The photo above was taken in the gym they call The Zone on Pit Street in Sydney. People work in small groups, like a team, and move from Zone to zone for different exercises. It somewhat reminded me of the Cross Fit gyms here in the States, but the way the zones are used, alternated etc was unique to me. Also, I know the value of working in small teams because my early videos were a lot like a social experience …”We’re doing Jane!” I’d hear from groups of women in different parts of the world. I was happy to see the way Fitness First used the social experience –team work– as a motivating force.”. It was clear that everyone has a great time at whatever level they’re at. There are over 70 Fitness First gyms in Australia as well as in the UK and Asia. Here are some other pictures of the gym.

Below is the key management team. To the far left is Pete Manuel, Managing Director of Fitness First Australia.

Here I am with Libby Trickett, three-time Olympic Gold Medalist in free style and breast stroke, who was also helping promote the Fitness First relaunch.

And, below, is Stephanie Simon, my manager, (In photo on the left!) who’s never been to Australia before and must have covered the entire city by foot during our stay. (I did back-to-back interviews to help promote the Fitness First rebranding and was brain dead at the end of each day and feel guilty that I didn’t partake of any exercise myself. Thank god everyone was super nice and we had a blast.

The photos can’t really capture the vibe, but I’ve never been in a gym where people seemed to be having as much fun doing things I’ve never seen before in a gym.

One of the funnier interviews I did was with two well known radio hosts, Fitzy & Wippa. When I walked into their studio, this is what I was greeted by:
Actually, this is just Fitzy. Somehow I’ve lost my picture that included Wippa when they greeted me which was hysterical.– Wippa jokes about being overweight, had yellow shorts, leg warmers, a cutoff tank top and hairy bare midriff. But Fitzy’s black leg hairs underneath the white tights was something quite special. Even he said it looked like a worm farm under there.

After the interview, they had me watch them do a work out which was filmed for their website, and asked me to correct their form. Here’s me correcting Wippa . . . we’ll just leave it at that!

We stayed at the Park Hyatt Hotel (Fabulous). Here’s the front of it. I love the art, both here at the entrance and throughout. It’s modern aboriginal.

Here are pictures of my room. It had a heated toilet seat–my first time experiencing that–and I can say it would be very easy to get addicted. Hmmmm.

And aren’t these native flowers spectacular! The ones to the right look like red brain coral.

In the lobby are these huge arrangements of spider orchids.

Views from my hotel room:

View from the lobby:

Here I am with Stephanie at the hotel with the famous Sydney Opera House in the background. It was built in the late 70s by Danish architect, Jann Utzon.

The architecture in Sydney is wonderfully eclectic

Below is the Sydney Theatre Company that is run by Cate Blanchett.

The first day we had lunch in the Sydney Cafe restaurant upstairs in the old Customs House. You walk on a glass floor beneath which is a replica of the city.

Here’s the restaurant and the food we ate

Zucchini and ricotta cheese with pine nuts

An assortment of delicious seafood–crayfish, scallops, octopus…

Tuna Carpaccio.

These are photos Stephanie took while doing a bit of sightseeing . . . just to give you a sense of the city.

Gorgeous tree in the Botanical Garden. I used to run in the garden back in my running days. I’ve been to Australia a number of times—in many parts, including the Great Barrier Reef and the Daintree Rainforest. Love this country.

Love all the art in public spaces.

Manley Beach

And There you have it. Summertime down under. G’Day Mate!

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  1. Gosh, this seems to be so much fun. Glad you had a great time. I’ve heard nothing but good things about Australia (except for one person whose opinion doesn’t matter to me).

    BTW, are you progressing well with your novel? Anyhow, I’m offering you my cheering and support.

    Also, what kinds of acting projects do you have in the future? I had two dreams about that. One of them was that you got a David O. Russell movie (I forgot the title I saw in my dream) and another one was more specific so I won’t reveal that in case I wasn’t right. But it was tv. Well, not exactly tv… 😀

    I hope you’re having a grand time anyhow. 🙂

    • I am on page 333 of my novel. Love this very different process–except when I want to kill myself. Lots of projects pending.none yet ready to announce except my book for teens coming out March 3. TV, yes. Film, yes. #td season of Newsroom, yes.

      • I’m so glad that you have fun with the novel. I want to write encouraging sentences to you, but I guess all I’m gonna say is: Enjoy it and let it fulfill you! Once you achieve that, it will show on the page it.

        Also, I’m impatient and want to read and I’m not the only one. So think about us as well. 😉 Ok, kidding… (not really). 😀

        Have fun and I hope to see you at the Oscars (and also hear your thoughts about this year’s contenders)!

  2. What a lovely summary of your stay in Sydney. Thanks for writing this and for the wonderful pictures!!

  3. Oh my god! I had no idea you were here in Sydney!!!!! Are you still around? Such a huge fan of all your work, especially your activism. Would have loved to have said hello! Xx

  4. 3 days! Wow, that is a quick trip! You must be exhausted!
    Do you think Fitness First will be something brought to the states?
    Thank you for showing pictures of Australia. Some day I really need to make it over there, visit the sights and my godfather.

