For the past couple of weeks I felt like I was finally starting to get my groove on where getting up early to exercise was concerned.
The kids have been waking up earlier and earlier as it’s been getting lighter in the mornings, so there has been no need for an alarm.
And, although I love having the extra hour of light of an evening between the October long weekend and Easter, there is nothing like Daylight Saving starting to throw the early morning fitness sessions into disarray.
With this in mind I have pencilled in a string of upcoming fitness events for added motivation when the alarm goes off.
One of those events is Ultra Trail Australia in the Blue Mountains next May. Entries are now open and it is a good longer-term challenge if you are looking for one.
For something shorter term or a bit closer to home, the Fernleigh 15 is looming large on October 22 but you still have a few weeks to get some training in or to get a team together for it.
Those living out Lake Macquarie may have some added motivation this spring and summer with council unveiling a new six-station fitness trail along the water at Speers Point.
The stations are spread across a 1.5-kilometre stretch and include stairs, parallel bars, sit-up benches, leg presses and more.
There is signage at all sites with instructions on how to use the equipment.
GET KIDS MOVING
As we enter the second week of the school holidays parents, like myself, might be looking for ways to get the kids outdoors and burning off some energy to prevent everyone from going stir crazy.
Hitting a trampoline park one day or booking them in for a day of sporting activities are options, but that can get pretty costly pretty quick.
There are also plenty of ways to get the kids active without it costing you a cent.
Take them to the park or beach and set up a circuit. As a guide, try squats, lunges, jumping jacks, shuffles, high knees then run between the markers (water bottles work). Take a ball or frisbee and make a game out of it. Or set up a ninja warrior obstacle course.
Go for a bike ride, walk or scoot. Hit the baths or pool and do some swimming, running or board paddling for other options.
Peter Mullen of Mullen Natural Health Centre, Hamilton has been offering some healthy food tips for spring and this week it is a recipe for scrambled eggs with avocado and almond flakes
He says this breakfast is full of good fats and bound to keep you you full until lunchtime:
Ingredients: 2 eggs, splash of milk or water, 1/2 teaspoon of butter, 1/4 of an avocado, 2 tablespoons of flaked almonds, pan fried in coconut oil.
Method: Pan fry scrambled eggs and liquid with salt and pepper in butter. Set aside. Using same pan, fry almond flakes, adding some coconut oil.
Serve: the eggs with the avocado and sprinkle almond flakes on top.
Spring loaded week #5
With daylight savings here and the weather becoming more agreeable each week, the sand is another option for getting a workout.
Sand can help improve the stability and strength in your joints and offers an alternative to pounding the pavement. You can also enjoy the benefits of a swim in the ocean post-workout.
There are a variety of things you can do on the beach for a good workout and for you that may just be going for a walk.
If you want to work a little harder you could try a fartlek session such as: walk 2 minutes, jog 1 minute, sprint 30 seconds. Then repeat in a continuous fashion for 20 minutes.
Upcoming fitness events
Relay For Life, Hunter Sports Centre, Glendale, November 4: Raising funds for the Cancer Council, Relay for Life goes for 12 hours and involves cancer survivors, patients, carers and loved ones. cancercouncil.com.au.
Summer Run 10k Series, Maitland, Newcastle and Port Stephens: A three-race 10km Summer Series will be staged at Morpeth (November 12), Carrington (February 4) and Nelson Bay (March 18). summerrun.com.au.
NewRun, Newcastle, April 15: This is over six months away but now is a good time to start planning. There are a range of distances. newrun.com.au.
Renee Valentine is a writer, qualified personal trainer and mother of three. email@example.com.