get back to exercise.
3. To tone up: try strength and movement classes
If you want to feel stronger and have more defined muscles, but the idea of doing burpees while a militant instructor shouts at you or spending hours in a barre don’t appeal, strength and movement classes could be for you.
They help you gain the strength you need to reach your goals, be they skiing for three hours straight without getting tired, or simply recovering from an injury that left you struggling for breath on a short walk.
4. To help you recover from injury: try Rehab
Rehab is a gentle exercise session designed to help build up your strength and stability, plus correct any movement patterns that might have caused your injury in the first place and ensure it doesn’t happen again.
In rehab sessions you’ll spend time concentrating on your balance and posture, so your instructor can see where you’re strong or weak and help you to build strength in those areas.
You’re unlikely to get out of breath in these classes, but you will see a big difference in your performance. It’s a long game, with most people having six weeks or rehab, but you’ll reap the rewards in the long run.
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