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Vital: Exercise your way straight to the pub.

EXERCISING doesn't have to mean lifting weights in a gym or pounding a step machine. If you're short on motivation, try these alternative exercises for some fun ways to get fit. Join a running club with a difference. The New Town Hash House Harriers have a novel approach to exercise. They run to the pub, have a pint - or fresh orange - then carry on their run to the next pub on their route. About 1500 hashes meet in the UK every week, around 50 of them in Edinburgh, though many thousands more are members of groups around the world.

Those taking part range from teenagers to pensioners and it's a social club as much as an exercise group. The running is made fun, there are no rules, no set pace and everyone is welcome.

Visit www.thenewtownhash.org for information on their Scottish meets.

Keeping fit was much easier when we were young and exercising was more to do with playing games and having fun. This is perhaps why outdoors activities like climbing trees are enjoying a revival among adults. But forget the wimpy branches you swung from as a kid - the adult classes on offer in Scotland involve climbing to the highest point of Douglas fir and Scots pines.

The sport's become very popular in the US where the American Council on Exercise recognises tree climbing as a great way to stay fit and healthy. Now stressed office workers in the UK are being encouraged to climb trees to beat pressure and improve health. Scotland's wilderness and woodlands have made it a prime location for climbers. Classes are available from the Abernethy Trust, Fairburn Activity Centre, Galloway Sailing Centre and the Lagganlia Centre.

More information is available from the Activity Scotland Association on 01445 771 263 or www.activity-scotland.org.uk.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Aug 31, 2004
Words:302
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