Monday, December 29, 2008

Feats of Awesomeness (training update)

Little weenie training update:
Boxing Day: Run and pulling work, swim 1500m - shoulder a bit cranky - may have to leave swimming a few months.
27th - teach a fabulous RPM Hi Performance class ..yeah me
28th - Cathe Hardcore Extreme - High/Low Extreme - Yowsas, I had forgotten how hard Imax 3 was - Interval 7...say no more! Cathe Cardio Fusion - love, love love LIC - though anything is special after IMAX3.
29th - walk 60min, teach RPM @ Toowong (a little crappy as mic was not working).

Nutrition Update:
Nutrition has been all over the shop, quite a few splurge meals in there, but hey, it's Christmas! I am slowly and steadily getting back to normal. I'm still carrying my extra 2kg of bloat.. hopefully shall be on it's way out by tomorrow!

Tomorrow I plan to smash the weights and visit some friends - should be fun :)

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Grrrr to mediocrity!

I have had a fantastic 2008 but I'm ready for an even better 2009! Whilst it is impossible to completely map out and plan your life my one big goal for the year is to perform every task I set my mind to without exception. I don't want to live "average", I want to be exceptional. I want to challenge my boundaries and become a better person for it. I want to push the edge and see where it takes me. I don't want to "settle" for a state of being because that's what "everyone else does".

Why all the hoopla? I witnessed an amazing conversation on Christmas Day - between my brothers-in-law and their brothers - you see all of them used to be amazing waterskiiers and avid sportsmen. Yet, here they were sitting, all pretty overweight and out of shape, discussing how one of them tried waterskiing on holidays and was so exhausted that he couldn't actually take all of the runs he had purchased. Then they started talking about age and how they'd let themselves go over the years and I felt sad as I feel this theme running through general society. I didn't think it was the time to say that I was feeling as fit as ever nearing 40 as I was when I was younger. In certain cases, I'd actually bet that I'm fitter.

The good news is that over the years I have read so many great stories about people who came to love fitness in their 40s and beyond and the amazing things they have achieved. The bodybuilding and figure world is full of them. So is the multi-sports world - in the last triathlon I did, I shared the run with a 76 year old tri veteran and she was awesome.

So if anyone is reading this blog feeling like things can't change, take heart - THEY CAN ....YOU CAN....if you're prepared to put in some work and apply some discipline. THe process can be painful (I'm thinking of the few weeks of Paleo I have done) but you feel so awesome for nailing it (on the paleo front, I've reintroduced dairy products back in but ditched the diet drinks altogether).

Who wants to be normal when you can be awesome?

Friday, December 26, 2008


Had a very enjoyable Christmas Day and ate, drank and was very Merry! The peeps at Precision Nutrition would call it a "refeed day", I simply call it Christmas cheer - and yes, the cheesecake was delicious! Got on the scales this morning and had a 2.5kg increase - yipes - luckily I know it's just carbs and water!

Santa and the family were very kind to me - I got some great loot - an IPod from Hubs, earrings from Miss S and a teapot from Miss G as well as money from both my parents and inlaws. This morning, I hit the road on my new road bike (thanks Amanda) and discovered that there is hardly any transference from RPM to the road and as everywhere around our place is hilly, it was quite a challenge! Then I went to the gym (yes, open on Boxing Day) and did a run and some back training (50 mins total). Came home and watched the beginning of the Sydney to Hobart with Hubs and now think it may be time for a little kip.

Hope everyone enjoyed their Christmas and all are enjoying a bit of R and R.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Spinning Those Wheels!

I am sitting here thanking the good Lord for my excellent ability to be able to recover from repeated sessions of torture - that is teaching THREE RPM classes in the last 24 hours. I had a lovely hot shower afterwards and enjoyed the chocolate bar that Shelley gave me as part of her Christmas present to me yesterday - tasted just as good on the inside as it looked on the outside. I also shouted myself Phuc Viet before tackling the crowds at Woollies doing final preparations for Christmas. I am lucky in that Christmas lunch this year is at my sister-in-law's place - so all I have to contribute is a salad, bread rolls and some chocolate - hardly any cooking required at all.

Now going to wrap presents with the girls - Miss G buying her Dad some "Toffee Caramel Biscuits" from Woolies because "Dad likes caramel" - so sweet - I, meanwhile, had been trying to convince her of how much Dad would like Lindor balls but she wasn't buying - so in went the $1.99 bikkies instead!

We're going up to Mass and Carols at our local church tonight - we're wondering what this year's one will be like as last year they did this role play about this Russian girl who got killed on Christmas Day during the First World War -that one went down like the proverbial lead balloon...shocker.

I'm not usually one to mention religion on my blog but I'm interested in how and why everyone believes what they do, I find that often the kindest and most giving people aren't of any fixed religious beliefs as one example. I have also found that the basic message (or Greatest Commandment - Love One Another As I Have Loved You) has been muddied by humanity - just within our local Catholic Church, I feel that it is run by power hungry opportunists and that there is absolutely no hint of anyone loving anyone else. To me, religion expresses how you "think, move and have your being" - how you live your life on a day to day basis, it's the small things, the small gestures which are so important in creating that momentum that makes the world a better place.

