Sunday, December 30, 2007

To know and not to do is to not yet know.
—Zen Proverb
2008 is going to be a great year for me.....I am shooting for the stars.
2007 was a very successful year, and a year in which I achieved all things I dreamed of and hoped for. I feel very satisfied and my plan for 2008 is well in place and I just can't wait for the last 9 hours of 2007 to tick by so that I can get into it. I still have some heavy lifting (excuse the pun) to do in respect to some strength training study and business plan implementation, but I am finally getting the opportunity to focus on my passion; and that makes the work enjoyable. So what's going on for me in 2008?
Powerlifting Competitions
April 19th-20th
2008 Australian Juniors/Masters/Intervarsity and ABSF Championships and Victorian Open - Melbourne University, Melbourne, Victoria.
July 26th -27th
2008 Australian Powerlifting and Bench Press Championships - Newcastle, New South Wales
October 1st -4th (still need to qualify and be selected)
2008 World Masters Powerlifting Championships - Palm Springs, California, USA
December 5th -8th
2008 Oceania Powerlifting Championships - Papetee, Tahiti
I am sitting on the sofa and have just been cursing my coach as he tells me I need to get into to gym 3 times this week before I start my next sequence for 2008....I can see why looking at this, and I am starting to feel a little more motivated!
Strength coaching and other PL stuff
I expect to complete my Level 1 coaching certs for ASCA in the next 60 days, and will start doing some work with women who want to be strong and fabulous. I am very passionate about what some heavy iron can do, for not only your physique, but also female health in general. I will be working with my coach on this and another International level powerlifter. I will have more details of this over the coming months, but if anyone is interested in building the glutes and abs to be able to squat more than your body weight, or the upper body to do unassisted chin ups drop me an e-mail. In fact I would love to hear from you about being a strong, fit and fabulous person.....
I also have a few other seminars and training courses booked, as well as a bunch of other things going on.
Right now I need to sleep before I go train.
Happy New Year!!

Saturday, December 29, 2007

I have been away from home for 1 week and fly back in tonight at 6pm. While I have been away I have done a few training sessions to keep my body moving, otherwise the DOMs pain is too much to bear in the first week back. I have enjoyed some yummy Xmas food, I have slept in and I feel relaxed.

From New Year I have 16 weeks until my next competition, and this will be made up of 2 x 8 week cycles. The first cycle is being based on a West Side Barbell style training (hard core PL), and the second will a more traditional PL prep to take me to comp.

I have been intentionally eating more since the Commonwealth Titles finished, and those extra treats will be decreased and replaced with functional nutrients. I will do a weight and body fat check in 2 weeks and expect to be only 3kgs above my weight class, which will put me in a perfect position 14 weeks out.

I am off now to enjoy another yummy brunch before we fly home.



Thursday, December 27, 2007

I am away doing the Xmas thing with family. I will be back posting on Monday.


Friday, December 21, 2007

I am feeling pretty happy right now as I reflect on the past year. I am planning on putting a post together on my successes, failures and surprises from 2007, but right now I thought I would share that all is pretty fine with this power lifter.

The first week back from NZ was a struggle, however I have integrated back into my day job and can report another quarter of over achievement. Other than being professionally satisfying it means that my PL plans for next year are funded! Yeah! Family life is smooth and we are all looking forward to a beak down in Melbourne with hubby's family.

Despite the change from pre competition nutrition and multiple Xmas parties on my return my nutrition has been consistent and my weight is stable (not to mention my moods). I seem to have had a real transformation during this last comp prep and now understand that to compete at a high level what I eat, how I train and how I recover everyday counts ( I will never forget that 200gms that cost me the gold). More importantly there is no sacrifice involved.

I am really enjoying going back to basics on my training as it has reinvigorated me with the thought always being in my mind that these changes will make me stronger. Powerlifting is 3 simple lifts, but I am feeling like they are new to me.

I am almost done with my Aust Strength and Conditioning Level 1 coaching study, and start my supervised coaching in the New Year with my first client. I am so excited about helping other women develop strong, functional bodies. Here's hoping that 2008 will see more women moving the big iron.

I am off for a walk along the river - have a great day.


Thursday, December 20, 2007

Part 2
The second area of retraining I am going through is on my deadlift. We have decided to try Sumo deadlifting in place of the conventional style I have been using for the past 2 years. I did try sumo about 12 months ago and had reasonable success with it, but changed back as I struggled after about 105kgs. One year on with significant more power through my glute/hamstrings I am back at doing reps at 60kgs - 80kgs. So far it feels very comfortable and Rod had another coach look at my form and there were only 2 areas that needed adjustment (unlike my squat).
I was at the point that I actually hated deadlift training and this has given me a renewed interest, and hopefully will be a plateau buster for me.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

I am going back to school......powerlifting school that is. Rod and I have made the decision that the only way to go forward is to take a step back. The main focus of this is my squat technique, and on Monday I started again with technique only - no bar, then moving to squat the bar only. I did this over and over again, and I am so sore right now. Who would have thought that multiple sets of 8 of a 20kg Olympic bar could cause so much havoc in a trained powerlifter. OUCH!!

