Category: Nutrition

Joining the Gym – a guide for beginners!

Ahhhhh January, the time for New Years resolutions, revised life outlooks and promises for the best year ever! If joining the gym was one of your New Year resolutions, but you are yet to put it into motion –  this will help you find a gym you will LOVE to go!

Personally, I love the gym. I love the atmosphere, and I love (most) of the people. But there was a time when I was petrified of the gym. I felt intimidated and was never sure of what to do, or what the equipment was – I would end up just walking on a treadmill in the corner for 30mins, and would then leave. Sound familiar?

The very first gym I ever joined was here in Christchurch, and I remember walking round like a lost puppy for a good 2 weeks, with absolutely NO idea what I was doing. Lucky for me, an old friend was primary school was one of the trainers there so I started up with here twice a week, and gained so much confidence. Back then my training goals were very different to what they are now, but the basics will never go away.

Trial
I always suggest trialling a gym first. Most gyms will offer a free trial period – so make sure you take advantage of that! Go in, have a chat to the staff and have a walk around with them – let them show you where the equipment is and see if they offer a free PT session if you join! Make sure you feel comfortable, you’re going to be spending a lot of time there!

If you can, during your trial days, make sure you go when you will be going once you’ve joined. If you know you work from 9 – 5 and you’ll probably go in the evening – don’t do your trial at 6am each morning, as you won’t get a proper representation of what the gym will be like. For me, I’m all about the atmosphere, I need a fun place to train. I like being able to chat to people, and have people chat to me. Maybe you like to put your headphones on and be in a world of your own – make sure you think about these things when you’re there.

Have in your head what YOU want from the gym. Good cardio? Step machine? Good tunes? Bit relaxed on shoe wearing? (another big one for me), good classes that match your timetable? Have a list and tick the things off.

PT or orientation
Once you’ve decided on a gym, make sure you use any free PT sessions, or orientations they are offering, but have a clear idea of what you want help with! Most will be able to set you up with a program and show you how to do each exercise. Maybe you want to include some weights! Ask!

A good squat rack is very important!

Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Seriously! I get VERY excited when someone asks me for help with technique, or show them what I’m doing. Or, if you don’t want to interrupt someone’s session, ask the staff at the gym – that’s what they’re there for. Don’t shy away and get back into the habit of treadmilling in the back corner.

 

 

 


Just do it!
Like most things, sometimes you just have to get in there and do it. Get some new gym gear, have a big smile and hold your head up high!

My current gym <3

Find a buddy!
Remember that there will be other people who have just joined as well, and are probably just as freaked out as you! So smile! Say hi to people! A few of my bestest friends I met at the gym (mostly through Instagram stalking) and meeting them was one of the highlights of my time in Aussie. We only became friends because we plucked up the courage to talk to eachother. There can be a lot of misconception about regular gym goers!

Gym buddies are the best – maybe you have a friend who goes to the gym regularly, let them know about your goals and set some gym dates with them! You don’t need to be doing the exact same workout, but having a friendly face in a sometimes terrifying place, will definitely help with making you feel at home!

And most of all – have fun!

The Girl Who Lifts
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Powerlifting into 2015

So 2015 has begun. A new year, new goals, and so many exciting things to look forward too. Lifting, lifting and a little bit more lifting!

I’ve spent a bit of time looking back over 2014, revisiting the goals I made, and feel a big sense of pride at what I have accomplished. Highlights for 2014 were getting engaged (eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!), placing 2nd at my first ever powerlifting competition, and then gold at my first GPC sanctioned event. No, I didn’t lose the weight I wanted, but I think what I have learned certainly makes up for it. Losing weight isn’t going to happen without knowing how to do it.

