Constant CPR vigilance is exhausting. Trust me. I’m there, ready to give chest compressions as I learnt in a scuba diving course as soon as someone keels over.

I bet we look great doing this, huh?

The only problem is, I don’t work in a hospital. I just go to a gym.

I recently joined one of those 24-hour chain gyms where you can work out to your heart’s content… or discontent.

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  • Joe says:

    11:19am | 26/10/12

    @Kika: Three times a week? Pretty much a bodybuilder. f you’re doing an exercise like deadlifts, for example, correct form is to let the weight hit the ground and ‘collapse’ with it after you’ve brought it back down past the knees, so as not to screw up your back. And… Read more »

  • Joe says:

    11:07am | 26/10/12

    @Kika: Lol, that’s called supersetting. It’s a technique to increase the intensity of a workout and you won’t see many seriously jacked guys or girls who never do supersets. Sometimes trisets and giantsets are used too, which is either three exercises combined or four or more respectively. The basic premise… Read more »


You might consider yourself in good health, but you’re probably just uninformed. With the range of conditions, deficiencies and disorders available to us spreading like blood on a tissue, the odds that you really are well must be diminishing. 

Look at me, look at me, look at me. Photo: Herald Sun

If you haven’t even found a puny food intolerance to call your own, you could be letting developments in the health and wellbeing industry pass you by. 

Anxiety, tiredness and bloating can no longer be dismissed as part of our human condition, although that is chronic. They are symptoms in search of a diagnosis.

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  • Kate says:

    06:00pm | 26/09/12

    I agree Kika. I know someone who was recently pregnant and had a list of ‘foods to avoid’ about a metre long. It put me right off the idea of pregnancy but I think she was being really paranoid. As long as you aren’t smoking a pack a day and… Read more »

  • Lorraine says:

    06:00pm | 26/09/12

    If only people realised that allergies and intolerances are liabilities rather then assets then maybe there would not be so many who make a claim on them. Read more »


“Good on you Tony, you’ll be in the big house soon won’t you?” said a Tony Abbott fan, slightly confusing American slang for prison with The Lodge.

“Well, I call it the crazy house some times,” replied Tony Abbott jovially, possibly confusing The Lodge with Parliament.

The Opposition Leader was spending about 20 minutes at Bibbenluke, a hamlet in southern NSW where 96 schoolboy Rugby League teams gathered on Saturday for a giant carnival.

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  • Mahir says:

    11:08am | 20/04/12

    Abbott did his softly skpeon salesman routine to charm the audience I’ve seen many a salesman & priest do the same. The public are easily swayed by the use of persuasive language that is often distracting waffle, a touch of humour, giving them what they think they want to hear… Read more »

  • Chris L says:

    06:02pm | 03/04/12

    @Tator - So I just had to avoid milk, sugar, Medicare levi, etc and I would have been fine? Thanks for clearing that up Tator. I don’t begrudge the taxes I paid under Howard and more than the taxes I pay now. I just don’t think we should pretend they… Read more »


There’s a steaming pile of rubbish out there about health. There’s plenty of money to be made from offering too-good-to-be-true remedies.

It's everywhere. Pic: AP

Yesterday I was writing a couple of news stories about ways in which people get bamboozled by health-related information and then I started firing up a Punch piece on them. Then I realised I’d written it all before. Bullshit is everywhere, and it’s a billion-dollar industry and people want magic pills.

So rather than repeat myself I thought I’d just list five of the stories that have crossed my desk recently and made me want to tear out my hair and run screaming into the street. And if you know of others, let me know. It’s not that we ever run short of subjects for The Punch’s regular I Call Bullshit column, but there’s a sadistic pleasure in seeing that particular cup runneth over.

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  • buy oem software says:

    11:04am | 19/08/12

    wZ3RTK Major thankies for the blog article.Really looking forward to read more. Cool. Read more »

  • TracyS says:

    09:36pm | 01/03/12

    Are walking and running really the only exercise options??? The best advice I’ve ever heard is for people to do the exercise that they enjoy so that they are more likely to stick with it - whatever type of exercise it is will be better than doing none. For the… Read more »


I’m standing on stage in front of a few hundred people wearing a tiny Swarovski crystal-covered bikini and six-inch Perspex platform stripper heels. That’s just the start. If you are a female figure bodybuilder, as I am, you get to wear nail art, big hair and lots of bling-bling jewellery. I even have crystals embedded in my false eyelashes.

