Healthy New Year!

Welcome back and Healthy New Year (Happy New Year doesn’t feel quite appropriate particularly as a number of our families have reported having Covid-19 over Christmas.)

Learning restarts on Monday and we need to have our laptops, iPads, phones etc. all charged up and ready to go, with pen and paper to hand and we will need out calculators this term as we get to grips with integers.

Lots of us start January with a view to changing some aspect of our behaviour. Losing weight or getting fitter is often on the list but while choosing exercise is a popular choice, sticking to it can be another matter. So, what can you do to increase the chance of your resolution making it past February 1?

Whatever your age, going from sitting on your sofa to the full 5K run is a bit tricky if you have been eating chocolate, and Christmas goodies whist watching the great collection of films over the holidays. Goal setting helps motivation, but an unreachable target can have the opposite effect, so be realistic.

If you're new or returning to home schooling and exercise on your own, start small and build from there. Set weekly or even daily goals if you have to, and once you've hit your initial target increase it from there

It sounds obvious but if you're choosing an activity that you know will always be a chore, the likelihood of it becoming a new habit is low. Therefore, choose something you enjoy doing. That's not to say that your goal will be easy to accomplish – determination plays a big part.

Undertaking a new activity may leave you feeling a little sore the next day, but that's perfectly normal and this will disappear as your body (and your mind) gets used to the idea. The upsides are that you're likely to feel happier and may even sleep better thanks to the exercise.

Writing down a resolution in your evidence diary makes it more likely to be accomplished, it will also record your efforts but one thing that's guaranteed to help most people stick to a new activity is doing it alongside others.

This term with us all now in Tier 4 that doesn't mean physically mixing with study buddies. Live exercise sessions online can help you feel part of a group, while roping in your family to follow a video on YouTube will mean you're less likely to back out.

You can also get support from others with the same goal if you decide to give free 9-week programmes like our 5K training or you could start your cycling training now for the Charity Bike Ride.

Not got time to commit to exercise, why not?

Speak to me and give me a really good reason why you are not being active. Sitting for long periods is one of the biggest contributors to ill health and depression. I know that some of you are feeling the new restrictions and the constant changes in the rules coming out from the government are very confusing and making you very anxious. Talk to me and we can work it out. If you do nothing else, commit to trying to get up from your sofa every time ads appear on the TV, or once every 30/45 minutes as you are learning.

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