Campsite workout

Today is day 2 of my holiday,  and as per my holiday goals, today was exercise day.  I had promised myself I would do it this morning, get it out of the way…so last night I prepared my workout gear – ready to get going in the morning.

A lot of people have asked me about my motivation for exercise – or where I find it. But let me tell you…this morning I played every mind game, and tried every excuse with myself not to do it. These included.. “I haven’t slept enough” “It’s too hot” “I’ll wake my boyfriend” but the best one “I’ll look stupid”

Now this last one played with me for ages. I lay there fighting myself..TRYING to find a reason not to do it. There are other people in this camp site…what would they think about some girl doing squats and lunges and running up and down the campsite?? But finally I remembered that NO excuse is better than the reason I’m doing this in the first place, so up I got (I didn’t wake my boyfriend) and exercise I did.

I set up a mini circuit – there was a concrete slap just next to us which was perfect for walking lunges and I mixed in some squats with my resistance band, jump squats, star jumps, abs and press up. I did this 5 times and I was spent. Proud and spent.

And do you know what? No one said a thing – no one even blinked an eye, except my boyfriend..who while he cooked me breakfast played Personal Trainer and told me to squat deeper.  My mind had tried, once again, to let me fail. Lesson learned. suck.


The Girl Who Lifts.

Thunder Thighs

Back in primary school, the boys in my class used to call me Thunder Thighs…this name has stuck with me and my thighs have always been a part of my body that I didn’t really like…until today.

Today I had my final session with Jake before my holiday and we smashed my legs.

Squats – my max set was 5 x110kgs (new PB)
Single leg press 4 sets of 8x80kgs
Bike sprints 4x30secs with a set of stairs in between

Today I love my Thunder Thighs.

Holiday Time

So I’m on holidays. 2.5 weeks off to do as I please… Starting Wednesday my boyfriend and I are heading up the east coast in a camper van for 10 days and I am going to put my heart and soul into not putting on weight while we are away. I think this will be a hard challenge.

I’ve set 5 holiday goals to help keep me on track:

  1. Keep up water intake
  2. Exercise at least every 2nd day. I’m taking a skipping rope and resistance band with me so I can set up circuits
  3. Don’t resort to takeways – PLAN
  4. Start each day with a healthy breakfast
  5. Limit alcohol

A holiday is NOT an excuse to eat whatever I want, and I have always struggled with this. I seem to convince myself that “I’ll just work it off after my holiday” This never works, so don’t put it on in the first place. Easier said than done.

Anyways, the weirdest thing happened to me at the gym before and it’s REALLY got me thinking… I jumped on the scales to get a pre-holiday weight (still 92kgs) and a girl, who looked about the same age as me, but about twice the size must’ve seen the unhappiness in my eyes said

“oh girl, I would kill to be your size”

This made me think… This girl’s “healthy” body image is where I am at, but I’m still working on mine. I need to lose about 15-20kgs to be in a weight range where I’m “healthy” – does that mean that she should loose double this? Or is she allowed to be happy and healthy when she gets to my size? Should I just be happy where I am at? Am I simply just doing this for my health…or will I be happier when I’m 20kgs lighter? Is it possible to love your body, but just wish it was 20kgs lighter?

SO MANY QUESTIONS. Hopefully I’ll find my answers…


The Girl Who Lifts.

Food frustration

So I went to the dietician today. We went through my food diary and talked about portions and then she said this…

“It looks pretty good to me”

What does that even mean?!! Obviously I’m doing something wrong otherwise I wouldn’t be in this situation. She must have picked up on my disbelief as she very quickly followed with…

“But there are some things you could change.”

Her suggestions: Have ½ cup of oats instead of a full cup and cut up some fruit in the evenings if I’m feeling like something sweet. Wow. That’s the best you’ve got? I’m sitting here, asking for your advice…and you tell me to cut up some fruit?

She finished up by telling me to “give it a go” and come back in 2-3 months.

So back to the doc I go to get another referral to another dietician for another opinion. I’m not going to stop until I get some answers.

After work I (luckily) had another session with Jake – 50kg bench press today. I’m still feeling pretty weak in my arms, and I feel it’s a real mental fight to push myself to failing point. Jake is amazing at getting me to my limit and tonight was one of those nights. We followed the bench with some incline dumbbell work, some overhead shoulder press and then a quick circuit (made up of kettlebell swings, skipping and abs) to finish off. Arms are def not my favourite thing to do, but I’m learning to love it.

I had a steak for dinner with my friend Rachael and caught the late train home. Again a perfect example of me using food to socialise, but it was the only chance I was going to see her…and it was a damn good steak.

The Girl Who Lifts

Leg Day

Today’s session with Jake was a killer.