So here is a list of things learned during 2014

  1. FOOD is one of the most important things to know about. I’m pretty happy to say that I now feel confident when making decisions about what to eat. Early 2014 I came back in touch with a beautiful girl called Mia, who I went to high school with. Mia has given me so much knowledge about feeding my body the correct things to let it be the best it can be. Check her out here or on instagram @madebymiaxo  I now take vitamins in the morning, eat a healthy breakfast (vegetables included), fill my body with vegetables during the day, water and eat a dinner that will help me grow. I still eat candy, chocolate and treats, but I am learning how to eat in moderation.
  2. Training. Gosh I love it. I go crazy if I don’t do it. Find something you love, and do it. Walking, running, basketball, whatever you love. Do it. For me it’s most definitely Powerlifting.
  3. Celebrate your successes. Seriously. No matter how small. It’s these successes that help you keep on moving.
  4. Don’t stop. You will have days where you feel like a failure, days where you think it isn’t working and days where you could eat a whole chocolate cake. Trust me. But it’s these days that turn into the biggest successes.
  5. If you do find you eat that chocolate cake, eat it, enjoy it, and then get back on the wagon. Maybe go for an extra walk.
  6. Find a trainer that can teach you how to train. For me, it started out being about eliminating injury and knowing how to do the exercises properly. But then it turned into a passion. I’ve been training with Mark from El Nino Strength and Fitness for nearly 3 years. What Mark has taught me during this time has been invaluable. Check him out here  on FB or on insta @elninofitness
  7. Love the shit out of your life. Learn, grow, change, talk, listen. Love everything you do.
  8. Don’t get a leg wax after leg day. Seriously.

So, last weekend I competed in my first comp for 2015 – the NSW powerlifting state title, this was the qualifiers for Nationals. They came around pretty quickly and my training into comp was pretty rushed, but I went in feeling confident and strong. I ended up with new PBs for each lift, and a new PB total, for which I am quite proud. Once again, I was in awe of the incredible ladies I saw on the platform, it’s one thing I LOVE about powerlifting – STRONG WOMEN! BIG thanks to PTC Sydney for an EPIC comp.

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Squat!

My numbers were
Squat 152.5kgs (new PB)
Bench 75kgs (new PB)
Deadlift 177.5 (new PB)
Total 405kgs (new PB)

To be honest, I was pretty gutted with my deadlift. I attempted 185 TWICE, and only just missed it. But it’s only made me more determined to get it next time, maybe even more! I ended up with a gold medal and a place at the Aussie powerlifting Nationals, which is where I am heading next. It was a bit of decision. Nationals are being held 3 weeks after my wedding, and I was unsure whether I wanted to take on planning a wedding AND training for nationals as well as trying to get through everyday life. But after a big discussion with my fiancé, and going through the time frame with my coach, I decided to go for it – you only live once right?

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Me and my number 1

 

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Me and coach – Mark from El Nino Strength and Fitness

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

First up I had to put some SOLID goals in place to get my through the next 12 weeks. 3 nutritional based goals, and 3 training based goals.

Nutrition

  1. Eat dinner as soon as I’m home so I’m not tempted to snack
  2. Plan my food, especially in the weekend, so I know exactly what I’m eating
  3. Eat breakfast in the weekend when I get up so I’m not starving and over eating

Training

  1. Minimum 5 hours training per week
  2. In bed by 11pm
  3. 3 strength session in the gym

It’s gonna be hard road, but one I am SO excited to travel.

 

The Girl Who Lifts

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Sydney Cup – the rundown

Apologies for the silence. It’s been a solid month and I am SO excited to finally sit down and write about it all.

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The guns are out!

Sunday the 12th October I competed in the GPC Sydney cup at PTC Sydney and WHAT a day it was. This was my first professional comp, so leading into it, I was pretty nervous…and questioning my own capabilities. What if I just wasn’t tough enough? I seem to expect a lot of myself with my lifting – which isn’t really something I’ve done with anything else…ever. I REALLY want to be able to be the best I can be. It’s a drive I’ve never had before, and I really, really love it. But, of course, doubt was playing up – what if I hadn’t trained enough, what if I fall over (seriously a big worry of mine) what if it’s just not good enough? Lucky for me I have a pretty good sidekick who keeps me on the straight – my fiancé. Every time I would start questioning myself this guy reminds me WHY I’m doing this – coz I LOVE it. It’s got nothing to do with how much, or how good…I just love it. Both he and my coach are constantly reminding me to “have fun with it” which seems to kick me back to where I need to be, and when I’m having fun, I get the drive to lift heavier – so LOVE it I will!

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My main squeeze!