Wow, that was deep! Better return to our regularly scheduled training and nutrition updates. I'm really looking forward to two days of rest before coming back and teaching Hi Performance on Saturday - what we all tend to forget is that rest and recovery is just as important as the kick butt training.

Hope everyone has a peaceful and joyous Christmas and that Santa brings you lots of presents.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Just love showing off my clients!

Here is the gorgeous Selina looking gorgeous and fit with a great pair of RPM legs going on - check out that right quad! We've been working together for quite a few months and transforming from endurance runner (which I may add, she's pretty darn good at) to bringing back the strength training and watching those muscles pop out everywhere....wahoo! I love photos, especially when they're of everyday people doing extraordinary things.

Ripped out a good running session this morning - did the "Tredder Shredder" run that many clients would have received this week. That is one sick little puppy by the 10th interval! I also got in a really good back and shoulder workout, the highlight of the day being that I used 4kg for lateral raises - it was only a few weeks ago that I was lamenting to Shelley that I could barely lift the piss-ant 1kg dumbbells. I also did some decline push ups off the step with a plate on my back - 3 sets of 10. I am strong, hear me roar!!! This may not be the case tomorrow after I do my final 6-12-25 leg workout - I've been following Lisa in her 6-12-25 journey and as I mentioned previously we're staking out a piece of floor at Fitness First to call our own near the squat rack! The thought of actually doing this workout makes me feel sick, but in order to change anything, you do actually need to have some "fear" inside you before you start your training session. If you're feeling completely comfortable, time to up the ante somewhat!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Reflection, Balance, Harmony!

Recently somebody asked me what my goals were for 2009 and I remembered thinking, "how did I go in 2008?" and went back in my blog to see what my goals were - to cook from the Precision Nutrition Cookbook (tick! My favourites are the PN Mixed Nut bars and the Tuna Flax Burgers) , to maintaining (and improving ) my fitness (pretty good), having the abdominal surgery (done and very glad I made the decision) and also to become a published author. I had mentioned something about writing a book - I didn't quite get there on the book but I collaborated with Lindy and have an article coming out in January Ultrafit Magazine called "Deconstructing the Squat". The model in it is none other than the lovely Tara.

In Women's Health and Fitness magazine this month we have two workout articles, "Boost Your Bust" and "Cane Those Calves" - so have a looky out for us next time you are at the newsagent.

I continued to do my coaching and turned out some lovely, not to mention well conditioned Figure Athletes this year and look forward to what next year is going to bring in this area.

Interestingly my weight is about the same though I did jump into the 50s today. A few people in RPM commented about how lean I was. That surprised me a bit because my definition of being lean is around the 57kg mark. A girl can dream that she's gained muscle (yes, I want MRs butt!) - in reality though , I doubt it - after not picking up any serious iron until about 5 weeks ago and being pretty lax about PWO meals, creatine and the like. I must admit developing a fondness for salmon - anything to avoid taking those fish oil pills.

2009 heralds my 40th birthday and not withstanding injury/illness, I plan to have a big year. I'm hoping that some of my fellow FHMFs will oblige me and join me in a team.

This is my tentative plan:
Jan/Feb: Aerobase workouts - swim/transition work /bike drill work etc. Get shoulders evened up.
February: Leanness Lifestyle Bootcamp 11
March: Sydney open water harbour swim with the FHMF girls
March: One Night In Vegas adventure race (any Brisbane girls want to put up with a big bad boss?)
April: Mooloolaba Triathlon
May: Brisbane Marathon or other event in Qld
July: Gold Coast Half Marathon
October: Brisbane to GC 100k bike ride
October: Noosa Triathlon.

It's looking a bit light in November, December and August so am hunting around for some mad event to enter. Anyway should be enough to keep me going there for awhile.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Surgical Reflections and Leg DOMS

Firstly, I just have to shout this out - "I have the worst glute DOMS ever and can hardly move!" - aah that's better. I'm sure the RPM and Bodystep classes didn't help today either but there you go.

I've been meaning to write this post for a little while and give a post surgical update. It seems like a million years ago since I had my abdominoplasty and breast augmentation but in reality tomorrow is my 8 month anniversary and whilst recovery hasn't always been easy I'm thrilled to report that I'm back into almost everything (some abdominal exercises feel plain weird and pull, so I'm careful with that) with a vengeance - that I squatted 40kg with good technique and minor stability issues, well that is a breakthrough that I'm extremely proud of.

Looks wise, the abdo has given me a bit of a weird looking belly button - as the surgeon cuts around the original, pulls the skin down and cuts a new hole for your bb and stitches it back into place and I've still got patches of residual swelling on my belly and a few patches of hardness along the scar which I am sure will resolve over time - but I couldn't be happier to get rid of that excess skin and have my diastasis repaired. The one thing I noticed that when I did gain a little weight it went straight to my butt. Not pretty! However now that I'm leaning out again nicely I'm starting to see a bit of definition in my abs when I'm not having a swollen day - I don't swell up much any more (this is a side effect of the surgery) but with this hot weather we are having I do feel a bit fluidy sometimes.

