Rowing in Killarney last summer - today, finding enjoyable activities is more challenging
Having being diagnosed with Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis three years ago, it can sometimes be a struggle to rustle up the energy and motivation to exercise. The condition also makes weight management almost impossible, so I really can't lose momentum if I'm to maintain any kind of control over the condition.
It is therefore vitally important to me to have an exercise routine and to follow it. This is not a chore. I am lucky enough to have found activities that I love, and the buzz and renewed energy makes it all worthwhile.
My absolute top activity is dragon boating with Donegal Dragons. We would normally have started into our new season by now, training three evenings a week on Donegal Bay, catching up with clubmates and introducing new members to this sport and social activity which we love so much. One of my favourite things about dragon boating is that it is open to all ages and abilities, with up to 22 people on the boat all working together and supporting each other.
I love the physical aspect of dragon boating but getting out on the water is very special too. Even entering into my fifth season, it still feels like an absolute privilege every single time.
Another activity I really enjoy is strength training with a personal trainer. This helps reduce injury in other activities, but what I like most is seeing my progress and finishing every session feeling stronger, fitter and with a great sense of accomplishment.
I try to top this up with a few gym sessions a week, popping in before work when I can.
So with all of this not available right now, I am in danger of vegetating! I try to get out for a walk and or get on a rowing machine when I can, but it is an awful lot harder to get motivated when the normal structures have disappeared.
There are plenty of activities being led online for anyone who likes a bit of guidance.
Body coach Joe Wicks free online PE sessions are proving a huge hit with people of ages.
Closer to home, Physio Eireann have uploaded a series of 30-minute Pilates sessions to YouTube. Sessions start at Level One, so are suitable for most people.
There are also countless free apps for people looking to exercise at home.
The only challenge is working them into a new routine, but we will all feel better for it in the long run.
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