11 November 2013

Healthy Self: Swimming

Lazy Girl Guide To Getting Fit: Swimming
All swimming costumes and goggles from Zoggs - shop online at www.zoggs.com

A couple of weeks ago I mentioned on Twitter that I had this idea of doing a series of posts on how to get fit  and keep fit on a budget and if you're a little bit like me - prefer to take easy ways out, especially when it comes to workouts. Although I am naturally slim (god bless fast metabolism) I would like to add some tone and definition to my body because I know it has the potential to be athletic if I just put the work in, and actually I feel really great after a hardcore workout, I just have troubles leaving the couch behind (especially during winter). So every Monday for the next three months I will be gracing you with a fitness related post whether it is an exercise post, a recipe or an accessory!

I'll start with something that everyone can enjoy in any weather without breaking the bank. We can already eliminate one excuse from indulging in this activity and that is weather. Most sport centers will have an indoor swimming pool and a sauna/steam room to enjoy after your workout. We can also push away the excuse of not having any "equipment" as the only things you'll need will be a swimming costume, a towel, a pair of goggles and if you have luscious locks - a swimming cap. Chlorine can damage hair by drying it out, and also turn your beautiful dye job into a rainbow from a horror film if you're a regular swimmer, so just make sure you protect your hair and wash it after a swimming session. You can wear any type of swimwear for a swimming session, but I would advise getting a well fitted swimming costume to avoid any "slips" or other mishaps - there is a great range of swimming costumes from Zoggs where you can find a style that you will like and that suits your body shape.

Anyone can enjoy swimming, from youngsters to the more mature populations and it doesn't matter if you're a beginner at water fitness or a pro swimmer because there's areas for everyone - just please stick to the shallow end if you're not a confident swimmer! I'm not great mainly because I hate putting my head underwater so I do laps but I stick my head up, don't question it - I've worked out how to do it! So just swim how you're comfortable swimming, or join a swimming group for beginners to get skills and confidence. There's a variety  of swimming groups like mother and baby, mature groups, beginners and different ability groups and it's a great way to get social as well as fit!

The NHS says that a 30 minute of moderate to intense swimming activity on 1+ days a week will count towards you recommended weekly activity, as well as having a number of benefits which includes not only getting toned but also general health like reducing the risk of a heart attack, stroke or type 2 diabetes.

Pros +: Swimming is a great way to tone every part of your body. When I do laps, I feel the burn in my stomach, legs and arms which are all parts of my body I want to concentrate on. It's great to do on a budget because a session costs around £3-4 and I am doing 2 sessions a week so that works out to £8, depending on your gym it might be more or less. Weather is not an excuse as most sport  centers will have an indoor swimming pool. It's also enjoyable with friends, a little bit of healthy competition and you can push each other to do better, then relax and have a catch up in the sauna!

Cons - : It can damage you hair unless you gear up with a swimming cap and conditioner, and unless you swimming costume covers the majority of your body you need to get prepped for a swimming session i.e ensure you're not channeling a gorilla before you turn up to the pool. Also, it still costs something so it could be beaten by other, free, activities.

Verdict: There's definitely more pros than cons for this fitness activity and in the winter the fact this activity is not weather dependent is a massive pro! I'll be doing 2 swimming sessions a week, are you guys on board? Did you enjoy my first post of the Lazy Girls Guide To Getting and Staying Fit series?

*This was a kindly sponsored post

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