Thursday, February 28, 2008

Do you hate your thighs?

For so many years I remember hating my thighs. I was “bottom heavy” and I always thought that my top half was normal and it seemed unfair that my thighs were so big in comparison. I hated getting in to swimmers and found all sorts of reasons to avoid these occasions. Even when I got in shape , it was as though my top half and bottom half were made from 2 different people. I recall preparing for my first body building and being between 11-13% body fat during the final months and still having bad thighs – loose skin and cellulite. I was distraught at the thought of getting on stage and looking fabulous, until I turned around and the whole world would see that I didn’t deserve to be there. In that first comp I did manage to get lean enough, but the following 2 years I wasn’t quite there.

I have spent so much energy on worry about either the size of my thighs or cellulite that it would power a small nation (and maybe financially support it for a while too). I recall many people telling me that you can’t change your body type, and everyone has their flaws so live with it. Well as you can see from the photo above you can change your body shape, you can develop high round glutes and balance your body. You can see from my picture from 2001 I was bottom heavy, and unless you knew me back then you never would have guessed now. In fact I had lunch with Liz Nelson today and she was shocked that I was once “hippy”.

Of course the secret to developing these muscles is activation and pushing heavy weights in the gym over a long period of time. I am more than happy to share these booty building exercises to one and all. Now I haven’t quite kicked all the cellulite yet, but I guess no is perfect!


Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Bench Focus Day

The volume theme is going to continue for the next 3-4 weeks Rod tells me today, as he made me rip through my sets. The strategy is to get my general conditioning up to cope with comp day demands. By the last bench set I was hammered - never thought I could get so fatigued by benching.

I am using light equipment now to prepare for comp, so I used a loose bench shirt. I haven't had a shirt on since Dec so it was a bit of a shock. However I did well and had a great first heavy session.

Bench 4 x6 reps @ 60kgs

Rack deadlifts 3 x 3 @100kgs

Goodmorning 4 x 6 @60kgs

tricep pushdown
This all took 90 minutes, plus another 20 mins on the treadmill.


Look what I found!

This is my first "before" shot way back in 2001 that started my wellness journey. I was about 60kgs and 30% bf here. I know I was never too out of shape, just soft and 4-5 kgs over weight. They ironic thing is I still weight about 60kgs, but I am 14% bf.

How do I feel when I look at this photo? I don't feel embarrassed or cringe in anyway because while there has been a lot of work done on the outside (probably about 6-7kgs of muscle), it is the changes on the inside that make me who I am today. When I show this photo to friends I get a few different reactions, 1) you look younger now, 2) you were never really fat anyway, 3)I would never have recognised you as your body is so different now.

To the people who give me the first response I always say that 9 years of consistent clean food, exercise, water and fish oil can do wonders for your skin. To the second response I say it doesn't matter whether other people think you are overweight, it is how you feel about yourself and the personal demons you have to fight to achieve balance. The third response is usually from people who have only known me in the last 5 years or so and assume I have always looked like I do now. I just smile when I get this response as the girl in the photo above knows the truth.


Tuesday, February 26, 2008

A time for reflection on my choices.
This is my 16 yr old daughter Charlotte. She is a member of the school girls rowing squad I train 2 mornings a week and today she suffered a minor muscle strain at the end of the session. The squad leaves to compete at National Titles in 5 days, so I hurriedly made an appointment to get her worked on. In the past I would reschedule my first few meetings, drop her off, pick her up, leave $20 in the counter, blow her a kiss, then run out the door and spend the next 6 hours calling in to see how she was feeling; I am exhausted even writing all that down.
Today that was my immediate plan, however when I got to the part where I pick her up and leave, I stopped. What was I leaving for? My daughter is a junior athlete with an injury, and stressed about Year 11, part time work, other teenage stuff and the pressure of doing well at National Titles. This sounds like me; if she needs anyone right now it is me. So I stayed at home and am working here (in between blogging). The truth is there is nothing more important right now than my daughter. So I wonder how many times in the past I chose to live my busy life, over the most important things in my life? I can't change the past, but I can change the direction of the future.
Well time to get domestic and make both of us lunch.
PS Charlotte created the new look of my blog.

This is a post I wrote some time ago and never published. It is more in line with the "tough love" approach, but I think it holds the truth to my current peace and balance. I know I owe you all a post on how to achieve that balance, but the first step is personal responsibility. Every day, every meal, every workout counts, and if you don't make them count you are choosing to be a little less than what you desire to be.


I’m just doing it.......

