There’s plenty of cool information and articles on house and home this issue. It’s the perfect time to explore exercise at your place, plus throw in a few fat loss and fitness hacks to keep your results rolling through winter. Celebrity trainer Shannan Ponton is here to help, with his tips on how to stay fit, healthy and active this winter.


I think we have been coerced, over the last couple of years, that HIIT - High Intensity Interval Training - is the only way to go. We’ve been bombarded by all manner of ‘insta-lebrities’ purveying ‘unbelievable, unbeatable results achieved in minimal time’ by performing ballistic, high impact, highly skilled movements, under load or at speed. As the marketing suggests, HIIT will generate substantial gains in fitness and noticeable change in Body Composition.

HIIT Training has produced some super fit, strong athletes, with incredible and highly enviable physiques… but at a cost. The downside of consistent high threshold training is injury. Particularly as ‘we’ get older.

Now, I use that generalisation with 100% conviction that at 45, my own PB’s - Personal Best Performances - have long passed and it’s only a good workout now if I get through without any niggles. Unfortunately, a niggle now seems to last a fair bit longer than before… like forever!

Training doesn’t have to be a flatout, uncomfortable push all the time. Just walking is a perfect way to get your body moving and generate substantial changes in Body Fat and Fitness.

I know, I know, I hear your scepticism. You’re thinking that’s way too simple and you need something more demanding. I was from the same school of thought, until I put it into practice and witnessed the results for myself. Changing very fit and healthy clients’ programs to include three or four extra walks a week was a game changer. Consistency is key, and is a higher overriding principle of fitness than speed or duration. Sounds technical but put simply you are much better off walking at six km/h for twenty to forty minutes, four to five times a week, staying injury free and enjoying your exercise, than running at your maximum speed of twelve km/h and developing an overuse injury, or even worse dreading having to do every session. Remember, this is a prescription for weight loss and good health, not sports performance.

It sounds relatively easy on paper and I will give you all the protocols, but you need to bring the commitment and determination. The effectiveness of this program depends on your level of consistency.


Frequency: four to six times a week.

Duration: twenty to sixty minutes.

Intensity: a brisk, purposeful walk at your own level.

How: walk a track, rather than a loop. Walk out one specific route and then double back, tracing the exact path you already walked.


  • Twenty minutes: walk out eleven, walk back to start in nine, faster on the return.

  • Thirty mins: walk out sixteen, walk back to start in fourteen.

  • Forty mins: walk out twenty one, walk back to start in nineteen.

  • Fifty mins: walk out twenty six, walk back to start in twenty four.

Of course sixty minutes is more effective than fifty... is better than forty… is better than thirty. so work whatever fits into your day. Doing something is better than nothing.

Don’t be a victim to time if you’ve only got twenty minutes. Get your backside out the door and move for that twenty minutes. If you sit down and whinge about how much time you don’t have to your virtual friends on social media, it will be gone.

Do it, it’s only twenty minutes.

SHANNAN PONTON is bringing results based personal training to the Northern Beaches. Rates start from $70/hour. Training at Dee Why Fitness First or Outdoors.

“I’m stoked to be back doing what I love best. Empowering people to transform
their minds and bodies with simple, satisfying nutrition combined with an efficient, manageable exercise program.”

Set your 2019 fitness goals? Train with Shannan and watch them come true.
Email Shannan today: @shannanponton