Lizzy’s ‘Hide The Greens’ Smoothie Recipe

The foods we eat can impact the way we feel. You may have noticed that you feel better when you’re eating a diverse range of different foods – but have you ever tried to incorporate different colours on your plate?

The bright and beautiful colours of fruit and vegetables are caused by an array of micronutrients and these are responsible for many processes that take place in our body all day long. When we are stressed, working hard in the gym or in need of some extra self-care, adding more nourishing and colourful foods can be a great place to start.

Hide the Greens Smoothie

When you want to sneak some extra colour into your morning (or your kids’ bellies!) this smoothie is the answer. It packs a nutritional punch with raw beetroot, leafy greens and healthy fats.

Ingredients (serves 2):

 1 cup frozen raspberries

 1 large frozen banana

 5-6 large leaves of leafy greens (kale, silver beet or spinach)

 1/2 small raw beetroot, peeled

1/2 fresh lime

 1/2 cup macadamia nuts, raw

2 1/2 cups filtered water

  1. First, place the macadamia nuts in the bottom of your blender with the filtered water. Let soak for 15 – 30 minutes for the nuts to soften.
  2. Add the rest of the ingredients to the blender and pulse on high for 60-90 seconds or until smooth. Add extra water to thin the smoothie if it’s too thick.

*If you’re after a nut free smoothie, you can omit the macadamia nuts or swap these for a tablespoon of tahini, coconut oil or avocado.

Coach Lizzy x

How Ilanna Stays Motivated

Meet our Studio Member Ilanna

Our little quiet achiever, Ilanna at Pinnacle Caribbean Park who when chatting to us about her training told us that she didn’t think it was very motivational. Well we beg to differ!

Ilana describes her life as very busy. Juggling full time work as a teacher, her partner studying and working full time as a critical care nurse plus spending lots of time cooking and spending time with family.

“My job is quite demanding and training provides me with an outlet after work each day for my mental and physical health. Training with a group of people and forming connections outside of my familiar circles motivates me as I look forward to seeing them!”

So what does the typical week look like for Ilana?

I always like to start off my week right with a Locker Room class on Monday’s after work. This always starts my week off right.

Wednesdays I attend Body Pump at Scoresby and love the CRX class there on Fridays too.

Saturday I like to take things a little slower with a sleep in and then a Reformer class at Caribbean Park.

Sundays are my rest days where we spend time with family and in the kitchen cooking.

Sometimes it’s hard to get to classes depending on if I get out of work on time but I try to go as much as I can and see it as part of my day. I go straight to the gym from work so I don’t have time to think twice about it. The feeling you get after a workout and the consistency and discipline that comes with going to the gym regularly is also a big driving force.

My biggest motivational factor is knowing the trainers will see you every week (and notice when you aren’t there!) as well as the people you usually train with. It takes me out of my comfort zone and makes me try things I definitely wouldn’t if I was training by myself.

Find out more about our studio membership options.

Melissa Duncan’s Top Running Tips

With the weather getting better & longer days upon us, it is the start of the running season and the perfect time to hit the pavement. Running is a fantastic form of exercise that improves your cardio fitness, builds lean muscle and also a great way to de-stress and get that endorphins hit.

Someone who knows this all too well is Australian Middle Distance runner & Pinnacle member, Melissa Duncan. Melissa has put together her top tip for anyone thinking of getting into running.



Having a squad to run with makes the whole process more enjoyable because you can use it as a time to catch up as well as get fit. Even just meeting with someone ensures your accountability to get out there.

Running is hard, but it’s the friendships and the social aspect that helped me fall in love with it.


Whether it be a target distance you want to achieve or a fun run event coming up, having a goal will make you more likely to stick with your running plan.


It’s very simple- the more frequently you get out for a run, the more you will improve! Don’t be afraid to have walking breaks if you need to, then gradually decrease them as you get fitter.


If you’re working long hours and already have a busy schedule, planning to run every day might be an unreal expectation. Start with a realistic plan of how often you can run and ensure it’s achievable so you will stick to it. If you miss one planned training run, it makes it easier to miss more in the future, so if your plan is attainable, you shouldn’t have any reason to deviate from it. Plan shorter runs during the working week and a longer run on the weekend when you have more time.


To ensure you can keep running, it’s important to avoid injury and soreness, so get that foam roller out and give your whole body a good stretch after every run so you don’t feel sore the next day.

