Before I write a post about my fitness routine, I wanted to talk about where I got all of this inspiration from in the first place. Two years ago, I had probably gone to the gym about twice in my life. The only times I would work out were at home and even then it was very inconsistent. I tried everything – fitness DVDs in the living room with my mum, YouTube workouts in my room on my own, running along the River Thames. I even tried running around the park at university but nothing really worked for me.
I started going to the gym with my mum when I moved out of university. One thing I found was that I really struggle to workout with other people. My mum is such a chatterbox and wanted to talk every ten minutes. Working out for me is completely removing yourself from all of your everyday thoughts, shutting off from the world for an hour or so and just focusing on you. I was doing 30 minutes cardio and moving onto strength training, but I was getting distracted by being with somebody else.
The exercises I would do on the mats were exercises that I had picked up from YouTube videos – mainly FitnessBlender, which I have talked about before and highly recommend. Unfortunately, I don’t think they post that many videos anymore. But the old ones are still there and are still highly effective if you really want to feel the burn in your muscles and not your wallet.
After my mum quit the gym, I started going on my own. It was daunting at first but I realised that this was an opportunity for me to learn more about how to use different machines and to get better at doing different exercises. I started looking for accounts on Instagram to follow that would inspire me to work harder at the gym and teach me different exercises to do while I was there alone.
Following the right fitness influencers is honestly like having a free personal trainer. All of the workouts are ready made for you, you can save them into a Fitness folder on your Instagram like I do and when you’re at the gym, if you’re ever at a loss for exercises to do, then you can refer to them really easily. So below, I’ve listed my absolute favourites to get you started.
Natacha’s fitness levels are unreal. When I think of my fitness goals, I think of Natacha. She works so hard and her endurance levels are sky high. When you watch her videos, you can see her struggling through her reps and really pushing through and I find that so inspiring. Great for really tough workouts that will improve your overall strength and build muscle. She’s always challenging herself so her page offers lots of different exercises and circuits, as well as fitness tests and clean eating tips!
For targeted workouts, particularly abs, glutes and leg workouts, Danielle is my absolute favourite. Her workouts are really simple but very effective and she makes use of a lot of different equipment – dumbbells, ankle weights, barbells and lots of different machines. Which makes her workouts perfect for exercising at home, at the gym or both.
Maddie’s workouts are so hard. But they’re great for taking your fitness to the next level. Whenever I’m getting bored of a routine or I feel like I’ve learned to do certain exercises really well, I head over to Maddie’s YouTube channel or Instagram and I have to really push through the workout. Which is great because as soon as you get comfortable with an exercise, you need to make it harder so that you’re constantly pushing your body to its limits.
The above accounts are ones that I visit time and time again. I used to follow a lot of Gymshark models. Although I respect their work as influencers and appreciate that there is a market for their workouts, I eventually found their accounts to be too heavily focused on getting that one Gymshark body – tiny waist and a big bum. All of their workouts would be focused on glutes and legs. There is definitely a huge market for that, there is no denying that. But, I wanted to follow pages that challenge your body overall. Pages that don’t just make money off promoting Gymshark leggings and taking photos of their bum. Sorry!
I hope that doesn’t sound horrible because these girls all have great bodies and they have built up really loyal fan bases. But I think that working out is more of an overall fitness goal for me, rather than striving to achieve this Instagram fitness model body.
If you’re looking for genuine workouts to get you started exercising at home or at the gym, then definitely check out these girls’ pages. I can hand on heart say that I do most of their workouts and that they constantly encourage me to challenge my body in new ways. If that’s something that you thrive on too then I’m sure you will like them as much as I do!