I was recently thinking about how the news of Pope Benedict’s resignation was received by the world.  It was a surprise to many and questions hung in the air either spoken or otherwise.  Even the most secular amongst us found ourselves discussing it and wondering about the ‘why and what’ of the situation.

It made me think about how news and messages are communicated, whether it be this high profile resignation or the message he has spent his life delivering.  Everyone has a message they think is important and how that is expressed can affect the way people decide to embrace it.

I think we can safely say that as OF’ers, we are evangelistically fervent when it comes to telling others about our classes.  We don’t really understand why you would not want to be a part of it.  I know many a person who has turned up because they have been made to feel that they are truly missing out on something....which of course they are!  It is a testament to the work Graham and Mark do to make sure that not only do we all get a varied and demanding workout, but that we all feel part of a team, a social gathering...we might whinge about the wind and the rain; we may compare strains and scrapes like war wounds (when really they are badges of honour).   However, we all know that the classes are a huge part of our lives and we get a wee bit jittery when we can’t make it.  I think we also know that the benefits transcend the improving fitness levels and the increased mileage.  Deep down it is about leaving the house with a stress headache and a frown...then getting home an hour later with sore legs, wheezy lungs, a muddy face and a whole new and positive attitude to what lies ahead. 

Amen to that!

So, welcome to 2013 and the first blog of the New(ish) Year.  Hopefully you are all adapting to being back at classes following festive indulgence.  

I know that if there is one thing that bugs our Graham about the New Year, it is the empty promises and the unrealistic expectations dished out by the ‘diet’ industry to those of us who want to get fit and lose a bit of weight.  Remember folks, getting fit is not about eating only grapefruit for 2 weeks.  Getting healthy is not about missing out major food groups or blending everything you eat into a mucky pulp.  It is no mystery.....eat healthy food and come to class!  No, it may not always be easy and yes, you will sweat a bit and get a bit out of puff.  I can however, guarantee that rather than feeling deprived, grumpy and hungry, you will have fun, make friends and feel great.  

I am certainly feeling the benefit of a couple of classes combined with a once a week Personal Training session to concentrate on strength work.  The difference has been amazing and the one-to-one classes ensure that the tailor made workouts are specific to my recent injury problems and adapted to my own personal strengths and weaknesses.  Personal Training is definitely something to consider if anyone wants to concentrate on a certain discipline or if the times of OF do not always suit your routine.  It is also worth remembering that PT lessons can also be given as a gift to someone who fancies increasing their exercise levels but are perhaps not quite ready to take the leap into the deep end of the OF pool.  Remember this when you are huffing and puffing around the park tonight....uttering the occasional sweary word at Graham and Mark.....the wind and the rain.....the mud in your hair....the sweat in your eyes....think of that experience in a gift voucher for the one you love...Happy Valentine’s Day! :-)