Faculty of Law staff get fit!

13 July 2012

Bene fit staff fitness
From back left: Bill Hodge, Helena Kaho, Alison Carveley, Scott Pilkington, Matt Newey, Raymond Stein, Ada Marama, Jonaan McLeod, Lisa Wilks, Kristy Robertson, Christine Calvelo, Christina Wu, Bipin Chavan

It was back in the beginning of May that the “All Staff” email was sent by Raymond Stein, our Faculty finance manager, with the bizarre subject title “Hear ye, hear ye hear ye !!!!”. I had a quick read, saw mention of a group fitness programme and thought “I’m fit, I play netball and go to yoga classes” and continued to file the email in the “Delete” box. Over the next few days, in the Staff Common Room, there were murmurings among the Professional Staff of who had signed up and on the bus home I thought ‘why not I’ll sign up’. Like Raymond said ‘it has the potential to be a great team building exercise across the Law Faculty’.

At the end of May the sessions started and the staff members (13 of us in total) trudged ‘up the hill’ to the University’s gym. There was a little bit of excitement, quite a lot of fear and anticipation and even some healthy rivalry in the group. We all had our pre- ‘one on one’ assessments so knew our personal goals, be it to lose weight, tone up, get stronger or just have fun.

Over the next 6 weeks, 3 times a week, our 30 minute sessions consisted of fast pace resistance and cardio exercises, rotating around the ‘stations’ under the direction of our trainers Matt and Kristy. Ada, our Faculty Registrar, soon took it upon herself to give us a 10 second countdown on our last exercise to get us through the final stages. There was sweat, panting, and by some the occasionally cheating (stopping on an exercise when our trainers weren’t looking)!

Our 6 weeks culminated with a final assessment (to see if we had achieved our goals, and of course the majority had), a prizewinning session (a $50 Westfield, for the most improved results and overall attendance, for one male and one female attendee) and a shared group lunch. We are now eating healthier too after Kristy gave us a very informative nutritional seminar and food plan which led us to change our morning tea, lunch and afternoon snacks. Soon the food cupboards were filled with cans of tuna, rice crackers and hummus.

In my opinion it has been a great team building session, it has created interesting conversation at work with colleagues keen to discuss the next day how they enjoyed the session, how they ached and some banter over who was cheating! I think we have learnt keeping fit is fun and even better exercising as a group with your colleagues. I would recommend to all!

Finally, a special thank you to our Dean, Andrew Stockley who agreed to subsidise this programme.

Article by professional staff member Alison Carveley