Studio Red Wellness is contributing writer Rebecca Barry Hill's favourite place for exercise. Photo / Anna Kidman for Studio Red

How The Viva Team Find Their Fitness Flow: Our Favourite Gear, Workouts & More

Exercise classes, sweat attire, post-workout smoothies — and how we like them

The Viva team are a lively bunch and love to get outdoors and physical whenever we can. We gathered up our favourite places to flex our legs, what we wear while doing so and the best meals and snacks to come home too. We hope this inspires you to do the same!

Dan Ahwa, creative director

Favorite place to enjoy wellness/fitness?
I'm a fan of a good park, a grassy slope to lie down on and read a book, take some time out. I like the privacy and quiet of the area by the reflection pond at the Auckland Domain, and a run/walk around my neighborhood is always good for the soul, along Cox's Bay reserve and by the water.

What does your fitness or wellbeing routine look like? 
I try to go to pump class at Les Mills 2-3 times a week which is all I have time for most days. It's quick, works my entire body. I have no interest in using the machines being on full display and the classes are easy to jump in and out of. I also like go for walks, so I try and go on a nature walk every other weekend. I love swimming in the ocean so when I can, and the tide is good, then I'm there.

A great pre/post-workout recipe to share?
A smoothie is a good pre-workout. Try this in a blender:

1 banana
1 tablespoon cinnamon
2 1/2 cups of oat milk
1 cup of ice
1 tablespoon honey

Top fitness attire or gear you are adding to cart?

Shakti mat $89.

Asana Rebel: Get In Shape app. (In-app purchases)

Asuwere training shorts $150.

Apple Airpods Pro $449.

ProRunner X40 Treadmill, $999, from Torpedo7.

Why is wellness/fitness important to you?
Being a creative person requires me to take care of myself so that I can continue to be creative and give good energy and ideas to those around me.

Emma Gleason, commercial editor

Favorite place to enjoy wellness/fitness?
The park. Fresh air, communal energy, and nature galore — I always feel better after a few hours spent in our neighbourhood green spaces. Pukekawa Auckland Domain is my favourite.

What does your fitness or wellbeing routine look like? 
I don't have a fitness regimen, but I walk everywhere I can, and I stretch (but not nearly enough). I drink a lot of water, and have a pretty balanced diet — that means lots of vegetables, grains, whole foods and olive oil, but also treats and takeaways too. I take an antihistamine every day for hayfever, magnesium when I remember. We bought a fancy Oscar juicer last lockdown and I'm obsessed with it — mostly making green juices but also citrus-y ones too. To manage stress I take baths, lie on the floor, do breathing (when I remember) and let myself feel both the bad feelings and the good.

A great pre/post-workout recipe to share?
Vogels (toast slice) with Fixx & Fogg Everything Butter, a filter coffee — Supreme currently, I like their new paper packaging — and a cold-pressed juice: celery, green apple, lemon.

Top fitness attire or gear you are adding to cart?
While I don't go to the gym or any classes, I move around a lot in daily life, so like clothes that are adaptable. I'm currently very into a 1980s New York leisurewear look for autumn, and want Hara leggings, a Ralph Lauren polo-collar sweater, Asics Sportstyle FB1-S GEL-PRELEUS, and Colourful Standard sweatpants. Maybe a leotard. I also want a shakti mat.

Hara The Label leggings $99.

Asics running shoes $200.

Colorful Standard sweatpants $116.

Ralph Lauren cashmere sweater $633.

Shakti mat $89.

Why is wellness/fitness important to you?
There's a lot to feel bad about right now (and it’s okay to feel bad!) so I think it's important to be kind to yourself, and seek out the things that make you feel better. Just do what you can — move your body, eat food that makes you feel good, and don't beat yourself up about anything.

READ: The Test Drive: Hot HIIT Pilates At Studio Red Wellness

Julia Gessler, digital and production journalist 

Favorite place to enjoy wellness/fitness?
I love the classes at Reform, a reformer pilates studio in Takapuna (you'll also find them in Parnell, Newmarket, and several locations across the country).

What does your fitness or wellbeing routine look like? 
After hip surgery a few years ago my fitness routine shifted to one that is easier on the body: pilates, yoga, considered strength training at the gym, hikes and swimming.

A great pre/post-workout recipe to share?
After a gym workout, I often make a smoothie comprising frozen berries, banana, Greek yoghurt, oat bran, linseeds, psyllium husks, Well Co rice and pea protein, and oat milk.

Top fitness attire or gear you are adding to cart?

Naganta zip-thru jumper $457.

Nagnata bralet $226.

Nagnata bike shorts $258.

Frank Green reusable stainless steel drink bottle $59.

How To Do Nothing by Jenny Odell $33.

Why is wellness/fitness important to you?
It's the bedrock of a real, substantive relationship with my health, and my body.

