Australian Running Festival 2016

Our first coached program of the 2016 season is the Australian Running Festival in Canberra on 9th-10th April 2016.  We love this race – Canberra offers cooler temps, autumnal colours, iconic buildings, great atmosphere and an awesome course.


We’ve planned three training programs for this event:

Distance Program Duration # Coached Sessions Starts
42km | 50km 16 weeks 32 sessions 19 December 2015
21km 12 weeks 24 sessions 16 January 2016
10km 10 weeks 20 sessions 30 January 2016


Our programs are prepared in blocks and provided via Training Peaks. This allows us to provide individual plans that best suits your needs and goals, as well as giving us the feedback and analysis tools we need. You will be able to log your workouts, analyse your pace, heart rate, power and other useful performance data.

Each program will be based on 3 x quality runs per week and 2 x cross-training sessions. We will meet twice p/week to train as a team – endurance run (Sat) and interval training (Tue). The additional tempo run will be done at a time that is convenient to you.  All our training is done in a friendly, supportive and encouraging environment.

What is included?

  • Periodised training plan based on your distance (10-16 weeks)
  • Face-to-face coached group session for two quality runs (endurance run and intervals)
  • Analysis and feedback on training data
  • Goal setting
  • Mental skills and strategies
  • Race nutrition and recovery
  • Race tactics and guidance
  • Race weekend logistics
  • Motivational support
  • Access to private Facebook page
  • Membership of a like-minded Community
  • Discounted BEXI race singlet

What is excluded?

  • Race entry fee
  • Travel, accommodation and meals

What is cost?

Program Cost
10km Race-FIT $300
21km Race-FIT $340
42-50km Race-FIT $370
Race-FIT participants can upgrade to our Unlimited 2 Term package to benefit from additional discounts.
Total cost can be split into 2-3 x monthly instalments.

Register today – I can and I will! 

Canberra Marathon

Explore Meditation

Meditation offers us a simple and effective channel to help regain and maintain our balance and reduce our stress levels.

Our 6-week program will provide you with the techniques to enable you to embrace a meditative state. You will gain an overview of the different approaches to meditation; discover which type of meditation best suits your needs and how different techniques can be useful at different times. At the end of the 6-weeks, you will leave the course with all the tools you need for your own daily meditation practice.

Benefits of Meditation

  • Helps regain balance in our lives
  • Reduces stress levels
  • Develops self-acceptance
  • Improves concentration
  • Develops confidence
  • Bolsters our immune system
  • Brings us closer to the people we care about

When does the program start?

Tues 09 February 2016
Narrabeen Beach SLSC

What is the cost of the program?

$140 for the 6-week period
Group size restricted to 15 participants

Our program is delivered by the fabulous Macarena Astrain. Maca loves to empower people reach their full potential through energetic work and meditation.

Reserve your place today!

Kids Learn-to-Run Workshop

Kids are natural runners, but whether they’re joining you for your local Saturday parkrun, participating in school athletics or involved in team sports, they require special care at every step of their development. From learning the right technique, to the right shoes, to the right distance.  Fuelling their passion for running means support, encouragement and guidance. This is where we come in!

Our Kids Learn-to-Run Workshop is based on our motivation to share the benefits and  fun of running with our younger generation.

Who is this for?

  • Kids who interested in improving their running
  • Kids who would like to progress their flair for athletics
  • Kids who are involved in team sports where the focus is on running
  • Kids who are keen to join Mum and Dad at their local parkrun on the weekend
  • Kids ages 6-12yrs

What is covered?

  • What good technique looks like
  • Drills to activate the correct running muscles
  • Agility and games to practice good movement patterns
  • Exercises to improve strength, stability and speed
  • Team-based games and activities to build self-esteem
When: Sat 21 November 2015
Where: Billarong Reserve, Narrabeen
Time: 10am-12pm
Age: 6-12yrs (max 8 kids)
Cost: $40 (+$20 p/sibling)

Click here to Register



Ouch… my back hurts!

I hear this all too often. What starts off as a dull ache, then soon becomes an accepted part of our day-to-day lifestyles… until finally the pain becomes unbearable. This should never be the case!

Our backs are one of the most important components of the human body. So when I hear of clients who are struggling with back pain, I really want to stress the importance of looking after our bodies – hence today’s blog.

What are the main causes of lower back pain?

  • Daily lifestyles – picking up kids, moving heavy objects, physical labour (lifting, pushing, pulling, etc.)
  • Sedentary lifestyle – lack of movement to strengthen & nourish the spine, soft tissues and ligaments
  • Poor posture – slouching in a chair over-stretches the spinal ligaments
  • Stress – poor sleep, diet and little exercise causes muscle tightness
  • Poor training techniques – performing exercises incorrectly will affect your lower back

By the time we reach middle age (40yr+), our bone strength, muscle elasticity and muscle tone have started to decline. The discs in our spine become drier and less flexible, making them less able to cushion our vertebrae. Which makes it all the more important to take greater care of our backs and nourish their wellbeing.

How should we relieve our lower back pain?

