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Lifestyle: Work Out To Warm Up

By Machaela Dwyer from F45 Hawthorn, 12 Wakefield St, Hawthorn With endless blogs, TikToks and reels flooding our feeds on the latest health and wellness trends, it’s difficult to know whose advice to follow. Fitness expert, Machaela Dwyer cuts through the digital noise to offer simple and sound exercise and healthy, balanced diet tips.

I’m an exercise first-timer. Where do I start?

Consistency is key. The best thing is to find out what you like to do and then weigh it up against your goal. For some people it might just be walking daily, while for others interested in the gym, I recommend signing up for the trials at fitness facilities around you to get a real feel for what you like and what works for you.

Favourite healthy snacks to keep you going for the day

Some of my go-to snacks include protein shakes, bananas, maple syrup, peanut butter on toast, fruit and nuts. Dark chocolate on Fridays is my weekly treat.

What is the best time of day to exercise?

There have been so many studies written about this. Whatever time will allow you the most consistency to train is the best time. I make time every day to move, but some people find they have to do it first thing in the morning as their work and family commitments take priority for the rest of the day.

How do I safely use pre-workout/supplements?

I believe pre-workout supplements are for elite athletes, but most of us don’t need them. Many people don’t consume enough protein and as we age we need more of it, so protein powder should be a staple in everyone’s pantry. I recommend having a blood test to see if you need Iron, Vitamin B and Vitamin D before you take any supplements, as sometimes doses purchased over the counter are not enough to supplement your deficiency. Our gut health will determine whether any foods or supplements we have consumed are absorbed properly, so if you think they aren’t helping, your gut microbiome needs to be assessed.

How do you stay motivated in the winter months?

I actually train my best in winter as it’s cold, so I naturally want to move to get warm. If you don’t want to train outside as it’s cold or raining, that’s when things like Sprint Classes or Indoor Classes can be beneficial. I really believe in training with someone; your accountability buddy will make you turn up during winter. I’d also recommend experiencing an Infrared Sauna; the feeling of walking out into the cold after being in the sauna is so invigorating. How important is stretching and mobility?

Mobility, which refers to the ability of a joint to move through its full range of motion without restriction or discomfort, is just as important as stretching, which refers to a muscle’s ability to lengthen. Mobility can be practised for just five minutes a day, either in the morning before you get out of bed or at night after a warm shower. Other benefits include a decreased susceptibility to injury, feeling less stiff and sore, greater range of motion and therefore more energy, and improved circulation, posture and concentration.

Machaela Dwyer has been in the fitness industry for 25 years, starting out as a personal trainer before she opened up the very first F45 studio in Melbourne in Hawthorn in 2014. As a qualified strength and conditioning coach, Machaela was the first female to be inducted into the F45 Hall of Fame in 2019. She is also a Peri and Menopausal Certified trainer and is currently undertaking a Hormone Practitioners Course. Machaela credits much of her studio’s success to her incredible staff who have contributed to the community she has cultivated over the years.

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