Steak, chips and wine reward savoured

Otago Daily Times Queenstown bureau chief Tracey Roxburgh documents her progress in the 12-week Revive programme at Alpine Health and Fitness.

Dear Diary ...

Saturday, November 3

Treated myself tonight, Diary.

Had lovely steak and salad ...and hot chips. And two glasses of wine. Beside this in food diary wrote "Sorry, am not sorry" ...enough said.

Was reward for getting through Spartan training relatively unscathed. In fact, probably least enjoyable element was warm-up (never underestimate how hard it is to yog with "high knees").

Trainer Stephen kept threatening to make anyone who stopped moving do burpees for an hour. Motivation enough.

During push-ups, while watching pool of sweat form on floor under face, could hear weird grunting noise. Looked to see where it was coming from.

Was me.

Later, Stephen made us do more push-ups, this time in a "fountain" ... reminded me of drinking game, except not as fun.

Sunday, November 4

This morning took Margo Berryman up Tobin's Track. She did incredibly well. Was also impressed with my own efforts - was able to hold a conversation the whole way up (only interrupted by the occasional grunt and moan).

At the top we even did some tricep dips and push-ups for good measure. How times have changed, Diary. Unfortunately, yesterday's exercise came back to haunt me this afternoon.

Walking proved difficult.

Decided best remedy was hot bath. However, getting in to bath took several attempts. Getting out was harder. At one point thought about calling for assistance ... until realised being rescued from bath was not something I would ever live down. Instead, used lateral thinking and unconventional exit technique.

Won't go into details, Diary, but it wasn't pretty.

Monday, November 5

Survived first "mock triathlon" this morning. Was mini version of what the rest of week holds. Was not fun, not easy and unfortunately the actual "triathlon" requires upping every distance. Do not have high hopes of great success in this event.

Following treadmill running (yes, actually ran) treated myself to stretch for poor legs. Was given stretchy band to assist and told to put it under foot, lie on back and use it to pull leg up. Except kept putting stretchy band in wrong place on my foot. You know what happens when you do that, Diary?

Stretchy band flicks you in the face.

Three times.

Tuesday, November 6

Deserve gold star, Diary.

Restraint today was phenomenal. Mr Whippy came to see me. Was offered ice cream and politely declined. Ice cream even had chocolate Flake in it ... I do enjoy chocolate Flakes, Diary. And Mr Whippy ice creams.

Later, was at Melbourne Cup event and offered glass of bubbly. Like bubbly even more than chocolate Flakes and Mr Whippy. Still managed to resist.

Went to Pump this evening and discovered lovely Margo there. We were back-row buddies and struggled through together.

Body is tired, Diary, and some of those exercises were really hard. After Pump convinced Margo to go for a "dirty 30" on treadmill ... first she had to remedy small issue with her clothing (she accidentally put her gym pants on backwards and didn't realise until too late. Told her I would have to tell you, Diary!).

Wouldn't surprise me if Margo asks to see my exercise schedule on regular basis just so she can avoid me in coming weeks.

Wednesday, November 7

Haylee has returned from soccer holiday. This morning, while I was having a go at first full triathlon, Haylee kept me entertained with tales about her trip which helped keep my mind off how hard it was to breathe.

Ultimately surprised myself - managed to finish rowing, biking and running in 28 minutes and 49 seconds. Didn't think I was capable of that.

To celebrate did RPM class.

About 30 seconds into warm-up decided I needed to find an alternative - and preferably relaxing - way of celebrating achievements. Post RPM caught site of face in mirror. Is not a colour I've seen before -think it requires new name. RPM Ruby or Cardio Cerise perhaps?

Thursday, November 8

Thought body would like day off exercise. Consumed by guilt.

Margo also had rest day ...think she regretted agreeing to Tuesday's dirty 30. Believe yesterday Margo was in whole world of pain. Feeling of guilt intensified.

This evening, however, forgot about aches and pains while enjoying sumptuous pot luck dinner at Haylee's house with Blue Team and gorgeous Amanda Codington.

There were very strict rules for contributions to the meal - low carb or no carb, as close to nature as possible and no more than 5% fat. Am no culinary genius when it comes to healthy food - talents in kitchen very much limited to dishes am not allowed to eat.

Research threw up rice paper rolls which seemed to satisfy criteria.

Thought this would be relatively simple dish ... quickly discovered bumble fingers not conducive to dainty, fiddly things and end result looked NOTHING like picture.

Thankfully other ladies were far more proficient in kitchen than I. Had lovely evening - was nice to talk to them without being "breathless" or dripping in sweat.

Without exception ladies looked beautiful - all their faces have lovely, healthy glow and everyone seems to have gained confidence already ...

can't wait to see what happens over the next five weeks.

Also swapped stories about experiences so far - Karan Stalker had me in fits when she said her 9-year-old recently announced "you have lost your wobblies" ... think Karan was relieved, particularly given a few months ago her 11-year-old told her she was "large in the barge". He will soon be saying she is dainty in the dinghy.

Also, Alex Musgrave is superwoman. She completed indoor triathlon in 22 minutes and 46 seconds ... think I shall give her new moniker - The Machine.

Friday, November 9

Week seven is almost over.

You know what that means, Diary?

There's only six weeks until Christmas. And you know what that means?

Is going to get harder and harder to resist temptations in build-up to festive season.

This morning was offered Cookie Time biscuits. Was all I could think about for the rest of the day. Concluded best approach was distraction. That came in form of gym going ...and another nudge at triathlon.

White board shows Kath MacKenzie is also worthy of The Machine moniker, knocking it out in 24.09. Given I felt like I was in sauna breathing in shards of glass by the end and finished only slightly faster than Wednesday, am in awe of The Machines' abilities.

Have one more crack at triathlon over weekend ... must ask gym staff to put stretcher on standby.