In the weeks leading up, I had a few technical issues with my squats. They just weren’t deep enough. Now for those that don’t know the rules of powerlifting: in a squat the crease of your hips when you squat down need to be just below your knees – and for short chubby legs like mine, I was having issues. But a few technical changes a few days out managed to sort it and I went in feeling pretty confident.

 

The day itself flew through. PTC really know how to organise a comp. It flowed so well, and the spotters were epic. Big thanks to the guys there.

First up was squat – I opened with 125kgs – which was already 10kgs up from my last comp pb. Powered through. 2nd attempt was 130kgs, which I smashed and I finished up with final squat and new pb of 140kgs. The day was starting off well.

Bench – not my strongest, but I am certainly getting there. I had a number (70kgs) I wanted to hit in comp and I just had my mind on that. 1st lift was 67.5 (5kg up from last comp pb), 2nd lift was 72.5kg – which I smashed (well not really, but I got it up) 3rd attempt was a 75kg, which I was red lighted (failed) Just didn’t have the strength.

Deadlift – was not my strongest deadlifting day. Had a few technical difficulties which I’ve never really come across – but overall I’m happy with my lifts. My best lift was 175kgs (5kgs up from last comp pb). My 3rd attempt was 185 but was red lighted due to technicalities – but I got it up, so I know I’ve got the strength, just gotta work on technique a bit more (BOOM)

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175kg deadlift

Over all I finished with a total of 385.5 which put me in 1st place in my weight range – and best of all…7th in Australia under GPC.

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First gold medal!

Yep – that’s right. 7th . In. Australia. How does that even happen??? Oh yeah…hard work and a whole heap of determination!

So what now? Rest, reassess, and start the prep for the next comp. I’m hooked on this – completely. Once again – big thanks to my coach Mark Nino at El Nino Strength and Fitness. Such a superstar. By the looks of things, I’ll be competing again in December at the GPC push/pull comp, which is bench and deadlift only. So lots and lots of work on my bench over the next 6 weeks – definitely got my eye on the 80kgs. Deadlift – 200kgs is next. I can feel it in my bones.

During this process, it’s really thrown me back to a time when I was convinced NOTHING like this would ever be possible. I’ve been riddled with back injuries since a very young age. At 12 years old, I was tripped up playing rugby and that was that. I was told sport was completely out of the question until the stress fracture I had endured had healed – before then I was a very keen netball and basketball player (I don’t know if I was very good, but I enjoyed it) and then that was it – over. Over my years at highschool I was in and out of physio trying to find an answer to the crippling pain I seemed to have. At 17, I was hit by a car and broke my femur – and this just threw me back to square one. After a lot of physio I’d think it was fine, get back into some exercise and it would all come crashing down. In the end I just gave up. I was even told it was in my head, and I just needed to toughen up. Turns out all I needed to do was start lifting  I’ve never felt as strong as what I do now. A good coach is seriously the best thing you can get when recovering from injury. I am SO unbelievably lucky to have the support I do – from all over the world. My fam back home in NZ, my best mate over in London and my fam here all can’t believe how far I’ve come since those days. I know my Dad is stoked – I don’t think his facebook has ever been updated so much as when I’m competing.

It’s a nice feeling being proud of yourself – like actually 100% freaking STOKED. Let’s get more of this going around!

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All smiles after a good day of lifting!

Watch this space – dreaming big!

The Girl Who Lifts

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Sick sick sick

As you may have gathered, I love lifting. I’m pretty sure I’m addicted. It makes me happy, and I think this is the most dedicated and focussed I’ve ever been. The next comp at PTC Sydney is just over 6 weeks away and I am AMPED. I’m working towards some big numbers for the next comp, and I’m feeling pretty good about it. At least a 180kg deadlift, 130kg squat and a 70/75kg bench. A total of at least 380kgs. There are no holidays booked, no reasons for me not to have 6 weeks of solid prep, (or so I thought). I have a brand new pink powerlifting belt and it is giving me superpowers (or so I like to think). Mark and I have been working really hard on getting my body working properly and I was feeling good!! Enter illness…..

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Brand new pink belt! Pink power!!

