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It's not a good time to be mulch. As of yesterday, contamination had been found at more than 45 sites across the state and sadly that seems to have included Bicentennial Park. Paul shared photographic evidence of the ugly fences (thanks, Paul!) and all sessions at Glebe from Wednesday onward were run at the arches (normally reserved for wet weather). Andy and Poppy will continue to monitor the situation and make decisions to ensure the group's safety. Hopefully you'll find interesting challenges at the temporary location and be back in more picturesque surroundings in no time. 

 


All evidence suggests Kathryn is having a fabulous time in India. I'm sure she'll have plenty of stories upon her return, but in the meantime, what a stunning photo in front of the Taj Mahal.



This week's focus is a big one: I like big glutes an´ I can-not lie... More is better when it comes to glutes, especially if speed is your goal. Strong glutes will help you run faster by literally pushing you uphill, providing essential power and stability. From a more functional perspective, they are vital to prevent injury. Strong glutes protect the lower back, hips, knees and ankles by creating proper alignment and stability. Where issues already exist, strong glutes can improve plantar fasciitis, decrease calf tension, and relieve pelvic floor tension and deep hip rotator pain. The positives don't end there. Years ago, my sciatic pain was resolved through improved glute function - what a relief! 


We are spoilt for choice when it comes to glute exercises. Lunges, squats, dead lifts, bridges, kicks, hip thrusts, and step-ups are all on the menu. Varying the tempo, adding weight and including isometric holds, are all beneficial in working slow and fast-twitch fibers to optimise strength and performance. Make sure you're mindful of squeezing your glutes to ensure good activation, and work through the full range of motion.


It's important to remember that a strong muscle isn’t a tight one. By definition, strong muscles need to be able to lengthen in order to contract. Tight muscles are often weak muscles that need more strengthening through their full range. The better active range you have in the hip, the more you’ll benefit from naturally using your glutes for everyday life. If you're working hard to build strong glutes, it's definitely worth taking the time to balance this with some hip and glute stretches (or a fabulous yoga session!). Your posture, balance (and butt) will thank you. 


Photos for the week are below as always. Have a fabulous weekend!






Let's start by welcoming newcomer Sarah! Hopefully you enjoyed your first session in Glebe and will be back for more fun (and work) next week. Tanya also deserves a special mention, as she managed to beat Andy to the punch on Sunday, sending her sessions through before he'd even sent the text out. Love your enthusiasm, Tanya! You made Andy's day... And for anyone not on social media, it was great to see these happy faces, finishing last week STRONG!


 

Meteorology school should really be a prerequisite for outdoor trainers. Andy and Poppy give it their best, but its a tricky science and I know they appreciate your good humour on the days when the weather gods throw a curve ball. Speaking of wet weather, Poppy's Wednesday group had the pleasure of exploring a different corner of the park this week, using the pavilion for their yoga session. 

 


 

If you've not seen the video of Psalty and Georgie in the Sydney to Hobart, jump on the Whatsapp group to take a look. What an incredible experience!


This week I'd like to encourage you to focus on good form, posture and breathing. All three are vital during exercise regardless of your goals, and can sometimes suffer if we are tired or really pushing to increase the load. Maintaining proper form not only aids in building strength and endurance but also reduces the risk of injury. Be sure to pay attention to the alignment of your arms and legs, particularly when performing exercises such as burpees, push-ups, squats, and lunges. When running, maintain a straight back and lift your head to enhance speed and endurance. Additionally, focus on proper breathing techniques to effectively engage your core, manage fatigue and stay focused throughout the session. If you've got all that sorted, a smile can't hurt either!


Here's your weekly highlights. Have a fabulous weekend.









It wasn't a typical week with Poppy being unwell, but hopefully everyone was able to get to what they needed from other sessions. I'm sure I can speak for everyone in wishing Poppy a speedy recovery!


Congratulations to those who showed resilience by turning up in the pouring rain on Tuesday. Nothing is getting in the way of YOUR goals!!



Resilience leads to success in so many endeavours, including the pursuit of fitness goals. Setting specific, measurable goals is an important first step, but resilience enables us to weather the storms (sometimes literally) and continue toward our desired outcomes.


The importance of goal setting won't be new to anyone, but let's refresh our memories:


  1. Setting goals significantly improves your chances of success.

  2. Setting fitness goals guides your actions and tracks your progress.

  3. Without goals, it's easy to lose focus and neglect intentions.

  4. Regularly checking and updating your goals keeps you motivated and on track. 

Fitness goals make workouts more efficient, help you progress faster, and provide a clear measure of your achievements, keeping you motivated when obstacles come along.


Assuming you know what you want to achieve and how you intend to do it, you're left with taking action. You're more likely to succeed if you have a plan. One of the primary reasons for Andy's text on Sundays, along with managing resources, is to get you to make that plan. Making a commitment on Sunday sets you up for success, by encouraging accountability to yourself and your goals. Don't let the weeks slip by. Text through your intentions first thing on Sunday and make the week count. 


It looks like you've had a great week - rain, hail or... extreme humidity. The proof's below. Have a fabulous weekend!


 





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