The Streets may have sung “You’re Fit But Don’t You Know It,” but we here at TNT are more of the ‘get fit without knowing it’ kind of people. Whether it’s weight lifting cartons of beer, or getting into a heated pool match at the pub, we like to get our fitness on without being told we’ve almost burnt the calories of the Mars Bar we had for breakfast. In fact, it’s better if you don’t tell us that we’re getting fit. It can be enough to turn our stomachs. And we’re not condoning bulimia either, unless of course you mean the many times we lost our breakfast while Zorbing or skydiving after a big night. Anyway, like the hardy journalists that we are, we got out there and tested some of the many ways to exercise while having a good time. Because Zumba – as fun as that word sounds – is really not that fun. Here’s what we came up with…
Trapeze the day
Did you ever threaten your parents that you were going to run away with the circus? Well, now your childhood tantrums can come true. At Sydney’s Trapeze School the instructors will have you flying through the air within the first hour of class, and unlike regular circus folk, they don’t smell like cabbage. In the heart of Centennial Park you’ll find an outdoor flying trapeze set up in the sky (complete with safety net). Classes host around 12 people so you’re not waiting too long in the sun before you’re climbing the ladder, dusting your hands with chalk and reaching for the bar. As you listen to the shouts from the instructor on the ground you’ll master it in a few attempts. While you’re soaring through the air you’ll actually be toning your upper body and core muscles, and improving your flexibility. And unlike the sports that beat you down, trapeze is great for your self-confidence. Especially when a stranger tells you to dangle your body in the air upside down and latch onto their arms as you defy gravity – and common sense. Indoor classes available year-round in St Peters. See sydneytrapezeschool.com.
Get your Batman on!
If you are afraid of heights and haven’t tried skydiving or bungy jumping before, this high-altitude sports craze probably isn’t for you. But for those lovers of crazy athletics, Wingsuit Flying could be the answer to that dream of becoming a superhero. Okay, you’re not saving the world, but you can finally fulfill the fantasy of being able to fly. Wingsuit Flying is a cross between hangliding and skydiving. You still have to pull a parachute chord, but the descent is slower then skydiving, allowing you to soar horizontally and do some aerial acrobatics. Great for developing those core muscles and feeling like you don’t have a care in the world. It is the exercise story to beat everyone’s pitiful attempts at the gym. 5dwingsuiting.com (By Rosemarie Marino)
Climb the walls
Want to burn up to 800 calories in an hour? Rain, hail or shine, there is a place you can go to re-enact the daring explorer within. Indoor rock climbing is one of the best ways to strengthen muscles you didn’t even know existed while having fun. Being a completely un-cliché way to work out, some of the areas you can expect to improve in are strength, balance, weight loss, muscle development and cardio health. It has been said to be like yoga on a wall, because you are using your arms to heave yourself up and legs to push yourself forward. To begin, you’ll generally climb shorter walls or little bouldering caves without a rope or harness. Make some goals and commit to it, and one day you could be climbing upside down on the roof! indoorclimbing.com.au (By Rosemarie Marino)
Party the carbs away
Get rid of that stage fright in a group based ‘Cardioke’ workout. Normally you’d need to be heavily intoxicated to get up and sing in front of a crowd, but this new trend channels those fears and turns them in to an interesting high energy laugh, therefore burning away more of the beer belly. Either attached to the exercise bike, or projected on a big screen, the tunes you know and love will distract your body from the pain and help you to push through to some total body burning! There are even slight developments of Karaoke Yoga, incorporating the ever so important ‘air guitar’ pose. cardiokedvd.com ( By Rosemarie Marino)
Rock n rolling
If you haven’t already heard, a great way to keep in shape is by joining a Roller Derby team. The contact sport has been around since the 1920s with a resurgence in the 70s (and recently when the film Whip It came out). It’s mainly female dominated but lately it has a growing number of males taking part too. To play, two teams must skate in the same direction around a track. Teams have a scoring player – the ‘jammer’ who gains points by overtaking members of the opposite team on a full lap, whilst the others block their opposition. The game has become so popular that you’ll find a league in most towns in Australia and is even under consideration for the 2020 Olympics. If you are looking for a somewhat more tame option, give ice-skating or roller-blading on a normal rink a try. You will still get the cardio and strength, just not the intensity and fun as a win with your team would be. Most rinks are fully equipped with a DJ and skate hire, so grab some friends and make an afternoon of it. sydneyrollerderby.com.au (By Rosemarie Marino)