Unfortunately the past few weeks I’ve been really struggling with headaches and nausea. I’ve really tried to ignore it and push on through, but then it happened… I got sick. I woke up with no voice, and then it was all downhill from there. Blocked nose, sore throat, irritating cough and just general yuckiness. Two days off work and two missed training sessions, and then when I finally made it out of bed on Saturday, even doing the groceries was exhausting. I was pissed off. My training was thrown off and all I could do was lie in bed and sulk about it. Even when I was back at work a throbbing headache and feeling of puking had me run for the train home. This was NOT like me. I really MISSED training, I missed the feeling of smashing a good deadlift, but I didn’t want to push myself too early.

Tuesday last week I bit the bullet and made my way to my training session after work. To be honest, I really wasn’t in the mood. My muscles felt tight and tired, and I knew it was going to be a shit session, so wanted to avoid it for as long as possible. Being the first session of the week, it was squat night – so I summoned my pink powers and pushed out the “you can’t do this” and went for it.

Well after about 20mins of warming up and struggling through the initial few sets, I wasn’t going well. My body had actually forgotten what to do. I was wobbly and not as solid as I remember I was, at times it was a little scary, but with the guidance (and spotting) of my amazing trainer, I managed to push out 6 sets of 110kgs x 2. A huge effort, and man it felt good to be back.

Wednesday, I was back to feeling shit – so shit I ended up at the doctor. I’ve been dealing with a bit of nausea lately, and way too many headaches, so I needed to get it sorted. My doctor took some blood, which have all come back clear. I’ve been put on migraine and anti-nausea meds until it all gets sorted, but she pretty much just said I am running myself to the ground. My early starts, late nights and training mixed together with some stressful times at work have literally pushed my body to the max, and something needs to be done.

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Home sick with my snuggie trying to keep entertained

SO – where does that leave me now?

I hate being sick, I hate missing training and I hate having to catch up again to where I was. So for the next 7 weeks I’m going to be taking VERY good care of myself. I may have missed before that Saturday night before I got sick last week, I had spent the evening at the Bledisloe Cup opener game (I do enjoy my rugby), drinking beer, and in the rain. This combined with being tired and stressed at work and my heavy weight training, left my immune system low and ready for any virus that wanted to do its thing. Not my best decision, but who is going to turn down FREE gold class tickets? Unfortunately, I might just have to next time.

Taking care of myself is unfortunately going to mean being away from my fiancé for a bit. A very good friend of mine is heading away for about 3 weeks next month, so I’m going to trial living in the city for 2-3 nights a week and see what happens. I just can’t survive on the 4-5hrs sleep I’ve been having a night lately, and I need to have more, and I think this is the only way to find these extra hours needed.

Food. Yep, as usual. I had BIG sugar cravings while I was sick and I gave into these cravings badly, and they seem to be sticking around. Good food, healthy food and make sure I’m planning ahead. I have a nasty history of completely throwing in the towel every time something like this happens – but not this time. It’s more important now, than ever, that I’m eating well and giving my body what it needs.

Mind. Deep breathing, taking time to laugh, and not letting my work and life get on top of me. I’m thinking bubble baths, reading back through my goals and reminding myself of WHAT and WHY I’m doing this. This also might include blasting my new fav song and dancing ridiculously round my room (check out It’s all about the Bass by Meghan Trainor – excellent booty shaking song)

Love. Pretty self-explanatory, but this one is really important. I’m so blessed by the amazing people I have in my life, and I need to make sure they know how much I appreciate them.

And if anyone has any natural ways of dealing with chronic headaches, please let me know.

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The Girl Who Lifts

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Acceptance – the happy place

Acceptance. Being happy with where you are, and what you’re doing. Knowing that you are doing EXACTLY what you’re doing. No Ifs or buts or maybes…Sounds easy, but it’s something I’ve really struggled with over the past few years.

Last Sunday I competed in my first ever powerlifting competition at PTC Sydney. I entered the day feeling confident, but worried. I knew what I could lift, but had no idea how it was going to compare to the other competitors. Mark had been drilling us with competing with ourselves and not anyone else, it was me vs me. Josie vs The Girl Who Lifts. But there was still that little voice in my head, worried that my best, was not going to be enough.