  5. That is one beautiful city! No wonder Aussies brag about their land down under. Amazing landmarks, eclectic buildings, unique flowers, neighborhood art. And that food looked amazing. I’m going to make that zucchini, ricotta cheese, and pine nut dish as soon as possible! Thanks for the nice photography!

    • I’ve been to Australia twice and it is truly magnificent, particularly its largest city, Sydney. We took a tour of the Sydney harbor and I have to say it is the most lovely city I have ever seen.

  6. I love the photos you take. I have to add– I like that softer hairstyle on you. I think you look 20 years younger with it 😉

  7. Hi Jane,

    I just wanted to say what an inspiration you are! I wanted to give you some insight on a funny situation that happened to me recently.

    A year ago, I bit the bullet and bought my first assisted living community. I moved from a liberal town in central Kentucky, to a somewhat conservative town in northern Kentucky. I spent my first year renovating my building and doing a lot of foot marketing. I also knew the power of social media, so I began using Facebook as a tool to get my business name out there.

    One day while dropping off some brochures to a local bank, a woman approached me and said “Lucas, I want to talk to you about something I saw on your Facebook.” I assumed it had something to do with my partner, although we never post any forms of affection on Facebook. I knew that being gay and moving to a small town would be challenging, so I prepared myself. To my surprise, she said, “I saw where you followed Jane Fonda and there are a lot of Vietnam Veterans in the area, and I feel that this could hurt your business.” Honestly, for the first time in my life I was speechless. I simply said, “Well, no one is being forced to move into my assisted living and if someone is willing to give up good quality care because I am a fan of Jane Fonda, I’d really rather them not live at my assisted living.”

    Long story short, my business is now doing great and I always include you in some of our classic movie nights! We have played “Barefoot in the Park”, “9 to 5” and my personal favorite “Peace, Love, and Misunderstanding.”

    I guess some things never die and even 30+ years late, people fear what they don’t understand! I just wanted to give a shout out and say that I love you, your body of work, your dedication to health and fitness and everything you stand for!


    • Lucas, this is a wonderful story and I appreciate your sharing it with me. Thanks for holding strong. xx

  8. Jane,
    Several months ago you provided me with your spine surgeon’s name, Dr. Rick Delamarter. I contacted him and I am wondering if you would be kind enough to tell me what your back surgery involved; fusions, levels, etc. Dr. Delmarter is on leave of absence until April and I am at the top of his list.I live in Sarasota, Fl Thank you so much for his name.

    If you would prefer not to include this on your blog, my email address is [email protected]

    You look fabulous and it’s obvious your surgery was a success.

    • I had stenosis and slipped disc—L4 & 5. I had a sort of lift put in from the front and screws put in from the back to hold things in place. total recovery to wear I no longer eeded a brace was 6 months. I walked the Cannes red carpet after 2 months–but regular percocet!!

  9. Thanks Jane, your stories are always interesting! That one small ship you photographed in front of the Sydney Opera House from the lobby, is the Sydney 2000. I was working on it as a waiter for 3 months in 2012! How cool it would have been to have you onboard! Btw, I hope someday you will get to read the letter I sent you… And I’m very excited about your new books… All the best!

  10. Off topic question… Have you ever read The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls?


  11. Australia has to be one of the world’s most wonderful countries. I’ve vacationed there twice and loved it. Friendly people, beautiful scenery, good food and wine.

    Sydney harbor is breathtaking – it’s truly one of the world’s most lovely cities with beaches within walking distance of the city’s center.

    And the Great Barrier Reef is indescribable. You have to see it firsthand to really appreciate it.

    My only regret was not getting to see New Zealand on my 2 trips to Australia. If I ever am “Down Under” again, I will be sure to visit NZ as well.

    Those photos of the seafood you had brought back fond memories of the wonderful meals we enjoyed in Sydney too.

  12. Hi, Jane. I am so excited about your new book ‘Being a Teen’. I actually pre-ordered it the minute I heard that a thing like that exists.
    This means so much to me because I am a teen and I am such a big fan of yours. Reading your memoir was the best thing I ever did. It is my favorite book and It completely changed my view on life. I love you so so much, you have inspired me in so many ways, I can’t even put it all in words.
    Just thank you for being you and I am looking forward to reading your new book. Hope you read this. Much love.

  13. Hi Jane,
    This is my first blog ever, of any sort, but when I stumbled by accident upon your site this am it brought back a lot of memories for me. After I had my first child in 1982 I did your exercise routine faithfully, having bought your record. (which I still have!) My daughter came along the next year and I continued to do the routine when I got home from teaching each day. I vividly remember trying to do the sit ups while my one year old kept sitting on me. He thought it was a big game we were playing! Now at 58 I’m retired and still trying to keep in shape though it’s much more of a struggle! I love your Santa Fe pictures also and coincidentally my husband and I are visiting there as well as Taos in 3 weeks after a short stay to see our sons in Denver- can’t wait! Keep up the great work you do and perhaps I’ll run into you in a cafe!

  14. hi Jane
    Just read about your trip down under. I must say that you looked so wide awake and fresh considering the long journey to get there. I am an Aromatic Medicine practitioner and Massage therapist. When my clients take flights long or short I provide them with essetial oil formulas to help keep them healthy during their trip. What are the essentials that you take with you ?

    Best wishes

    Bernadette UK

    PS – The photgraghs are great especially the food !!!!!

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