GO ON A PARKRUN
The parkrun phenomenon has taken the country, and indeed the world, by storm over the last couple of years. The premise is simple: every week at a set time in designated locations, runners meet and set off around a course. It’s not a race – it’s you against the clock. It’s completely free and volunteers will time you, so go regularly and attempt to improve on your time with each run.
Parkrun meetings regionwide www.parkrun.org.uk
SIGN UP TO A BOOTCAMP
Bootcamps don’t just exist on X Factor, you know. They’re also a great way to have fun and keep fit. Bodyguards Gym run regular outdoor bootcamps targeted at improving fitness and body shape and achieving sustainable weight-loss. This summer’s sessions are being held on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday evenings across July, August and September, and are lead by health and fitness professionals. Each session lasts for 45 minutes and will take place at the band stand in Exhibition Park, Jesmond. For more information on classes, contact Bodyguards at their Jesmond base.
Clayton Road, Jesmond NE2 1UJ
0191 239 9000 www.bodyguardsapt.com
TAKE TO THE WATER
Add an extreme element to your work-out by getting involved in canoeing and kayaking. British Canoeing lists points such as improved aerobic fitness and increased strength and flexibility as key benefits of this aquatic activity, as well as decreased pressure on joints which may result from activities such as running. Interested? There’s a top-class facility right here in the North East where you can give it a go. The Tees Barrage International White Water Centre offers you the chance to start as a complete beginner and work with a fully qualified instructor to get yourself going on still water until you work your way up to more extreme conditions.
Tees Barrage Way, Stockton TS18 2QW
01642 678000 www.tbiwwc.com
GET ON YOUR BIKE
A gentle cycle is all very well but, if you really want to burn some calories, try mountain biking. The tricky terrain will see your muscles work that bit harder, improving both your cardiovascular fitness and your strength. Seek out a company offering guided rides and take off on some of the region’s most spectacular trails. North East-based Cycle4adventure offer everything from mountain biking skills courses, perfect for getting you set up in the saddle, to weekend-long guided rides that can be individually tailored to meet your needs.
0191 490 6111 www.cycle4adventure.co.uk
GET READY TO ROCK
Rock climbing is becoming increasingly popular – with centres springing up across the country, including in
our native North East. Who wants to be stuck inside on artificial climbing surfaces though? The world is your climbing centre now – get in touch with a company like Northern Outdoor who offer climbing experiences at a range of locations across the region which can be integrated into a programme of other activities or booked as a singular one or two-day course. Working with experienced instructors, you’ll feel the burn as you make it to the top, but you’ll be too high on adrenaline to care.
07966 451148 www.northernoutdoor.co.uk
PRACTISE YOUR DOWNWARD DOG
The benefits of yoga are well-known: increased flexibility and muscle strength, sustainable weight reduction, improved cardiovascular health, a more balanced metabolism – the list is a long one. This peaceful pastime is probably best associated with mirrored rooms in leisure centres, but what if we told you that you could attend a class by the sea? Liz Yoga run regular beach yoga classes on weekend mornings at King Edwards Bay in Tynemouth – bend and stretch your muscles, and relax your mind surrounded by spectacular seaside scenery. Check their Facebook page for regular class updates and information.
King Edwards Bay, Tynemouth
07961 431915 www.lizyoga.co.uk