From the moment I arrived I was put at ease, everywhere I looked there was a smiling face…everyone sharing their love for lifting. There was no judging, no snobbery, just a love. A love for lifting heavy.

I was unbelievably lucky in that I had so many people there to support me. My Dad and his partner Linley, my lovely fiancé, two of my girls Cleo and Rachel, and of course my loco warriors – Mark, Sean, Abishek and Kris. And then there was the crowd. Never in my life have I been surrounded by so many supportive, loud, happy people. I was ready to smash it.

Loco warrior team!
Me and Mark after winning my 2nd place
Me and Mark after winning my 2nd place

 

First up was squat – I had the number I wanted to hit – 115kgs. I had failed it the week before and there was no way it was going to happen again. I smashed it. No problem.

Bench – this was tough, and definitely something I need to work on. I hit 62.5 ok, but then failed on 70kg.

Deadlift – now it was my time to prove to myself I could do it. I started with 145kgs – easy. 2nd lift was 160kgs – easy. So I thought what the hell and went up to 170kgs. I had the support of the crowd and my crew and there was no way this wasn’t going up. And up it went. I was stoked. Absolutely and utterly stoked…I was exactly where I was supposed to be. For the first time in a very very long time, there was no doubt, no feeling of not being good enough, not skinny enough – I had just smashed a perfect 170kg deadlift and I LOVED it.

110kg squat – nailed!
170kg deadlift – Hulk smash!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I talk a lot about getting rid of the negative things surrounding your life – living happy. But what happens when the negative is in your head?

How many times have you said to yourself “when this fits I can….” “When I’ve lost weight I’ll….” “I’d be so much happier if…..” I know myself that I’ve said these things MANY times to myself, my wardrobe is FILLED with clothes that JUST don’t fit, but yet I hold on to them just in case I’ll fit them again.

Through my journey over the last 7 months one of the things I’ve tried REALLY hard to eliminate from my life is the “when I’ve lost weight I’ll…” So much of my life has been run by this sentence – I felt that somehow, life would open up a whole heap of opportunities once I had lost some weight. And do you know what – it had nothing to do with the weight, I just had to go and find them.

Acceptance of who you are right now is SO hard – trust me I know. One of the best things I ever read was

“you can love your body and change it at the same time”

BOOM! Hits the nail on the head. But what does this mean? To me, it’s all about being the healthiest version of yourself. I love my curves, I love my boobs, I love my bum but I’m going to keep exercising, I’m going to eat clean most of the time (which means I’m going to enjoy those treats to keep my sanity) I’m going to be happy, and I’m going to love and accept myself. Why? To be healthy. The healthiest version of me. Once I changed my thinking to getting healthy not skinny (read about that here) my whole opinion of myself and what I was doing turned SO much more positive. Suddenly I was checking out my guns, rather than measuring my waist. The weight I was lifting, was SO much more important that the weight on the scales.

Acceptance also means being ok with each decision in your life. Food, relationships, work and play. Be happy with every decision you are making, and if your not – change it.

Acceptance is also about being happy with yourself. Have you ever said to yourself “I’d be so much happier if I could fit that dress I saw for the party.” NO! Put on that sexy dress, put on some red lipstick and go rock that dance floor!

So, here are my top 5 tips for you own acceptance

  1. Stop thinking If, When, What if… just think NOW
  2. Get rid of those clothes that you’ll wear “when you lose weight” (I promise I’ll do the same)
  3. Be happy with every decision you make
  4. Accept yourself, as you are, right now
  5. Be the healthiest, happiest version of yourself

This comp has really made me accept that this is EXACTLY where I’m meant to me. I am stronger than I’ve ever been, I’m healthier than I’ve ever been – and best of all…I’m happier than I’ve ever been.

My happy place
My happy place

So go find your happy place.

The Girl Who Lifts

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Holidays and Proposals

Apologies to my readers for being so quiet lately…It’s been a crazy month that has truly been life changing.

So last month I spent the most magical 9 days in my home country of New Zealand. I took my boyfriend over and we spent 4 days in Christchurch and then 4 days traveling round the South Island visiting some absolutely amazing sights. I had forgotten how amazing my country is, and it was so exciting to show my boyfriend where I’m from and the beautiful country which is just across the ditch.