I have just turned 40. I am in great physical shape and a member of the Australian Power lifting team. I also have a successful professional career, 2 very switched on teenage kids, sexy hubby, great family and some incredibly fulfilling friendships with amazing people.

I eat clean, I train every week, I spend significant effort on recovery, I supplement, have massages, acupuncture & saunas. I do this every day, every week, every get the idea. This is my lifestyle and I love it, everyone who knows me understands that this is my life.
A lot of people look at me and ask how I do it all. They ask for advice on fitness, weight loss, nutrition etc. Now as much as I don’t want to sound like a Nike slogan, the answers to all of these question is ....... just do it.

Before you think I am a saint or a nutter, my recent experience in the Australian Power lifting team has given me the opportunity to meet a number of same minded individuals, many of whom are older than me and I am extremely comforted by the fact that I am not alone, and the future looks very active for me. A lot of these people aren’t elite athletes; they are just regular people with respect for their health.

I was having lunch with an overweight girlfriend recently and she told me that “this time” she was going to lose weight by sticking to her diet and exercise program and it would all start on Monday. I challenged her and said “why don’t you start now “(it was Friday lunch). She looked at me horrified as apparently there were parties planned over the weekend and it would have to wait. So apparently going to parties and living lean are incompatible...........hmmm I must have missed this announcement.

At dinner 2 nights later (yes I do eat out a lot), another girlfriend wanting to shed a few kilos and get some tone challenged me to find a way to motivate her to “get her to the gym”. Now as you can see from the top of this article I am a pretty busy woman. Motivation is your own personal domain, and if loosing lean muscle, gaining body fat and a general deterioration caused by aging isn’t sufficient to get you moving what makes you think I can provide any additional impetus, especially when all of the above are a major reason I look after myself?

Over the past 10 years of my wellness journey I have seen many things, read mountains of magazines and books, attended seminars, training courses and talked to many people. I have also experimented with many fads and methodologies, so I have a pretty fair foundation to form an opinion on why so many people are unfit, overweight, unhealthy and unhappy. However I am going to refrain from advice, theories or explanations simply because there is so much information and education already available.

So what is my point? My point is that your body is your responsibility. To build a strong and functional body with endless vitality and to remain youthful and energised into old age YOU must take responsibility and simply DO IT.

If you don’t want to look after yourself, that is your choice........but stop freakin asking me how I do it because I am too busy being fabulous!!!

Monday, February 25, 2008

8 weeks to Competition

All I say is thank goodness for my deload last week. After the seminar on the weekend Rod and I decided to add a 20 minute pre work out warm up to my routine. My training sessions are now taking about 2.5 hours in total by the time I warm up, lift, do steady state cardio and warm down!
Today I have video of one of my warm up squat sets. This is 3 reps of 70kgs. The rest of the training session was;
Squat 4 sets, 6 reps, 80kgs
Bench 4 sets, 4 reps, 45kgs
Deadlift 4 sets, 5 reps, 62.5kgs
biccep curls

The Power & the Glory (part III)

Nic Unsworth-Smith was, amongst many other things, an International level powerlifter that I knew from the gym I worked out at. He asked me why I was looking upset at my final figure comp, and I said I was over bodybuilding. I loved to go to the gym and push myself and get strong and fit, but I found competition day a huge anti climax; there was no physical competition, no sweating and bleeding. He suggested that I should give powerlifting a go, and after he explained what powerlifting was I simply said “I can do that”. There are so many times those 4 little words have gotten me in to a lot of trouble, and this was to be no different.

I started training with Nic in December 2005, I had to learn how to squat, bench and deadlift with corrrect technique, however I progressed very quickly in the first few months. Coming in to my first competition the following April I was given a very rude, and painful, awakening when Nic introduced the “equipment.” Impossibly tight suits, belts wraps and bench shirts. Today I have fine white scars on my arms and legs left over from a couple of years of wearing this gear. This was a far cry from sequenced bikinis and high heels. This was pain, adrenalin, fear and exhilaration all rolled into one. That feeling of walking out onto the platform for my first competition squat wearing a squat suit, knee wraps, power belt, weightlifting shoes and chalk is one I will carry with me forever; this was competition, this was what I was meant to do! Within the first 12 months of being a competitive powerlifter I qualified to compete at the Nationals Titles.

