Taking the first steps into fitness can sometimes be quite daunting, particularly if gyms, classes and organised sports hall activities are alien concepts!  For some people, they pick up their 150 active minutes a week from a physical job, or walking the dog, while for others, they don’t ever quite get round to making them happen…

A study carried out by a collaboration of international academic researchers on behalf of the Lancet Physical Activity Series Working Group stated that strong evidence shows physical inactivity increases the risk of many major health problems including coronary heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, type 2 diabetes, breast and colon cancer and depression.

The researchers estimated that if inactivity could be reduced by 10%, 533,000 deaths worldwide could be averted each year. If inactivity was reduced by 25% the estimate was that more than 1.3 million deaths could be avoided.

Startling stuff! This week’s Live Active blog is all about Jimmy Taylor. Jimmy is a man who at 65 years old had NEVER been in a gym or fitness class, and who had realised that the bit of boxing and football he’d done as a lad wasn’t going to be enough to carry him into a healthy retirement!

Last November he was talked into taking part in the Fit Into Festive campaign (he’s the man snoozing in the chair here!) by his daughter Karen, who is also our Business Planning and Marketing Manager here at Live Active.  In return for his hard work eating mince pies and pretending to sleep, Karen issued him with a 12 week membership and encouraged him to make good use of it.

Here’s Jimmy’s incredible story from Armchair Snoozer into Gym Bunny!

“Karen got me talked into doing this photo thing and I thought to myself, why not give it a go? I’ve not done any organised fitness since I was a bairn, and at 65 it seemed it should be doing something.

I’ve always worked in sales and with people, so it wasn’t really a confidence thing for me. I just needed a push! I found it quite easy getting into a routine once I’d started.  I like going in the morning, do an hour and then that’s me done – the first 15 minutes are still a killer but once you break that barrier it flies in.

I took my induction with Colin (Keogh!) – he’s good that one! I like Colin.  He worked with me to get a plan toegther, targeting some bits more than others, and he sorted me out with an A4 book on toning up, muscle groups and different exercises.   

I think the induction helped me a lot – it was an excellent start. Colin is a real go-getter and as a mentor you couldn’t ask for more.  All of the staff in fact, were very good but he stood out for me.  I find it really relaxed, there’s always someone going round chatting to new people and giving ou wee tips – they really do want to help you.

Treadmill, rowing and weights was my routine – I split it up and did an hour every time I was in.  It definitely made a difference – definitely!  I’m a lot fitter, I’ve lost weight and inches especially round my stomach and waist.  My 13 weeks finished and I signed up for a membership straight away.  I’m a regular now – 5 days a week, one hour in the morning and then my weekends I keep to myself. I love socialising, you know!  I’m always back into it on a Monday though – I will agree now that it’s all about balance!

If there’s anyone out there like me, who’d never been in a gym before, I say – Go for it!  No one bothers what you’re wearing, what you’re doing or how you’re doing it. And that’s the great thing!”

If you're feeling inspired to make a change then check out our fantastic Ready | Set | Go 6 Week Membership for only £25. You'll get UNLIMITED access to all of our gyms, pools and fitness classes. No catches or contracts, just a great opportunity to come and try our great products for 6 weeks.  Check it out now >>>