TIME TO GET STARTED...

SO WE’VE DEALT WITH YOUR EX­CUSES, BUT HOW EX­ACTLY DO YOU TURN YOUR NEW-FOUND RE­SOLVE INTO AC­TION?

Essentials - - Shape Up -

If you’ve never had an ex­er­cise regime, the best way to make work­ing out a last­ing habit is by in­tro­duc­ing very small changes into your day.

AC­CORD­ING TO DR BJ FOGG, DI­REC­TOR OF

THE PERSUASIVE TECH­NOL­OGY LAB AT STAN­FORD UNIVER­SITY, THE SMALLER, THE BET­TER. ‘IF YOU DON’T MAKE YOUR FIRST BE­HAV­IOUR TINY, YOU WILL AL­MOST CER­TAINLY FAIL,’ HE SAYS. THIS IS BE­CAUSE BIG CHANGES RE­QUIRE MORE WILLPOWER AND ABIL­ITY, SO IF YOU DON’T HAVE EI­THER, YOU’RE SET­TING YOUR­SELF UP TO FAIL.

FOGG IS THE FOUNDER OF TINY HABITS, A FREE ON­LINE PRO­GRAMME HELP­ING PEO­PLE AF­FECT CHANGE IN THEIR LIVES: ‘THE TINY HABITS ETHOS IS AL­WAYS IN THE FORM OF: AF­TER I DO X, I WILL DO Y,’ HE EX­PLAINS. ‘BY ANCHORING YOUR NEW HABIT TO AN EX­IST­ING ONE YOU WILL MAKE THE NEW HABIT MORE REG­U­LAR.’

THIS MEANS THAT BY DO­ING SOME­THING AS SIM­PLE AS ONE PUSH UP AF­TER YOU GET OUT OF BED, EX­ER­CISE WILL START TO FEEL LIKE SEC­OND NA­TURE. HERE ARE OUR TOP TIPS FOR SQUEEZ­ING EX­ER­CISES INTO YOUR DAILY ROU­TINE:

PRE-SHOWER PLANKS IF YOU’RE WAIT­ING FOR THE WA­TER TO HEAT UP, WHY NOT PUT THAT 30 SEC­ONDS TO GOOD USE? HIT THE DECK AND HOLD A PLANK FOR 30 SEC­ONDS, AT FIRST, THEN LONGER. DO THIS

EV­ERY DAY AND YOU’LL BE WELL ON YOUR WAY TO A ROCK-HARD CORE AND TONED TUMMY. Dog jog

Tak­ing your pooch for his daily walks can seem like a chore, but as you're do­ing it any­way, why not make the most of it? Rather than tak­ing a leisurely stroll around the park, help his fit­ness as well as your own by al­ter­nat­ing your pace be­tween a brisk walk and a slight jog. In­tro­duc­ing this kind of in­ter­val ex­er­cise to your daily rou­tine is a speedy route to car­diac health… and slim­mer legs!

TEA-TIME TWISTS

You’ve served the kids their tea and you’re not eat­ing un­til your other half gets home, so what do you do? Well, you can put off the other chores and use the time for a quick abs work­out. Sit cross-legged on the floor and hold your arms in prayer po­si­tion in front of you. Keep­ing hips square and abs tight, breathe out as you ro­tate your up­per body to the right. Re­turn to the mid­dle and re­peat on the other side. Do as many reps as you can be­fore they’ve fin­ished eat­ing.

‘By do­ing some­thing as sim­ple as one push up when you get out of bed, ex­er­cise will start to feel like sec­ond na­ture’

BOIL­ING BURPEES

HOW MANY TIMES A DAY DO YOU MAKE A CUPPA? RATHER THAN WAIT­ING FOR THE WA­TER TO BOIL, USE THOSE EMPTY SEC­ONDS TO DO A QUICK BURPEE. ONCE YOU GET INTO THE HABIT, UP THE NUM­BER. SAY HELLO TO STRONGER ARMS, CHEST, QUADS AND GLUTES IN NO TIME.

Crunch in your car

Stuck at traffic lights? Time to work your abs. Ex­hale all the air from your lungs and use your abs to suck in your stom­ach as if you were try­ing to pull your belly but­ton into your spine. Hold, re­lease and re­peat up to ten times for a toned tum.

ZEN BE­FORE ZZZZZS...

BE­FORE YOU CRASH INTO BED EACH NIGHT, GET INTO THE HABIT OF DO­ING THIS SIM­PLE YOGA POSE TO LET GO OF THE DAY’S STRESSES. STAND UP TALL WITH LEGS TO­GETHER, IN­HALE AND REACH YOUR ARMS STRAIGHT ABOVE YOU. AS YOU EX­HALE, EN­GAGE YOUR ABS AND FOLD FOR­WARD, KEEP­ING YOUR BACK STRAIGHT. TUCK YOUR CHIN IN TO­WARD YOUR CHEST, RE­LAX YOUR SHOUL­DERS, AND

EX­TEND THE CROWN OF YOUR HEAD TO­WARD

THE FLOOR TO CRE­ATE A LONG SPINE. REACH

YOUR HANDS TO­WARDS THE GROUND, AND HOLD

FOR TEN BREATHS. AS YOUR FLEX­I­BIL­ITY IM­PROVES, YOU SHOULD BE ABLE TO LAY YOUR PALMS FLAT ON THE GROUND WITH YOUR LEGS STRAIGHT.

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