Hila Upcycle – saving our planet!

One of the many things I love about kayaking is that I get to train on the beautiful waterways around the Gold Coast and Brisbane.  During a session, I usually see a range of wildlife enjoying the water from ducks, swans, cormorants, kingfishers and other birds, to water dragons (lizards) and numerous unidentified fish that unexpectedly jump out of the water and scare the life out of you!

Unfortunately, I also see a lot of rubbish floating around in the water mostly, glass bottles and plastic materials.  So, I did a little research and discovered that inorganic waste such as plastic and glass takes a very long time to decompose, if at all! According to the Clean Up Australia website, glass is estimated to take one million years to break down into smaller pieces!

To combat these shocking statistics recycling makes an enormous difference, with glass products able to be recycled infinite times.  Another more sustainable and creative way to reduce waste is upcycling.

“Imagination is the beginning of creation” – Hila Upcycle.

Defined by Wikipedia, upcycling is the process of transforming discarded objects or waste material into a useful product of a higher value and quality with minimal impact on the environment. And unlike the recycling process it uses less energy and produces less emissions and pollution.

I came across Hila Upcycle while searching for gift ideas on Pinterest.  They are a family owned business with 3 generations of experience in the glass industry.  Hila Upcycles’ mission is to create a more sustainable future by offering products that utilise more creativity and less electricity, and reworking materials rescued before ending up in landfill.


And they really do deliver on their promise with a wide range of handmade glass products from drinkware and platters, to jewellery and home décor.  I was absolutely amazed by the creativity and artistry that goes into every piece! With upcycling not only do you get a interesting and one-of-a-kind, handcrafted product, you are contributing positively to our planet!


Photo credits: S.Seipel (top), Hila Upcycle (middle).


Motivation with Fitbit

A question I often get asked as an athlete is… how do you stay motivated?  Motivation is what drives you into action to achieve a goal. I believe that motivation comes when we see results from our efforts. To stay motivated you need a way of measuring your progress which will help you continue on track to reaching your goals.

The great news is the incredible technology to track everyday activity is already available! A great tool that I love for keeping track of my fitness and health goals is my Fitbit Super Watch. I own a Fitbit Surge and I highly recommend it as the ultimate tool to help you stay motivated.

This watch has so many notable features like GPS, heart rate monitor, SmartTrack activities (including daily steps counter), silent alarms and auto sleep monitoring just to name a few.


Here, I want to highlight three of my absolute favourite things about my Fitbit Surge, but for full details and for help choosing the right Fitbit device for your personal needs check out their website.

Firstly, I love that the Fitbit Surge has a large touchscreen display so I can view my stats in real-time and get feedback during an activity! And for additional information the watch wirelessly syncs to an App on my phone or computer so I can analyse all the data in more detail and view it over time. The watch provides more than enough information for you to see real progress and through the App you can choose a range of goals that you can achieve daily.

Secondly, In the gym I love using the heart rate monitor to track my workout intensity. The watch uses a green LED light which reflects off the skin to detect changes in blood flow and measure heart rate. This feature is great to ensure I am hitting the right intensity for my particular workout. And from personal experience, I can say it is much more comfortable wearing a wrist watch than a heart rate monitor strap.

Lastly but not least, an outstanding feature of the Fitbit Surge that I love is the automatic sleep tracking. I believe good quality sleep is crucial for recovery and enables you to perform at your best day in and day out. My Fitbit Surge not only records the duration of my sleep but also the quality of sleep and combined with the App I can arrange my sleep targets and alarms to get the best rest and recovery.

Check out the Fitbit website if you are interested in getting your own Fitbit to help you stay motivated and achieve your goals.


Photo credits: Fitbit Website (top), C.Seipel (middle).