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It’s all too easy to start a fitness routine filled with enthusiasm, only to end up letting it slide after a few weeks or months. So how do you create a sustainable routine that works for you – in the long term?

The answer may lie in taking the time to discover your own unique strengths and weaknesses when it comes to your health. That’s something Muhdo, one of our partners, can help with.

Muhdo is a DNA health test company that can allow you to build your fitness goals step by step by revealing key information about your genetic profile.

While other DNA companies reveal insights about your ancestry, Muhdo provides personalised insights into how your body responds to exercise, nutrition and other lifestyle factors. That information can help you personalise a routine that will allow you to progress faster and more effectively, and is bespoke to your needs.

We spoke to Wez Pooley, Business Development Director/Co-Founder at Muhdo, British long-distance runner Helen Davies and David Lloyd Clubs Personal Trainer Zoe Charge to find out more about creating a fitness routine that’s all about you.

How important is it to personalise your fitness routine?

Helen Davies: “Everyone responds differently to exercise. It’s not a case of one size fits all, so finding out how to get the best results for you personally and working smart with your fitness routine is imperative. That’s especially true in today’s busy world where time is precious and we often don’t have hours to dedicate to our fitness routines every day.”

How can Muhdo DNA test results help you personalise your fitness routine?

Wez Pooley: “Overall, your Muhdo results can provide valuable insights into how your body responds to exercise and nutrition, allowing you to tailor your fitness routine to maximise your results and minimise the risk of injury.”

Zoe Charge: “Knowledge is wealth! Knowing the genetic body makeup helps manage fitness expectations, set realistic goals, and gives me an overview of what workouts the body will respond most positively to.”

Helen Davies: “For me personally, I was competing at an elite international level as a marathon and ultra marathon runner, and being a more mature athlete and a busy mum, it was important for me to work as smart as possible. Genetic profiling filled in a lot of the blanks and allowed me to maximise my training, recovery and performance.” 

What kind of insights can you expect from the results?

Wez Pooley: “Some genetic variations can impact how your body responds to exercise. For example, some people may be more responsive to strength training than cardiovascular exercise, while others may benefit more from high-intensity interval training. By understanding your genetic profile, you can tailor your fitness routine to maximise your results.”

Zoe Charge: “My results showed that my muscle power is ‘above normal’, and my muscle stamina is ‘gifted’, which tells me that I have the ability to exert certain levels of power, and perform a physical task over prolonged periods of time with minimal fatigue.

“I have increased plyometrics and endurance exercises in my routine to maximise these attributes. “

Wez Pooley: “Your Muhdo results can also provide valuable information about your body’s nutritional needs. For example, some people may have genetic variations that impact their metabolism or nutrient absorption. By understanding your genetic profile, you can tailor your nutrition plan to meet your body’s specific needs and support your fitness goals.”

Once you have the results, how do you build a sustainable fitness routine?

Helen Davies: “Creating a sustainable exercise routine entails starting with the basics and gradually progressing as your fitness improves.

“By gradually increasing the intensity of your exercise routine, you can train your body to adapt over time to the demands you place on it with your chosen exercise or sport.

“If you go all out right away, your body will not thank you and you will not make progress. You will stop responding to the exercise and the result will be possible burnout, which will leave you demotivated, exhausted and struggling to get going again.”

How do you find the motivation to exercise regularly?

Zoe Charge: “Set small goals. Of course, still set a long-term goal, but setting small goals inside that will make it feel more achievable. When a target is so far away, it is easier to move goal posts, and before you know it, this Monday has changed to next Monday and so on.

“The small goals can be as simple as ‘this week I’m going hit 12,000 steps each day’, or ‘next week I will try a new class’. They don’t have to be big goals, just small steps to get you in the right direction.

“Also, if you do have a down day, don’t beat yourself up. Think about the positives you have achieved so far in the week. You may not have made HIIT this morning, but you may have reached a personal best with your squat, or tried the Stairmaster for the first time.”  

How do you get started when you’re relatively new to exercise?

Helen Davies: “Choose something that you enjoy and find fun, or that connects you with other like minded people, as this will motivate you and make it a lot easier to stick to. Joining a club or fitness community can be a great way to help motivate and inspire you and offer you advice on how to begin.”

How do you avoid injury when you’re just starting out?

Wez Pooley: “Some genetic variations can impact your body’s ability to recover from exercise. For example, some people may require more rest days between workouts than others. By understanding your genetic profile, you can tailor your fitness routine to optimise your recovery and avoid overtraining.”

Find out more about health testing with Muhdo.