The period following May 2007 was a very significant learning and development phase for me. Despite 18 months of lifting I was still eating like a figure competitor, and was severely struggling with the demands of training, work and life in general. I was fatigued all the time and my recovery was appalling. Enter an exercise physiologist, Liz Nelson, who ‘broke me out of food jail’ and bought a refreshing scientific factual perspective to nutrition. Within one week I had more energy and vitality. I remember walking down the street feeling like I was walking on air. I couldn’t believe how incorrectly an intelligent and experienced athlete like me had been eating; I was a new person. The first competition Liz mentored me through was a crucial one for my lifting career as I was selected in the Australian Team for the Commonwealth Titles. My lifting career is forging ahead, and I have some very exciting competitions coming up in 2008. I have also decided to leave my professional career to follow my dream in fitness.
Over the past 8 years I have pushed myself to extraordinary lengths to achieve my ideal body and GI Jane abs. I have felt lost, out of control and frustrated for months and months on end at times. I gained and lost those abs more many times that I ever should have. However as I sit here and write this I can truly say that I now have balance, wisdom, and an acceptance of self.

I have told my story to share my journey and to provide hope.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Just a quick note to let you all know that I am off to Mebourne today until Monday, as I have a strength and conditioning seminar to attend. Mike Robertson, renowned strength coach and corrective exercise specialist, is in Aust and I am one of the lucky ones who got a seat at his Melb seminar. Rod and I are both going and I am very excited about learning from Mike, particularily around pre work out mobility and injury prevention.
photo by Dallas Olsen
part II

Six pack and Food Jail

In late February 2003 I went back to training with Nunzio, about 10 weeks after I fell ill. I was still on medication but I was determined that I wasn’t going to let the illness stop me from my goal. I had lost weight and muscle, so we had to go forward with what we had if I was to make it on stage in 8 months. I trained weights 4 days a week and many hours of cardio over the next months, getting gradually leaner at each weigh in. I had a single minded obsession and not once did I stray from the diet or not complete my training. My social life disappeared as I was always training or tired from training, and in October 2003 I stepped on stage for the first time at 48kgs and about 8% body fat.

I was still on medication from my illness and in hindsight it would have been better for my long term health to wait for 12 months before attempting to compete, but I wanted those abs more than anything in the whole world. I was lean, really lean and I finally had control over how I looked. Or so I thought.

After the euphoria of my first competition I started to eat “normally” again. In the first 3 days I put on 3 kgs and can I clearly recall looking at myself in the mirror and felt disgusted at how fat I had become. Within 6 weeks I was back to 55kgs and a new struggle with food and body image emerged. The feedback from the judges was that I was in great condition but I was too small and needed more muscle, so Nunzio and I worked on a plan that would see me sit out a year and then go back with more muscle. However I changed this plan and got back on stage 9 months later and then 15 months after that again. In this period of bodybuilding my weight ranged about 10 kgs each off season and the only way I could control the way I looked was to be in “competition preparation mode”. I convinced myself that I was carb intolerant and had a slow metabolism and felt I put on weight when I reintroduced carbs and other regular food to my diet. The reality is that my body was simply doing what normal a body does after a heavily restricted diet over a long period of time. This caused other eating disorder type behaviours; I was unhappy and in food jail.

In my third year of bodybuilding I realised that I was competing to keep those abs, and not because I was interested in sculpting a muscular physique. I needed to stop for my health, and my sanity. I didn’t get into great condition in that final year, and as I sat despondent back stage after my final competition a guy I knew from my gym sat next to me and asked me what was wrong. We then had a conversation that would change my life.

to be continued....


Thursday, February 21, 2008

Photo by Dallas Olsen

Bench training with clients

This morning I trained 2 strength clients on the bench press. The male client told me he had shoulder issues and was benching no more than 70kgs right now and had benched 100kgs at his best about 10 years ago. The female client had a 1 rep PB of 50kgs.

I did the first 30 minutes of the session in technique correction and kept the weights at a very modest level. They progressed very quickly, and so I decided to load the bar. 60 minutes after technique correction the male client benched 100kgs for 1 rep, with no shoulder pain or impact. The smile on his face said it all, and I predict we are going to see a 130kg bench in a few months - something he laughed about at the begining of the session. The female client benched her personal best of 50kgs (carry a leg injury today), and that will be 60kgs in a few months.

It is fantastic to be able to make such an impact in one session! Iam am feeling so satisfied right now.


Wednesday, February 20, 2008

In the beginning (part 1).........

