Missed the workshops

секцииAfter arranging a babysitter and all prepared for the Quarter 4 workshops, we turned up today on the Sunday, only to find that the workshops had been moved to the Saturday. Although I’ve injured my back so I couldn’t do combat anyway, I was totally gutted that I missed Balance, and Alex missed his opportunity for his first workshop back in Adelaide.

I’m not sure how I feel about Les Mills Asia Pacific’s customer service lately. While I guess the error was my own mistake for going on the wrong day, I feel Les Mills could have done much better in several ways. Apparently Les Mills have started switching between Saturdays and Sundays for the last year, but since I’ve been overseas I have missed this. Previous to this the workshops were ALWAYS on a Sunday with some extra classes occasionally held on a Saturday.

So little did I know, they were chopping and changing it, and when I registered online for the workshop, there was tiny text listing the date below the workshop listing, ie:

Adelaide Super Workshop
6 November 2010

So the theory is, I probably should have written the date down while I registered. Maybe I should have? But I didn’t. Despite this, I feel Les Mills shouldn’t make it so hard for me to find the date and time of the classes in the case that I DIDN’T write it down. I received no confirmation letter of the date/times. Sure, I received a ticket for entry to the workshop, but there was no confirmation of date/time. Why doesn’t LM send out any confirmation of the date and time?

To make matters worse, once online registration has closed, the workshop disappears off the list in the online registration section, so therefore there is no possibility of looking up the time and date. Revolution didn’t turn up till after the workshop, so no help there either.

I posted on Les Mills Asia Pacific’s Facebook wall that I felt LM overall is going downhill in terms of customer service, which a couple of people disagreed. When I contacted LM about it I was basically faced with the answer “bad luck”. Ok, so I didn’t write down the small print at the time of registering, but good customer service in this country generally involves “going the extra mile” even if the customer is not always right.

During our trainings as an instructor LM always emphasise being approachable as an instructor. I’m really not seeing LM lead by example here, especially at the bigger events like Filex where you have to line up to get autographs and photos. I feel LM are trying to make the workshops too “professional” and forgetting about just creating an “awesome fitness class”.

For me, it doesn’t quite feel the same as the old days. I wonder where 2011 is going to take us? I think LM should rethink some of their policies before more competition like Zumba hits the scenes!


I’ve participated in this release 3 times now and I have to say I absolutely love it! This is the most fun I’ve had in pump ever since I last taught in Australia when I was still fit!

I just love the squats, I love the single bottom half pulse in time with the music. The chest track is a little bit more plain, but I love the back track and how it starts off slow and then it kicks off with the faster music. Makes me buzz!

Triceps I can’t really remember, I only remember pain and laying on my back. Biceps is just fun! The slightly difficult timing with the cover music (and seeing instructors struggle with it) keeps me mentally occupied.

Lunges, forget lunges……..I’m totally writing off lunges until I can complete a track. At least my ankle problem is getting stronger now and I put the back of my heel against the step to support my ankle which helps heaps.

Shoulders is awesome but the rotator lifts totally cain! Love the music, it’s awesome.

Abs and cooldown? Can’t really remember by that point, and I’ve worked too hard to care.

Total thumbs up for this release!

BODYPUMP 75 launch

I haven’t done pump for a couple of months following being sick and back problems etc and been concentrating on balance instead. So I finally dragged myself to a pump class this morning and was surprised to discover it was the actual launch class.

It was great to do pump again and it was definately easier for me than the last time I did it. Not easier in the sense I’m not lifting enough weight, but in the sense that my muscles felt like they were functioning better. Previously I found that my muscles were so tight and spasming that it was difficult to do the moves at all (mainly squats and lunges) and doing pump was extremely exhausting.

This morning however, it still hurt and it was still hard, but I didn’t feel that desperate exhaustion of feeling like I’d just had open heart surgery (not that I know what that feels like, but you get the idea). It definately helps me to go again when I know I’m not going to feel like that!

Can’t remember much of the music and chorrey (haven’t looked at my own DVD’s), but I do remember enjoying being back in pump, so it must have been good 🙂

Les Mills workshops

First time back to the Les Mills workshops in Adelaide. The initial plan was to get a babysitter and both Alex and I would go to combat in the morning, however after deciding getting a baby sitter would be too hard in the morning, and realising that combat was at 8am, we decided to can the whole idea of going. We decided that we really wouldn’t enjoy the class and if we didn’t have a baby sitter then only one of us could do the class anyway.

So we decided just to go to balance in the afternoon. I was planning on doing balance and Alex hoped to watch a bit if it was permitted with Connor around. As it turned out Alex was invited to take Connor upstairs where he could the class from the balcony. Upon going upstairs we were talking and then shortly later we got strictly reprimanded and told that this was restricted area for trainers only. Hmmmm, well, I explained that we were told to come up there. The trainer said we couldn’t because they needed their privacy and needed to get changed etc.

