Tuesday, 3 January 2012

New Years' Resolution?

Cycling in the Cotswold Hills - where miles often drift by unnoticed
Are you wanting to start getting fit?  Are you saying "I want to lose weight", "I want to start running or start cycling" or maybe "Shall I join a fitness club or join a gym?".  Traditionally this is the time of year when many people make all kinds of resolutions and for many it is a time of needing to economise. It got me thinking and here's some options.....

A fantastic way of getting into good shape but you might need to be patient.  Besides being good for your fitness, it is said regular cyclists tend to live longer and be more laid back and easy going.  Also a good form of transport  instead of driving everywhere and using petrol at £1.30 a litre.  You could go on a cycle holiday, perhaps with the CTC.It's also about making a statement.

You might already have a bike in your garage but consider something newer.  If your existing bike is a cheap MTB (heap of junk probably), the chances are you find it hard work and heavy going.  It probably doesn't fit you very well which you realise your knees are complaining because you can't stretch your legs out far enough.  Consider something newer and lighter to inspire you to cycle more than you have ever done so as as adult.

There are some clubs out there which I think tend to be a bit male and race orientated but not completely so.

Out of all the activities here, it is the most expensive but a good bike is an investment.  Be aware some people get addicted to the bikes, rather than the joy of cycling.  Be warned, there are so many gadgets, accessories, tools and clothing for all eventualities.  Allow £1200 to get going (estimate) see below.

In my view the purest of sporting activities and one that allows for different disciplines such as long distance, round the block jog, 10k races, fun runs etc.  Probably the most cost effective way of improving fitness and losing weight.  You can run outside or  inside on a treadmill.  Then there's the Runner's High!

Having bought Runner's World magazine a few times, I never cease to be amazed at how involved the sport can be and this makes it all the more fascinating.  Allow £200 to get you running in style

Fitness Clubs
A civilised way of getting into great shape in a social-able manner, no matter what the weather is.  Some may offer classes which could be fun, others might offer personal trainers to give you some targets and expert advice.  Can be expensive but great for posing; convenient for many urban dwellers.  Perhaps around £400 a year, more if buying new clothes and shoes.

Possible costs:

£800 Bike (hybrid or Road)
£80 Lights
£40 pedals
£15 lock
£30 bag
£40 pump, ordinary and track type
£25 mudguards
£60 shoes
£100 other clothing
£10 spares, tools etc.
£1200 Total

£80 running shoes (most importantly have a gait analysis done)
£25 shorts
£20 socks x2 pairs
£15 vest
£50 tops (technical fabric type).
£10 hat/gloves
£200 Total


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