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New Year New You 

Tried and tested fitness programs online and around the Shoeburyness area by Ryan Rowley

Adult Weight Management

Why you should lose weight? 

Maintaining a healthy weight isn’t just good for your physical health, it plays a vital part in your mental well-being too. If you’re overweight, you’re more likely to suffer medical conditions such as Coronary heart disease, Type 2 diabetes and certain cancers, including breast and bowel. You are also more likely to suffer a stroke and a heart attack than others of the same age. There is strong evidence that weight issues also link to depression.

Who can join?

  • Anyone aged 16+ who lives or works in Southend

  • Registered with a GP in Southend

  • BMI 30 or more (or 27.5 when adjusted for ethnicity* and health conditions

*People with a South Asian, Chinese, Other Asian, Middle Eastern, Black African or African-Caribbean family background are more at risk of heart conditions and other health conditions therefore a lower BMI is used.

Adult Weight management Exercise group

Cost: Free – Must be 30 BMI+

Self referral:



Exercise type:

Cardiovascular, Aerobics, Circuits, Dance, Seated, Badminton & Resistance Bands


Time: 45 Minutes

Calories burned: Varies each session average between 200-300

Muscles used: Full Body – a combination of core strength development, upper body and lower body

Pro’s: A variety of exercise types used on a weekly basis meaning a range of benefits to the body. This also supports inclusiveness as instructors can adapt exercise to meet your needs.

My experience: Joining the group I was given a welcoming introduction and greeting from fellow attendees. The group begun with a discussion around food groups, the instructor was knowledgeable and created a comfortable space to ask questions. Post discussion we took part in a warm-up followed by a combination of circuit and dance exercise. With options to progress the exercises where possible, I felt reassured I had options to adapt the difficulty. I would say this is a great place to start for beginners from my joyful experience with the group.

Image by Geert Pieters
Jogging by the River
Couch to Fitness

Cost: Free

Time: Whenever – Great flexibility as you can log in to workout at any time

Exercise Type: Cardiovascular

Time: 30 minutes

Calories Burned: 275

Muscles used: Full body – a combination of upper body & Lower body exercises.

Pro’s: Very adaptive – the coach provides alternative rest times and exercises to meet all fitness levels. Good for people who ‘don’t have time to work out’ as they are short and can be completed any time you like.

My experience: I created an account online and signed up for the programme and enrolled to the programme without any problems. The website was very user friendly. The workout itself was fun and compact, I felt as if I had done a lot in 30 minutes which left me feeling productive. The workout consisted of a warmup, 4 sets of exercises with active rest and a cool down. Overall Id recommend this to any busy people short on time yet want to get active.

Gym Session- Resistance training based

Cost: discounted via exercise referral:

Local gyms:

  • Shoeburyness Leisure Centre

  • TruGym

  • Garrons Tennis & Leisure Centre

  • Pure-Gym

Exercise type: Resistance Training - using a mixture of fixed resistance machines/free weights.


Time: 50 Minutes

Calories burned: 360

Muscles used: Full Body – a combination of core strength development, upper body and lower body

Pro’s: Adaptable - if you find you have physical barriers then the benefit of the gym is that there is a vast range of equipment available. Health benefits such as developing strengths, muscular endurance, flexibility and posture.

My experience: The gym session consists of a 5 minute warm up via a cardio machine, short stretch and then the resistance training. Typically, a full body workout with an exercise dedicated to each area of the body. 3 sets of 12-16 repetitions at a moderate weight with 1 minutes rest between sets. To finish, a short cool down on a cardio machine then a short stretch.

Image by Kelly Sikkema
Cycling Up the Hill
Just Ride

Cost: £2.50

Ride times: Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Saturdays 10:00am-12:00pm

Exercise Type: Cardiovascular

Time: 50 minutes

Calories Burned: 240

Muscles used: Lower body options for upper body cycles available.

Pro’s of cycling: Great cardiovascular exercise for all levels of fitness. Low impact on our joints. Can support reducing the risk of multiple health problems such as high Blood Pressure and Type 2 Diabetes. A fun way to burn calories to support weight loss and stay active.

My experience: I joined the Saturday morning group for a cycle and was greeted with a warm welcome from the volunteers. They were soon ready to support me choose a suitable bike for my ride. After getting set up and some easy-to-follow guidelines, I was ready to go. I completed 50 minutes of cycling around the track and cycled 14km. Overall I burned around 240 calories. 




Exercise type: Cardiovascular


Swim Time: 30 Minutes

Calories burned: 220

Lengths: 46 - 20 metre pool

Muscles used: Full Body – a combination of core strength development, upper body and lower body

Pro’s: Swimming is a great way to increase physical activity with low impact on our bodies. It can support with endurance, muscle toning and strength building. Not only this but it may help reduce stiffness of joints due to the nature of the movements.

My experience: I start with a warm-up in the pool with some Breaststroke followed by some basic upper body stretches in the pool. Once ready I will swim freestyle either continuously or in sets of 2- 4 lengths. Once finished I will swim a slow 2 lengths on my back or using a float with just leg kicks to cool down. 

Swimming Pool
Image by Arek Adeoye
Outdoor Walk

Walking Groups:


Walking Apps:

Cost: Free

Exercise Type: Cardiovascular

My walk time: 45 minutes brisk walk

Calories Burned: 195

Muscles used: Lower body / core

Pro’s of walking: Completely free. Low intensity yet can be adjusted with walk speed/terrain. Can be social if you walk with a friend or family member. Flexible as you can fit this onto your commute to work/lunch breaks or weekends.

My experience: A cold winters walk but with fresh air and sea breeze. My favourite low intensity exercise to keep active with great views around the coast. I mapped out a route prior to leaving, took the four legged friend and started my walk whilst tracking my progress.

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