How/when did you get started in training and living a fit lifestyle?
I reached a stage in my early 20’s where I felt I had no hobbies or interests outside my studies, I was studying my bachelor of nursing degree at this time. I felt my life was consumed by university studies and part-time work. I had no other goals besides achieving my degree in 3 years time. I came to the realization I had no other goals to focus on in the interim. I also realized I did nothing for myself. And naturally being a quieter/shy person, confidence was always something I lacked in. Hence why I began training.
What is the most challenging thing about being a fitness model?
The most challenging thing about being a fitness model is the label attached to being a fitness model. I feel this title has an image attached to it, so to the pressure to maintain a certain look. For example, when I think of a fitness model I picture a lean physique all year round, 6-pack abs etc. And I will be the first to admit, I do not have lean abs all year round. Although, it is not expected by the wider community to literally uphold this ‘look’, but sometimes it is hard not to feel an expectation.
How was it being on the WBFF stage this year? You looked incredible!
It was an amazing feeling. I had accomplished what I had set out to, and nothing can beat the feeling of accomplishment. I had always had a negative belief in myself and that was, that I was not a ‘world’ class athlete. It had taken me some time to realize my potential and to confidently believe I deserve to be up against other WBFF pros on the world stage. That’s what I set out to achieve, and that’s exactly what I did. Next time, however, I’ll be expecting a Top 10 or even better Top 5 placing! 😉
What products and supplements do you swear by?
I love a good fat burner. If a product has scientifically proven ingredients to aid in increasing your metabolism, then why not get all the help you can get. Plus they’re tasty and helps you drink more water (which I am a big advocate for). I also highly recommend creatine. I believe it is underrated as a supplement for females, and more for males. But, it is one product I will consistently use and recommend.
What are your top 3 favorite exercises?
I am a huge fan a compound movement. I love exercises that target multiple muscle groups and ones that are more taxing on the body. At the moment I am really loving cleans (gets the heart rate up and can go heavy too), walking dumbbell lunges (I strap up, so I can go hold a heavier weight and not have my grip giveaway before my legs do). I also love barbell Romanian deadlifts (I use a power band horizontally placed across the squat rack, for extra glute activation).
Do you listen to music while you train? If so, what’s your favorite type of music you like working out to?
I love listening to anything that has a catchy beat, one I can sing along to. I love old school RNB, current mainstream music, even a like some old school Korn or Metalica. During prep, however, I do listen to a medley of motivational speeches. I find my mental focus increases massively.
Do you ever encounter stereotypes with the way you look?
Stereotypes can limit and often have negative ideas attached to them. I overall would say I have not experienced any negative stereotypes attached to my look. I am either oblivious or I chose to not internalize comments, looks, and actions as negative or harmful. I have been told by two photographers that when they met with me they were surprised in how quiet and softly spoken I am and that they were expecting me to have a strong deep voice hahaha. Which I found amusing!
What is your current training style, routine or split?
A benefit of completing a ‘cut’ is you are able to see where your physique lacks, needs improvement or is developed. I am happy with where my upper body is at. I have taken more focus on my abs, glutes, legs, and calves. I have only recently changed my training style. The beginning of my workouts still involves up to three single exercises with a focus on a repetition range no greater than 12 (so relatively heavy) with the remainder of the session involving circuit training/HIRT (high-intensity resistance training). Since finishing a competition, I find HIRT style training a more enjoyable way to train and I spend less time in the gym, yet still leave feeling accomplished and physically exhausted.
I still train 6 days a week, purely because I love being physically active. My current training splits looks a little like; Day 1: Quads and glutes. Day 2: HIRT style training focusing on shoulders, chest, and triceps, finishing with Abs. Day 3: Hammies and glutes. Day 4: HIRT style focusing on back and arms. Day 5: Leg and glutes (calves and abs included0. Day 6: Mix day. Crossfit style training. Full body circuit, abs, plyometrics. Day 7. REST. Actively recovery day. I tend to include a nonstrenuous walk, more for mental clarity.
What are your favorite clean foods and splurge foods?
I really love eating my veggies. love colorful roasted Mediterranean-type of vegetables, love eggplant, red peppers, zucchini. I admit I am strange and love broad beans and Brussel sprouts. I also love my oats! My splurge foods – I am definitely a savory gal over sweets. I love a great chicken parm or a pulled pork burger!
What is the craziest thing you’ve ever done?
I was in Vegas with my brother. I had agreed that we would go skydiving sometime during our trip, after having a few wines or two. The following morning I had woken to my brother on the phone to a company enquiring for the both of us. He said we had 30 minutes to make it to the airport for our reservation. Afraid of coming across as sad, I nodded my head, got changed and headed into our uber ride. I remember having no thoughts, I didn’t even want to contemplate the idea of jumping out of a plane. I feared the more I thought about it, the higher chance I would refuse to step out of the Uber, let alone a plane. Well, needless to say, I did it. Screamed a lot. Laughed a lot I nearly cried. It was an experience that’s for sure!
What tips do you have for a beginner at the gym?
One thing I remember most when I first started, was the lack of confidence to walk into the gym and use the equipment (particularly when other members were in the gym). It took many solo sessions (each with the hope the gym would be empty) and many YouTube clips explaining how to perform exercises. I have a clear memory of myself playing around at my local gym, trying to perform a deadlift. I was the only person in the gym. The moment I heard someone enter I remember fumbling around to grab my things and leave straight for the stretch area as if to give the impression I was at the end of my workout. Too embarrassed and self-conscious. If I could speak to the beginner else, that would be to invest in a trainer or a gym buddy to educate you how to perform exercises correctly. As I found, with competence, comes confidence.