Leeds, in the heart of West Yorkshire is home to three universities, world class sporting facilities, successful sports teams, healthy eateries, multiple Olympians and a rich culture influenced by many different nationalities. If you’re looking to spend a healthy day out in Leeds you’re not short of options when it comes to food, fitness and fun!
Train Like An Athlete
The John Charles Centre for Sport is the training ground of Olympic diving champions Jack Laugher and Chris Mears and triathletes Alistair and Johnathan Brownlee. Leeds Phoenix Lifesaving club compete at world championship level whilst the diving, swimming and synchronised swimming clubs boast a whole host of national, European and world championship and Olympic athletes. If you’re looking for a new water based sport this is the place to do it! If water isn’t your thing there’s also an athletics stadium, tennis centre and even indoor bowls!
If you don’t mind going a little further afield then Ilkley Lido is the place to be. This outdoor pool is unheated and not for the faint hearted. Sunbathe on the grass with your healthy picnic in the summer months then jump in the freezing water to cool off, are you brave enough?
Continuing with the theme of water sports, why not head over to Yeadon Tarn? It offers a range of activities suitable for all levels of experience courtesy of Leeds Sailing and Activity Centre from sailing to raft building. Take a look at their website www.yeadonsailingclub.co.uk for a full list of everything on offer. The huge expanse of water is also great for dog walking, jogging and leisurely walks.
If water isn’t your thing then there’s still plenty on offer. Leeds is a great place for both indoor and outdoor bootcamps with companies such as British Military Fitness and UK Outdoor Fitness keeping us sweating with their exceptionally varied and fun classes.
Head To The Gym
Gyms in Leeds are brilliant, to put it simply. Every budget and every goal is catered for with chains such as PureGym and Xercise4Less bringing outstanding facilities to the table and Leeds City Council provide affordable yet high quality facilities at the city’s various leisure centres.
Primal Gym is a city centre facility that doesn’t do generic, branded fitness classes. It focuses on conditioning, strength, power and core with all members also having access to yoga and Pilates for optimum flexibility and functionality. You won’t find rows of treadmills and stationary bikes here! Lifting platforms, boxing rings and sprint tracks are just some of the equipment available to use with the friendly and professional staff more than happy to teach you how to make the most of it! Every new member gets a health and movement assessment with an experienced coach to identify areas to work on and set goals to get you there.
With all of this activity you’re going to need something to get you fuelled up for the day. For all of your brunch, coffee, tea and cheeky slice of post workout cake needs look no further than Mrs Atha’s. This charming city centre space is a haven for readers, writers, creatives, hipsters and ladies who lunch. The menu boasts healthy options and their (very) specials on offer to tuck in to and satisfy any taste buds. The emphasis on quality is apparent and I would argue that it’s well worth a trip purely for a sausage sandwiches!
CafÃ© 164 is also located within the city centre and the food is exciting yet healthy and balanced with a seasonal menu and a talented kitchen team always pushing the boat out to bring new creations to the Leeds food scene. If you want balance then this is the place to go as the clean eats can be followed up by the decadent treats produced by â€˜queen of edible delights’ Catherine James. Follow them on Instagram @cafe164 to get your mouth watering.
Just need some pre-workout motivation? Laynes Espresso, just a stone’s throw from the train station has you covered. Laynes uses coffee beans from roasters selected from all over Europe to ensure that you get quality in every single cup.
Trattoria Il Forno makes 20 inch pizzas…… yep, you did just read that correctly! Make sure you take some friends with you to help polish off one of these monsters!