Ironically watching sport is one of the least healthy pastimes. Days of sitting, combined with fast food and alcohol will leave you feeling sluggish, stiff, and perhaps even a little guilty. Fitness professional and Director of Healthy Balance Fitness, Jodie Arnot, shares some hot tips for how to keep your health and fitness resolutions on track during the Australian Open.
Move More – There’s an app for that
Sitting on your butt all day will make you feel stiff and lethargic. I encourage you to try to get up and move around as much as you can between matches. Walk around Melbourne Park – there’s plenty to see! – and stand up whenever you can. Sitting is killing us!
The World Health Organisation recommends we all take 10,000 steps per day to maintain good health. If you have an iPhone 5s I encourage you to try out a free app that I love called Pedometer++. This app magically counts the number of steps you take over the day just by carrying your phone with you! Or keep it simple by wearing a simple pedometer on your waistband. Keeping an eye on your step tally will help encourage you to get up and move as much as possible.
Swing by the Tan Track
One of Melbourne’s most famous fitness meccas is the track that encircles the botanical gardens, famously known as “The Tan”. It’s only a short, scenic walk from Rod Laver across the river. Don your sneakers and join hundreds of walkers, joggers and dogs in a lap or two. One lap is 3.8 km and choosing clockwise will mean you’ll get to experience the infamous Anderson Street uphill. Guaranteed to break a sweat!
Hire a blue bike
Melbourne’s bike share program is a great way for visitors to take a spin around the sights of Melbourne while getting some exercise too.
If crowded trams aren’t your thing, a ride to the Open might just be the way to go. Find the clearly marked bike racks in 50 locations throughout the city insert your credit card and you’re ready to ride. The first 30 minutes of any trip is free so you can do a stack of short rides for nothing. Simply return the bike at any designated bike rack – there’s one right outside Melbourne Park.
Don’t forget that you’re required by law to wear a helmet when riding in Victoria. You can grab a $5 helmet at many 7 Elevens and IGAs, and it may just double as a kooky sunhat!
Take a dip
The Australian Open is notoriously hot. Eyeball drying, skin scorching, pools of sweat kind of heat. After a long day of tennis adventures, a swim will be a welcome way to get some exercise. MSAC in South Melbourne is one of Melbourne’s largest, most impressive aquatic centres. Not limited to indoor and outdoor pools, you can hire sports courts of all kinds, or hit the gym and group fitness programs. You might just spot an athlete or two!
Wear or pack your sneakers
One of the best ways to encourage yourself to be more active is to wear shoes and clothes that are conducive to exercise. If you wear your sneakers to the ground you’re much more likely to want to walk back to your accommodation. The bike and pedestrian path along the Yarra river is stunning, and out-of-towners won’t get lost if they follow this back to the city. If you’re conscious about keeping up with the fashion pack at the Open just take your trainers with you in a suitably stylish bag.
Take healthy food with you
Not only will you be sitting all day, you’ll be tempted with copious amounts of fried food, sugary cold treats, and alcoholic beverages. Resisting the temptation to pig out all day is much easier if you pack an assortment of delicious, healthy snacks. Stick to water as much as you can – you’ll need the hydration! Take a small, soft cooler bag with an icepack and fill it with fruit, homemade salad and lean meat wraps, hummus and veggie sticks, and nuts. I can’t be responsible for the envious drooling you’ll cause. Double check what you can and can’t bring along.
Sweat before you go
Set your alarm 30 minutes earlier and spring out of bed for a DIY hotel room/home workout before your shower. Not sure what exercises to do or what will fit in a space with barely enough room to turn around? Check out our hotel room workout here. You’ll be patting yourself on the back all day.
Use that inspiration
After watching the greats in action, I’m sure you’ll be itching to get on the court. Hire a court (and racquet) for an hour at Melbourne University or Albert Reserve and make like Federer or Sharapova for 60 minutes.
Aim to move a little more and eat a little less junk and your body will thank you for it by the time the Open is over.
About the Writer:
Jodie Arnot is director of Healthy Balance Fitness a multi-award winning group fitness business based in Melbourne, Australia. Jodie has 15 years of experience in the industry and is passionate about inspiring non-exercisers to discover their love for workouts.
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