Friends who train together, stay together

Not every gym session has to be programmed and followed rigidly, sometimes it’s good to just hit the gym with your friends and do what you fancy. Not only is it fun but it also reminded me why I love training so much. I laughed whilst trying to hula-hoop, exhausted myself on the battle ropes and flipped a 60kg tyre around the gym floor with my best friend – what could be better than that!?

Kicking off 2015 with two training sessions on New Year’s Day my friend Liana and I headed to her gym (Virgin Active) for a training session where we pretty much spent an hour and a half working on technique and discovering new, fun ways to train. It had probably been a good six months since I had trained in a commercial gym so I was like a little kid in a sweet shop when I got there, jumping on boxes, checking out the free weights area and getting my feet all caught up in the TRX bands.

Laughing as we got caught up in the TRX bands

Laughing as we got caught up in the TRX bands

Liana and I started by going back to our primary school roots with a hula hoop session. The last time I picked up a hoop I was probably in Year 3 with my hair in a high pony tail and wearing ankle socks…not much has changed really! Although we were just having a laugh it is actually a really good workout. Hula hooping is great for your core as it requires you to keep your abs engaged at all times. It can also be used to help tone the rest of your body. For example try spinning the hoop on one arm held straight up above your head whilst keeping your abs engaged. To tone the lower half of your body try and spin the hoop around your knees whilst keeping the glutes and abs tight to reap the rewards of this fun exercise.

Next we headed for the battle ropes. This was the first time I had been able to try these and I was excited to do so after seeing lots of workout videos on Instagram of people using them, particularly ultra runner Bec Wilcock. Using battle ropes is a great low impact training method yet it can still yield big results. It puts less stress on your joints but still gives you a really good workout which builds muscle and burns fat simultaneously. Not only that but you can also take them outside and tie them anywhere which means that come summer time it’s the perfect excuse to ditch the gym and train in the park.

We also worked on our squat technique before moving on to one of my favourite exercises, pull ups. I’ll never forget the day I did my first pull up, mainly because it was on my birthday, but also because it was a goal of mine to do at least one before 2015. Liana also got her first one on New Year’s Day which was very exciting for both of us.

We finished our New Year’s Day workout with a three minute power plate blast with some running intervals in between which was a lot tougher than it sounds, trust me! Basically, we started 2015 as we mean to go on with plenty of training but also having lots of fun whilst working hard. Bring on the rest of the year 🙂