My anxiety isn’t the type that can be got rid of by pounding the streets in my (non-existent) running trainers. Getting outside and keeping active helps, but I prefer much gentler and relaxing forms of fitness. When Simply Beach wanted to work with me and get me to share my love of swimming, I thought I’d put together a little post with all my favourite chilled exercise choices – options that benefit my mind as well as my body.
This is a sponsored post with Simply Beach, but all opinions are my own.
Swimming is my favourite form of exercise. If I can do it outdoors or in the actual sea, even better. I love sunny pool and beach holidays as I love the comfort of the water. Swimming is one of the best forms of exercise out there, as you are working so many muscles against the pressure of the water, but the water absorbs the shock, so it doesn’t feel as strenuous. Blue is a comforting colour for me, so I love to head into the cool blue waves at the beach when I’m on holiday. At home, you can carry on swimming by finding a good health club or spa that’s close to you. Simply Beach* have a huge range of swimsuits to suit everyone – including an extensive plus-size section with stylish, chic designs.
Walking is the best form of exercise they always say! Not only is it gentle and keeps you fit, but it’s a great reason to get outside and clear the cobwebs away! Use it as time to think, or time to people watch and escape from thinking. I love to listen to podcasts on walks as they keep me company and I find it stops me getting bored.
I’m not going to put yoga in this post (who can actually DO yoga?), but a cousin of yoga is pilates and it’s all about holding easier positions with the strength of your core. You’ll really feel the burn there at the top of your stomach, but the meditation time-out at the end will ground you again and ease away tension. After a Pilates session you feel so relaxed (and a bit sore), but you’ve really worked your muscles is a disguised way, so you’ll sleep like a baby at night.
Animals are beautiful creatures who deserve just as much love and respect that we give humans. There is nothing more comforting – except the arms of your partner – than holding an animal close and feeling its heart beat. It depends on you and you depend on it. It’s grounding and humbling, and it helps you to put life into perspective. Horse-riding is a great activity to try, as you are putting your trust in the horse that it will keep you where you’re meant to be (on the saddle) and take you where you want to go. It gives you time to think on your own, and having that animal so close to your own body is very comforting.
Let’s be real here – I purchased my walking boots and heavy duty socks when I went back to the TV & film industry last year, as nobody wants to be on location on a film set, or at a muddy Unit Base in anything even remotely less sturdy. It’s part of the uniform! However, since I had them, I have actually used them for their true purpose – climbing (strolling) up some rocky hills and Bens (it’s Scottish for a big hill). Walking is some of the best exercise you can get, and if you take things easy, a hill climb can be a great opportunity for deep conversation with a friend, or silent reflection on your own. Nothing beats the view you get from the top over life below you – it reminds you how little you really are, and how there are so many bigger things going on than what you are worrying about.
You can see more of what i’m loving, and what i’m doing, over on my Instagram.