In the late 1990’s I remember watching Demi Moore in GI Jane and “those abs”. I wanted that fabulous six pack and to be strong, tough, yet still feminine like Demi. However at the end of each day after working in my stressful IT sales job and picking the kids up I was so tired that I sat on the couch had a few drinks and nibbles and “relaxed”. The next morning I would look at myself naked in the mirror and say today was the day I would gain control of how I looked. I did regular exercise, I even did a few corporate triathlons at one stage, but on the weekends or at night I still had those few drink and other treats. I deserved it right? After all I worked bloody hard, I did have kids, I was only a few kilos heavy, and .......I am sure there were plenty of other justifications and excuses.

Then one day I woke up and realised that at 32yrs old, and 30% bodyfat, Demi’s abs were never going to magically appear for me. I was going to have to change. I am not sure if there was an incident that inspired the change, but I do I remember that day like it was today. Something had lit a fire inside me and I knew that I deserved better than what I was giving myself. I finally understood that all the responsibility to change was with me.

Over the next 4 months I trained weekly with a PT, I read books and magazines, I talked to people about fitness and health and successfully dropped my bodyfat to 22%. The journey had begun. My self esteem increased, I become more successful in my job and life was getting better. At that time I was training in a bodybuilding gym, and around comp time when the girls were leaning down I came face to face with Demi’s abs. That was it for me, I decided that to gain my long term desire of the six pack I would become a figure body builder!

So two years after getting into pretty good shape for 30 something mother of two, I decided it was time to “get serious”. We had made a move from Melbourne to Brisbane, so I did some research and found myself a trainer who could take me from what I was to figure competitor. Nunzio Lo Castro was a former Mr World, and he created amazing changes in the first month of training with him. As I had been weight training for two years I had some muscle to work with, and being the focussed type I embraced the nutrition changes with open arms. Within the first month I dropped 3kgs, and I had a visible 4 pack – a little soft but it was there. GI Jane was on her way.

In December 2002, one month after starting with the amazing Nunzio, I was struck down with a mystery illness. I had extremely high fevers, was covered in a rash, and my whole body was so stiff that I was unable to roll over in bed without excruciating pain. I had test after test and no one could work out what was happening to me. The possibilities ranged from Ross River Fever to Meningococcal – which resulted in the Health Dept getting involved and all of my family taking a horrid anti biotic that turned their pee bright orange. I eventually started to recover with the aid of some heavy duty medication and I left hospital after a few weeks. The final prognosis was a rare form of rheumatoid arthritis which I still need to manage today.

So In Feb 2003 my dream of getting on stage that October with GI Jane abs seemed crushed.

Part II tomorrow.


Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Training junior rowers

I have been spending time with the girls (they are 16yr olds so I am not sure if I should call them girls?), over the past 2 weeks doing strength based exercises. Pull ups, deadlifts, front squats, rows, push pres etc, just to give them to basic form and feel for these moves. Over the next few weeks I will combine these skills into a power moves to assist in building their acceleration.
I gave them a pretty good pasting this morning with a circuit of speed based exercises of box squat jumps, db sprints, med ball push ups, power rows, db thrusts, renegade rows and over head squats. They got thru 3 circuits ( 1 x 60sec, and 2 x 30secs) without complaining or anyone giving in - sensational attitude! However the highlight of my morning was teaching them to do a dumbbell snatch. Some of them took to it immediately and some other took a few reps, but they were all able to perform a technically correct snatch. Next week I will bring in power cleans, and high pulls. This crew will have huge amounts of power in a few months, and I can't wait to see how it translates on the water.

This is my dream; to get the chicks doing the power moves right at the begining of their weight training out boys the girls are about to take over the big iron!.

Train hard and heavy!


PS I have finally found a very efficient way to video and post exercises now, so I will add video of these power exercises on Friday for you.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Photo by Dallas Olsen

What life are you living?

I am not feeling 100% today, and am working from home. I did get up at 5.30am, and follow the usual routine of Meal 1, check e-mails, cardio at the gym, and home for breakfast all by 7.45am. I have been slightly fatigued and very stiff, with particularily tight and crunchy traps and headachy for a few days now. This happens from time to time and I usually lay low for a few days and then charge forward again.

I am not sure who first called me "Wonder Woman", but it was quite a few years ago now as people looked at all the things that I did and wondered how I not only got them all done, but was successful as well. The answer to "how" is massive amounts of energy, an unstopable desire to make the most of my time in the world, precision timing and sacrifice. Keeping this cracking pace up has made me tired and I don't want to fall into fatigue and "tired woman's syndrome"- so after many months of deliberation I have decided that I need to answer my question of "what life am I living?" and live the life I was meant to.

