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Commit to Get Misfit



Widening Participation are taking on the Commit to Get Fit challenge, as a department and as two competing teams owing to numbers, so both myself and Chris Mason will be documenting our team’s respective efforts on SPLASH. You can read his (frankly more amusing and better written) blog post here. However, I think we can all agree that ‘Misfits’ is a far superior team name to ‘Thin White Duke’ and that we will probably win everything.

We’re looking forward to doing lots of activities together as a whole team but have also decided to introduce an element of competition between the Misfits and the Thin White Dukes. Given the heated debates this morning on what counts as mindfulness/relaxation (smoking: no) and one of your 5-a-day (onion bhajee: definitely not one) encouraging people to be more competitive may have been ill-advised but we’ll see.

We’re awarding a point for each of the following:

  • 30 minutes exercise (can gain 2 points for an hour)
  • Team class, walk or activity
  • Drink 2 litres of water
  • Eat your 5 a day
  • Try a new sport or activity
  • Relaxation, mindfulness or wellbeing session
  • Abstain from your nominated 'weakness' e.g. chocolate
  • Bring in a healthy snack for the office (maximum 1 per week)
  • Eat healthily in general

Whichever team has most points by the end of the month has to buy the other team lunch. Who knows, we might all be so inspired by Commit to Get Fit that it will be a delicious salad rather than cheesy chips.

We made a good start on Friday by joining in with the boundary walk, always a nice highlight of the month and a chance to meet colleagues from across the University.

WP team on the boundary walk for Commit to Get Fit

Here are some of our team goals to give an idea of what people are hoping to get from the month:

Anne-marie: I always enjoyed a bit of keep fit, and was fairly active up until I had my first baby 18 months ago(!!). Since then I have had the perfect ‘excuse’ to not fit in any exercise – at all. Without a doubt it isn’t so easy to find the time or energy now, with childcare arrangements meaning my only available timeslots were between 5am-6am (yuck) or after 7.30pm, when all I want to do is eat and flop, but it isn’t impossible and CTGF is the perfect motivation to kick-start a new routine. I can definitely give 100% to a healthier diet and healthier living too, and am looking forward to reaping the benefits!

Claire: I have always been fairly exercise-averse, apart from long walks and the occasional game of badminton with friends, so despite participating in Commit to Get Fit for the last couple of years, I haven’t really committed. This year I am determined to make a real difference, hopefully one that will last into at least mid-June, after which our outreach work reaches a peak and we all have to resort to custard donuts to make it through July. I am aiming to do 30 minutes exercise every day and have signed up for lots of exciting classes: bouldering, fencing and trapeze included. I will try to eat my 5 a day and not have as many fried egg sandwiches.

Paul: As a new member of staff I’m really excited by the prospect of CTGF.  At my previous place of work we didn’t have any similar programmes and nipping out of the office to do some lunch time exercise was more frowned upon than encouraged, so I feel very lucky to have the opportunity to get fit guilt free. I already exercise regularly so my main aim is to try out some new things and I’ll be taking part in Trapeze, Handball and Fencing.  My diet could certainly improve a little so I’ll be giving up chocolate and trying to drink more water.

Sam: Not only am I giving up alcohol but Mark is as well to support me through the month. So the Dunnetts are Dry! Which is quite an achievement as we have to pinch space in our neighbour’s glass recycling bin every fortnight (all done under the dead of night)! Sam also suggested we include the mindfulness category and has offered to do some lovely reflexology sessions for the team.

Stephen: I have always been a big sports fan but struggle to find the motivation and time to fit it in. I have been trying to lose weight for some time, with mixed success. Hopefully CTGF will trigger my competitive nature and give me the push I need to give up all the gym food and exercise regularly. I am aiming to go all month without any junk food and aim to get as many points as possible to spur the misfits to victory.

Healthy snack of the day: slices of apple spread with peanut butter… sounds bizarre but eliminated my custard cream cravings.