  • Prevention – by avoiding placing undue pressure/weight on our backs
  • Regular exercise – to strengthen and nourish our spine, soft tissues and ligaments
  • Foam rolling – our thoracic spine, glutes, hamstrings (avoid lower back)
  • Pilates/yoga – to improve strength, flexibility and suppleness

I’ve included a few simple stretches and strength-building moves designed to support your back and help relieve pain. These exercises should be part of a regular program to help strengthen our backs. We’ve got one body and a whole lot of living to do — let’s look after ourselves.

Nurture, nourish, exercise and strengthen our bodies – it will love you for a very long time.

Debbie Solms
Run Coach | Personal Trainer

Lower Back Exercises and Stretches

Spinal twist Hip Flexor Knee to chest
Plank Cobra Back Exercises

In the Pink

Last Sunday one of our favourite Beauty of Exercise (BEXI) members, Liza Dukino, faced her fears and took part in her first ever triathlon – the Pinkie Triathlon. We are all so proud of what Liza achieved – from being anxious in the water, to having an immense fear on the bike (having had a bad stack). Liza has filled so many of us with inspiration and admiration. Below is a heartfelt story about Liza’s journey to the start-line and the actual race day – enjoy the read…

When you are part of a group like BEXI an injury can leave you isolated and lonely… if you let it!
In November last year an MRI showed a 50% tear of my plantar fascia and the advice was to stop. Stop meant no more training for Coastrek with the BEXI Trekkers and no more running. This was tough to deal with, with a severe case of FOMO (fear of missing out), I couldn’t imagine not being around all my BEXI mates. And bigger than that I was afraid of stopping and going back to who I was before I found my healthy lifestyle focus.

I needed a new focus something that I could do that wouldn’t exasperate my injury and would still allow me to be part of the community. I had always enjoyed swimming and I had bought a 2nd hand road bike earlier in the year that was gathering dust in the garage… they became my new focus. But what to work towards?

I had joined the BEXI triathletes at the Port Stephens Triathlon event that year, just tackling the swim leg for the fabulous Helen. Seeing the team tackle and conquer the swim, cycle and run all with a smile on their faces and celebrating their achievements that evening lit a little fire in my belly… that was something I wanted to achieve.

So I joined the well time new Swim-FIT program with the lovely Sue Bennett and joined the Run-FIT crew on a Tuesday morning with a special tailored Liza-FIT program on the bike. A few rides on closed paths gave me the confidence to join the BEXI cycle girls on my first ride to Church Point – almost 20km and I was stoked. My confidence crew on the bike the more I joined my buddies Cass and Katja on our regular rides and my swimming was improving as I learned about my stoke and bilateral breathing.

Now, it was time to give all this effort a focus… the Ultra course of the Pinkie Triathlon. The plan was to do the whole thing myself, just do the run on the day and deal with the consequences of the injury to the foot afterwards but I had been finally started to see an improvement. Finally, I was learning to listen to my body and decided 2 of the 3 legs was a much better option. Super Coach (SC) Debbie, a constant source of advice and support jumped at the chance of joining me to finish the tri off with the run.

Along came race day and off we went, my run coach and my swim coach by my side on the trek out to Parramatta Park, I was pooing my pants I was so nervous. Waiting for the briefing to start I see 3 figures in the distance, all decked out in orange. My first thought is ‘WOW!’ – we need to get those feather boas and hats for the BEXI support crew for the Australian Running Festival in Canberra next month’. My next thought was -‘Oh s*#t’… that’s Lisa, Cass and Kris! These 3 amazing BEXI friends had taken time away from their families on a Sunday morning to come and support me. I welled up. I was so touched and overwhelmed by the support of those girls there on the day and all the positive support from those who couldn’t be there.

So with my BEXI friends cheering by the side of the pool I jumped into my first triathlon, maybe my second if you count Port Stephens but this time I was adding on another leg. The event was tough but the whole time I had a smile on my face because I was there, I was actually doing it! I tagged SC and off she went, blitzing all the other runners and I joined her for the last 50m and we ran through the finish together. Phew it was done, now where is that champagne?

So my advice in all of this is, never let an injury let you feel isolated and lonely because there is a fabulous BEXI community around you that will train with you and support you in whatever goal it is you set out to achieve.

Liza Dukino
BEXI Triathlete, March 2015


Reflections of Coastrek 2015

I am continually inspired by our wonderful Beauty of Exercise team who put their heart, sweat and tears into training and preparing for various events. This year’s Coastrek – 55km coastal walk from Palm Beach to Balmoral – is another example of true camaraderie. Below is a heartfelt insight from one of our ‘BEXI Trekkers’…

As I sit in my cosy warm home this morning I am grateful that today is not the day to embark on a 55km walk. It is grey and misty today, a far cry from the beautiful sunny day of Friday 6th March, 2015… the day of Sydney’s Coastrek. This is an event that brings together over 3500 people, with the aim of walking 55km over every beautiful beach and headland between Palm Beach (on the northern beaches of Sydney) to Balmoral. All in the aid of the Fred Hollows Foundation, which brings sight back to the needlessly blind. But the walk was more than just fundraising for a great cause. It is about grit, determination and most importantly about camaraderie and great friendships.

