30 days of fitness – part 4

I definitely had higher expectations of myself at the start of this month, in setting my “exercise everyday” challenge. In hindsight, was it too ambitious? No. Was I just too busy? Maybe, not really? I had a good number of lazy days, that’s what happened basically. 

I am ending the month on the right note at least. Exercise ALL the remaining days until Malta! Unless I don’t..

Day 28: Not hungover per se, but definitely feeling the effects of a day in the sun with booze and not enough water.  After spending all day working from bed in my PJs, I got into my running gear and jogged around (some of) Victoria Park. Finished with sit ups and burpees at the outdoor gym.

Day 29: Monday BJJ with the morning crew. Best start to the week. After running yesterday I was even less bendy than usual, bit ouch, but an enjoyable ouch.

Day 30: Jose was all about the pad work in Muay Thai class this morning. Only 10 minutes of other cardio hell instead of the usual hour+. I got paired with a southpaw which, along with needing to remember some long-ish combos certainly got my brain firing.

30 days of fitness – part 2

“How long now until you’re at the beach?” My flatmate Viktor doesn’t read my blog but he knows ALL about my fitness challenge – mostly due to all the extra washing I’ve been doing. 20 days to go! I’ve had a few ‘nope’ days so far, and let’s be honest there’s probably a few more ahead, but I’m already exercising more frequently than usual so, winning right?

Day 13: Very much an Amsterdam recovery day – and by that I mean recovery from two big work days. I slept a lot, but I did muster the energy to do a hula hoop workout, which my neglected-of-late hoop was surely pleased about.

Day 14: Ran to Mile End Park for some hill sprints. No Matt to keep me going but, there were two other guys already there doing the same thing. I did more than I would have all on my own, simply because I would have felt silly starting after and finishing before them! Finished with some skipping and bootstrappers.

Day 15: Fightzone London has a new timetable! And there’s now an extra 7am BJJ class, so that’s how I started my working week.

I’m really excited to be able to train three times a week now at my favourite time of day. The gym has also expanded to upstairs meaning a third mat, and a weights room.

Day 16: So Muay Thai coach Jose was in punisher mode this morning; 1.5 hours of sprints, punching and kicking drills, squat-kicking, more running, dreaded burpees and more. And I managed to knock myself in the head with a 7kg medicine ball.. I’m good like that.

Day 17: Morning crew BJJ class FTW!

Day 18: Working from home day since I was heading to Strasbourg (via Basel) in the evening. Was a tad stressed and hadn’t finished packing fully, so was up early to do that, then left mid-afternoon for the long tube trek to Heathrow. Needless to say, the exercisy didn’t happen. Flight delay did though, annoyingly. Not overly long but, saw me arrive after midnight. Bleh!

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Finally boarding. Lucky I love you, British Airways.

30 days of fitness

There’s nothing like an upcoming beach holiday to get you motivated! Do I care about being “bikini body ready?” Nope. But I DO want to feel comfortable getting about in next-to-nothing in Malta for two weeks, and right now I don’t.

So, here’s me holding myself to account; nothing is stopping me from making sure I get some kind of workout in for the next 30 days.

I’m also back on the MyFitnessPal app for good measure, it’s a pain, but tracking what I eat and inputting my exercise definitely helps me to keep it up.

Day 1: Morning Muay Thai class. 1.5 hours. Lots of pad combinations, short set of sprints at the end.

Day 2: BJJ with the morning crew. 30 mins drilling technique, 35 mins sparring rounds.

Day 3: Morning Muay Thai class. Jose began the class by asking if any of us were sick – then he proceeded to punish us with a crazy 1 hour 15 min workout. Timed pad combos broken up with burpees and sprints and squats and planks and other horrors. I dread how my body will feel tomorrow.

Day 4: Morning crew BJJ. As expected I woke up feeling like I’d been hit by a truck from yesterday’s session. 30 min drills, we had to stack each other and it’s hard for me on a normal day, but after a few days of exercise in a row my body is about as bendy as a steel rod. 30 mins rolling rounds, got my nose squished, a close-but-not-quite sub on Matt and now it’s off to work.