Above all, it’s really important to enjoy your running or you won’t have the motivation to keep doing it, so spoil yourself with some brunch after your run on the weekends!

If you are interested in joining us for our Pinnacle Run Club with Melissa, you can register your interest here:


Pinnacle’s brand new 8 Week Challenge (8WC) is based on our original 12 Week program which has helped thousands of people lose weight, break unhealthy habits and make their health & fitness a priority. So, why did we make the change from 12 to 8 weeks? Read on to find out… 


Previous challenges have proven 8 weeks to be a more manageable time-frame
Our team have been facilitating 12 Week Challenges for more than 5 years, and with 2-3 Challenge’s each year, we’ve gained powerful insights into what motivates our members.  Over the last couple of years in particular, we’ve noticed that it’s the 7-8 week mark where the magic happens! During these weeks, members have achieved amazing transformations in both body & mind, and are ready to put what they’ve learnt into practice. At this time they’ve made a conscious decision on whether they’re now ready to go it alone with a Coach or workout in the gym with the mates they’ve made during the challenge… and they’re usually ready to celebrate at this point too (see note on presentation night below!).

Small goals provide the stepping stones to your success
Pre-challenge check-ins are a great time for a heart-to-heart with one of our expert coaches.  During this time, they help pave pathways for success and then, during group workouts and via online conversations, they help you set small goals as stepping stones. Small goals over 8 weeks are a lot less daunting than one huge goal and a 3-month timeframe.

Camaraderie and a sense of community flourishes
Q: What happens when you work out in a team three times a week for 8 weeks? You encourage one another? You push each other to your limits? You banter online with words of support and share healthy recipes?
A: You build a strong, proud team – and even find lifelong friends. This motivation & support network is one of the vital catalysts for change.

Be inspired to make lasting lifestyle improvements
In addition to your supportive tribe of likeminded friends and regular group workouts – the complimentary Nutrition Workshop in week one, meal plans, and regular healthy tips for an active lifestyle make it almost impossible to not feel motivated and inspired. This equates to better odds of you sustaining your new lifestyle long after the challenge has finished.

Last but not least, an 8 Week Challenge means there’s only 2 months to wait until the fun-filled bootcamp awards presentation

And whether it’s 8 or 12 weeks, no Pinnacle Challenger will be left thinking ‘what next?’ We make it a priority to provide pathways for ongoing success and long term fitness goals.

So, no matter your starting point or whether your goals are fitness, weight loss or habit-specific, we’d love to help you achieve them in our next 8 week Challenge. Starts Monday 21st January  HERE 

Meet Dan: May Ambassador

During our last 12 Week Challenge, Daniel Watts, 30, reduced his body fat by a whopping 10% and was the overall body transformation winner! An absolute crowd fave, Dan also took home the People’s Choice Award. We’re thrilled to announce him as our May Ambassador and love the energy he brings to every gym session. 

Here’s some insight into how he has achieved such greatness and his advice for anyone seeking similar results…

How long have you been a member of Pinnacle Health Club?
14 months.

What was the starting point for you?
Joining the Pinnacle 12 Week Challenge gave me something to focus on and a goal to work towards.

What results have you achieved since becoming a Pinnacle member? 
I’ve lost 10kg, reduced body fat by 10%, increased muscle mass, participated in the 12 week challenge, drastically improved my fitness, increased energy levels, improved self esteem and made some awesome friends!

What are the 3 main changes you made to achieve these results?
I have exercised more, drastically changed my diet and changed my overall attitude towards my health – I’ve made it a priority!

What challenges have you faced along the way and how have you overcome these?
I was feeling lethargic, out of shape and lacking the confidence to get to the gym, but then I discovered Results Training at Pinnacle! The team training sessions are great because of all the other people in the group motivating and supporting one another. As I started feeling good over time – due to regular exercise and the awesome atmosphere in the gym – the things that were holding me back became a distant memory.

What have you learnt along the way?
That it’s actually not hard to lead a healthy active lifestyle. You might have to push yourself to make a change in the beginning but one you find what you love, it’s easy to stick to a regular regime. For me, MMA sessions are as fun as they are high intensity so I enjoy coming to the gym for them. Plus the Coach’s encouragement helps you to both reach new heights as well as stay motivated if you’re having an ‘off’ day.

What has been your proudest moment to date?
My change in body fat and positive attitude to training. I actually look forward to going to the gym again and that’s changed my life dramatically.