For those of you interested in the technical aspects I am correcting 3 areas in particular.

  1. placement of the bar on my back; this has been moved down my back another 5cm
  2. knee break; I am retraining to break with me knees moving out rather than forward pushing my butt further back
  3. Foot placement; I have moved my toes out to a 45 degree angle rather than front on.

The purpose of these changes is to stop the propensity of my chest leaning forward, and allowing the bar to move up and down in the same plane. This should automatically give me a deeper squat and more control out of the bottom....and bigger lifts.


Sunday, December 16, 2007

People you can't live without.

This is Rosie and I last week at one of our many work functions. Rosie is an absolute god send to me and one of the people that I definately can't live without. Many people ask me how I manage to do and achieve all the things that I have and the answer is simple; suround yourself with incredibly talented and loyal people like Rosie.


I have just spent my weekend at St John's Ambulance doing my Senior First Aid certificate. I was a little concerned that I would still be fatigued from my trip to NZ and would struggle over the 2 days, however I actually really enjoyed it. The course was well prepared and presented and I learnt a heap of things. I needed to do the course for the strength coaching I will be undertaking, but I found it so useful that I am thinking of going back to do an advanced course.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

The Power of Consistency

Over the past 9 months I have trained for and competed in 3 Powerlifting competitions. I have won a National title, gained selection in the Aust team, and won a silver at the Commonwealth Titles. In this time my total PB has increased by 30kgs from 285kgs to 315kgs. I have not had any injuries that have prevented me from training and my weight has stayed within a 4kg range - despite some serious hypertrophy.

I believe my recent success is due to consistency. As a lot of people in blogger land have a major interest in nutrition I will start there first........

I eat the same types of food day in and day out pre and post comp, with enough variety for sanity. In fact I think the body needs consistency of nutrition more after a comp to heal and wild swings in nutrition not only prevent recovery, they play havoc with your hormones and we all know the downward spiral that leads too.

I invest a serious amount of time to ensure that I have access to the correct nutrition, and it is available when I need to eat it. I make sure that the balance of nutrients is correct every day so I keep my energy levels up while being mindful that I need to keep my weight in check for my weight division. This behaviour is second nature to me and can't imagine eating any way. I love my food.

Just a final note to say that pre and post work out nutrition is key to athletic performance and if anyone is training without nurturing their bodies before or after a work out you have just wasted your training session and lost the opportunity to improve yourself

I guess I can say ditto to the above. I have a range of supplements that I take mainly for recovery and maintenance purposes and I follow the same routine daily. The 2 "must haves" for me are fish oil and vital greens.

Recovery & maintenance protocols
I have weekly massages, acupuncture and stretching therapy. I also do sauna protocols 2-3 times a week. The faster you can recover, the stronger you will be and the more you will improve at your next training session. If I am tired I rest. My belief is it is better to do prehab than rehab. Recovery is key.

I know that if I am consistent with all these things, my body will respond. Sometimes it may take time, but it will repond the way my team and I need it to.

Respect your body and it will perform for you


Liz Nelson looks after my nutrition, so please visit her if you need help or advice.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

This was the "day after" bungy jump - nothing is scary after an international power lifting competition!!!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

This one is for my Mum......she hates these photos when I am straining with veins popping!!!!

In Action!!

Slave driver!!!

My coach may look all smiles and pleasant 10 mins after the medal ceremony, however my 1 week of rest is up and I am back into the gym in 3 hours time. Apparently as I have no injuries and I have pulled up well means I should be training.

The next comp for me is the Aust Junior and Masters in Melbourne the last week of April, so we have 4 months to execute "the plan". I know I agreed to "the plan", but I am thinking I may have been in a post comp state of confusion. The components look like this;


  • 3 days PL training consisting of all 3 lift each day - ouch.
  • 4th day will be to build upper body size and strength for bench improvement


  • Working with Aust squat legend one day per week to change my feet position and tweak other form weaknesses.
  • Changing deadlift style from conventional to sumo.


  • I am changing bench shirt brands. I will need to work with the Titan shirt 1 day per week to adjust to the benching style.
  • I will order a smaller squat suit.


  • maintain nutrition and recovery protocols as they seemed to work very well for me
  • maintain body weight at 57/58kgs for the entire preparation.

For those of you that are in Melbourne I will keep you updated on the comp date and venue, but it would be great to have a support crew come and watch. It is generally free, and if you stick around to watch the 82.5kg - 100kg men you get to see some great bodies under tension!!!!!!


