the Road to Fitness — 6: Keep On Moving!

Kay starts the Marines run May 2013

Lord, I’ve got to keep on moving… —Bob Marley 

Move for health and long life

By Roger Childs

All the research spells out that movement and exercise has got to be good for you. 

Whether it’s yoga, stretching, strength training, running, walking, cycling, swimming, dancing … moving is great for lowering stress, making you healthier and increasing life expectancy.

There are plenty of myths about exercise. How about putting stress on the joints? A recent America study from Bringham Young University found that running is actually good for your knees. It’s the “use it or lose it” principle.

The benefits of moving and flexibility

 By choosing healthy habits every day, we can create a gene activity pattern that is more beneficial for our health. —Ivana Buric, Coventry University 

In her scientific studies, she found that regular exercise and, what she calls practising mindfulness, reduces stress. She recommends yoga, meditation, breathing exercises and tai chi as ways of improving mental and physical health.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAMany fitness professionals and academics recommend 150 minutes (2½ hours) of exercise a week to  maintain a healthy lifestyle. 

Local Kapiti sports coach Murray Ashley, trains people from teenage to early seventies and sets weekly programmes. He emphasizes that flexibility is important. 

Particular activities don’t have to be done on specific days. Bad weather, domestic responsibilities, school or work commitments and unexpected events may mean that the set programme needs to be adjusted. The important thing is completing the weekly schedule. At the end of the week his athletes work out what percentage of the programme was done.

Exceeding expectations

You may be settling into a fitness programme or may have been exercising and training for years. 

Whatever, there is always the opportunity to expand your horizons.

Going beyond what you’ve planned has got to be good for your morale and self confidence. It may be extending how far you walk, run or ride, or challenging yourself to do more in the gym.

Exercise and training should always be manageable, however it is easy to convince yourself that you’ve done enough. 

ebikes 1If you ride an electric-bike don’t forget to pedal! Just use the “engine” for going uphill.

There is tremendous satisfaction in going the extra mile: doing an extra block; going for an hour rather than 50 minutes; lifting a heavier weight; adding an extra repetition in the gym.

A friend who was training for a half marathon recently planned to do a run of about 23 km. He missed the turn off from the Kapiti expressway track and got home having done 29.4 km. So he threw in another block to get up to 30 km. 

Way to go!

Waikanae town centre access and safety ‘study’

This is one of the reports attached to the agenda of the 5th and final meeting of the Waikanae Community Board of this year with the existing members before the election. It takes place this evening at 7 pm in the Community Hall in Pehi Kupa Street/Utauta Street.

The August meeting was cancelled and not rescheduled, meaning this is the first since June.  We’ve heard the explanation that the three cancellations this year have been because of the lack of a quorum (which is three of the five members); however, rules allow for video conferencing (including via Skype) to consider a member being present.

Our team has made clear we consider it a poor commitment to their job by the present members, particularly the Chair (Ms Prvanov), that this should happen.


Agenda of Waikanae Community Board Meeting - 17 00 2019Agenda of Waikanae Community Board Meeting - 17 00 2019Agenda of Waikanae Community Board Meeting - 17 00 2019

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Te Tapuwae o Rongokako Marine Reserve — Conservation blog

Marine reserves are one of New Zealand Aotearoa’s special protected places where ecosystems are left to thrive naturally, and this Conservation Week we’re checking out Te Tapuwae o Rongokako on the East Coast. Te Tapuwae o Rongokako is about 16 km north of Gisborne and can be accessed at Pouawa by heading up State Highway…

via Te Tapuwae o Rongokako Marine Reserve — Conservation blog

the incomparable Margaret Atwood’s latest novel

By Ralph McAllister

The Handmaid’s Tale sequel hits the shelves

TheTestamentsMargaret Atwood’s The Testaments was published worldwide on Tuesday, 10 September. I read the 400 pages last Thursday and write to you, dear readers, as Atwood would say. The sequel to her 1985 The Handmaid’s Tale has been a long time coming.

