Corinne Austin | Personal Training

Tri in July

I feel pretty special that I have been able to regularly contribute to the health section of Northlands longest running newspaper for the last three years now. This is my 82nd submission – I can’t believe I’ve found 82 different health topics to write on!

My intention has always been to educate you all on a spectrum of health and fitness topics, but to ultimately inspire every one of you to embrace the greatness of living a healthy lifestyle.

It’s the middle of winter, and don’t we know it. Darkness surrounds us as we depart for and return from work. The heating systems in our homes have been turned on, our winter jackets and cardigans have made it back to a place of easy access in our wardrobes, and we just generally spend more time indoors. We turn to stodgier foods to warm our bellies, and many of us tend to avoid our planned walks or exercise sessions because it’s too cold, dark, or miserable outside. To put it bluntly, we hibernate.

So I thought I’d try to inspire you out of your winter hibernation zone by throwing a healthy challenge to you all. One that’ll keep you occupied, keep you off the couch, re-awaken positive energies, and give you a fantastic head-start to summer.

I’ve titled in ‘Tri in July’. And since it’s exactly the 1st day of July as you’re reading this then there is absolutely not a better time to start. And it’s absolutely free, so there really shouldn’t be an excuse to not join in the fun!

How does the ‘Tri in July’ challenge work? Well, listed below are 12 different health or fitness challenges. You each must select three (as in a triathlon). They must then ‘tri’ to complete all three before the end of July. Do not fear, this challenge is not just for the seasoned exerciser. There are challenges for anyone and everyone, even if this may be your first step back into a health and fitness journey.

I encourage each and every one of you to give this a go. We all know we should be exercising regularly. Here’s your chance to do something magical with the month of July; something that may turn your life around.

Select three of the following twelve health challenges to complete in the month of July:

  1. Walk or run 77 kilometres.
  2. Trial a new exercise class (aqua-robics, body balance, yoga – your choice) and attend 4 sessions over the month.
  3. Avoid coffee, tea, juices, fizzies, and alcohol. Drink only herbal tea or water (with a squeeze of lemon juice).
  4. Of the 31 days in July, do 30 minutes of yoga or other stretching activity on 20 days.
  5. Buy a maximum of two meals each week. Make sure all other meals are made at (or brought from) home.
  6. Include three vegies in your lunch every day.
  7. Join a gym and attend 7 times.
  8. Take 20 deep breaths every day.
  9. Find, prepare and cook four new healthy meals – check out for over 2000 recipes.
  10. Complete 500 bodyweight squats and 350 kneeling press-ups.
  11. Make an appointment with at least two of the following health professionals: GP, chiropractor, osteopath, massage therapist, personal trainer, physiotherapist, homeopath, or nutritionist. Ask for an ‘assessment’ and discover all the places where you could tidy up your health. This is a great idea to help you understand and realise what your next health goal could be.
  12. Plan twenty minutes of ‘quiet’ time activity three days every week. This is time you need to plan and set aside and which you carry out in a room or area that has no distractions, no noise, and is free from interruptions. Everybody should do this. This is not only good for us, but the results of having the ‘quiet’ time will transfer to our work, our work colleagues, and our friends and loved ones too. It’s a great time to get the chaos out of your head, to rest your mind, and to be grateful for all the wonderful things in your life.

Do not delay. This a great friendly little challenge for you all. Whether you’re a busy corporate, semi-retired, a stay-at-home mum, or a busy student, there is something in there for everyone. So choose the three challenges which stick out to you and that you know will actually challenge you for the better. Get your hubby, wife, kids, or best friend involved. Get stuck in, and embrace your health this winter.

For any questions or comments email