Now, I’m totally in support of the fact that they need somewhere to get changed, but I thought this attitude was pretty rude. It was the last class of the day and almost everyone was gone. I couldn’t image many more clothes changes occurring at that late stage of the day. At the very least, she could have asked a bit more nicely. I’m not sure if it’s just me, but I’ve noticed over the last few years the trainers are becoming a bit more “elite” and less approachable. We’re seeing at Sydney Filex the Program Directors are not contactable at all except for during a brief “signing session”. I understand the whole concept of LM wanting workshops to be more “professional”, but I don’t think this is a good impression in the long run as it’ll make instructors behave more this way towards participants. We should remain totally down to earth and approachable and I don’t believe you should ever put yourself up on a pedestal, that’s something we should let other people do!

So, back at the workshop, I was very angry about the way the trainer spoke to us and how protective she was of their precious little change space and I didn’t feel motivated to stay for the balance masterclass anymore even though it was a beautiful day outside and Alex could have played with Connor in the outside gardens. Eventually I did decide to stay and participated in the class.

I enjoyed the class, although somehow I’m struggling to find that same buzz I used to. As usual I can’t remember much of the class, but I do remember that I didn’t notice the cover music AT ALL. There was one point in the class that I remembered to notice, but when I did listen to the music intently I could find anything “different” about the music to complain about. This really does go to show that participants really aren’t going to notice the PPCA free music.

Bridge pose

In Balance, when we do bridge pose, on the videos it always explicitly explains that we must squeeze our buttocks while lifting up.

However I once had a PT client that used to do pilates who said to me that they explicitly state to NOT squeeze the buttocks.

Yesterday I participated in a pilates class where the instructor also said not to squeeze the buttocks in bridge pose and to try and relax the muscles.

So my question is, why is this taught differently between the 2 programs?

Les Mills Workshops – Adelaide

The next round of workshops are coming up again and I’m finally going this time!

Up until my pregnancy I had a track record of never missing a single workshop. But then I finally had to miss one, with the Adelaide workshop falling 1 week after I gave birth. Following this I was in the Netherlands and I battled the Dutch beaurocracy and the fact that I wasn’t allowed to attend workshops, despite being a fully qualified International Les Mills instructor (although once they “needed” me I found myself teaching classes totally unqualified like Pilates, but that’s a whole ‘nother story!). So, a few workshops missed, a few workshops attended in the Netherlands, a couple more workshops missed in Australia and now FINALLY……….

I put my registration in tonight – 29th August…….woooo

Getting fit

To all people trying to get fit and lose weight and the uphill struggle that it is, I want to share some motivational words. People used to think as an instructor the fitness and staying in shape was easy, but it was never just handed to me. Now, 2.5 years later, after a pregnancy and a tough time in the Netherlands I’m going that uphill battle again. But I’m determined. Despite my limitations at the moment, every time I find myself starting to slip I remind myself that I’m craving lollies etc BECAUSE I’M TIRED…..not because I’m hungry. Fitting in a lifestyle of healthy eating and fitness around a husband and a child is challenging to say the least, but I WILL get there…


…and YOU will too!


Well, so I finally got back to my first BODYCOMBAT class in Australia. Taking it carefully so as not to injure myself I did all low impact and wore my heart rate monitor. OMG, with all the low impact moves my heart rate still went up to 179 and averaged 165!!! When I was still teaching I would have been hard pressed to push myself to get that even in attack!

Well, the slow journey to restoring fitness……..is slow. But I am determined!


I can’t believe “You’re Shining” is in the latest combat! That breaks my heart, since I recommended that song ages ago and was dying for that to be in combat or attack.

I’ve been so out of it when it comes to all the latest Les Mills stuff. A few weeks ago I finally purchased the latest releases for combat, pump and balance. I hadn’t bothered, since I haven’t been teaching much and only doing the occasional balance here and there. Last night I finally extracted all my songs to itunes so I could listen to new music on the way to work (I have an hour drive). When I first got in the car, I initially put on the warmup for combat 44, but then changed my mind and started searching for the latest balance. For some reason I didn’t feel in the mood for combat. But while I was looking for the balance tracks the first notes of the combat warmup really struck me. I couldn’t turn it off! so I stayed with combat, and the music sounds awesome! I haven’t done combat properly since combat 35, when I was pregnant. I did teach BC41 a few times in the netherlands, but apart from that I’m really missing out on a lot.

So after listening to the whole combat, man I wanna do it again! I can’t believe the feelings the music gave me, that buzz and motivation! It’s a pity everyone is mixing now and I’ve missed it 🙁

I’ve been taking my fitness slowly and doing pump and balance, maybe a low impact combat class will be on the cards soon?

Chicken Soup Recipe

  • 2L chicken stock (salt reduced)
  • 600 g (approx.) sliced chicken
  • 2x onions
  • 4x carrots
  • 1x large zuccinni
  • 3x sticks celery
  • 1x clove garlic (pressed)
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Large handful Egg noodles
  • Chopped Parsley

Bring stock to boil. Add all ingredient (minus parsley and noodles). Turn down to simmer. Simmer for approx. ½ hour. Add noodles 5mins prior to serving, Add parsley 2mins prior to serving.

