Diced by VARLAH

I am responsible for Hugh Jackman’s muscular physique…

There’s something that you might not know about me.

I am responsible for Hugh Jackman’s muscular physique.

You know, those pumped up shoulders and big broad chest you saw in the movies Australia and Wolverine?

Yep. That was me.

Well, maybe it wasn’t directly me. It was probably more the work of his personal trainer at the time, celebrity fitness motivator to the stars, Luke Istomin. But, Hugh probably doesn’t realize that I’m responsible for Luke’s diced abs and path to becoming certified as a Fitness Leader.

Okay, okay. So maybe Luke doesn’t realize this either…

Many years ago Luke went to the same gym where I taught fitness classes.

So it could be possible, right…

… that I was such a motivating instructor, that Luke decided to also become a trainer, and because of this commitment he then went on to transform into one of Australia’s top fitness motivators, gaining the attention of the stars (Ricky Martin, Kylie Minogue and more), to eventually work on set with Hugh Jackman during the filming of Australia and Wolverine, causing Hugh to grow those fine muscles…

… and so you see in the end, Hugh Jackman’s muscular physique can be accredited to me!

VARLAH, fitness video streaming
Luke Istomin, Trainer to the Stars

Jokes aside, I’m often asked how I balance the daily indulgence of food reviews with a healthy lifestyle. There’s no doubt that eating out daily and tasting every dish and beverage on a menu (in the name of research) certainly takes its toll. Besides early nights, lots of water and nutritious food choices when I’m not blogging around, daily exercise is key to my mental and physical wellbeing. I work the equivalent of two full time jobs so there’s not a moment to spare for a gym visit: what I need is an exercise routine that is fast, effective and that can be done just about anywhere.

Enter VARLAH and Luke’s Diced program. VARLAH is Australia’s first on-demand fitness video streaming service. Recently launched, the goal is to grant unlimited access to a variety of fitness programs and workouts led by captains of the industry and catering to all ages, fitness levels and interests.

Diced is the first of the programs to be rolled out and is exactly what I need at this time in my life. Having a generally good level of fitness, but needing a bit more focus and encouragement to maximize the effectiveness of my daily workouts, this six-week high intensity interval training program is aimed at getting participants in tip-top shape, without having to spend hours daily to get results. Streamed on line I can do it anywhere anytime I have an Internet connection. At home, it’s usually five in the morning before I head off to work that I tune in. On the road, it’s often in the hotel room in between reviews. All I need are my sports shoes, a device and a connection.

VARLAH, fitness video streaming
Luke Istomin and the Team of Diced

Participants are encouraged to take their measurements and record their score on a fitness test on the first day of the program, with regular check-ins throughout the six weeks. A calendar and nutrition guide supplement the program further encouraging a healthy lifestyle, and if followed optimize the outcome.

My first week of training I felt as if my arms were going to drop off! I was moving in ways I hadn’t for a long time. The second week I noticed a measurable difference in my strength and stamina. I honestly didn’t think that first week that I’d be able to get through to the end, but Luke’s friendly video manner and encouragement to take things at my own level and work towards my personal best kept me on track. By week three I noticed a huge difference in my core. Tight, strong muscles appeared that I never knew I had! I have one week to go, and feel rejuvenated and fit. I can’t wait to see what new programs VARLAH will be streaming.

VARLAH, fitness video streaming
Maybe one day…

Find out more about VARLAH here and purchase the six-week program here ($69.90 AUD). For the best 10 transformations, the VARLAH team will offer a full refund of the program, so be sure to take your pre and post photos and record your measurements as you go.



  1. Hugh Jackman, love him in the musical, The Boy from Oz, the Peter Allen biography.

  2. I still haven’t seen the film, Australia! 😉

  3. He is definitely in good shape.

  4. Your post title is such a teaser that I had to click in immediately….hehe! 😀 Exercise needs a lot of discipline…and I admire your discipline (even when you’re on the road).

  5. Judging from the amount of dinners, lunches & Xmas parties I’ll be attending, I think this may be just what I need to survive the silly season!

  6. There is a lot of hard work involved in staying in good shape!

  7. Kirsten Durward

    Diced sounds like just what I need right now Monica! In the summer I’m going to take a look at it, thanks for sharing!

  8. Millions of Hugh fans across the world owe you a genuine debt of gratitude! 🙂

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