As the seasoned coastrekker in the group (ie. I had attempted it a few years ago), I knew what was ahead. Encouraged by the enthusiasm of all the ladies in the BEXI Trekkers team (walkers and support crew), I got up early on the hallowed sleep-in day (Sunday) to join in the training walks. These days were great fun and a wonderful way to start the day. Who can pass up the opportunity of a ‘gentle’ beach stroll, a good chin wag and a good coffee… and all at the same time. Heaven really!

But as the day got closer trepidation set in. Our fundraising goal was achieved (and superceded thanks to the generous souls out there). The support crew and logistics for the day were organised. However, I knew what was ahead of me and knew that it was not going to be all rosy. The sore feet, sore legs, blisters and SAND …. everywhere !

We arrived at Palm Beach early in the morning to be greeted by the most magnificent sunrise to start the day. Someone upstairs had been listening. The weather was not too wet, not too hot, not too cold, not too windy. Perfect really!

The air was filled with excitement but despite the laughter and banter there was a little bit of anxiety in the air as well. Yet all that anxiety melted away when we crossed the start line heading down Palm Beach, heading for Balmoral in the distance, somewhere. I could go on forever but that would be boring so I’ve listed some of the highlights :

  • A early morning snack of Lemonade icy-pole. Liza, how did you know that that would hit the spot perfectly.
  • Coming off Mona Vale beach and seeing our angels, the beautiful smiling faces of Liza Dukino and Ingrid Taylor waiting with cold drinks and cold watermelon… exactly what the doctor ordered.
  • Narabeen Lagoon – our support crew of angels and head angel, Debbie Solms.
  • The salty chips at Long Reef. Again, exactly what was needed.
  • Dee Why – Ingrid placating Lisa after her icy pole fell on the ground. (Best lower lip action I’ve seen in quite some time!)
  • Manly – our on-call coffee crew.
  • Balmoral – everyone! And the champagne at the end was perfect.
  • Lisa’s video blog – she left the best til last. (Amazing the effects of drugs and alcohol!)
  • Camadarie amongst all the walkers, the volunteers and the locals who were out cheering everyone on.

I cannot finish off without thanking my team. There were times (esp Warriewood-Collaroy) when I was struggling. However, they were there to encourage and support me all the way. They would wait for me and never complained at how slow I was walking. I think that without me they would have done the walk in a record time! However, we were in it as a team…and everyone knows that Together Everyone Achieves More!

  • Kirsten Prescott – She had been quite ill during the week but hadn’t said anything to the team as she didn’t want to let us down. As if they were even remotely possible.
  • Lisa Bale – She pushed through despite the horrific blisters that started fairly early on in the walk. Not a complaint from her either.
  • Kym Gray – A fine example of consistency and determination. She didn’t waver at all during the whole time, and all done with a great smile.
  • Liza Dukino, Ingrid Taylor and Debbie Solms – being at the right place at the right time and saying the right things. Your support means more than you’ll ever know.
  • And last but certainly not least, my family – for putting up with me being away and grumpy and sleeping all day the following day.

55km’s in 14.5 hours is not easy but with the help of gusty, determined, yet gentle, caring and beautiful souls it was a day I shall hold dear.

Lucia Hains
Bexi Trekker, March 2015


The Power of Setting Goals

Why are goals so powerful? Because they give us a purpose; they help propel us forward; they help us believe in ourselves; they hold us accountable; and they help us live life to the fullest.

Three months into 2015, we are proud of the progress our Beauty of Exercise members have been making:

  • Our Run-FIT team completed their 10km Sun Run event in February – huge kudos to Amanda Green for placing 3rd in her age-group;
  • Our BEXI Trekkers completed their 55km Coastrek event last week; 
  • Our committed Race-FIT team are in serious training-mode for the marathon and half-marathon events at the Australian Running Festival in April; 
  • Our inspirational beginner runners and walkers are four weeks away from achieving their first 5km parkrun; and
  • Our fabulous beginner swimmers are gaining confidence in the water as they prepare for their Pinkie Triathlon at end-March.

Goals drive success! So if you’re looking for success, we’ve got some awesome programs planned for the upcoming autumn term:

– Gold Coast Airport Marathon (& half-marathon/10km)
– RUN BETTER Workshop
– 5km-FIT
– Walk-FIT
– Swim-FIT

Put your feet up and read about the above in our latest newsletter –


We’re thrilled that Dave Robertson (Robbo) is able to make himself available to deliver his highly recognised Run Better workshop. Designed & delivered by Robbo himself, a qualified physiotherapist, you will come away with loads of professional advice on running anatomy, skills, drills & prevention/management of running injuries. Suitable for anyone who wants to become a better runner – first-timers to ironman-triathletes.

If you are struggling with your running and are looking for expert advice on how to improve your technique and performance, then this workshop is for you.

Date: Friday 13 March

Time: 6-7.30am

Cost: First-time program $110 | Refresher program $70.

Limited to 10 x participants.

More info: