Well, Spring seems to have sprung and along with it a sudden unexpected interest in gardening! This week has seen me out in the garden armed with secateurs hacking away at anything that didn’t move. My arms are certainly feeling as though they’ve had a good workout!
The only downside to all this lovely spring weather is the unwelcome return of my Hayfever and associated problems!
I’ve been bravely battling on though and have finally finished filming my new collection of Fitness DVDs. They’re now in Editing but I can’t wait to see the end results!
I’ve also been working on some personal fitness programmes for some lovely competition winners that I met recently in Prague
This weekend I had the honour of coaching young atheletes alongside Steve Green of stevegreenfitness.co.uk. I can honestly say that Steve is one of my all time heroes – a real coaching Guru who has become one of the top Conditioning coaches in the world.
Well, the kids broke up for Easter a few days ago and with the nice weather I can see that the local swimming pool and tennis courts are going to feature quite large. The youngest Maxwell is also booked onto a council run Cricket course which he’s really looking forward to.
I’ve also decided that we need to give out National Trust card a bit more of a bashing – we’re very lucky to have a few properties locally that are ideal for long family walks.
We’re also not too far from the wonderfully historic Penshurst Place and it’s lovely adventure playground. I took the youngest Maxwell there last week and me being me I couldn’t help ignoring the sign that says ‘under 16s’ only – I had a fantastic workout on the equipment! I was enthusing about it to my assistant Kate and she suggested that we build our own one at home using all the trees that blew down in the recent gales – food for thought!
Well we’ve actually done it! we’ve finally made a permanent move to the country! This week we moved into our new home (that we own rather than rent) – it’s been a long old process as I reminded Mr M last night when we watched an old DVD of us appearing on the BBC’s ‘Escape to the Country’. I’d secretly applied for us to be on the programme years ago when I wanted to move to the country but he didn’t – sneaky eh? Through the course of the programme we only viewed three country properties but by the third I’d won him round and many years of viewing properties in several different counties followed!
So our new home is hard won but worth it – I love waking up every morning looking out onto nothing but fields
My usual regime of fitting in exercise around all my other chores, has for the last week revolved around the lifting of an excessive amount of boxes. They may mostly contain rubbish but my arms are definitely ready for the shorter sleeves of summer!
In between the move I’ve thankfully still managed to put in my stint coaching at Tonbridge Athletics club. As always I’m in awe of the total dedication given by this amazing group of professionals. They give up their time, not for money but through a sheer love of sport and a desire to realise the dreams of the next generation of Sports men and women.
So after an exhausting week or so I’m very excited to be off on a trip to Berlin! I’ve never been before so I’d love to get some tweets from all you lovely people with ideas of places to visit – @SarahMax100
Happy 2014 everyone! Here’s to a Happy and Healthy new YOU!!
I’ve started the year with some fantastic news – Bloom Retreats have been included in The Times top 50 Retreats for 2014! and not only that but they’re featured right now in the February addition of MarieClaire, so why not run off some of that Christmas excess by nipping down the shops to purchase a copy!
As a quick reminder (and because I love talking about them , the Bloom Retreats are held at Lynne Frank’s idyllic Majorcan hideaway in Deia. In Lynne’s words the Retreats are all about: “bringing women together so that they can fulfill their true potential and lead authentic and rewarding lives”.
I’m delighted to announce that I will be running two more Fitness Retreats, the dates of which are May 20 – 25 and September 26 – Oct 1. The programme of other Bloom courses is also really exciting – Lynn herself will sharing her wisdom on her ‘Women’s Creative Leadership’ course and Elaine Kingett (whose company I was delighted to have on my own course last year) will be leading ‘Writing, Walking & Meditation’. There are lots more on offer (see the full range at www.bloomretreats.com).
To book please contact email address hidden
Hope to see some of you there!
After many years away from Athletics I was very excited a few weeks ago when Tonbridge Athletics club accepted my offer to do some voluntary coaching. When I turned up the first week, the adrenalin rush that hit confirmed to me just how much I had missed the whole world of Athletics.
I have to say that there is some serious talent there (including I’m sure some future Olympians!) and they are a delight to teach! I’m now starting to get quite excited about the Brazil Olympics!
In the meantime my Claygate team are going great guns and their fitness sessions with me should see them in peak condition for the Christmas parties!
My outdoor classes on our local common also continue despite the new chill in the air, it’s been a good measure of general hardiness though as I’ve seen numbers drop off as the drizzle has set in. Unfortunately we have to accept that we live in England not the Carribbean, and have started devising a new workout that can be done whilst wearing Wellies and rainhats!
Well, the season of mellow mists and general sogginess is upon us once again but I have some lovely memories of September’s Retreat in Deia, Majorca to keep me warm for a while longer. As usual we had a really lovely bunch of ladies of varied ability and with very different needs but by the end of the week they had all achieved a lot and felt fabulous!
We were lucky to have picked a week when the fresh fruit and veg on the Estate was at its best and every morning I started the day by doing the rounds with a basket ‘harvesting’ goodies to make big fresh salads. The little organic tomatoes especially were incredible and we all gorged ourselves on Persimmons growing wild on the terrace trees.
Of course every trip has its funny moments and ours was getting lost on a hike – we had to be rescued by the lovely Monika with her car. Please be assured that on the next Retreat I will have thoroughly pre-checked the route and gained a mastery of both map and Sat Nav!
Bloom Fitness Retreat May 19th – May 24th 2014
Sept. 26th – Oct. 1st 2014
Please contact the lovely Monika to book your place( Monika’s e mail is on the website, I can’t post it for some reason!)