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Devils Punchbowl Falls
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One of the many beautiful lakes

It was really nice to have a chat to a few of my followers in NZ and find out what makes you tick. I really love all the support and really wouldn’t be getting this far without it.

I love to travel – always have and always will. I’ve always done it alone as well, so having someone to share it with now makes it all so much more special. Our trip, was incredible. We drove from Christchurch to Franz Joseph Glacier, through Arthur’s Pass (which is a very special place to me) had a night at one of the most magical places ever, it’s called The Rainforest Retreat – and if you are ever in Franz Joseph I definitely suggest a night here…quiet, calm, and surrounded by forestry. Just magical.

 

After visiting Franz Joseph Glacier we travelled over the Haast Pass and through the Mt Aspring National Park – never in my life have I seen such incredibly beautiful views. We took our time taking photos at every possible moment, till we finally reached Wanaka, where we were staying for two nights.

 

The next morning we made our way into Queenstown where my boyfriend and I were going to take one of the biggest leaps of faith – the Nevis Swing. A 70m free fall, into a 300m arc swing. I’m not sure why I decided to do it – I just knew I needed to. I’m not much of a daredevil, and a year ago I would have felt too “fat” to do such a thing. I think this was a way to show myself how far I have come.

 

But to make the jump even more spectacular, my boyfriend proposed. Yeah that’s right, my boyfriend is now my fiancé. Most absolute scariest, fun filled, adrenaline fuelled moment of my life. I am now officially the happiest girl alive.

There is a photo I took just after the proposal which really cements just how happy I am to share this moment in my life. And yep, those big red numbers written on my hand is my weight. A big happy 93 kilos, with a big happy diamond on my hand.

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Big ring and numbers – and I couldn’t be happier

 

Then it was back in the real world – 4.30am start, work and training. God it was good to be back in the gym. I had a few training sessions while I was away – all light work so god it was good to be lifting heavy. It’s been a massive couple of weeks of training. My first ever comp is on Sunday and I am SO excited to see what I can hit.

This is where I’m sitting…
Deadlift – 160kg (YEAH!!!) See the video here
Bench – 65kg
Squat – 110kg

I am STOKED with those numbers, and it’s full credit to my trainer Mark for getting me here.

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After one of my light sessions back home

I can’t wait to fill you all in after Sunday.

The Girl Who Lifts

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The Jeans That Fit

Training is going awesome. Prep for comp is going incredible, my strength is skyrocketing, and each week I’m feeling stronger and stronger, fitter and fitter (and looking leaner and leaner).

Tonight I managed to smash out 5 sets of 5 130kg deadlifts. The felt strong and clean, which is an excellent feeling. But the thing that is surprising me the most is my bench. Each week they seem to be getting stronger and this week I managed to grind out sets of 60kg. Who would’ve thought? Oh..AND my squat is back, after my epic fail it’s taken me a while to get back into the grind. I just couldn’t get my confidence back up – even though I know I can do it. But then this week, it all came back and I made my way through 95kg sets. Boom!

Deadlift determination!
Becoming my happy place

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tomorrow my boyfriend and I set off for a holiday in New Zealand. Apart from some friend and family time, I’m looking forward to hitting some NZ gyms and spreading some girlwholifts love! We’re spending 4 days in Christchurch and then 4 days doing a bit of travel around the South Island. We’re having a night at Franz Joseph Glacier, then two nights in Wanaka. It’s going to be amazing. I’m so looking forward to getting back to my home country – I do miss it sometimes. I miss my friends, and family…and it’s going to be REALLY nice to just spend some time with my man. With all my commuting and crazy hours, we don’t really get to see much of each other during the week, so it’s nice when we can get away together.

Now for the story of the day…for the first time in about 5 years, I bought jeans. Actual jeans – black skinny jeans to be precise. But even better, they’re jeans that fit. They fit my thighs, they fit my stomach, they fit my bum – they feel perfect.

A good pair of jeans are a staple for any girl’s wardrobe, but for me, they represented a long time fight with myself of where I thought I should be. I gave up on buying a pair of jeans years ago. I’ve literally lived in skirts in summer, and skirts and tights in winter. There was not one pair of jeans that would fit. But then on Saturday, I felt a change. I was doing a bit of shopping and pamper day, new nails, waxing, shopping…and then I wandered over to some jeans. I stood and stared, held some up, put them down, wandered away…and wandered back. I took and breath grabbed my size and went and tried them on. I was expecting disappointment, I was expecting them not to fit… but then suddenly they were on….done up…and damn they looked fantastic. Like they look good!

I did a happy dance and then bought those suckers.

The jeans that fit

 

The jeans finally fit.

 

The Girl Who Lifts

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Haters Gonna Hate

The last week of training has been epic. My training has kicked up (another) notch, and I’m reaching goals I never thought I could. My eating has been on track and I definitely have my mojo back after it went missing.

I even managed to get my boyfriend into the gym last week, which was absolutely awesome. It was so nice to share such a massive part of my life with him. He did SO well, managed to smash out some 130kg deadlifts – pretty amazing for a first timer.

SO – this is where I’m at.

BENCH

2 sets of 5 x 45kg
1 set 3 x 52.5kg
2 sets 1 x 57.5kg

5 sets of 10 x 30kg

DEADS

3 x 130kgs (you can see the vid for my deadlifts on my TGWL facebook page – you might as
well hit like while you’re there)

SQUATS

5 x 62.5kg
3 x 70kg
1 x 75kg

SO HAPPY! Lifting is the best buzz – I’m not sure why it’s taken so long to get into it!

So I read something incredible the other day – my Dad posted it on his facebook and it fits in perfectly with how I’ve been thinking.

Critics and Haters are only good for one thing. They let you know you’re doing exactly what you should be doing.

Instead of getting mad:
– Keep outworking them
– Keep outsmarting them
– Keep innovating faster than they can
– Keep enjoying and supporting the people that matter in your life

They will twist what you say, and do their best to set you up to fall… but there is one thing that they can’t do…and that’s BE you.

And that’s kind of why they’re so upset in the first place.”

Haters gonna hate, but lucky for me, I don’t have many haters around me. I got rid of them ages ago. I have come across one during my mission the last few months. It was actually an ex boyfriend who thought he needed to tell me that nobody cared about my story, and that I am what is wrong with society at the moment.

How he came to this conclusion baffles me, but the amazing realisation that came from this was that this is HIS issue. NOT MINE. And he can take his issue far far away from me! And once I realised this, a slight wave of happiness came over me.

When I made the decision to move to Australia, one of my closest mates at the time told me that I was making the biggest mistake of my life. For me, it was an adventure – finding a job, finding a place to live, meeting new people – to him, there was too much room for failure. But isn’t that what life is about? When trying new things they either work, or they don’t – you’ve got a 50/50 chance, so why not give it a go?

The point of today’s rant – haters gonna hate. And when you hear someone say “they’re just jealous” they’re absolutely right.

New dress!

The Girl Who Lifts

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Skinny vs Healthy

Thegirlwholifts lost her mojo this past week. I don’t know where it went, but I struggled to get it back. My weight was getting me down and I lost sight of what was really important. My brain keeps coming back to weight loss, and I’m becoming quite fixated on it, which isn’t good. When I get depressed about it, it seems my whole body follows pretty quickly. I got tired and run down, I forgot the basics of what I was doing, which sets off my emotional eating, which sets off the guilt, which sets off another round of depression – it’s a vicious cycle. A vicious cycle that came at terrible timing – Easter DID NOT help things. WAY too much chocolate was consumed. The good thing is that I’ve kept up with my training – THAT I am proud of. I’m pretty lucky to have Mark from Top Health PT pushing me along – we got through it pretty well actually. I manage to squat out 5 sets of 5: 60kg, 65kg and 67.5kg squats. Impressive for a bad week, if I may say so myself!

I found myself staring at my vision board this morning, trying to find the motivation that it gave me a few weeks ago. I stared at the photos, remembering the feeling I had when they were taken, and what they mean to me, I read my goals, I read my key words – words like strength, happy, love, family, friends, exercise, sunshine (things that mean something to me) – and I realised there was a word missing from it – SKINNY. Not once, has this mission been about being skinny, it was always been about my health, and getting to a healthy, happy place.