Squats: 4 sets of 5-8 reps – starting at 60kgs and moving my way up to 90kgs (a new PB for me!!)

Single leg press: 3 sets of 8-10 reps at 80gs. Final set of 20reps at 70kgs

Walking lunges: 3 sets of 20 reps with 16kg dumbbells in each hand. We threw in some stair running in between to get my heart racing.

It’s days like today I get a sick satisfaction out of this. I do not know one girl who could squat 90kgs, and I did it. I get an interesting response from the guys – they are either extremely intimidated or extremely supportive. I like working out with the guys, I feel it pushes me to my max as I have this crazy determination to lift more than them.

I’m off to see a dietician tomorrow. I’ve been tracking my food pretty seriously over the past few days and I’m really interested in hearing what she has to say. From what I can see, I’m eating around 1500 calories a day. I eat my fruits and veg, and I include a good amount of protein. Food is a difficult one for me though – I love food, I love eating, I love socialising and eating, I especially love candy. I don’t eat terribly though…I don’t have take aways very often, I eat breakfast, lunch and a small dinner and I drink lots of water. So getting a scientific point of view is going to be very helpful.

I will let you know what is said

The girl who lifts.

My guys at Top Health PT

Over 18 months ago I moved to Australia from New Zealand, and once I had settled in I decided to get back into the gym and get myself a trainer. This led me to Mark at Top Health PT. Now, if you’ve never had a personal trainer, a good one is definitely worth the money, and Mark was worth it. Yes, he was total babe… but Mark GOT me. He knew my struggles, he made me enjoy exercise and everything that goes along with it.

You can discover about Top Health PT here.

Many people have asked me WHY I need a trainer – can’t I just do it myself? Think of the money you would save? Can’t you just download an app for that? The answer (for me) is no… I can’t, and here’s why

  1. Self-motivation only lasts so long. There are days when I just CAN NOT be bothered going, but I’m booked and paid so make use of it
  2. KNOWLEDGE. These guys are trained to know what they’re doing. They know what exercises go together, they know what’s going to work for me, much more than I do
  3. They make training fun. I can’t remember a session where I wasn’t laughing – mostly at myself, but the laughter was there
  4. Support. Anytime I’ve got a question, or something hurts, or I just need to be reminded why I’m doing it – they’re there.
  5. RESULTS (nothing more needs to be said)

Over the next year and a bit, Mark and I worked away…my weight went down a little, but never much. This didn’t annoy me though (much). I loved being fit, I loved feeling strong, and I was finally seeing a light at the end of the tunnel. Being a girl, heavy lifting was NEVER something I thought about doing, I didn’t want to be BIG, or muscly and the preconceived idea kept me far far away from weights. MAN I WAS WRONG.

The road to 100 began very soon after this – a 100kg deadlift. I remember the feeling of lifting 80kg and that was it – I was hooked.

Mark then introduced me to Jake, a new trainer to the Top Health PT team… and without these guys, I could never have gotten to where I am now. Jake and I started training together – 100kgs was well within my reach and I was getting excited. The day I smashed 100kgs by 10kgs was big. This was soon followed by 122.5kgs…..135kgs……then 140kgs just before, and then once again on my 28th bday. Jake followed this lift by making me do 3 sets of 10 x 100kg lifts. This was it. This was what my thighs were built for. I am The Girl Who Lifts.

Let me introduce myself…

I am 28yrs old and I am The Girl Who Lifts. This is my journey into a better and healthier life through lifting…heavy

My weight has always been an issue with me, my body LIKES to big and I’m sure if I let myself I would just get bigger and bigger and bigger. At my heaviest I weighed 95kgs, and right now I’m nearing closer and closer to that number – this is not something I am happy about. Which is why, on the 20th Dec 2013 (my birthday) I found myself at the doctors, seeking help and maybe a few answers to my body woes.

But let me clear a few things up…

  1. I exercise…4 – 5 times a week. 3 of those sessions are with my amazing personal trainer Jake.
  2. I eat healthy – I don’t binge excessively, I enjoy a good solid, mostly healthy diet
  3. I have PCOS

For those that don’t know what PCOS is, it stands for Poly Cystic Ovarian Syndrome. Poly – meaning lots; and Cystic – meaning Cysts… on my ovaries. This as a result leaves me with such fun symptoms like excessive body hair, being overweight, out of whack periods, acne…the list continues.

You can read more about this condition here.

My PCOS hasn’t REALLY affected me the past few years– I’ve always been overweight, and I have just learned to always have tweezers with me to attack the stray chin hairs…I was given a Marina IUD 5 years ago (life saver) so my life has just plodded along.  This all changed on my 28th bday, when suddenly I realised was 2 years away from 30 and children were definitely on the menu in the next few years and in the state I was in, this wasn’t going to happen easily. So off to the doc I went and my journey began…