Written By: Lorna Dollery | Photography By: Barbara Clarke

Boxing Coach Lorna Dollery gives her top tips for living your best life.

If you wake up every morning blessed with the ability to move your body, you are luckier than many. Make exercise a celebration of that ability by finding a way to move that brings you joy. You are more likely to stick to a routine if you are doing something you like. For you, it could be any number of things—hiking, a fitness class, martial arts, lifting, yoga, riding your bike, dancing…the options are endless!

Weight is nothing more than a measure of your gravitational force upon the earth. It has no place in your everyday life. If your main motivation for working out is losing weight, you are denying yourself so many of the wonderful benefits of exercise. As soon as we free ourselves from the number on the scale, we create space to notice how much progress we can make in other ways—running faster, lifting heavier, punching harder, getting stronger.

There is a common misconception, particularly among women, that lifting weights makes us bulky. This is a myth. Lifting heavy weights has many wonderful benefits including building muscular strength, increasing bone density, decreasing risk of injury, changing body composition and improving balance and posture. To truly reap the benefits of lifting we must progressively lift heavier weight, but it is very important to slowly build up to this. If you are new to lifting, I highly recommend hiring a qualified professional to teach you to do this safely and with the correct form.

Research shows that working out with a partner increases exercise frequency, performance and consistency. We are more likely to adhere to something when we have an encouraging partner to help us stay accountable. Choosing the right person is important. Find someone with similar goals and whom you respect and don’t want to let down. This person should have a positive, uplifting attitude, and it works best when they have a similar fitness level and goal.

Don’t skip rest days! To maintain an active lifestyle your body needs to recover. Active recovery such as taking a walk or a yoga class can be excellent ways to promote recovery and prevent injury without feeling like you’re sitting around doing nothing. However you choose to recover, making it a priority in your regimen will allow you to keep your body healthier for longer.

I believe we are healthier and happier in our physical bodies when we take care of our spiritual and mental health. A well-rounded wellness practice encompasses physical activity, nourishing nutrition and proper recovery—physical, mental and spiritual. A daily meditation practice or regular energy healing can do wonders for your state of mind, and when we are in a good state of mind, we are less likely to skip workouts or reach for foods that we know are less optimal for our health.

Lorna Dollery offers one-on-one and small group personal training and fitness boxing at her studio on Old South Road. Private sessions can be booked via email and public small group classes, including a weekly community donation class, can be booked online at

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