Looking back over the last 11 months, what have been your favourite moments in the gym?
Definitely the friends I have made along the way – they help keep me focused and determined but also make every workout fun. The changes in my body composition feel pretty damn good too!

What’s your advice for someone in your old shoes?
Get to the gym! The sooner you start, the sooner you will see results. Of course it takes time but if you are committed you will get the results you want and hey, you might even surprise yourself by winning a challenge or something along the way! With a good gym and good people around you, it’s easy to achieve your goals. You just have to be willing to knuckle down and do the work.

After achieving so much in such a small time, do you have any new goals on the horizon? 
I’m working towards completing a triathlon in January and running a half marathon later this year.

… we have no doubt you’ll achieve all of this and more Dan and are so glad you chose Pinnacle as your health and fitness partner!

*Results may vary. Exercise and proper diet are necessary to achieve and maintain weight loss and/or muscle gain over an extended period of time.


Leading a healthy lifestyle is all about balance, and balance means enjoying life’s little luxuries such as this delicious Pear and Apple Crumble. It’s perfect for warming tummies on a cold day and – while the apple and pear combination is excellent – it can be made using several combinations of fruit such as mixed berries (strawberry, raspberry, blueberry and cherries). An easy dessert with ingredients you probably have on hand.

Serves 4


  • 4 green apples, peeled, cored, sliced
  • 3 pears, peeled, cored, sliced
  • 1/4 cup caster sugar
  • 1/4 cup plain flour
  • 1/3 cup traditional rolled oats
  • 1 tablespoon light olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons chopped macadamia nuts
  • 6 tablespoons low-fat natural yoghurt, to serve


  • Preheat oven to 180.C. Place apples, pears, 1 tablespoon sugar and 1 tablespoon water into a small saucepan.
  • Cook, covered, over low heat for 10-15 minutes, or until fruit softens.
  • Spoon mixture into four 3/4 cup-capacity ovenproof dishes and place onto a
    baking tray.
  • Combine remaining sugar, flour, oats, oil and nuts in a bowl. Sprinkle over
    apple and pear mixture.
  • Bake for 20 minutes, or until topping is golden.
  • Serve crumbles with low-fat yoghurt.

Recipe courtesy of our Dietician Partners, Nutted Out Nutrition

Why we LOVE Group Fitness

Entering the half way point in the 21 Day Easter Hangover Challenge (where our members attend as many Group Fitness and/or Results Sessions as possible for the chance to win awesome prizes), we wanted to know what they love about Group Fitness. This is what some of our members said when we asked ‘What’s your favourite Group Fitness Class and Why?’…

What our UPWEY Members said…

Dance Xtreme: It’s unique and a great fun workout. The instructors are inspiring – Female, 45-54

Konga: Fun, good cardio (more than just dancing) & muscles feel worked afterwards – Female, 25-34

Yoga: I love the amazing feeling afterwards. Perfect harmony between Body, Mind and Soul – Female, 35-44

Body Pump: Great music and I love the weights. The instructors have been amazing with motivation to keep pushing through to get results – Female, 25-34

Can’t choose a favourite because I enjoy them all for different reasons – Female, 25-34

Super Seniors: The whole hour is spent in the exercise room. The class is informal and fun, yet we get a good workout too – Female, 55-64

Cycle: because it’s a good hard cardio session – Female, 25-34

Barre Attack: because of the pace and the intensity. The exercises target the areas that I try to target. – Female, 14-24

WOW (Workout of the Week): Love the variety each week and it’s a killer – Male, 35-44
(NB: * WOW is a circuit based program that is performed at high intensity to push your body to its limits, creating a lean and toned body.)

See the full range of Group Fitness classes at Pinnacle Upwey HERE

What our OAKLEIGH Members said…

Zumba: The music helps keep you motivated to go hard – Female, 35-44

Love all the classes and the instructors, they are awesome! – Female, 45-54

Body Pump: I enjoy lifting weights but don’t really feel comfortable doing this on my own – Female, 25-34

Boxing: All over workout and cardio. Feels good when I’ve finished both mentally and physically – Female, 35-44

Body Attack: Excellent instructor and we have a great group of friend who do the class with us – Male, 35-44

Yoga: The teacher & the type of yoga which creates a tough yet rewarding workout experience – Male, 55-64

