By Gemma Yates
Want to make 2024 your fittest, healthiest year yet? We're so here for that. To give you some wellness inspiration, we've rounded up the fitness trends set to be huge in 2024. The best bit? There's not a fad diet or punishing exercise routine in sight.
Cycle-syncing (tailoring your training programme to match the different phases of your menstrual cycle) is big news on social media, and according to Holland & Barrett's 2024 Wellness Trend Report, we can expect to see the conversation around the female cycle amplified this year, as well as a focus on hormone-balancing foods. From pre-teens to perimenopause, changing female hormones affect everything from exercise and sleep to blood-sugar at every stage of life. By educating ourselves about our hormones, we can make lifestyle changes, work in harmony with our bodies and boost our overall health.
It's been a wellness buzzword for a while now, but it turns out the secret to living longer might not be cold showers, chugging supplements and fasting until you feel faint. Instead, this year we're taking inspiration from the inhabitants of the world's "blue zones", regions where people live exceptionally long (and healthy) lives. The focus is on whole foods, family and community connection (hello, Juicy gang), regular physical activity - things like walking and gardening - and keeping life as stress free as possible. It's simple, but the best things often are.
From injury to interrupted sleep, the risks of overtraining are real. Going hard 7 days a week might give you bragging rights, but it's not going to do your gains any favours. Getting adequate recovery can improve performance and reduce risk of injury, ensuring you're raring to go and giving it your all at your next session. Carb-loading and nice warm baths will always be recuperation staples, but massage guns, cold showers and regular mobility sessions are set to level up your at-home recovery in 2024.
THE STRENGTH TRAINING AWAKENING
Instead of striving to be small, women are finally training to be strong. Gone are the days of endless cardio as we realise that lifting weights is the way to shift the dial on body composition and create your ideal physique. Boosting everything from bone density and muscle mass (essential for women as we age) to cardiovascular and mental health, strength training provides a holistic approach to fitness with a true carryover into everyday life. This year we'll also see the rise of hybrid training - a performance-improving combo of lung-busting cardio and resistance training that will build muscle and endurance and give you a greater base level of fitness.
If there's one thing that's going to help you stick to a fitness goal, it's accountability. Think about how easy it is to snooze that alarm when you don't feel like exercising. If you've pre-booked a block of sessions with a personal trainer, you're far more likely to show up. As well as making you accountable, a personal trainer will provide guidance on everything from goal setting and good technique to nutrition and recovery, helping you smash your goals and reach your full potential