6 women tell: How we stay fit and fantastic

Women’s Health Week is all about women making the time to put their health first. Six women tell us how they do it. 

Claire Radbourne, Lyn Newland, Shelley Ware, Sunita Varlamos, Nhu Ton and Kiara Perin are the faces of this year’s Women’s Health Week, running from September 3 to 7.

They each share their top three tips for keeping fit and healthy, inside and out.

Claire Radbourne: Keeping grounded through nature

“I am a keen gardener and enjoy both the physical and mental health aspect to being outside. The garden is a very peaceful space for me,” says Claire, pictured above with Shelley and Kiara.

“My workplace runs mindfulness sessions each week, which I find excellent. They bring me back to a focused and centered place.

“I also really enjoy walking and just taking in the world, whether it be at the beach or on the streets. It’s a no-fuss way to get out and get active.”

Shelley Ware: Don’t be afraid to ask for help

“Heart disease and breast cancer are prevalent in my family, so I get my yearly check up from the same doctor and have breast screens every two years,” she says.

“I love walking and enjoying the outdoors to keep fit. Recently I started carrying light weights to help keep my arms toned too.

“I’ve recently started asking for help when I need it, instead of being a superhero and doing everything myself. This has helped balance my life. It turns out people love helping me as much as I love helping others.”

Kiara Perin: Preparation is key 

“I have a drink bottle that I always have with me. This encourages me to drink regularly and to stay hydrated,” Kiara says.

“I like to have a substantial healthy breakfast, such as porridge – it’s a good way to fuel and kick start my body for the day.

“I find that a good way to stay fit is to have an exercise buddy. They keep me motivated and accountable – and it’s more fun!”

lyn and kiara

Lyn Newland: Use it or lose it

“If you don’t keep active, both physically and mentally, you start to slow down and find that you can’t do things as easily as you used to do them,” says Lyn, pictured above left with Kiara.

“Watch your thoughts – it is very easy to get lost in the past, which is often coloured with some form of regret. It is better to endeavour to live in the present moment.

“When you are feeling low or unable to cope, become aware of your breath. Focus on breathing deeply and regularly and even taking a short walk. Remind yourself that self-help is the best help in the first instance.”

Sunita Varlamos: Embrace the calm

“I practise yoga at least four times a week.  Afterwards I feel stronger, stretched, calm and mindful of the world around me,” says Sunita, pictured below left with Nhu.

“I do not eat meat and feel better for having a plant-based diet.

“I go to bed early and aim for a refreshing eight hours sleep.”

sunita and nhu

Nhu Ton: Take time for yourself

“I practise meditation while I commute to and from work every day by train. A quick 15 minutes of this helps me get a calm and grounded start to the day,” she says.

“My husband and I love going to the movies, but with little kids it’s almost impossible for us to see a movie together. So every fortnight on a Tuesday we take turns to have a night out at the local cinema. Some ‘me time’ with a good movie and a choc top is always a good idea.

“I squat for five mins when I brush my teeth – it’s a quick and simple core strengthening exercise that everyone can do.”

As told to Sarah Marinos.