I made a pact with myself about 11 years ago that I will always be true to who I am. Some people call me crazy others call me fearless; however I can honestly tell you that I am the person I was born to be. That person is a strong (physically and emotionally) women, with complete belief in wellness and empowerment so we can all have better and healthier lives. I have collected amazing experiences in my journey and feel that now is the right time for me to close my eyes, take a deep breath and jump.......

At the end of March my corporate career comes to an end, and for one month I will be a full time athlete and focus on my Elite Grading at the April comp. After April I am following my dream to inspire other and women ( and hopefully the occassional man) to make positive choices into a life of wellness. I haven't sorted out the details but I should be able to pay the bills with a combination of sponsorships, strength training clients, speaking engagements and other activities that I haven't even though of yet!

Well, I have is in the hands of the universe now!


Sunday, February 17, 2008

Pieces of the puzzle

Lia asked the question "was the outlay of the Gene Elite Test worth it?" I can only answer this from my perspective, and I guess the answer lies in those evasive words it depends.
Over the past 12 months as my ranking and experience has been increasing, my coach and I are always reading and talking to people about how to improve, and we have found many different ideas on training, nutrition, and recovery. It is fair to say that elite athletes and their coaches in the same sport can have extremely different approaches yet they can all be highly successful. Why is this? From what I can tell it is because we are all different, and our minds and bodies react differently to training, food and recovery methods. There is no "one size fits all" approach to any of these things. In Precision Nutrition, John Beradi talks about the importance of individualisation of his program, and I think this is the key.
It is important to understand the fundamentals of the sport, or work, you are doing. You need to apply sound principles to your nutrition and recovery strategies and you need to mould these around your indivual requirements. This should give you a unique program that works best for you. But the question is "how do you know what level of personalisation you need". The truth is most of the time we are guessing, and often those guesses can be based in incorrect beliefs about how our bodies work guided by our minds.
With current technology and scientific studies we can take the guess work out of it. We can find out if we are carb tolerant, or how well we are likely to recover and what mix of training is going to be optimal. These types if tests are sinply information that can be interpreted and used to increase your performance.
So was the Gene Elite and similar scientific based tests worth the outlay? As I said at the beginning of this post it depends on what you want your outcome to be. For me? I was beaten to a Gold Medal by 200gms of body weight in December.......yes it is worth it.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Photo by Dallas Olsen

Preparing for battle

It is 9 weeks today to my next Competition; Aust Juniors & Masters April 19-20 in Melbourne. The past 6 weeks have been spent building overall body strength working the muscles from all angles. I have achieved a good result and increased my strength and lifted some great PB's in training. I have also addressed some technique issues. On the nutriton front the past 5 weeks have been used to detox, balance hormones and build mental toughness - and I can attest that has happened. I have also lost 1.5kgs on the scales and all of that is bf as I have managed to add lean muscle as well. So this has been the optimum result.

I have next week as a "deload and recovery week". There will be 3 low volume lifitng sessions, 3 HIIT sessions, 3 saunas, 2 massages and a facial!

The following week I start the official preparation with focus on the 3 lifts using gear. I will also be loosing another 2.5kgs with precise nutrient timing to maximise lifting performance while dropping the last 2-3% bf. From Monday 3rd March it is game on...........


Friday, February 15, 2008

Excel Gene Report

I recently did a DNA test with Excel Gene to assist in the development of my training, recovery and nutrition plan. About 10 days ago I wrote a post about how I believed it was tough for me to lose bf and that I was carb sensitive, only to have that totally blown away by the Poliquin results Krista came up with and then confirmed by the DNA test. Today I am going to give you a summary of the rest of the results and what they mean for me. The report is courtesy of the fab Liz Nelson.

You have a positive variation in your PPARy2 gene activity which reduces your risk for Type II diabetes and other associated cardiovascular illnesses. It also means you are less likely to develop insulin resistance.The fact that your genetic makeup indicates a positive variation in the gene, it supports the notion that your carbohydrate tolerance and your ability to utilize carbohydrate is better than most.

Training Notes: cardiovascular exercise geared towards improving fitness will help kick along a fat loss goal even further.

Your GeneElite profile determined three negative variations – in ACE and MTHRF which have to do with cardiovascular health.
You are at increased risk for cardiovascular disease and osteoporosis. HOWEVER, you’re in the right sport to deal with potential osteoporosis and eating foods that contain plenty of folate (leafy greens) goes a long way to preventing accumulation of homocysteine (a product of the expression of MTHFR ) B Vitamin supplementation is also worth considering.

