Herbert People

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In our continuing hunt for groups or clubs that meet in Herbert Park, we came across a small gathering. We first noticed them early evening on a drab Friday, doing cross training on one side of the park, while just opposite them in the other side there was a fitness instructor with a large group.

They seemed to be mimicking their actions and straining to hear the shouted commands. We waited until they had finished and went to say hello.

There are four in this gang; Dave, Malachy, James and Alistair. James Donnelly, 40, from nearby Wellington Road, was dressed flamboyantly in white lycra and said the idea was his. “I walk my Pug here and noticed them doing the training,” he told NewsFour. “We have a Friday date night where the four of us get together and watch a movie and gossip. Our all-time favourite is Bridesmaids, and there’s a scene where the girls copy a fitness class in the park. Now we’re going to do this before settling into the couch. It takes the guilt out of eating tubs of ice cream.”

“We have a great giggle, not like them over there,” he said, pointing to the puffed, red faced folk who were filtering away from the official class across the road. “It’s just us girls, so we’re not worried about looking silly. We take it at our pace and skip the really hard bits.”

We asked if they felt guilty for getting instruction for free when others were paying for it. Again James fielded this question. “It’s only a bit of fun and a way to get a bit fitter. We’re not the skinny things we used to be and we already talked about getting the slave driver over there a present, like a whip or something fab like that.”

By Steve Kingston