Finding a Personal Trainer

Keeping fit is something I’m passionate about. Getting active and hot and sweaty makes me feel sensational so it’s no small thing for me to decide to want t a personal trainer. I’ve had one before – twice a week to get me doing exercises I wouldn’t normally do, not an incredibly challenging brief for a PT. But now, I know what I want.

Have pushed myself physically and mentally for 9 months through five 1.5 hour sessions of muay thai, boxing and MMA (with the odd BJJ and judo lesson thrown in to round things out) my requirements for a PT are more specific. I want someone who has fought or is fighting professionally now, someone who won’t treat me like a girl and someone who will help me perfect my technique.

I’ve been referred to ‘PT L’ (let’s call him that in case it doesn’t work out) and he’s fought professionally and focuses on technique in the striking elements of MMA…all sounds good so far. He can only do mornings, not preferable for me but willing to work something out. Might be time to call on flexi time at work!

What I want is someone to get me back into the MMA frame of mind and body so I can get the most out of group classes where they don’t focus so much on technique. Depending on how much he costs will determine how often I see him…if he’s outstanding I’ll commit, if not I’ll keep shopping around…

I’m auditioning him with a free trial session he offers browsing clients next week. Will let you know how it goes.


Zumba with Keren (a social activity with health benefits!)

Last week I had my first taste of Zumba with my sister at Fitness First gym – a hilarious dance based aerobic workout that left me with no dignity but lots of laughs and yes, I did work up a bit of a sweat. So last night I gave it a second go with a friend who has been taking classes down in East St Kilda at Zumba with Keren – we’ll call her Miss K (no, not me, another K!).

The class is held in a community hall – a charming local joint filled with the sounds of rhythm, beats and an enthusiastic Keren guiding the mixed bag of girls and women trying to keep up with the steps. To be fair, Keren does lead well and it’s not too difficult to follow.

Zumba is a great after-work workout (the kind you go to when you would possibly bitch out of something more strenuous) because it’s a laugh and you do get the heart rate going. It’s fun to do with friends who have little shame and don’t mind thrusting and jumping around in a room full of people. Although only one word can describe trying to look sexy and coordinated when  you clearly are not: sad.

But do give it a go if you’re after something different and fun(ny?). I’ll be back in the groove with Miss K although it’s not going to replace my spin classes. It will be my second workout for the day when I need to up the ante, a social activity with health benefits!

I started swimming (yes, I know it’s getting into winter!)

I wanted to update this post with a little note to say that I am really really really enjoying swimming! Have weaved it into the morning routine and getting to a 6:30am swim with my amazing colleague Jaselyn. She’s a pro and taught me to go the distance by swimming slower with the mantra in mind “I’m going to have an easy swim today”.

On Monday morning I swam the furthest so far since I started swimming in late May. Perhaps by the time summer comes along I’ll feel ok to try ocean swimming. Now if only I can overcome my irrational but very real fear of sharks…


To add to my suite of exercise activities I’ve started swimming. Encouraged by my courageous colleague Jaselyn who is a pro triathlon competitor, I have begun following the straight line and getting some lap time in.

Luckily, I have found the perfect swimming partner in Caitlin – considerably more competent than I and experienced in swim training… the ideal training partner because I know she would be capable of dragging me out should I start to flounder or get a cramp! I realised I have not swum a distance since 1998 at my school swimming carnival…

I had my first taste of swimming when I was in Sydney for Mother’s Day at the 25m pool at my parent’s apartment. But my first real pool time with Cairty was last Sunday at Fitzroy Swimming Pool, an outdoor location with a 50m pool, perfect for catching the last autumn afternoon sun. It wasn’t very crowded and there were plenty of lanes available for casual laps.

There are lanes dedicated to play, slow, medium, fast lap times.

I contemplated the play lane and, decked out in my black Speedo costume with goggles on head, I realised I was perhaps misleading in my costume because at the moment of choosing lanes I didn’t feel ‘qualified’ to wear such garb on my first day swimming! So I started in the slow lane wearing my ‘fast’ cossie. The pole dancing must be working a treat because I managed to move over into the medium lane… and then back to slow then the fatigue began to set in after the first 200 metres.

Last Friday morning we ventured into the darkness for a 6:45am swim at indoor Melbourne City Baths and it was not half as unpleasant as that hour of the morning sounds. Given that I usually get up at 5:45am to make spin it was kind of like a sleep in for me! The pool here is 30m long and a little more crowded so it’s harder to count the distance  covered. Not that I am up to counting yet, I’m just aiming to get through half an hour of laps without feeling like I may have dropped a lung at the bottom of the pool.

For our next swim we may try Richmond pool as another indoor alternative although we are fond of the outdoor Fitzroy pool, even though it is a little chilly in the air. But I’ll keep updating the swimming progress and come to a decision about which pool to commit to!

This is a wonderful form of exercise I’m really enjoying. There is no impact on the joints and I feel kind of ‘floaty’ after I get out of the pool and not heavy like after spin. the cardio workout is amazing and I’m using smaller muscles I forgot about which is good too. The best part has been gaining a lovely new friend – thank you Caity for inspiring me to dive right in.

So, what do I bring to the swim training team? Well, I hope it’s my enthusiasm and commitment to the times we schedule in. I think I could very well become addicted to the swim.

*Note: I wanted to take pics of the pools but I felt creepy. So I didn’t.

21 Days to a better habit

In a bid to get into the good habit of exercising in the mornings I asked the tweeps for advice about the length of time it takes to form a habit. The general response was 21 days. And so I began my quest to make use of being awake at 6 am and instead of lying in bed thinking I should get up and get moving,  I actually did. And I have made it through with 20+ kms on the bike at my apartment’s gym and a few days of yoga to stretch and vary things up a bit.

I will only know if there is truth in the 21 day rule if I am continuing to stride into the gym bleary eyed in the days and weeks to come but I have a good feeling. That and too many people know about my determination to get into the habit and, in the guise of not letting them down, I shall continue to be diligent with my workouts. But my fitness fellows really know that if I stopped now, I would only be letting myself down (sounds like something The Commando or Michelle Bridges would say).

An hour of exercise daily isn’t much and when it’s in the early(ish) hours of the morning when not much else is happening, why not get it done. And I feel great throughout the day. And it frees up the evenings. So yes, this is one habit I would like to keep.

Perhaps my next goal should be 21 days to daily blogging….

Day 21 - a newly formed habit

Twitter support group (21 days to a new habit)

As my Melbourne adventures continue, so does the wonderful support from the kind people of my new city. Feeling fairly settled, I have a set myself a new challenge: to form the habit of exercising in the morning before work. I am on day four of the 21 days it takes to form a habit, as advised by everyone on Twitter. Including weekends. As a fairly determined person, I am keen to see this happen but also being self-aware I know that my willpower to make it happen is not as good as I would like it to be. Enter the Twitter support network. The encouragement from my amazing network to see this through may just be enough to get me across the finish line.

And so, I continue to be overwhelmed by the sense of loyalty and sheer kindness of the beautiful people following @KimberleyL. Thank you.

The result on day 4 after 35 minutes