January 2017

2017: How I aim to improve this year

2016 was the best year The Fit Londoner has had in a while. There has been some real uncertainty and downs in my personal life over the past few years, which I haven’t mentioned on the blog. But last year, I started to see the bright light at the end of the tunnel. The dark times  are over (touch wood) and with what I learnt, I aim to go bigger and better in 2017.  Here are eight changes I’m making in 2017. 


Stop talking, start doing. I recently read about a 38-year old lawyer in the UK, who has become the youngest person to run a major law firm in the country. In the article, she described herself as a ‘stop doing, start doing’ type of person. This got me thinking. I sometimes talk about, or highlight problems, but I don’t always create a solution, or, I might talk about wanting to do something, but I don’t do it.  

A lot of the ways I aim to improve this year are based on this premise.   

Creating a Movement. Last year, I highlighted on the blog that I had noticed a real lack of ethnic female diversity within sports, fitness advertisements and generally in normal fitness spaces like the gym or spin classes. At the end of December, I started to work on a movement that aims to encourage more women of ethnic backgrounds to get into elite sports, fitness advertisements and workout more. I guess this is a real example of one way I aim to stop talking and start doing. 

Personal development. A real buzz word across social media, blogs and magazines but I want to continue developing myself. I have been listening to podcasts like Body and The Beast and Mindset with Muscle but I need and want to start reading again. I have compiled a huge list of books I want to read, so I will be devouring them when then they arrive.   Educate myself more. Something I dislike on social media, is when an insta-famous person provides advice on anything fitness, health or nutrition related when they don’t necessarily have the skills for that. Sports science is something I am particularly interested in as well as science and luckily I have access to a science-based library so will be using that.    To help me understand exercise a lot more, and in line with the movement I am creating, I hope to go back to studying and qualify as a personal trainer. Big things are happening.

Continue to push myself out of my comfort zone. 2016 was where I discovered that the distance I  love to run is 26.2 miles (aka the marathon) and obstacle course races – like the Spartan obstcacle course race. This year, I will continue these but I now want to push myself out of my comfort zone and complete an event where the training is gruesome and full of blood, sweat and tears (hopefully more sweat than tears)! As it currently stands, I am not training for anything due to some medical issues.


Travel more. Last year, I travelled to four countries, but this year I want to travel a lot more. Already, I have planned a big trip to the US and a few shorter trips are planned with friends. Hopefully, I will have some overseas blogging projects.

Working on stretching. Uh-oh. Any personal trainer, who has trained me, or any sports massage therapist, who has worked on my sore muscles can tell you that I have really tight hip flexors. It actually improved a little bit during Verona Marathon training as I did post workout stretching a lot more. But it’s not enough and this year I want to get into the habit of stretching on my rest days and after every training session. No ifs or buts.   

Using rest days more effectively. Usually when I have a rest day on days after work, I like to go home and relax. This year I’m getting rid of that. I realised that last year I was becoming one of those people that can just talk about fitness. I’m going to continue to train hard but balance this with rest days where I do things that are not so related to fitness. Like visiting art galleries, photography exhibitions, museum exhibitions, wandering around food markets, or being creative at home. During a recent home clear-out, I found a large blank, white canvas I had bought a few years ago. This year that canvas will no longer be blank. I’m also going to attend short courses – whether that’s something arty or learning a new skill. Eventbrite is quickly becoming my best friend. 

What do you aim to achieve this year? Whether it is sports-related or not, The Fit Londoner would love to know. 

Mara xx