Utilising 182 park venues around Australia, it’s a very non-pressured, fun, social initiative that’s about getting people out there and realising ‘wow I can actually do 5k’, says Michelle.
We caught up with Australia’s most recognised personal trainer to find out more:
Why did you want to back this project and what makes it so unique?
Well I teamed up with Medibank because we both have the same passion. Our first initiative is Personal Better Day on Saturday, September 3. It’s a great event, it sends a message that I personally always try to spread: [when it comes to exercise] it’s all about inclusiveness; anyone can come along, people of all ages and abilities.
You don’t have to be a professional sprinter; we want to encourage people to turn up, whether it is with their kids and pram or their dogs or their best friends who they just want to talk with the whole 5k. It’s a real community event.
Why do you think it’s better to work out in a group?
I personally believe that to be the case; there is plenty of research out there that shows us that we will act in a more positive way and have a more interactive mind set than if we are just working out on our own. This is the emphasis of the event; you join like-minded people in the community and become part of a team, which is uplifting in itself.
Do you have any tips for people to kick-start their fitness routine for spring/summer?
I would say, take the pressure off yourself. Don’t self-sabotage. Let exercise be a really fun, interactive and social way for you to stay fit and healthy. Don’t compare yourself to what you might have been like when you were in high school at the age of 18, when you now might be a 38-year-old woman with three kids and a full-time job. Take all of that pressure away and go ‘you know what I’m going to go out there and be the best version of myself today and enjoy it for what it is’.
Having just recently had a another child yourself, do you have any fitness tips for new mums who are maybe finding it difficult to get back out there?
I think being outside; you can’t beat it! Whether you are a brand new mum or a stressed out worker, there’s nothing better than going out to a park and enjoying your surroundings. I always say to people take your shoes off, connect with the ground, walk on the grass, get your breathing back. You don’t even have to break a sweat, just get in touch with yourself and get back to nature. These are the kinds of things that ground you, yes all the problems and stresses of life might still be there but you will probably have a slightly different perspective on them and it will help you to decompress.
Do you have any particular workouts you like to do with children?
I love getting out to the park and doing a bit of a jog or walk with the kids and the pram. Or even I will put my youngest in a baby carrier and do some squats or lunges with him. I love a good inclusive family workout.
Why is the Personal Better Day over 5k?
5km is a really smart distance, it’s enough to make you feel like you have achieved something but it’s not too much that you feel wiped out for the rest of the day. It’s a distance that people can run or walk in a reasonable time frame.
As a big fitness personality in Australia, what inspired you to collaborate with Medibank?
Our philosophies align: as far as getting Australians healthier, being inclusive when it comes to exercise, eating better, having a regular and consistent routine of exercise and having an overall personal better well-being. That’s why we have come together to try and create as many initiatives and projects as we can to create a healthier Australia.
Do you have any final fitness tips or words of advise?
My number one tip when it comes to exercise, nutrition, health and mind set, above everything else, is consistency. Just be consistent. You don’t have to be like an Olympic athlete or eat like a Tibetan monk on a mountaintop in Nepal. Just be consistent and think ‘what activity can I do today that will support me in my health and mind set or what can I eat that’s good for me‘. Small steps.
You can sign up for a Personal Better Day near you here.