Day 5: TGIF! Had a much-needed sleep in after four early mornings in a row. Going to get my fitness on by walking home from my work in Holborn Circus. Takes about an hour, and my body wants something low impact today.

Update: Walking home successful, got a little wet (didn’t bring a brolly OR a weatherproof to work today, doh!). But I scored a rainbow for my troubles. 

Day 6: I would normally hill run with Matt but that didn’t happen, instead my friend Anthony was doing his practical assessment to be a Personal Trainer and asked if I could be his guinea pig – no worries! He passed with flying colours, and I worked up a sweat. 👍🏻

Day 7: There were a few activities I could have easily done today, but for stupid, mostly lazy reasons, I didn’t. Fail day. 

On a bright note I did catch up with an old friend, and I smashed out three freelance articles. 

Day 8: Another nope day. I even packed my Muay Thai gear for evening class, but tired and cranky won. 

Day 9: Back to it! Amazing how much better you feel after a good sleep. Just finished BJJ class with the morning crew. Didn’t get a sub but did have side control and mount on Pete for a solid time in rolling rounds. This rarely happens with anyone so, pretty happy. 

Day 10: Ashamed to say it was another nope day. Traveling for work, got to the hotel late and smashed a wheel of Dutch cheese instead of smashing out some sit-ups. 

Day 11: Well I didn’t pig on cheese today, but I didn’t work out either. We did a two-hour Amsterdam walking tour so I guess it wasn’t all meetings and work meals. 

Day 12: Got up early and took my skipping rope to Vondelpark for 30 mins of skipping and sprints. Feeling great for getting sweaty! 

(Almost) Four Nights In Bangkok.

** BJJ talk halfway in 😉 **

I scheduled my flight to London via the Thai capital to see the lovely Marissa, who has moved there for work. I can honestly say Bangkok would not have been on my radar otherwise.

Rather than rush around doing the touristy thing I made no plans, there more to hang out with my friend and relax. In hindsight a few things I should have pre planned, like an empty suitcase for all the cheap shopping and tailor made clothes!

But I had a great time getting to know Marissa’s bustling neighbourhood in the embassy district, window shopping in Siam, having a spa treatment, riding the incredibly efficient BTS (skytrain) – mustering the courage to take a short ride on the back of a scooter (yes I’m a scaredy cat) and of course a spin in a tuk tuk, which I thought was definitely going to tip over the way we were screaming around corners at 1am!

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Watching Muay Thai fights at Lumpinee Boxing Stadium is a great experience, not just for what’s going on in the ring but it’s one of the few places in Thailand where gambling and betting is allowed – so there’s a lot of action in the stands.


Being driven from the airport by a drunk cabbie – not such a great experience, truly I don’t know how we weren’t involved in a crash with another car – or the concrete freeway barriers.

There are many hilarious, sober tuk tuk and taxi drivers in Bangkok though … like “Mr Big” who earnestly revealed he’s gay while showing us posters, physical photos and snaps on a digital camera, all while navigating Friday night traffic and trying to pitch himself as our personal city guide. (For the record, checked out Khao San Road but no ping pong shows!)

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I hadn’t even planned to do a BJJ class during my extended stopover, but on a whim I hit google and found Bangkok Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Academy was only one BTS stop from where I was staying.

Located in the Trendy Building on Sukhumvit Soy 13, the hardest part was finding the Soi (street) as it wasn’t signed. A few extremely friendly locals pointed me in the right direction.

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Pat Aphaisuwan took the 7am class – a small turnout that Friday (I think other regulars had a late one the night before) of mostly western dudes, but I’m told a few women also train at the club.

Warm ups, live takedowns, Pat demonstrated some handy back escapes before ending the one and a half hour session with comp rounds.

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Thanks for having me guys!

He says they get travellers passing through quite regularly – my one-off class cost 500 Baht (about $17 Australian) and I believe they have pricing plans for short term training periods.

No shower inside the Academy, though Pat says they’re building one – and there are ladies and men’s toilets on the same floor, so somewhere to go to change/freshen up after training.

A really friendly academy that is worth a visit, if you ever find yourself in Bangkok.