The author Helen McInerney struts her stuff. Photo: Supplied.

My deep dark tan is painted on and then there’s another layer of shimmer gel so I look like a bronzed-up Barbie doll with muscles.

I turned 50 this year and decided to enter a bodybuilding competition - a memorable way to mark what might otherwise be a year of regret.

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  • God (yes, the one you worship and pray to) says:

    12:23am | 30/03/12

    Bodybuilding (and this bitch) = 92% drugs + 4% diet + 4% training. Competitive bodybuilding is a JOKE. The more drugs they take, the more they’re rewarded. Just like the Olympics and other sports I guess. (And this is coming from a ripped natural bodybuilder.. not some old fatcunt) There’s… Read more »

  • Priya says:

    07:14pm | 12/10/11

    no one said you had to go out and be a body builder. Clearly this lady has gone on her own personal journey with weight and this is where she has ended up. Its marvelous. It takes great dedication and mental strength to get where she is. I say bravo.… Read more »


While the media last week fixated on the political “divide” in Australia, with vastly divergent views expressed on the carbon tax at the forums and some confrontations between people with passionate viewpoints, it’s worth remembering that every day of every week, Aussies are getting on with their lives and doing remarkable things.

They made it… just. Pic: Jay-Nel McIntosh.

It’s worth remembering that there is so much more that unites us as a nation than that which currently divides us.

All that is great about Australia was on display in a rain-soaked corner of Queensland last weekend.

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  • jf says:

    05:16pm | 21/07/11

    Have a crack at it Paul. I reckon you’d find it harder than you think. Mateship - plenty of that amongst the walkers. In fact, you get plenty of that just down at the Broady on a Sunday arvo session. Endurance - 96km through rough, hilly terrain. I’d call that… Read more »

  • RyaN says:

    10:27pm | 20/07/11

    Got no substance so going to resort to out and out lying now are we? I guess this is unsurprising since lying is not foreign to Laborites though! Read more »


Being a proper Renaissance man, I recently swore off exercise. Every year, my brain - being the smug bastard that it is - tells my body to get healthy, which usually complies. This year’s embarrassingly brief dalliance with fitness, however, saw my body rebel, invoking Charles Darwin himself. 

I'd flat out kill for a family size block of Cadburys right now

It all began with a recent viewing of The Fugitive. Harrison Ford just keeps running and running and running in that movie. What if, I thought, a one-armed man killed my wife and I couldn’t prove it and was sent to jail, only to escape thanks to a CGI train crash? Tommy Lee Jones would need only follow the trail of vomit and tears for five minutes before he found me wheezing in the foetal position, begging for leniency.

And so, I’ve spent the past month running and tearing various muscles in an effort to become healthier. It occurred to me last week, however, that it’s all a bunch of nonsense. As I spluttered my way up one of Taringa’s many tortuous hills, I realised exercise and healthy living was the height of human stupidity.

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  • ZSRenn says:

    07:59pm | 15/07/11

    Personally I blame the beer. Laopo liang tang wo cafe. Read more »

  • id says:

    06:29pm | 15/07/11

    Exercise is as boring as bat guano. If it were more interesting I would do it. Read more »


Think you’re a normal weight? So did I, until I got stuck in lift at 2am.

Picture: Sandra Priestly.

A big group of us piled in and it promptly broke.

After the shock of screaming to a halt between floors, we were indignant. The lift said it could hold 12 people. There were only 11 of us.

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  • Rebecca says:

    09:04am | 03/02/10

    I am a 29 years old 6’1 and 100kg and if you go by the BMI chart i am obese as my BMI is over 31 but the strange thing is that i dont have an ounce of fat om me, if i follow BMI the only way that i… Read more »

  • Louise says:

    08:08am | 03/02/10

    Did anyone stop to think that being overweight is also directly linked to ones socio- economic background? Ie: if you are poor, its more likely you are fat.  To tax these people is to in effect not only keep them poor(er) but also fat(ter). I don’t know anyone who is… Read more »


If you have an aversion to thousands of riders in brightly coloured lycra, it’s not for you. If, however, you are a keen recreational cyclist who delights in an outdoor adventure, the Great Victorian Bike Ride is one of the ‘must do’ events in life.

First conducted in 1984, when 2,100 people cycled from Wodonga to Melbourne, it has grown into one of the great cycle touring events in the world. Last week, 5,000 people rode from Portland in the west of the State, via Cape Bridgewater, along the iconic Great Ocean Road to Geelong.