Thursday, December 06, 2007

A few more details
I actually tied for first place but the South African lifter was 200gms lighter than me at the weigh in and therefore won.
It was a very tough day and I am absolutely exhausted and covered in bruises and lacerations. I have learnt so much in my first international competition and can't wait to get back home to put it all into practice and really nail my Elite qualification next year. The referees were much tougher on the technical rules than a National competition and many of the other girls bombed out on an entire lifts. My total was down quite a bit on what I was looking at but the reasons are varied and I won't go into the list of things I learnt yesterday. So I will leave you with some positive thoughts of my journey.
  • I have a killer bench and was 17.5kgs clear of the silver medalist
  • My squat is coming together and the final 115kg lift had plenty left - look out 2008
  • In the past 12 months my total PB has increased 30kgs.

My total was;

  • Squat 115kgs
  • Bench 70kgs
  • Deadlift 130kgs

Total 315kgs

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Commonwealth Titles quick update
Silver overall
Silver Squat
Gold Bench - yeah!
Bronze dealift
more details later

Sunday, December 02, 2007

I'll be back!

This is my last post before I leave for NZ. To say I am excited is an understatement, and packing my Australian tracksuit and t-shirts today has really brought the reality home. I am going to lift for Australia. OMG! I feel like a kid before Xmas.

My last week of lifting has gone very well and my opening lifts are as follows;

  • Squat 110kgs

  • Bench 70kgs

  • Deadlift 127.5kgs

I have done all these lifts many times in the past month in training and I am confident of a good start. I also have a new breathing technique that is providing more stability and leverage, and while I am not keen on adopting new techniques so close to a comp I believe it is a very positive change.

I will need to put some work into making weight, but I am in range already 3 days out so I feel relieved about that. The only new component for me will be the flying, but I have my upper & lower body skins and flight socks and heaps of green tea bags with me. It is only 3 hours from Brisbane to Christchurch so the impact will be a few hundred grams at worst. I need to finish packing my bags and I am ready to go....I feel ready

One last thing before I leave and that is to thank all my friends here on blogger. There are so many and I would hate to miss any names in my current state of excitement so to all of you......

I will get a message to someone on Thurdsay to let you know how I lifted.

Anything can happen in a competition, but I am well prepared and focussed so BRING IT ON!!!!


Focus and nerves.

This was taken just over a year ago at a local comp. I don't recall what I was listening to, but I do know it was before my squat and I was running thru my technique. This is what I have been doing today. It is a simple lift, but sometimes you forget the most simple things under pressure.

  • Take my time
  • feet under the bar and get the pacement on my back correct.
  • big breath, stand up and control the weight.
  • stay tight...3 steps only back.
  • head up, pause control the weight
  • receive the signal to squat
  • big breath fill the chest, push it to the stomach against my belt
  • lock elbows down, close my mouth.
  • lift


Saturday, December 01, 2007

When I come back from NZ I will have finished my ASCA certifications and will be starting strength training under the supervision (initially) of my coach and his Bodyworx business. This is my new t-shirt!




The bar should be gripped slightly wider than shoulder width apart, with the hands evenly spaced. The novice can initially adopt the same width grip as the bench press. Over time lifters tend to adopt a preference for either a wide grip or a narrow grip. In the wide grip technique the bar is gripped near to the sleeves, in competition the grip will therefore be taken outside the racks with the officials requested to set up the bar with “racks in”. A close grip technique involves grasping the bar close to the marks with the hands slightly wider than shoulder width, as described above with both grip-width techniques it is important to keep elbows together and under the bar to assist in pushing the chest out.


To set up the lift stand well under the bar with chest out and back tight. This initial preparation is vitally important in helping to maintain a strong upright position. The bar should be positioned on the back just below the top of the deltoids.

Once set up under the bar there should be a momentary pause before taking one step back. This one-step set up procedure is recommended as a means of quickly and easily establishing a stable stance with the minimum of wasted effort. In competition, once set up, the lifter would remain motionless awaiting the referee’s signal to squat.


The set up procedures described above assist in producing a good trunk position. There are several points that define a good trunk position:
§ the back is hyperextended,
§ the stomach pushed out against the belt for inter-abdominal support,
§ the chest is pushed out,
§ and head up and in the traps.


The width of the stance is defined by the feet positioning. In the initial stages of teaching the squat, recommend a foot position wider than shoulder width with toes pointed slightly out.


The descent must be controlled. In addition, for a good descent the knees are kept out, the hips move down and back with an attempt to keep the shins vertical.


During the reversal from descent ascent ensure that the hips are locked and that there is a well controlled transition through the bottom of the squat. The reversal phase should be sufficiently slow to avoid the appearance of dropping or bouncing but rapid enough to take advantage of the stored elastic energy in the muscles. In the ascent, it is vital to keep the head and chest up and elbows under the bar to maintain an upright trunk position.

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