Originally from New Zealand, Kiwi lifeguard Harrison Reid now calls Australia’s most iconic beach Bondi home. We caught up with him for a 5:00am run to find out more about his week as a Bondi lifeguard.
How does your day start when you are rostered on to work?
We work from 6:00am at Bondi and finish at 7:00pm. I set my alarm for 5am and turn the news on so I can see to what’s going on around the world and check the weather so I know what day I’ll be in for. My gear will be packed the night before so I’m pretty much ready to take on the day ahead.
Does your week of training change based on the weather conditions?
Totally. We get to train at work for an hour so. If it’s really hot in the middle of Summer and it’s going to be a busy day ahead, I might go to the gym for a workout there, just to get your eyes of the water and get out of the sun as I know I’ll be in it all day.
If it’s big surf, everyone tends to get out on the boards for a bit of fun – it also works out as good training, so we are prepped if s**t hits the fan and we need to get out there amongst it, if someone’s in trouble around the beaches or the cliffs. If there’s no surf, a lap of the bay swimming is nice or even running a few laps.
Could you tell me what your training looks like from Monday to Sunday?
I don’t have a strict training schedule. I run the beach on Wednesdays and do the 440 run club on Saturday mornings, 5am at Bronte before work. I’ll base every other session around that and try and do a minimum of 3 Pilates classes a week. I’ll then train for an hour either outdoors in the water, in the gym or a big walk daily.
What your favourite food to eat for:
Breakfast: I don’t actually eat breakfast. I try not to eat before 12pm. If I do have breakfast, it’s a bit of a treat for me so I always go the smashed avocado, ricotta, 4 poached eggs, Bacon and a hash brown.
Lunch: lunch is normally pretty big for me as I usually haven’t had breakfast. Across the road from work they do a tasty beef brisket salad, which I ask for with extra beef and sweet potato every time.
Snack: a smoothie goes down well, especially when it’s hot and busy at work so you need something in the tank that’s also cold and refreshing. Coconut water and the flesh, cocoa, frozen banana, mixed berries, 2 eggs, Açai, walnuts and some ice is a hit.
Dinner: A BBQ is my weakness. Sausages, steaks, chicken, you name it. Anything that goes on a BBQ I love (with tomato sauce obviously).
Who do you look up to within the Bondi Lifeguard team? and why?
I admire all the guys I work with down at the beach, even the ones who have just started. They all bring something special to the team and I still learn from everyone on a daily basis.
I owe a lot to Maxi who took me under his wing when I first started and moved from New Zealand. I lived with him for 3 years and he really looked after me. Also, Deano who is a yoga instructor and personal trainer who helped me get my training together from day one…. otherwise I’d still be rolling around the beach, like a beach ball. I was a big kid when I was younger… photos say it all. So, I’m proud with the level of fitness he has got me to. But as I said there’s too many to name. I have the upmost respect for the bosses, team leaders, permanent staff, casuals and the even the guys on the traineeship. The things I’ve seen the guys do, by going above and beyond and putting their bodies on the line to save lives is pretty bloody amazing.
Harrison is featured on Bondi Rescue, every Wednesday at 7:30pm on Channel 10.