Marketing & Communications Officer
Date: 19 July 2021 Author: Energise Me
People often think that because we promote active lifestyles we must all be super sporty. The truth is, we struggle to be active sometimes too.
We love to share stories of local people finding joy in being active in the hopes of inspiring others. Over the past year, your stories have helped us keep moving. So, we wanted to say a big thank you to all our local storytellers who’ve energised us.
I’ve tried lots of exercise classes – before the pandemic, and during – and I love to know a little bit about the teacher or instructor beforehand. It makes me feel more comfortable, and confident. Reading the blogs with Ros and Jocelyn helped me feel at ease.
They both welcomed me into their classes, and we communicated by email beforehand so I could let them know if I had any illness or injury. I love trying new classes – the gentle Tai Chi was a great relaxer, and the midday yoga class a good reminder to step away from the computer and stretch!”
I have always struggled in the cold and I suffer from Raynauds Syndrome which means the cold affects my circulation which can be very painful. Due to this I never swim in the sea in this country (even with a wet suit).
After having the pleasure of meeting Debbie, who suffers from the same but is an open sea swimmer, I started to think maybe I could give it a go. Armed with lots of advice from Debbie to help with my circulation, such as beetroot and ginger smoothies, and what equipment would help, such as neoprene gloves, boots and a woolly hat (even in summer) I started to look for opportunities to go.
Unfortunately due to lockdowns, juggling work/homeschooling, bad winter weather, opportunities were not easy. However one late Spring family visit to our favourite south coast beach, I decided to join my kids in the sea – just in a swimsuit. It took me ages to get in, but once in it was lovely. Afterwards, it took 20 minutes for my hands and feet to come back to life. But this didn’t stop me and I got in 2 more times – the last being for 20 minutes.
Whenever we go to the coast, which is luckily quite often, all my swim gear comes with us so I can grab those opportunities. I have also joined the Winchester Blue Tits and 2 local open water swim groups.
Thanks to Debbie for showing me it can be done and for all the great tips and advice.
I have been inspired to be active by both Chris and Debbie. Both of them inspired me to challenge myself more. Debbie told me to always have a challenge or goal to help motivate you and keep things fun. She said to always have your next thing planned so that you stay interested. This made sense to me.
Since then I have tried to take part in lots of different active challenges. I started by taking part in Red January, simply trying to be active every day in January. It was more difficult than I expected, but I loved the feeling I got for completing the challenge. Next, I took on 27 in 27 running challenge for Mind. Running has always been a massive fear of mine, but I managed it! Currently, I have just completed a 14-day lower body challenge.
Completing challenges, however big or small has shown me I am capable of doing so much more than I realised. Choosing challenges that are completely different has helped me stay interested in being active.
Chris says that you have to get comfortable being uncomfortable. His mindset has inspired me to try new activities that I would normally be a little bit scared of. On a recent holiday to Wales, I tried segwaying, hiking and also went on a giant swing! Chris’ words also inspired me beyond activity. I have tried to incorporate them in everyday life and at work.
Every now and then I try to like running. Not that long ago, I thought I’d finally cracked it. Sundays were run days and, for once, I wasn’t hating it. Then life threw a couple of giant hurdles in the way and, without intending to, I just stopped running.
Sophie’s unexpected path from couch to 5k felt very familiar to me. She reminded me of the great feeling that comes after a run. After reading her blog, a thought crept into my head that I hadn’t had for a while… ‘maybe I should go for a run’. It took me several days to warm myself up to the idea, but I dusted off my trainers and went for it. The smug feeling when I finished was everything Sophie described.
Next time I’m struggling, I’d like to think I could just remind myself of that feeling. But I know it will probably take someone else describing it to get me to listen!
Thank you to all the inspiring people who are sharing how they’re being active and keeping it real. We’d love to hear who inspires you and take in your active story.