Parents News
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I was sitting in my office sipping a cup of tea when the invitation came in for a week at Fit farms and in blissful ignorance I thought “That looks like fun, a health farm that specialises in fitness –a bit of aerobic, walking and stretching.” If I had known the work rate I was going to achieve and the multi use of blister plasters and gallons of deep heat I'd consume I would have bought some shares in there respective companies –even in this economic climate.

  The first day was great – well, we only arrived at 4.30pm – meeting the other guests and the friendly staff; Julie a no-nonsense leader, Marie Tigger like and Charlotte possibly an elf but definitely not human, all super fit a nd enthusiastic even at 5.30 am (see photos below).  A pleasant (if small) dinner followed by ice breaking team games.

The next morning up at 6am for a health assessment – well I did already know I was over weight, plump….OK fat. My target to lose 4 lbs, reduce fat percentage and lose all the skin off both feet. But I walk the dogs and go to various classes at the gym so I was going to be OK. Unfortunately the fitness test was not 10 min on a stationary bike seeing how breathless I got, it was a 3 mile jog – I'm not built for jogging so I found it difficult and painful and was very slow. After a healthy salad with a cup of soup for lunch, an afternoon nap perhaps… no - abdominal workout, in a large airy barn full of weapons of mass exercise, sitting on a Swiss balls so that they (the guards) can hear us fall off if exhaustion prevails and we fall asleep. This was followed by aerobics with a very jolly lady who doesn't seem to understand we are having difficulty lifting the feet never mind crossing them. Dinner was a chicken fillet with veggies & fruit salad, then back to barn for team games – tonight's netball or as I liked to call it trying to stand up and stay awake.

 Soft warm sand beneath me, the sea lapping gently at my toes and steam ship drifts by blowing its whistle, but as the noise breaks into my consciousness I awake to hear the wake up whistle its 5.30 AM!!!! and time to get up, but my body will not move. I'll stay here no one will notice, but what if they do and everyone is waiting for me to arrive in the exercise barn? Circuits starts when everyone arrive, so not wanting to be shunned I hobble to the barn. And so another day begins. Each day starts with circuits before breakfast followed by a day of walks, swimming or cycling, interspersed with lovely small meals and a variety of exercise classes from Tai chi to Salsa with boxasise in-between in the hope that you'll find at least one you enjoy or dislike least!

 Hard work-definitely, painful of course, but and I hate to admit it, enjoyable. I feel fitter and healthier than I have in 20 years. The week is both physically and mentally challenging. The other guests were supportive, friendly and we had a great laugh. There was a range of ages and fitness levels. The staff are motivating, very knowledgeable, completely unforgiving, but underneath it all very kind. The Chef was great fun, cooking tasty, healthy meals and willing to cater for vegetarians, even though he is French. The workshops were informative, relevant and practical. You will be given the tools to live a healthier lifestyle. I would thoroughly recommend Fitfarm to lose weight – I lost 5 lbs – get fit, it's a real accomplishment to cycle 14 mile or hike 10 miles most of it up hill! Dare I say it ….it's a life-changing experience. www.FitFarms.co.uk   . Peak District and Exmoor .  The 7-day programme costs £1,350 for a single room or £995 for a shared room .

FIGHTING THE FAT IS A FAMILY AFFAIR AT FITJUNIORS  Parents get involved in weight-loss camps for kids

With the news that 90 per cent of Brits could be overweight or obese by 2050, it's time for parents to take action. While it's up to children to fight the fat, parents can make a real difference. FitJuniors, the newest and most advanced UK weight-loss camp for children aged 8-17.At FitJuniors, parents are required to take part in a day of workshops which detail the three elements of keeping fit – nutrition, exercise and behaviour change. Children can't be expected to get fit without learning to enjoy exercise and healthy food. Fun activities such as rock-climbing, abseiling and kayaking are accompanied by cookery classes. FitJuniors, which is situated in the picturesque Peak District, is the latest project by www.FitJuniors.co.uk , the award-winning weight loss camp for women.