Mike Galvin chats to former Cotswoldian, now Surry Hills local, Dave Marsh, coach at Fitness Playground Surry Hills.

How long have you called Surry Hills home? I moved to Surry Hills 12 months ago. Previous to that, I had arrived from the Cotswolds and spent time in Bundaberg. I wanted to live centrally in Sydney within walking distance to my work. Easy access to public transport and the eastern beaches was also important.

What do you enjoy most about living here? Living and working in Surry Hills has a homely-like feel of a small town in comparison to the hustle and bustle of Sydney CBD. It feels very local and the Postcode has a relaxed culture that belongs to its people.

Coffee or tea? Definitely coffee. A favourite would be Cuckoo Callay on Crown Street. They have insta-worthy artistic takeaway coffee cups and a brunch menu to die for, you can’t go wrong. I recommend the “Sir Hogs-worth”.

What does a typical day look like? Up at 5:30am, the day is filled with coaching clients at Fitness Playground, Surry Hills. I’m lucky to be able to provide a service to locals in the community that involves bettering them. I use a combination of strength and conditioning techniques, nutritional programming, calisthenics and movement.

My favourite restaurant is: I love Thai food so I would have to say Spice I Am on Wentworth Ave. The crispy chilli and basil chicken is exceptional as is the Pad Thai.

The last meal that left me salivating was: Tequila mockingbird. The slow cooked lamb is a must and if you’re a tequila fan then this spot is definitely for you with an extensive selection and cocktails made to your taste.

A local business I love is: Saltie on Devonshire which serves up tasty takeaway bowls. The onset-bowl with grilled chicken and sesame sauce is the perfect balance of nutrition meets taste. I’m also lucky to live near Maloney’s Grocer where I’m a regular.

My favourite green space is: Centennial Parklands, escaping the noise and taking in a sunset or sunrise stroll through the beautiful parklands is a perfect spot to unwind or take a jog around.

People should visit my suburb of Surry Hills because: It has an extensive choice of brunch spots, quirky bars and restaurants and is home to two of the best gyms in Sydney.

My ideal weekend is: Getting up early and heading to Bondi for sunrise. It’s a quiet time at the usually busy spot where you truly see the natural beauty that attracts millions each year. Take in a coastal walk or run, then brunch at one of my favourite foodie spots back in Surry Hills.

My ideal weekend away is: Escaping the city, heading to Byron or Noosa. Fresh air, surfing, relaxing and enjoying destinations in the big backyard that is Australia.

You can learn more about Dave and the Fitness Playground crew at @fitnessplaygroundau. 
Follow him on Instagram at @movable.muscle.