A JUNIOR doctor is seeing patients in a GP surgery before switching to her workout gear so she can host free fitness classes from home during lockdown.

Dr Ashley Walton, 28, is a familiar face at the Barrhead Foundry, where she usually leads exercise sessions in her spare time.

And despite being busy with her work at a Glasgow surgery and as a locum doctor in hospital, she has moved her lessons online to help people stay active during the coronavirus pandemic.

Ashley, who is originally from Barrhead and now lives in Newton Mearns, said: “I’m still seeing my patients who aren’t suspected Covid cases but it’s a different world in general practice at the moment.

“It’s much more streamlined and, typically, all patients we see need to be physically examined.

“I don’t get very stressed but I’m sure I would without fitness in my life.”

Ashley is a qualified fitness instructor for East Renfrewshire Culture and Leisure (ERCL), who are running a series of free online workouts each week.

She is encouraging people of all ages and abilities to get involved in the fitness classes in a bid to minimise stress during these difficult days.

Ashley said: “I think it’s very important for people to look after their wellbeing, especially at the moment, so it’s great that East Renfrewshire Culture and Leisure is running these classes for free.

“It means everyone can access them from home.”

Ashley, who has a two-year-old son, usually teaches 27 fitness classes per week, including the sessions at the Foundry and others at Eastwood Park Leisure Centre.

Her popular online classes have included Disco Body Attack and high-intensity interval training sessions such as Grit and Core.

She added: “Fitness and teaching are massive passions of mine. I love that I still get the chance to teach. It’s giving me some normality in my life and I just love the community feel, the music, the moves and the buzz.

“I’m missing taking the classes in person but the online sessions have been awesome for encouraging friends and family who don’t have fitness as part of their life to try a wee bit from the comfort of their own home.

“It’s also been great that regulars who normally have their set routine are trying out different workouts.

“People are also reporting they are losing weight and toning and that the classes are giving them a sense of accomplishment, so they are definitely helping with mental health at this difficult time too.”

The Ashley’s classes are part of a varied fitness timetable run by ERCL includes live classes every weekday, which can also be accessed to catch up anytime after the session finishes.

Ashley added: “The classes are announced on a Sunday for the week ahead. My top workout tips are to set achievable goals, use an activity tracker and get creative with household items – fill rucksacks, use water bottles, get involved in the online workouts and have fun with it.

“Fitness classes never feel like work to me. I give lower and higher impact options, so it should suit everyone, and you’ll feel great after completing a class.”

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