How not to be a quitter

If you’ve made a new year’s resolution to get fit this year, you’ve probably managed to stick to it so far (you have, haven’t you?). But fast-forward a month and there’s a one in four chance you’ll have given up, according to research on resolutions from the University of Scranton in Pennsylvania. Within six months, the study found, 54 to 60 per cent of people had missed their targets. “We set out with the best of intentions,” says Midgie Thompson, mental performance coach at Bright Futures Coaching. “But a lack of planning and a failure to set clear, achievable goals often sideline us before we’ve had the benefit of seeing or feeling results, which can be highly dispiriting.” Read on to find out how to give your new year fitness regime staying power.

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Why it's never too late to exercise

Surprising as it may seem, the over-65 age group is less active than any other. But exercise doesn't have to fall off the agenda as you age - in fact, it can help you live a longer, healthier and happier life. Sam Murphy finds out more.

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Don't fear to tread: how to get the most out of the treadmill

Some people rarely run a step outside the confines of the gym, while others loathe the treadmill…but how ever you feel about the running machine, these ten tips will help you get more out of using it, making your workouts not only more effective, but also more fun. Honest!

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How to avoid running injuries

Two out of three runners will pick up an injury this year, but most can be easily avoided. Sam Murphy explains how to prevent common injuries, and how to recover quickly but safely

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An insider's guide to triathlon

I’m not a newbie, but the prospect of a 750m swim, 20km bike ride and 5km run, completed one after the other, is still daunting. Read my blow-by-blow account of taking part in the Blenheim triathlon.

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Smart snacking for active people

Three square meals aren’t always enough if you’re constantly on the go. Smart snacking can help you top up energy levels so you get the most out of your workouts and recover optimally, too. Here’s my top ten…

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Aging and sports performance

Most people assume that as we get older, physical performance declines. But a growing body of evidence suggests that it's not physiological changes that make us slower, weaker and fatter but a decline in training. One study, published in the American Journal of Sports Medicine found that in competitive masters athletes, it wasn't until the age of 75 that significant declines in performance were found! One man proving that older needn't mean slower is Olympic swimmer Mark Foster, who I interviewed for Observer Sport Monthly. Find out what he, and a host of experts, have to say about the chances of attaining a new PB once past the first flushes of youth...

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Don't die of indolence

The Olympic legacy was meant to be a fitter, more active nation, but research published this week in The Lancet shows that two out of three Britons are not meeting the weekly physical activity guidelines. Our unwillingness to work up a sweat is not only contributing to the likelihood of ill health but is also knocking years off our lives, says Sam Murphy.

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Paula Radcliffe: A day in the life of a supermum

Marathon runner Paula Radcliffe shares her daily routine with Sam Murphy

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