Cycling as it’s something I really enjoy – Male, 45-54

Body Attack & Body Balance: I love both because of the instructor. She makes class so positive and uplifting, I always enjoy attending – Female, 14-24 years

See the full range of Group Fitness classes at Pinnacle Scoresby HERE

What our SCORESBY Members said…

Body Attack: It is a great workout – Male, 45-54

Boxing: I have done a little boxing in the past which makes it even more enjoyable – Male, 35-44

Pilates and Cycle: Great music and instructors. Pilates is great as I need assistance with core workouts. Cycle is great as I wouldn’t usually use the bikes – it’s great to have instruction and goals set. Cycle also gives me a good cardio workout before weight training, without impacting my joints – Female, 45-54

All the classes as it gives me a variety of workouts and I feel my body needs it to keep me fit – Female, 45-54

Barre Attack: everything about it. The facilitators are great, the pace, the ballet component, adaption to meet individual ability or adjustment for injuries. It is a great cardio and sweat-inducing workout. – Female, 55-64

Yoga: Work out for mind, body & spirit; the whole package! – Female, 55-64

See the full range of Group Fitness classes at Pinnacle Oakleigh HERE

Learn the Top 3 Advanced Exercises

Squatting, thrusting, pressing, planking, you name it, we’ve done it! Actually, these terms (and their associated exercises) are part of our everyday lingo at Pinnacle Health Clubs. What we don’t talk about as much is which one of these exercises we truly love (and to be honest, that’s probably because we love ALL exercise!). However, there are some extra special workout essentials that our Coaches have a certain soft spot for – such as the three below.

Add these to your daily routine for added intensity!


  1. Start feet shoulder width apart with barbell resting on mid trap
  2. Squat by bending hips back, allowing knees to bend forward
  3. Keep spine in a neutral position with knees tracking in the same direction as feet
  4. Descend until knees and hips are fully bent, past ninety degrees, pause
  5. Extend knees and hips until returning to the original position


  1. Start feet shoulder width apart with barbell resting at shin level
  2. Grip bar and lift by extending hips and knees to full extension
  3. Keep spine neutral and pull shoulders back throughout lift
  4. Return barbell to floor by bending hips back while allowing knees to bend forward


  1. Start laying fat on the bench, gripping the bar with arms just wider than shoulder width apart
  2. Lower the barbell to chest, across nipple line with elbows at ninety degrees, pause
  3. Press bar upward until arms are fully extended

If you are unsure about technique or want further advice before adding any of the exercises above into your workout, we recommend consulting a Pinnacle Coach. Our Coaches are exercise professional with the knowledge and expertise to coach specific movement patterns, training programs and prescribe exercise for results. Pinnacle coaches are industry leading in their field and have the educational backing to advise you on your path to success.


*Results may vary. Exercise and proper diet are necessary to achieve and maintain weight loss and/or muscle gain over an extended period of time.

Top 3 Beginner Exercises

Strengthen legs, glutes, core, arms, chest & shoulders with these simple but oh so effective workout faves!

Legs & glutes will burn (in delight) with the Step Ups; focus heavily on your triceps, while also improving strength in your chest and shoulders with Tricep Dips and add a Plank to build isometric strength which helps sculpt your waistline and improve your posture.


  1. Start facing bench/elevation with high chest and neutral body position
  2. Place first foot on bench, push through the heel and extend hip and knee
  3. Step down with second leg by flexing hip and knee of first leg
  4. Alternate


  1. Start by placing hands on the edge of the bench, with feet fat on the ground (heels for progression)
  2. Descend by bending arms until slight stretch is felt in chest/shoulder
  3. Push through the palms, keeping the spine neutral and hips close to the bench, extending the arms back to original position


  1. Start laying fat on stomach, placing forearms and palms fat on the floor
  2. Lift your chest, stomach and legs of the floor and maintain your balance between forearms and toes
  3. Hold umbilical line in and squeeze glutes
  4. Keep a straight line from shoulders across back and to the feet
  5. Body to stay in a neutral position
  6. Hold

If you are unsure about technique or want further advice before adding any of the exercises above into your workout, we recommend consulting a Pinnacle Coach. Our Coaches are exercise professional with the knowledge and expertise to coach specific movement patterns, training programs and prescribe exercise for results. Pinnacle coaches are industry leading in their field and have the educational backing to advise you on your path to success.


*Results may vary. Exercise and proper diet are necessary to achieve and maintain weight loss and/or muscle gain over an extended period of time.