Ashleigh Cometti, beauty editor

Favourite place to enjoy wellness/fitness?
There's nothing I love more than getting outdoors to exercise, and Tāmaki Makarau is brimming with incredible walking tracks and hiking loops to explore. On any given weekend, you can find me exploring Duder Regional Park, climbing the stairs to the top of Camp Sladdin in Clevedon, or traipsing my way to the top of the Hunua Falls. If I feel like travelling a bit further afield, nothing can beat the incredible views along the Te Henga Walkway, a 10.3km track, which trails the cliffside from Bethells Beach to Muriwai.

What does your fitness or wellbeing routine look like? 
I aim to exercise 3 to 4 times per week, which usually involves one evening 45-minute boxing class, one Saturday morning bootcamp and a couple of walks or hikes with my family. For me, wellness and self-care go hand-in-hand, which is something I practice nightly when performing my evening skincare routine. This often involves using a gua sha or facial massager to relieve tension in my jaw (I have a terrible habit of clenching), and treating my face and body to aromatherapeutic products to help erase the stress of the day while soothing my skin.

A great pre/post-workout recipe to share?
I've been making overnight protein oats for as long as I can remember, and it's such an easy grab-and-go breakfast. At night, I'll combine 30g oats with one scoop of vegan protein powder (Naked Harvest Strawberries & Cream is my current go-to), a splash of almond milk and a teaspoon of chia seeds and mix well before leaving to set overnight. In the morning, I top it with frozen raspberries, some coconut flakes and a drizzle of Pics peanut butter. It's the perfect way to power up before a busy day, or to refuel post-workout.

Top fitness attire or gear you are adding to cart?

Bala 1Lb bangles, $99, from Superette.

Theragun Pro Massager, $1099, from Torpedo7.

Apple Watch Series 7 from $649.

Lululemon Align High-Rise short 6-inch $79.

Two Islands Move Me Fast-Acting Joint Support $64.

Why is wellness/fitness important to you?
I'm a much happier "me" when I prioritise my health and wellbeing. Exercise allows me to have a bit of "me" time — it's my opportunity to invest back into myself. I lead a really busy lifestyle, so exercise is something I have to diarise or it just won't happen, but I always feel so much better when I do make time for it.

READ: Why Surfing Has Been A Revelation For Cookbook & Wellbeing Author Eleanor Ozich

Annabel Dickson, fashion assistant

Favourite place to enjoy wellness/fitness?
I love nothing more than the ocean, so for me a time in or near the sea cures all. I've been enjoying a lunchtime dip in my neighborhood of Pt Chevalier, perfect for refreshing the mind and body in this current heat.

What does your fitness or wellbeing routine look like? 
Most mornings of the week start with a 40-minute high-intensity circuit-style workout at Playground. I love the instructors' energizing and inviting attitude along with the family vibe. Great music accompanied by interesting and technical workouts. Occasionally a light walk around the neighborhood or an evening swim is a great way to settle the day also.

A great pre/post-workout recipe to share?
I'm not a huge morning eater, so a smoothie or yogurt and fruit is refreshing around midday. I love an on-the-go snack such as corn thins with avo or hummus. I'm not much of a cook so easy 'preparing only' meals are my go-to.

Top fitness attire or gear you are adding to cart?

Live The Process bra $133.

Nagnata trousers, $450, from Muse. 

Viper skipping rope, $39, from Industrial Fitness. 

Allbirds running shorts $120.

We-Ar yoga mat $98.

Why is wellness/fitness important to you?

I exercise mostly for mental clarity. With the world in the state that it is right now and local stresses such as work and general life, exercising is my escape. It is important for me to be present and in my best mindset whilst providing positive energy around the people I love. 

Rebecca Barry Hill, contributing journalist

Favorite place to enjoy wellness/fitness?
Studio Red in the city. Take a heated yoga class in what feels like a 5-star hotel.

What does your fitness or wellbeing routine look like? 
Half an hour on my exercise bike a few times a week. Daily dog + child walking. Online yoga once or twice a week at home. Stretchy band routine from YouTube in place of weights. A brisk pool swim when I can. “Dance parties” with my 4-year-old.

A great pre/post-workout recipe to share?
A green smoothie made with spinach (or whatever greens you have on hand), celery, frozen blueberries, a frozen banana, 1/4 avocado, a handful of pumpkin seeds and 2 teaspoons of Dr Libby’s Bio Blends Organic Daily Greens + Radiant Reds.

Top fitness attire or gear you are adding to cart?

Gaiam Yoga Mat $103.

Gaiam Acupressure Mat & Pillow, $80, from Rebel Sport.

Gaiam Resistance Training Bands $59.

Nike Revolution 6 running shoes $110.

Olympus Iron Kettle Bell, from $24, from Torpedo7.

Why is wellness/fitness important to you?
Without a decent routine I’m moody, my work and sleep suffer and I can’t indulge in my favourite foods and drinks to the same extent. It’s 90 per cent mental for me.

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