Third week of pump

Ok so it’s only been 1 class a week, and not getting to do much else, but this weekend pump WAS much easier. I saw my chiro on Thursday for the first time in ages and that has made a HUGE difference. I could nearly do lunges all the way through, except when I do them with my right leg back, I have some problems with my right ankle. Seems to be an issue that started back in the Netherlands and my chiro has also been working on my ankle.

The Saturday morning instructor is away next week, so if she can’t get anyone else, I might be doing the class! With baby weights I’m not going to be at my best, but if the alternative is to cancel the class then I’m sure the participants won’t mind. Stay tuned…

BODYPUMP with PPCA free music

The news of the copyright tribunal decision is hitting the fitness industry, and Fernwood are another gym that are going all PPCA free music as of June 1st (or rather “gone”). I haven’t purchased any of the new releases as yet, since I’m currently not teaching and I’m working full time, so yesterday morning I did BODYPUMP with all PPCA free music.

I’ve heard lots of complaints and compliments about the other programs and so I was keenly interested to see what the music experience would be like as a participant. Let’s just say, I was pretty tuned in half of the time to the music, the other half the time I was in pain. I was pleasantly surprised and I didn’t think the music was too bad and there was only about 2 tracks (when I was noticing) that I kinda cringed and could tell that it was a cover. Some of the tracks were really bloody well done!

I think the main point I want to make here, is that if I wasn’t really paying attention to the music, I would never have noticed. The instructor did make a mention of the music being covers, and at one well known track a participant said “is this not the original?” I think there’s only going to be real problems if they cover the current top 40 music. I was never really keen on Les Mills using the latest top 40 music anyway, because we hear it all the time on the radio and then hammer it over and over in our classes. In light of the problem with covering these well known songs (because participants WILL notice these) I think Les Mills would be wise to do away with or steer away from using this type of music.

I’m 100% in support of going PPCA free since what the PPCA has done is ridiculous and greedy. I can’t see any gym going ahead and paying the fees. Why do we have to pay 3 times for the music anyway? First Les Mills pays for the licence to use the music, then we have to pay ARPA to be able to play music in businesses and then again to the PPCA. Imagine if BMW demanded fees for every time you take their car out and drove it on the road?



Well, I’ve managed to teach a few balance classes since I’ve been back in Australia, but I had to give up my one permanent balance class when I started my new IT job in April. So apart from a couple of fill ins, and attempting to go for a walk and doing a couple of attack tracks in my lounge room, gym life for me has been pretty much non-existant.

But since doing more fill ins at Fernwood, I think I’m kinda on the books there, meaning the staff let me in to do a pump class this morning. And OMG, I’m not sure I really did it, but my legs are hardly moving right now!

It’s so frustrating, and despite being overweight and unfit, the instructor recognised that I knew what I was doing. I think it’s so much easier to join as a newbie participant oblivious to correct techniques, than to be forcing yourself proper technique and challenging yourself. Since my muscles need a proper sports massage (which I have to wait a few weeks to get in), I found I struggle too much with the leg tracks and can’t lift weight through the whole squat track and I didn’t risk doing all the lunges. All the same, I still can hardly walk!

Hopefully I can keep going to pump every Saturday and become a smart full time but FIT IT employee! 🙂

Old times

Well, last night was a fantastic night…….but to explain, a brief summary for those who don’t know the story.

I used to often hold BBQ’s at my house, those BBQ’s usually involved alcohol (like any), Les Mills music and a handful of Les Mills instructors.

That mix usually created a lot of amazing fun……..me trying to do drunken jam. Plyo lunges on concrete in bare feet and nearly hitting my head on the verandah during rear jump knees. All that fun has been a long distance memory though, after having a baby, going to the Netherlands with my dutch husband, a combination of the cold and falling down the stairs causing me so many back problems that I’ve lost fitness, put on weight and ended up in a miserable state of total unfitness.

And for those of you who remember sofie, I’ve been trying to drag her back onto the forum to post, but she’s not teaching LM anymore either following her car accident, and getting fit again is for her, also a struggle.

But last night, I had an inkling of a taste of what it all used to be for me. I’ve been losing complete passion for the programs, finding it so hard to remember what I loved. Last night I hosted a BBQ for a dear friend of mine’s 30th. Natty’s (who is also on this forum……..infrequently) husband didn’t have a location for his birthday, so we offered our backyard to celebrate. Jukebox, lots of alcohol and lots of non-fitness people….except for Alexander, Natty, Sofie and myself.

Now, sofie has never been a combat person, but Natty, Alexander and I went crazy when The Pretender came onto the juke box. For me it was like a drug……..I felt that buzz. People were watching, people were thinking we were nuts, and I through myself fully in moves that I knew I would regret the next day.

But I didn’t CARE!

and I had so much fun. The people at the party thought we were pretty crazy, and omg my body thought I was pretty crazy and I was heaving like a racehorse by the end of the track……..but omg, the buzz!