How to Kick-start Your Fitness Routine after Winter



Summer can be a tough time to get back out there and kick-start your fitness, but we tell you how.

We know you’ve heard of all of these, but here are the pros and cons why they’ll work for you right now;

1) Weights:

Don’t be afraid. Many trainers swear weights tone the body faster than anything else, and short sessions several times a week  save time and maximise results. “Just ensure you are shown what to do by a qualified instructor the first time,” Fitness expert from The Health Hub Rachel Livingstone explains.

“A weights routine mapped out by a qualified instructor can put you on the path to better health, a stronger body and weight loss quickly.” Personal trainer Jen Dugard adds.

Pros: The results are fast and will give you strength in every aspect of your life.

Cons: You need a trainer initially at least to get your technique right, and you need to make a 12 week commitment.

2) Swimming and Aquarobics:

Great if you’re very unfit, have an injury or just love water.  “It is a full body sport, low impact, doesn’t take too long and gives you some head space,” Jen says.

“The water is very supportive of the joints, and many women enjoy aquarobics where they can conceal their body, but still enjoy a good cardio vascular workout.” Most local swimming pools have classes.

Pros: As long as you’re a confident swimmer, you can do this anytime.

Cons:You have to de-robe beforehand and shower, and re-groom after. The trick is to plan it at the right time of your day.

3) Paddle-boarding:

This sport became a hit on Aussie beaches last summer for good reason. It’s great for your core, gets you out on the ocean and into fresh air, and is great fun.

“Ninety minutes goes by on the water, and you barely notice, as there are so many distractions,” Charlotte Piho, paddle-boarding expert instructor says.“You get the same cardio vascular workout as you would from a run but it’s not as intense on the body. It’s social, empowering, and a great self-esteem boost,” Charlotte reflects.

“It  has been proven paddle-boarding can burn off an initial layer of fat, as it works the whole body, arms, legs and core, and can give you a sense of freedom as well as achievement. Correct technique is critical, as is establishing how to fall off without injury,  and there are even yoga classes on paddle-boards which add another dimension.”

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Pros:One of the easiest and best sports you can do solo or with friends, with fast results.

Cons: Again you need a complete beauty overhaul afterwards, and you need pre-planning.

4) Yoga/Pilates:

“Yoga is a great way to calm down, meet new people and have some fun. There are many forms from hatha (generally relaxing), to vinyasa (high impact) and bikram (hot yoga).” You can sign up to the best centre in town or go to your local community centre.

“ If time is the critical factor on your life right now, a DVD is an easy way to exercise as often as you can, and at a time to suit you. Yoga improves flexibility, muscle strength, releases toxins, reduces anxiety and can help you sleep.” Google your city to find a location nearby.

Pros: Strength and flexibility are critical in modern times, and throughout your life. The benefits of yoga will filter right through every aspect of your life.

Cons: It can take a while for your flexibility to improve so you need patience.

5) Dance:

“Dancing can be an emotional release,” Jen says.  The Sydney Dance Company is renowned for opening their  four stunning studios overlooking Sydney harbour to the public to do various classes at all levels throughout the week.

Classes include ballet, hip-hop, tap, funk, jazz, lyrical, elementary, Latin American and more and graded beginner, elementary, intermediate, advanced or professional so you’ll know what you’re in for. No bookings are required.

Zumba is available almost everywhere, and many children’s dance studios now have adult classes. “Any type of dance from zumba to ballet is good overall body workout that gets the heart pumping, and improves your mood,” Jen adds.

Pros: Dancing can make you feel like a child – free and liberated.

Cons: The talents of others can lower your self-esteem – don’t’ look at them, focus on yourself.

6) Running:

Now don’t be scared. You too can become a runner if you really want to.  “Another great overall body workout, and something you can do solo or with a buddy, “ Rachael says encouragingly.

You can find a running coach to kick start you, or there’s a great program online; Cool Running Couch to 5km program.  The program starts slow with walks and short runs, and builds up over nine weeks. to  Running burns serious calories, and tones the areas you’ll want it most – legs and butt.

Pros:It’s fun, exhilarating and you get better at it over time.

Cons: It is tough at first and can be hard on the joints.

7) Rock Climbing:

Not for the faint hearted, rock climbing gives you a good core workout, and can force your mind to shut everything else out and be in the moment, something many women welcome.

“A lot of gyms now have their own rock climbing walls as the sport gains popularity, which means you can do it any time and in any weather,” says Jen. “You can enjoy the exhilaration of achieving the climb you want over time.

It can be a replica for so many aspects of life – one foot in front of the other to reach their goals. ”  A google search should bring up rock climbing walls near you.

Pros:Huge sense of achievement, and improved strength and endurance fast.

Cons: Don’t attempt it if you have a fear of heights.

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Renae Leith-Manos


Renae Leith-Manos travels the world writing ( She has had a colourful media career as a journalist in many magazines and newspapers, and spends her time writing, consulting to new businesses, running, doing yoga, swimming & cycling.
She's likes healthy eating, but thinks chocolate cake is just as important as kale chips.
She spends most weekends hanging out with her gorgeous twins.

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