I’ve always been a big girl, but I’ve always hated it. I got teased, called fat, told by doctors that all of my PCOS issues and endometriosis would be magically cured if I just lost a few kgs. I’ve always wanted to be skinny. But skinny isn’t the answer – healthy is. And I need to remind myself of this. Everyday. Yes, I have a goal weight, but does this translate to being skinny? In my mind maybe…but to the rest of the world probably not.  Healthy to me is quite easy to put into words, skinny is just an image in my mind. A girl wrote a beautiful article on Stuff.co.nz today that brought me to tears because of how true it rung to me. You can read it here.

In the world of the internet, skinny has some pretty bad connotations – anorexic, unhealthy, ugly…so why is it something so many of us “big” girls strive for?

This leads me to my next question – What stipulates healthy? A “normal” BMI? A size 6? Being able to run 10k? Being happy?

Here’s what it means to me

–        Getting off metformin, which I’m on for my PCOS
–        Getting my hormones back to a normal balance
–        Getting down to 80kgs
–        Being happy
–        Being content

Mia (my food angel) has got me taking B vitamins, and I think they kicked in today as well. Coz I found my mojo. I’ve never been a vitamin taker and I wish that I’d gotten on this train earlier. B vitamins help with relieving stress, supporting the body through physical and mental health, energy, healthy nervous and cardiovascular system. MY GOSH they have helped. I had my buzz back today, and it was magical.

So skinny vs healthy… what do you prefer?

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The Girl Who Lifts

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Resetting the goals

So last week I booked tickets for me and my boyfriend for a 10 day holiday in New Zealand.  Bit of time in Christchurch catching up with the family and my friends, then heading down to Wanaka for a few nights. When I left NZ 2 years ago, never did I think that I would end up here. Happy, completely in love and on my way to compete in my first powerlifting comp.

Leaving NZ was a bit of a spur of the moment decision. I came over to Oz for a holiday in November 2011, had the most amazing time – then January 1st 2013 I bought the ticket and 6 weeks later I was here. I spent a month down at my Dad’s sorting my life out, deciding what I was going to do, then it was up to Sydney, job interviews and then apartment, friends and a new life. I’m not going to lie, I may have been running – from what I’m not sure, life I think. Christchurch was rough at the time. Aftershocks after the earthquake were still running hard and we were all trying to come to terms with what our new post-earthquake life meant. I was stuck in some pretty toxic friendships, and they were bringing me down pretty bad. I saw Australia as a pretty drastic way of leaving them all behind. Was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.

Moving countries is something I suggest to everyone – at least once. I’ve done it twice. England and then Australia. It’s liberating. Scary, but liberating. It certainly wasn’t a walk in the park either. I made some stupid decisions, moved house 3 times in about 6 months, and definitely thought about moving back to NZ once or twice. But I made it through and now I’m here… loving life, living it huge and ready for the next challenge.

With 8 weeks to go till NZ (and counting) I thought I’d better set some goals to help me through. I’ve discovered that the old “eat no crap and drink no alcohol” type of goals don’t work for me. I don’t know how they work for anyone. I LIKE FOOD. I need to set goals that are realistic, but that will help me still reach my major goal.
Mark and I have also started on a new training program. We change it up quite frequently, which is GREAT for someone like me. We’re really working towards the big lifts and I’ve hit a new PB for my deadlift… 145kgs BOOM!

The smile on my face that day was pretty huge, and MAN it felt good. The reaction from the guys in the gym made it even better.

So here we go with the goals…

  1. Choose wisely – ask myself if what I’m going to eat is going nourish me.
  2. Exercise – training 3 times a week with Mark, plus Tuesday and a weekend day.
  3. Breeeeeeeeeeeath – everyday
  4. Look after my liver – that’s my big one at the moment. Lots of dandelion tea, lots of water and limit my alcohol

That’s it. Four basic, easy goals that will help keep my focused and on track.

Let’s do it 🙂

Check out the guns!

The Girl Who Lifts

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