If the idea of setting your alarm for a ungodly hour pre-6am spins induces a frenzied panic, and after work hours are dedicated to those ever-important social activities, we’re here to help. What about that daily interlude that usually flies by and doesn’t usually offer us the opportunity to achieve much—except feeding our faces of course! Lunchtime workouts can be your saviour for the busy bees we are. Of course there are practicalities to think about—packing gear the night before, shower facilities, eating before/after etc. But trust us, it’s worth it—if only for the sake of that extra hour of shut eye and the ability to still make that tinder date after work.
Yoga And Pilates
We’re all beginning to cotton on to how good yoga and Pilates workouts can be for our overall wellbeing. The fact it will actually make you look better in your lycra tights in just a bonus. Yoga Academy offers 50-minutes classes at either 12.05pm or 1.05pm which leaves you with just enough room to shower before hightailing it back to the office. Abundance Mind and Body right on Queen St is perhaps Auckland’s most affordable yoga studio and also offers lunchtime sessions and will leave you with enough coin to grab a healthy refuel on your return. Of course, if you’re open to gettin’ your serious sweat on in your midday hour, there’s also Hot Yoga Works Britomart which offers express (60min) classes at 12.15pm. If you want to take your Pilates next-level, then head along to K-core Pilates in Victoria Park Market. Their 45-minute reformer sessions will make your body burn in places you didn't know existed.
Same, same but different. Like, yoga and Pilates, a Barre workout also offers you the chance to sculpt long, lean limbs. Give Studio 3 in Grey Lynn a go at their fantastic ½ price Friday 45-minute class. Alternatively, BarreFigure on Richmond Road offers lunch time classes to the Ponsonby worker bees with their 60-min signature classes at midday on Monday, Wednesday and Fridays.
Circuit And HIIT
Circuit training and high impact interval training (HIIT) can be perfect for us time-poor peeps. Working your whole bod in limited time means you get more bang for your buck. Often with 30-minute time frames, you’ll be left with plenty of transit minutes to whip out the makeup bag or hair products before returning to the grind. BodyTech, with its state-of-the-art equipment and renowned small group classes offer guided interval training at lunchtimes for a full fitness experience. Bonus: BodyTech also has a pool. Of course there’s also Les Mills’ GRIT classes, which are like HIIT meets boot camp—certainly not for the faint-hearted but you’ll get results quick.
Workout in the water! Swimming has proven itself to be great cardio exercise without the joint stress of running and other impact exercise. Lucky for us Aucklanders, we have a public swimming pool within minutes of the CBD to take a lunchtime dip. The Tepid Baths, housed in an iconic historic building, offers a great place to do a few laps in your lunch break.
Box It Out
If all those emails, phonecalls, and to-do lists that pop up in your workday make you prone to a bit of midday frustration then swinging some punches at a bag could be just what you need. Lucky for us, Auckland's boxing scene is making it easier than ever to glove up and release some tension, with short and sharp classes popping up all over the city. For an intense cardio hit, check out the newly opened Studio Box; a group fitness HIIT inspired boxing workout that'll leave you ready to take on the day. If you're after a classic boxing workout that'll leave you feeling like a real badass, then book yourself in for a lunchtime session on the bags at Boxing Alley – their boxfit classes are the perfect mix of functional fitness and boxing technique.
Of course, a PT is usually at your beckoning call and can be organised to fit into your regular schedule (or lack of). Check out Parnell’s The Exercise Room or Ponsonby’s The Form Room for beautiful, boutique studios that specialised in personal training programmes.
Improve Your Practice
With what may be Auckland's sleekest studio, the no-fuss minimalist design of SALA reflects their back to basics approach to fitness too – making popping into one of their lunchtime classes just the reset you need. Their lunchtime regulars tend to focus more on yoga, but don't be fooled, you'll definitely still get those muscles working. From dynamic yoga to slow yin, come 12:30 the studio turns into a zen den where mobility, flexibility, and technique take over. Even better, take your time on your way back to the office and detour to Little Bird Kitchen for a post-yoga sweet treat or smoothie to really make yourself feel vituous.
A Lunch Date With A Difference
To round off our workout suggestions, we’ve saved the most simple for last—pack your runners and hit the pavement. Of course, you’re at the mercy of the weather gods but make the most of any weather and get to it. Take a different tack with your next lunch date catching up with a friend and go for a lunchtime stroll instead. After all, it presents the perfect opportunity to vent work frustrations or get a real headspace break from your daily work, which is often seriously welcome.
No time to exercise during the week? Here are some great Auckland Weekend Walks and Hikes to enjoy.