Training Notes: doing some aerobic training (in off season) will go a long way in keeping you more cardiovascularly fit. Doing something like RPM where there is also a lot of explosive work for those Type IIs is not a bad option.
The positive variation in your HIF-1 means that you have good potential to be a better endurance athlete than most.

The only negative variation here is TNFalpha which is a gene that activates the substances and molecules involved in inflammation. This variation can lead to overstimulation of the inflammatory process which can lead to problems such as cardiovascular disease, joint pain, asthma and slow tissue healing.

Layman's terms and training notes: Be careful of a heavy training load where you are getting heaps of inflammation and DOMS. Cycle your training so that your workload is fairly even – within a weekly microcycle and during each macrocycle (block of training or preparation). Plan to take active recovery weeks as well. Recovery modalities such as deep water work, massage, steam etc also help alleviate inflammation and promote recovery.

Thesegenes are all about how well our liver detoxifies our system and how well we deal with free radicals which accelerate age related illnesses.
You only have one negative variation, GSTM1, which suggests that overall, you’re pretty good at dealing with Xenobiotics (toxic substances which accumulate in the body)

Layman's terms; This is where nutrition plays such an important part. As you also have a negative variation in Col1A1 (osteoporosis risk), a diet rich in calcium is recommended. This could be covered by 3 serves of dairy or supplementation.

Dietary fats also help minimize the inflammatory response so using cold water fish (or supplementation eg Krill Oil),flax and organic meats, eggs and dairy will help with potential inflammation and your recovery.

I feel that this GeneElite report and the recommendations suggested almost mirror what we started doing nutrition wise and even more so with what Krista is recommending – so I really believe that you are evolving down a path that is tailor made for you, so I’m really not surprised at your response to the training, eating and supplementation.


Thursday, February 14, 2008

Photo by Dallas Olsen

Athlete and coach

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Photo by Dallas Olsen

Big Lifting today!!!!
I have completed the "lean and green" protocol and now able to add back in my beloved oats everyday, my body felt like it was supercharged (despite being day 1 into a menstral cycle), and I really got stuck into my training this afternoon. I always seem to take about 30 minutes to really start hitting the groove and today was no different. So by the time we got to the rack deadlifts I was smokin'.

Today the rack was in it's highest position - so I probably had to move it about 15-20cm to full lock out. We started on 80kgs then 100kgs for a warm up. Then Rod said we would just keep adding weight. I did 5 reps at 140kgs, 150kg, then 170kgs - and I had more left - oh yeah! Moving that sort of weight get the endorphines absolutely firing. I did my 20 mins steady state cardio on the treadmill and had Rammstein blasting on my iPod. I will be on a high for hours tonight.


Tuesday, February 12, 2008

I thought I should add a post to the picture today to fill you all in on what has been going on for me. On Monday I started training the First 8 rowers at Someville House, and while training 9 girls at once presented a bit of a challenge, the session flowed well and I am impressed with the strength and speed of these young athletes. I am looking after them 2 days a week, and I will have them stronger than they ever thought possible within a couple of months.
I am off to train 2 strength clients this morning who are after power lifitng technique instruction. They have been lifting for a while and are looking to take a leap forward, and this usually comes with adjusted technique - as I know from personal experience and the torture I have been through lately with my squat.
I am on day 30 of my Poliquin lean and green protocol - oh yeah! I am happy to report I was 100% compliant and am very excited to see what has happened to my bf levels. The measurements will need to be put off one week due to PMS as an accurate reading is not possible tomorrrow. I will call it early and say that I will have a 2kg bf loss and 500gm muscle increase. Let us wait and see.
Gotta run and do what I love to do........LIFT!!

Monday, February 11, 2008

Photography by Dallas Olsen
Sponsorship Announcement
I am pleased to announce that Breast Implants Australia will be supporting me this year in my lifting aspirations. As you may know I had breast implants about 12 months ago, and had a very speedy recovery to set a new QLD bench press record 11 weeks post surgery.
My reasons for the surgery were mainly to "get back" what I had lost after breast feeding my 2 children. Over the past 8 years I have transformed my body (and mind), however this was the one area I was not able to correct with exercise and nutrition. I am thrilled with the results and am more than happy to discuss my experience if you have any questions.
You can visit Breast Implants Australia by clicking on the link in the sponsors section on the left had side of my blog.
Have a great day!