May 19th – May 24th 2014
Sept. 26th – Oct. 1st 2014
I love spas. I’ve been to loads of them all around the world and have to say I’m now something of a connoisseur. So when I moved away from London I confess I was very worried that I wouldn’t find anything that could match the heady heights experienced in the big smoke. Happily I was wrong. My husband gave me a voucher for The Green Door in Marden, Kent shortly after we moved and a month later I was a confirmed regular. To find this gem in a small village in Kent that ticks every box is a delight. Everytime I go, Kelly and Nicky make sure I’m buff and ready to face the world. Trudi, Director of the Green Door, started her career at the Sanctuary Spa in London before managing The Mandarin Oriental Spa in Hong Kong for 5 years. On her return in 2000 she dreamed of opening a day spa and now the dream has become a reality in Marden in Kent. I am a lucky girl indeed
This year I booked my pre holiday session with the lovely Nicky. As a special treat Nicky gave me a free treatment from their new range and it was wonderful. I’m booked in the salon in September and will make sure I add it to my list.
If you happen to be in the area or simply want a wonderful spa day out I would highly recommend the Green Door
I know I nag you all every summer but it really is important to try and stay healthy on holiday! All that work you put into getting a Bikini Body – it’s madness to then spend two weeks being totally inactive and stuffing yourself with chips – you’ll come back feeling tired and bloated. It makes far more sense to use the opportunity to exercise in different ways in different surroundings.
This summer we’re going to Gozo and I shall be combining work and play – I especially need to keep in shape this summer as I have filming for my new series of fitness DVDs when I get back. I have lots of favourite ways to do this out there – the beach is a half hour walk from the house for a start (for those of you that have to climb down a cliff to get to the beach you’re even luckier!). When we get to the beach, the inflatables we use (a Mantaray and a Killer Whale) were craftily chosen by me to be difficult to get onto – plenty of exercise is obtained through repeated climbing on and falling offs!
Big Girl will come training along the beach with me – usually either an early morning power walk or run-walk combined with circuits on the beach (incorporating wave jumping etc). Walking knee deep in the water along the shoreline for a mile to buy healthy snacks is a fantastic cooling exercise.
I also find that digging myself out of live buriel in the sand by the kids provides quite a lot of exercise!
Every evening we might even round off the day with a game of frisbee or rounders on the beach.
Away from the beach, we always go Self Catering so that I can make sure we eat healthily. Around the house itself, I’ve devised cunning plans to keep us in shape – every other day we do a 20 minute circuit round the house and I wear pads on my feet to polish the floor – it looks a bit as though I’m auditioning for ‘Dancing on Ice’ but it definitely gets me moving!
The sun is shining and Festival Season is upon us! we’ve just returned from the wonderful ‘Latitude’ festival in Suffolk – it bills itself as ‘more than just a music festival’ and it certainly was – a mixture of music, theatre, comedy, caberet and dance to name just a few. I would describe it as totally magical – from the pink painted sheep to the woods lit up at night.
It was the kid’s first festival and to be honest I was a bit apprehensive about taking them but needn’t have been as it was SO family friendly – they were able to experience a new level of freedom as it was such a safe environment – in fact Eldest Maxwell and her friend would disappear off on their own for most of each day.
I was also able to experience something totally new – a ‘She Wee’! For the uninitiated among you, this is a disposable plastic contraption that allows us ladies to use a urinal. I have to say it was one of the weirdest experiences of my life – I won’t go into to much detail but in short it involved standing on tiptoes to wee frontways into a trough in a ‘shower cubicle’ needless to say I made a complete hash of it – it’s definitely a technique that needs a lot of practise – perhaps I should incorporate it into my Pelvic Floor routine?
Anyway, moving swiftly back to the festival… we didn’t get much sleep (the music went on until 3am) but I was expecting that and we would have Siestas with earplugs every afternoon before all the events started at 4pm. I did find sleeping on an airbed hard going and every morning I would wake up really stiff as if I’d done a really heavy workout the day before. I spotted some other fit looking people around the site in the morning doing their stretches, on chatting to them I found that they were all experiencing the same thing – it’s interesting that if you train regularly you really do notice inactivity!
However – on the whole we managed to keep quite healthy. We would have a big breakfast every morning (cooked on our gas burner which decided to die on us half way through and we had to buy another) but during the day the selection and quality of food on offer was amazing. We got a fair amount of exercise as we were on the go the whole time – either walking between Arenas or jumping up and down to the music. We even took part in a dance lesson at one stage in a bid to improve our Saturday Night Fever routine.
I even switched from wine to cider (it was organic though, wink!)
For a while now, I’ve been writing articles for the family fitness magazine ‘The System’ (if there are any PTs reading this blog, the magazine is always on the lookout for new articles). Please contact Steve via his website www.stevegreenfitness.co.uk to get your free copy or to submit as article.
This wonderful freebie is edited by one of the best conditioning coaches in the world, Steve Green who has trained some of the Greats: Tim Henman, Greg Rusedski and … Cliff Richard. Steve has always been a hero of mine, I have learnt a huge amount from him over the years and it’s wonderful to see that his fitpack system is taking off in schools and showing kids how to exercise in a fun, safe way.
I remember back when I lived in London I used to watch him training Cliff on Wimbledon Common. Cliff would appear at the beginning of the session looking pristine in super clean whites and reappear an hour later looking like the Swamp Monster! The training worked though – at the time Cliff was playing Heathcliff in Wuthering Heights and he did actually look rather hunky – I have to say though that for me, nothing beats Colin Firth and his dripping shirt.