Not that she has been exactly resting in the meantime. By my count there have been seventeen other novels and much poetry, and many essays since The Handmaid’s Tale

I would suggest, without equivocation, that The Testaments is her masterpiece.

 Picking up where she left off

The opening leads us straight back to Puritan patriarchal Giliad where the fight for survival makes cannibals of us all. Not quite perhaps, but near enough.

Aunt Lydia shares her secrets with us, as the battles for control of Giliad are fought with increasing doses of fake news, deceit and collaboration.

The stories, and there are many, are not for the faint-hearted.

Aunt Lydia dominates after surviving extreme torture as part of her introduction to hierarchical work. Two young initiates obnoxious Daisy and faithful Agnes share the telling of some of the events, but not so intimately as Lydia.

Most of the men are despicable.

But while the desire for control is endemic it is not simply just male versus female. Atwood is too clever.

Plenty of mayhem, deceit and, humour

Loyalties are shredded, murders committed and the future remains doubtful. Sound grim?

Don’t forget the indomitable humour which has always been part of the Atwood arsenal.

For example:

Lydia describes herself having “a sack-of-potatoes body.” Note the hyphens.

Or

”So kind of you to tell me,” I said.
The muscles of my face were beginning to hurt. Under some conditions smiling is a workout.

Or

“The Commander stuck his mouth onto my forehead in a chaste kiss, His lips were unpleasantly warm ; they made a sucking sound as they pulled away. I pictured a tiny morsel of my brain being sucked through the skin of my forehead into his mouth. A thousand such kisses later and my skull would be emptied of brain.” 

Rare and precious

Margaet Atwood 3It is very rarely that I devote an entire column to one book, but, let me insist, this is a rare and precious novel. Booker? Of course.

Even with my failure rate of predictions, The Testaments will surely win and be talked about for just as long as The Handmaid’s Tale.

If you can only afford to buy one book a year, this is it.

So get down to Paper Plus and get Atwood’s masterpiece.

the Rugby World Cup begins this Friday — our final lead-up article

by Roger Childs

The 2015 final

No excuses. We were well beaten by a better team on the day. The All Blacks are the best team in the world. —The thoughts of Wallaby captain, Stephen Moore

Proving their superiority

World Cup final

The All Blacks came into the World Cup as the top ranked team and remain so with their emphatic 34-17 win over the Wallabies in the final. Only a moment of stupidity by Ben Smith which cost him 10 minutes in the bin, saved the Australians from a humiliating annihilation. 

Leading 21-3 early in the second half, after a superb individual try by Ma’a Nonu, the flood gated were about to open, but Smith’s absence allowed the Wallabies to score two converted tries. However normal service was resumed when the full back returned and the champions won their second consecutive World Cup with a flourish.

All Blacks on top from the start

As in the quarter final against France, the New Zealanders went on the offensive from the start and some big tackles and early breaks, notably from Nonu, had the Australians on the back foot. The All Blacks came close to scoring, but determined defence by the Wallabies kept them out.

Penalties were traded to take the score to 9-3 but finally, just before half time, a superb movement involving a double round from Conrad Smith and a well timed pass from inspirational skipper Richie McCaw saw Nehe Milner-Skudder score in the corner.

The All Blacks were much the better team in the first half and their set piece scrums and lineouts were first rate. They also lost nothing in the loose where the Australians were expected to have the edge. 

Locks Brodie Retallick and Sam Whitelock were in great form in the tight and the lineouts, and Jerome Kaino stood out with his powerful tackling and strength in the rucks.

Carter and Nonu star in the backs

Dan Carter missed the 2011 final and was determined to make the most of this one. He set the backline going well, tackled effectively and got more distance with his line kicks compared with opposite number Bernard Foley.

 But crucially his goal kicking was excellent: only one attempt missed and his first four from wide out were all dead straight. Then with the scores at 21-17, a long range drop goal gave the All Blacks a crucial 7 point buffer. His man of the match of award was well merited.

At second five Ma’a Nonu showed why he has no peer on the planet in this position. He always made ground with ball in hand and frequently broke early tackles. His tackling was deadly as usual and his passing was up to the usual high standard. 