Photograph by Dallas Olsen

Sunday, February 10, 2008

I had my photo shoot today with Dallas Olsen (above). Being a novice to the whole process I felt pretty awkward at first, however Dallas was obviously very experienced and had me quite relaxed after the first 15 mins or so.
I have to sat that it was very hard work, and I had to come home for a "nanna nap" before my training session......I have a new found respect for anyone who is in front (or behind) the camera now!
I should have some pics to post up within few days.
Off to squat now.....

Being in Powerlifting I get asked the question about drugs in sport on a regular basis. I guess it comes with the territory - just like weightlifting, bodybuilding and so many other sports these days. I am a 100% natural athlete. I am not passing judgement on those that are not, however my choice is to be drug free and I can, and have been tested by ASADA on any day at any time.


Saturday, February 09, 2008

I am a Powerlifter.

Michael told me how much thicker my back had become recently, so I asked him to take a photo. To be honest I wasn't sure if I wanted to post it, as I still find my muscle mass confronting. However after thinking about it I realised that if I am to continue to be honest and real, then I should post it.

4 years ago

Friday, February 08, 2008

Wonder Woman's Day

5am - wake meal 1

5.15 - Take daughter to rowing sheds

6am - go to market for fresh fruit and veg

7am - meal2

7.30 - pick up daughter and talk to rowing director re training program for Monday

8.30 - pre work shake

9am - Dynamic bench training

10.30 - post work shake

11am - pick up son's clothes for school dance

11.30 - go to powerlifitng competition (Rod lifitng today)

12pm - eat (will have packed 2 meals before this)

12.30 - train son at powerlifting club

2.30pm - supporting rod and eat again

4pm - back home for shave, exfoliate for fake tan - probably eat now

5pm - fake tan appointment for phoot shoot

7pm - dinner

7.30pm - take son to school dance

10.30pm - pick son up

11.00 - pass out


I hope you day is super charged.


Thursday, February 07, 2008

GO BIG!!!!!
Yesterday's training session was the heaviest lifting I have done in a while. As usual with these heavy sessions with a reasonable amount of volume it took 90 mins, then I did 20 mins of steady state cardio - so about the usual 2 hour training session.
Box Squats
6 x 60kgs, 6 x 65kgs, 6 x 70kgs, 6 x 72.5kgs
6 x 50kgs, 6 x 55kgs, 6 x 60kgs, 6 x 60kgs
Rack deads (10cm above knee)
6 x 120kgs, 4 x 150kgs, 6 x 140kgs
Rod trains me to keep under my fatigue levels, so for example while I could have pulled 150kgs again on my last set of rack deads, he wants to stop me from going to failure so I can recover quickly and be fresh for the next session. As he has been training me for a while he understands what levels of intensity and volume I can do and recover from quickly - great coaching!

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

The scientific proof that I was wrong..

A few days ago I wrote a blog about beliefs, and how powerful the mind was in limiting success with the incorrect belief. I had always "felt" that I was carb sensitive and it was more difficult for me to loose bf than other people. I had modified my carb intake over years, and expected to see a very tough time when dropping weight for my weight category. I can put these beliefs down to experiences in my past such as; thinking I was fat as a kid, having complex carbs and fruit removed from my diet over long periods when I was body building then not undestanding the body's natural reaction to refeeding, and of course the whole body image issues that we all suffer from.

One months ago Krista came back with the results from the Poliquin tests and told me that I had good carb/insulin tolerance, and after 2 weeks of supplementation my markers had improved to the point that I didn't need any further supplementation in this area. How could this be? I am the chick that gets fat if I eat too many carbs............or am I?

She then asked me to challenge the belief that it is difficult for me to get lean.....I am 40 years old and I maintain between 14 -16% bodyfat all year round enjoying great variety in my food. That doesn't sound like a person with fat metabolism issues and carb sensitivity. So the questions came ...."Where did I get this idea from and how much has the belief impacted on my life"

I believe that things come to you at times when you are ready for them.......1 day after my post on beliefs I received the results of DNA testing aimed at assisting althetes with planning and performance. There are 4 gene tests and the first one is Body Fat Metabolism; lipid metabolism and insulin sensitivity. So this sealed the deal, here was the scientific proof and the results shocked me. My DNA proves that my Body Fat Metabolism is rated as EXCELLENT. I have a genetic advantage in this area! I am still speechless......

I have learnt so much from this process that will make me a better athlete, but that does not compare to how much healing I am going thru emotionally.

What do you believe?


Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Sponsorship announcement

I am very excited to announce that I have entered into a sponsorship arrangement with the Atlernative Foods Company, the home of Mototo. Mototo is the world's first super premium dairy-style desserts that are Dairy, Soy and Gluten-free with the additional functional advantage of added calcium.

The founder, Rohan O'Reilly, is a true inspration and the perfect example of "never giving in", and "doing whatever it takes" to achieve your dreams - a theme that is close to all our hearts here in blogger land. Rohan's dream to bring Mototo to the market place has taken him over 10 years.

Rohan believes that my personal journey and dedication in transforming myself from the "soft" 30 year old women who was never quite happy with her body, to international level powerlifter 10 years later is also inspirational and a great fit for his company.

I am very proud to be associated with a company that believes in female empowerment and positive choices and look forward to a long and successful association with the Alternative Foods Comany.

Please visit them at the following url, and of course please go and enjoy some sensational ice cream for you and your family.


Monday, February 04, 2008

Strength and Conditioning coaching for junior female rowers.

I am very excited about the news that from next week I will join the Somerville House Rowing Coaching team as a voluntary strength and conditioning coach. I will be training the squad going to National Titles, then work with the First 8 through the following rowing season. This will be about 2 gym sessions per week.

The Director of Rowing is a very experienced rowing coach, and I will be learning so much from him. In our discussions today I was so pleased to hear that as a result of his Russian background and training, his is stressing the importance of speed and power moves with the girls.

I can't wait to get these teenage athletes in the gym and build speed and strength with high pulls, power cleans, squats etc. I feel so greatful to get the chance to contribute to developing strong and fit young women.

Busy, busy.


I have so much going on right now I forgot a recent milestone. My "girls" are 12 months old and I recently had the all clear from my surgeon. I had a sensational recovery after my operation, I was back in training 9 days post op and within 11 weeks of surgery I set a QLD bench press record.

Sunday, February 03, 2008

A quick note on my post below..
I worked on belief no.3 yesterday and really challenged myself as to why I have this, and before going to bed all I could think was...."loosing 3kgs in 11 weeks is just a matter of consistency, and I can't beleive I thought my body wouldn't do it - that sounds like an excuse!"
This morning I weighed in 500gms lighter than my last weigh in day 5 days ago........the power of the mind.
Have a great day

Saturday, February 02, 2008

No belief is right or wrong. It is either empowering or limiting.

A belief is nothing but the generalization of a past incident. As a kid if a dog bit you, you believed all dogs to be dangerous. To change a particular behavior pattern, identify the beliefs associated with it. Change those beliefs and a new pattern is automatically created.

I have found myself in a situation where I have had to challenge a few of my beliefs to move forward. As I have found in the past my journey to higher levels of my sport very rarely involve the sorts of challenges that you expect, and the major issues come from left of centre. When I am talking about beliefs I mean the sorts of things that you know to be true in your soul. The problem with beliefs (wrong ones) is that they can control 40% of your abilities.

Belief no. 1. My Squat.
I always believed that I had a great technique, and while my numbers were progessing I thought that something physcological was holding me back. Truth was that my technique was average and I had done well because I was strong; it was the technique that was the problem. BOOM!

Belief no.2 . Carb Tolerance.
I have believed over the past few years that I am carb intolerant and don't handle sugar well. This has lead to diet modification to get and stay lean. Turns out that this belief is wrong. According to tests and scientific measurements, I have good carb tolerance, and with additional supplementation it has increased further. BOOM!

Belief No 3. Leanness.
This one is the toughest to write about as I have only just admitted to myself - and now to all of you. I have believed that it is difficult for me to get lean, so anything I do to my diet to get those last few kgs off before a comp will be hampered by weight swings and a stubbornness. I admitted this to Krista today and she sent me on a journey to "flip the switch". I have been reading and doing mind exercises today, and I feel sick in my stomach after doing an exercise to change this belief - obviously a deep seated belief. I know it takes hard work and consistancy to get to 12% bf as I have been there and lower before, so I need to explore if I am making excuses for myself. This belief may take some work, but I know it will go .....................BOOM!

Off to have a little sleep as challenging myself is very tiring.


Friday, February 01, 2008

More Videos???

As I am getting into slightly heavier lifitng now and as it is crucial that Rod can check my technique on every rep we will be taping each training session. It is a pretty easy process to turn then into a 30 sec file that I can load up here and on youtube.

So my question is; what type of lifts would you like me to put up? Do you want to see the favorite squat, bench press, deadlift or assitance exercises like good mornings and rack bench that you may not normally do in your programs?

Leave me a comment



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