KIN Training debunk myths surrounding HIIT and yoga and provide tips on overcoming your fitness fears.
Persistence. Patience. Strength. Adaptability. Kindness.
If the last three months have taught us anything, it’s certainly recognising the importance of these qualities in ourselves when overcoming uncomfortable and uncertain situations.
What if we could use these skills and qualities to drive our own wellbeing journey and overcome any fears or uncertainty around fitness disciplines?
Teaching people over the years and providing integrated HIIT & Yoga classes has allowed us to listen to people’s hang-ups and often undervaluing of their capabilities. Often people feel like they can only fit into a category – ie. weights kind of guy/gal, the runner, yogi etc. At KIN we have a range of clients who have broken through these stereotypes and seen the benefits of challenging themselves in areas they used to consider perhaps out of their comfort zone.
“I haven’t really had the confidence to do any classes for a few years as you always feel that everyone else knows what they are doing and have been going for years but I haven’t felt that once with Kin Training, I found it very easy to pick it up.” Sharon, 47, KIN at Home attendee
The first stage in change is giving it a go. Be patient, be kind to yourself – nothing happens overnight, no matter what those dieting pill companies tell you!
See below some myths about fitness & yoga and our tips on powering through:
Lucy on the HIIT myth: “I’M TOO UNFIT TO DO HIIT”
Fear of looking like a sweaty mess, or potentially passing out in front of a room of people, are worries I have heard many a time that often put people off even attempting a high intensity session.
The fact is, yes, you may be unfit to your standards, but first try re-framing your mindset around HIIT training by thinking about how you have felt in the past AFTER you have done anything that’s challenged you cardio wise – did you feel like you were happy you did it? Felt the benefits the next day (including struggling to sit on a toilet seat at times)? Felt like you had achieved something? Thinking about the initial after affect feelings often can help put you in the right frame of mind in taking the steps and confidence to try something new.
Secondly, speak to the teacher before on an email or call them and explain your fitness level, be honest ie. how much exercise you have been doing and what, any injuries, and a good teacher will be honest about the level the class is and put you at ease, but also most classes should be beginner/intermediate unless it states otherwise, so there will always be lower impact options.
Thirdly, there’s no shame in taking rests when you first start, it’s expected, and certainly preferred by the teacher (nobody wants to call an ambulance and honesty I have thankfully never had to)! Listening to your body is key, even the fittest people have days where their bodies say ‘stop’! Understanding your MHR (Max heart rate) can also be helpful for those with wearable tech as it always you to know your limits and goals, during HIIT for example you should be aiming for 70-85% of your MHR throughout your 20-30 min session.
“I had never taken a HIIT class before, so wasn’t entirely sure what to expect and I was convinced that I wouldn’t be fit enough to take part / keep up! I think I expected myself to give up (either in class or just stop attending the sessions entirely) however I have come to enjoy doing the sessions and I think I’m seeing small improvements on some exercises. There are some I’ll never master!”, Stacey, 33, KIN at Home attendee
Vic on the yoga myth: “I’M NOT FLEXIBLE ENOUGH”
Not being flexible enough is the top reason I hear why people avoid or become fearful of yoga. The truth is yoga is really for everyBODY – young, old, larger, smaller, with an injury, pregnant, disabled, desk worker, really everybody. There are a myriad of different yoga styles, practices and teachers out there for all body shapes and stages of life. As well as improving flexibility yoga is also about building up strength, improving your posture, changing your energy levels and prioritising your mental health.
The first thing to ask yourself is what do you want out of your time doing yoga? From there you can take a look at the different styles of yoga available and see which one will suit you. It may be a dynamic movement based practice or maybe meditation and relaxation. Possibly combining yoga with another familiar exercise such as HIIT will give you more of a taster and gentle ease into the practice. START SMALL. Try and take a beginners class or an open class where the teacher will be expecting a range of abilities. I have students from all walks of life and fitness levels coming into my classes therefore I plan modified versions of each pose to try and suit every body type.
My biggest advice is try not to worry about what other people think and compare yourself. If the person next to you or side by side on a zoom screen can touch their nose on their shin, don’t think you are inferior if you can’t do the same. Yoga provides a unique space to really LISTEN TO YOUR BODY. Only you know how you feel when you move so move with kindness over force. Rest when you need to and when the teacher offers it.
THE BREATH IS EVERYTHING. Sometimes it really is an effort to remember to breathe! But being aware of our breathing is the key to improving our practice and gaining strength, flexibility and mental clarity. If breathing in and out through your nose feels alien or plain weird then don’t sweat it, breath through your mouth! You will notice that tuning into the breath enables the body to release and open up, allowing you to melt and enjoy your time on the mat.
“I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to ‘keep up’ or do all the exercises and would feel like an idiot. However, it has been absolutely no problem in that respect as during the HIIT and yoga we are always given alternatives of how to do things at our level, and lots of encouragement” – Cassie, 35, KIN at Home attendee
By Lucy and Vic @ Kin Training