Averaging 70 kilometres a day, the huge peleton spread for kilometres along the coastal road. There was every shape and size of human imaginable, battling headwinds from Port Fairy to Port Campbell one day, and then the long climbs to Laver’s Hill and over the Otways the next.

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  • Sloth says:

    01:33am | 14/12/09

    Mr Andrews, just a quick question; I’ve a friend whose a black African - will he be allowed to come riding with you, as well, or is this one of those whites only events? I only ask because he’s worried you’ll take his visa off him if he asks you… Read more »

  • Mikko says:

    07:50pm | 13/12/09

    Come on guys, since when is a politician not allowed to have a life outside of politics, and are you so narrow minded that’s all you want to read about? If it was Kevin Rudd setting an example by getting fit cycling the Great Ocean Road instead of jetting off… Read more »


How times change. When I started working in an office a little over 20 years ago, you could still smoke at your desk. In fact, when you were shown the stationary cabinet on your first day in a new job you could kit yourself out with a stapler and sticky-tape dispenser as well as an ashtray.

Sadly the pewter beer tankard has fallen out of fashion.

In those days, ‘smoking or non-smoking?’ was an everyday question when checking in for an airline flight’, you watched the Benson & Hedges World Series Cup over summer and the Winfield Cup over winter and the back cover of almost every women’s magazine carried an ad featuring an attractive blonde, a beach, acres of cheesecloth and a packet Alpine.

At about the same time blokes would go to the beach in the middle of the day, shirtless and hatless, while women would lay for hours baking themselves to a golden brown while occasionally basting themselves with coconut oil. Sun protection was not standard work issue for workers out of doors and sunshirts and sensible hats had the same sartorial appeal as sandals with long socks.

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  • JenkinsRhea says:

    07:46pm | 02/08/10

    When you are in a not good position and have no money to move out from that, you would have to receive the mortgage loans. Just because that would help you for sure. I get sba loan every single year and feel myself good because of this. Read more »

  • Alexandra Coffey says:

    12:08pm | 20/01/10

    Funny. Read more »


I have battled with my weight for the past 12 years. I’m now 40.

Spot the fit guy: Me with Hugh Jackman

I thought having kids would be a turning point. I thought having a suspected heart attack in the West Indies while filming my show An Aussie Goes Calypso would be a turning point. I thought turning 40 would be a turning point.

But nothing seems to stick and I continue to jump on and off a number of diets and fitness regimes.

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  • Michael says:

    07:49pm | 03/08/12

    Princess Mary’s funeral? I think I missed that. However, yes there’s something about this bloke that’s just not quite hitting the mark of the ‘funny fat guy, true aussie bloke’ - somehow he rubs me the wrong way. Also, I think he secretely likes being a ‘big fella’. Anyway, good… Read more »

  • Big Fella says:

    09:04pm | 16/10/09

    Good on you Gus. I started putting on weight when I started working and have steadily increased over the years. Managed to have a couple of good drops in weight but every time put it back on. Hit just under 90kg about 9 years ago and earlier this year dropped… Read more »


If you’re like me - and hopefully you’re not, since that would make you a lazy couch potato with a strong dislike for exercise - then you’ll no doubt be heartily cheered by the efforts of a bunch of amphibious rats somewhere in Japan.

Apparently two groups of these rats were set different tasks. The unlucky ones got to paddle in a pool for six hours, with a brief break halfway through. The ‘lucky’ ones got to carry a load of weight and struggle hard for twenty seconds before being lifted from the water for ten seconds, and then thrown back in.

Clearly, some people have a strange idea of fun. But for the rats, there were some interesting changes. The ones that exercised for six hours got fitter.

But, and this is the good news bit, so did the rats which did twenty seconds hard work, followed by ten seconds break – repeated over just four and a half minutes of swimming.

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  • Gabriela says:

    06:10am | 31/05/12

    Hey man , first off love the vids. helps me alot considering i just strated going to the gym about a month ago (never been before in my entire life).  Anyway the concept 2 is a part of my daily workout lately ive been doing 300 meter sprints 10 pushups… Read more »

  • Jim says:

    01:57pm | 07/07/09

    Lost my license so I’ve been riding my bike a bit - little trips mostly, like to the shops etc. Anyway it seems to be true that short bursts can make you fit. Everyone says I’m looking slimmer. Read more »


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