The 11th edition of the UAE’s largest walkathon, WALK 2017, saw thousands of UAE citizens and residents walk along Abu Dhabi’s iconic Yas Marina Circuit today to raise awareness of diabetes.
A delegation from Abu Dhabi Police led the way ahead of senior officials and members from the Abu Dhabi Executive Council from the UAE, the Department of Health in Abu Dhabi, Abu Dhabi Police, Department of Community Development, Department of Education and Knowledge, Department of Economic Development–Abu Dhabi and the Abu Dhabi Sports Council.
Organised by Imperial College London Diabetes Centre (ICLDC) with the support of Department of Health – Abu Dhabi, Abu Dhabi Sports Council, and sister companies Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi and Healthpoint, the annual walkathon was part of ICLDC’s award-winning campaign ‘Diabetes.Knowledge.Action‘.
The world’s fittest woman is not a triathlete, cyclist or runner. She is not a professional footballer either. She is Tia Toomey, a Reebok sponsored CrossFit athlete from Australia.
The 24-year-old Brisbane native was crowned the Fittest Woman on Earth at the Reebok CrossFit Games in Wisconsin back in August after a gruelling four days of competition.
Toomey, a weightlifter who competed at the Rio 2016 Olympics, was put through a series of events including standard aerobic, weightlifting and gymnastics movements to become the overall victor.
The CrossFit games is an annual event held to determine the fittest man and woman on earth. Athletes have to qualify through regional events and face exercises from hill sprints to sandbag carries to open water swims and endurance events. The athlete with the most points after the four-day competition is deemed the winner.
What is remarkable about Toomey’s story is that she only took up CrossFit seven years ago after practicing the sport to help increase her power and strength for the 400 metre hurdles.
After two impressive second place finishes at the 2015 and 2016 CrossFit games, she would replicate her mesmerising form to fend off twotime champion Annie Thorisdottir of Iceland to deliver a first title.
Speaking at the launch of the new CrossFit Gold Box in Business Bay, Dubai recently, Toomey told Sport360: “It’s been a surreal journey, something that I never expected. I started CrossFit simply to improve my fitness and then it’s totally led to being the fittest woman on the earth.”
She added: “Throughout the journey I never put pressure on myself to achieve number one. It was always part of CrossFit games or regionals. From there, I developed confidence and think I can go for one better and hit number one.”
Toomey finished a formidable 14th place in the 58kg weightlifting class in Rio, but it what far from the dream she had growing up, instead believing she could qualify for the Olympics through track events.
“Going to the Olympics was also something that I always wanted to achieve, but not realising that I was going to go there for weightlifting,” she said.
“I always thought I’d go there for running, that’s where I started. I started doing CrossFit to improve my running and strength and it built from there.”
“The transition of training between weightlifting and CrossFit wasn’t that difficult. It was awesome. The beauty about CrossFit is we do weightlifting movements. “We continued training for CrossFit, which helped with my strength for the weight lifting. I didn’t feel as much pressure.”
Toomey now turns her attention to the Commonwealth Games where she hopes to represent Australia in weightlifting on the Gold Coast in April next year.
STATE OF ART
The CrossFit Gold Box is a worldclass CrossFit facility which now offers two locations in Dubai – Al Quoz and Business Bay. At both centres they offer a broad training programme that is suitable for any level of fitness.
Resident fitness experts, Gold Box Fitness (GBF), work with top athletes and coaches in order to create only the highest quality programmes that help you reach your fitness goals.
All programmes are based on the CrossFit methodology, which features constantly varied, functional movements at a high-intensity. Movements are organic in nature, innate to your DNA, and essential to quality of life. At GBF they train for longevity and health.
In addition to the CrossFit staples such as pull-up bars, ropes and rings, free weights, kettlebells, rowers and jump ropes; CrossFit Gold Box also boasts fully equipped designated lifting platforms and bumper plates. GBF make sure every session leads to a stronger, faster, and happier you.
As they explain to all new arrivals: “CrossFit can seem intimidating at first, but at Gold Box we’d like you to view it more like a big dog that looks scary but actually just wants to cuddle and eat a lot.
“The workouts are hard, of course, but when you’re working alongside others who are suffering through the same exercise, camaraderie is inevitable. “It’s easy to make friends when you see the same group of people at the same time every day.
“If you prefer to just come in, get your workout done and get out with an air of quiet mystery, you also have that option.
“Just don’t be surprised if you wind up making a few new friends on your way to looking good and feeling great.”
WHAT: CrossFit Gold Box
WHERE: Al Quoz and Business Bay.
VERDICT: Experience the fitness craze that is sweeping the world in these state-of-the-art facilities.
With the aim of expanding knowledge of calisthenics and the growth of discipline within the region, Battle of the Bars (BOTB) announced on Wednesday the return of its 4th installment at Gravity Calisthenics Gym, Al Quoz in Dubai.
The event will take place on November 17 and 18 at La Mer, Jumeirah 1.
Battle of the Bars, created by the World Calisthenics Organisation, is the world’s first calisthenics competition based on individual battles. Competitors go head-to-head, where they are judged based on strength, endurance, agility, creativity and technique.
Battles are held in different countries throughout the world. Winners of these different battles qualify and get a chance to compete in the main battle that takes place every year in Los Angeles.
The format consists of a 16-man competition where contestants go head-to-head in three-minute battles, with an elimination scheme.
“The message we are communicating is the foundation of calisthenics as well as its influence on individuals, competition and contribution to the fitness landscape in the region,” explains Yousuf Al Gurg, a key figure behind BOTB and co-founder of Gravity Calisthenics Gym.
“The introduction of calisthenics to the region will help bring regulation and progression to the platform.”
Targeting UAE and GCC youth aged 15 – 30, the event will showcase a range of calisthenic-trained athletes and their skills, highlighting the importance of the discipline.