The icing on the cake was his try of the tournament just after half time.

All Black magic

You will never, ever, ever see a try like that in a World Cup final!! —Ecstatic commentator Justin Marshall

 ~ Sonny Bill Williams was engulfed by two tacklers 5 metres inside the Australians’ half

 ~ He managed to free his arms and off load to Ma’a Nonu behind the ruck that was forming

 ~ Nonu raced through a gap and outpaced Tevita Kuridrani

 ~ Kurtley Beale tried to tackle him but was wrong footed

 ~ Nonu then ran wide on the left hand side to score in the tackle of Drew Mitchell.

The Wallaby comeback

It now seemed that the All Blacks would run up away with the game, but Ben Smith foolishly lifted an opponent above the horizontal and denied his team the chance to build a huge score.

The Australians are too good a team not to take advantage of being one man up and two well taken tries by David Pocock and Kuridrani closed the a score to 21-17. 

World Cup final 3However, back to 15 men, the All Blacks pushed out the points gap with a superb Carter drop goal and a penalty. Then, with only a couple of minutes on the clock, Ben Smith redeemed himself with an excellent kick through, which the speedy Beauden Barrett towed ahead and gathered to score near the posts.

Worthy champions

The All Blacks dominated the final and only when they were one man up did the Wallabies have the initiative.  

The victory was a due reward for the New Zealanders skill, fitness, team work and individual brilliance.World Cup final 2

Kapiti Poetry News — September 2019

Poetry Portland LibraryBy Gill Ward and Elizabeth Coleman

National poetry day and Kate Camp

National poetry day has been and gone and it will seem no time at all until next year and we are doing it all again. I hope you were able to pick up a poem somewhere during the week. Also the poetry tree (Poetree) outside Robert Harris had poems on for people to take so we did our best to publicise the fact that it was a week of poems.  

Kate CampKate Camp was our guest poet that Sunday so it was excellent to have last year’s Katherine Mansfield Award Menton resident winner as our guest. We enjoyed her straightforward style and the things she shared with us about the poems she read. Thank you, Kate. Hopefully the people who won the spot prizes on the day were pleased with the books they chose.

Christchurch’s Erik Kennedy in town

  • On Sunday 29 September
  • at Robert Harris Café, Coastlands, 4 – 6 pm

We are delighted our guest poet Erik Kennedy agreed to visit us all the way from Christchurch. 

Erik-Kennedy“Erik Kennedy has followed his poetry chapbook, Twenty-Six Factions (Cold Hub Press, 2017) with his debut collection, There’s No Place Like the Internet in Springtime (Victoria University Press, 2018). He edits the online journal Queen Mob’s Teahouse. His first-full length collection sparks with multiple fascinations, experience, thought, wit, politics, optical delights and aural treats. It is a book of harmonics and elastic thinking, and is a pleasure to read.” (Paula Green, Poetry Shelf).

Erik was born in America and lives in Christchurch and is now about to share poems in Kapiti. He says, “I was an only child with addictive tendencies. I started writing my own poems, and I liked it so much that I thought I should write hundreds of them”.  A poet to look forward to! 

Please! Remember one page at the open mic so we don’t squeeze our guest poet for time

Next month, October, the last Sunday falls on Labour weekend. Traditionally we don’t have a poetry reading on that day owing to holiday traffic and holiday activities so will be bringing you the news about our November session in early November.

ice-cream truck in Kanawa Street — but there’s a little story to it

Waikanae icecream truck Kanawa Street

‘Grandma’s Taxi’
Quite a few years ago, my wife’s Grandma was out shopping in Waikanae. She missed her bus home to the retirement home, so summoned the ice cream vendor who just happened to be trying to sell some 99’s near the bus stop. He kindly allowed her into the passenger seat and took her home. It’s not known how much business he attained from other residents, but he gave her an ice cream too! Here is his van parked across from where we used to live in Waikanae in Kanawa Street. “Well done Mr Kool!” (Wallace Trickett)