The new boobs have opened up a whole new world - firstly I had never been able to wear those really nice T Shirt Bras that are around, even in an A cup and stuffing them with tissues or any other padding just looked ridiculous. Today I am a perfect 12C and they just look and feel amazing. I didn't have any idea at the time just how pleased I would be to have done this as I'd never really been into the idea of "boob jobs" as such but I am a converted woman that is for sure.

Would I have the surgery done again?
In a heartbeat!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008


Boy oh boy - have a big case of the big ol' fat bovines today, undoubtedly not helped by a rather nasty dose of TOM. Occasionally my post surgery tummy will swell, tummy tuck veterans call it "swell hell" and I have been visibly puffy today.

In the middle of it all remembered that it was legs day - I gotta admit, they're my least favourite body part to work - except if I'm teaching RPM - the music, company and atmosphere always gets me through. As I helped Lisa cane her legs yesterday using the 6-12-25 method, I thought that I should do the same. Whilst I did not get near her squat or deadlift weight (I squatted and deadlifted 40/50kg respectively), I managed to match the other weights that she had used -hurt like hell too! I finished the session absolutely shattered - we're both developing a really nice relationship with the floor around the squat rack at the moment and as I sit here typing I've got some serious DOMs going on in the glute/hamstring region. I did a nice slow walk to finish off (no cardio today, this workout was my cardio!)

I'm looking forward to seeing two x Amandas tomorrow for RPM in the morning - and testing out Amanda's road bike - I am really hoping that we match up well size wise. Am also teaching Bodystep, so if I thought I was lacking in the cardio department, I shall more than make up for it tomorrow! Think I'm going to wear one of those cute little workout skirts tomorrow...step princess here I come!

Monday, December 15, 2008

The Wolf

In a native American folk tale, a grandfather explains to his grandson that he has two wolves inside him. One wolf fills him with hope and reminds him how wonderful his life is and the other fills him with doubt and convinces him that nothing is worth the effort. The grandson asks, concerned for his grandfather, "Which wolf will win?" The grandfather replies, "Whichever one I feed."

Which wolf are you going to feed today?

PT skit for Nicole P

Thursday, December 11, 2008

The Power Within

Tonight I am planning on watching one of my favourite TV shows, "Heroes" - the gist of the show being about ordinary individuals who possess extraordinary "abilities" eg being able to fly, withstand fire etc etc. I must admit, I'm a real junkie for this type of concept and just love the goofiness of the whole thing - but I find myself getting little nuggets out off all sorts of things on various TV shows which aren't related to social commentary at all.

On last week's episode, one of the characters, Hiro Nakamura, said "a hero follows his true purpose" and like the "dirtbag" quote I mentioned a week or so ago, this really hit home with me. Within ourselves, we can CHOOSE to be extraordinary, we can RISE above the mediocre and we can FLY. It is all in how we choose to live - with intent, purpose and thankfulness for all the good things we already DO have.

This resonated with me because right now I am beginning to FLY on all accounts with my training and nutrition right now- I am progressing nicely on both fronts - shoulder pain is diminishing with every session and I've nearly finished a two week Paleo eating protocol which has seen me lose a bit of bloat and sit me just above my happy weight. I don't usually eat in a Paleo fashion, but intuition was telling me that I'd been a little too dirty of late and that I needed to work on this aspect of my eating. I'm gradually reintroducing a few of the foods I love and have missed, starting with the fantastic Vietnamese dinner I am going to have with Shelley, Katie, Nicole, Shannon and Steph (and anyone else I may have missed). So, I'm planning on wandering down under the 60kg mark in the next week or two and focusing on getting my training sessions in.

Today I did no training except for 5 minutes of bicep work with Miss M (I was training her and trying not to grimace!), but I did have a nice cup of tea, Mrs Nesbitt style :)

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Look ear!

Look at my early Christmas present from Shelley! She's turning me from a geek into a rebel! Wahoo! The idea of a piercing first came up on the FHMF weekend in Melbourne when Katie decided that she was going to get a tattoo and I mentioned getting a piercing. Well Katie eventually got the tattoo and I haven't thought about the piercing since...except for this morning.

Trained Shelley as usual and then she tells me that she wants to "borrow my body" for half an hour. Thinking that we were taking a leisurely trip to the P.O, I was literally floored when I was informed that I was about to have a piercing. It did hurt but I'm OK now because Shelley bought me a Freddo Frog afterwards.

Thank you Shelley, I'm feeling like the coolest "almost 40 something" around.

Monday, December 08, 2008


Just to let everyone know I will be offline until tomorrow as I am changing ISP providers. If you are waiting for a program, this this the cause of the delay. Sorry for the inconvenience!

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Congratulations to Caryn!

I haven't had any pictures of Caryn to put up winning the INBA Figure Novice Vic Titles, but here she is at last! Caryn and I worked together from 9 weeks out from this show - we stopped the deprivation and got on the better road to leanness. Not to say that you won't get hungry and that occasionally you won't want to put your head in a bucket of hot chips but incorporating a comp prep as part of your lifestyle rather than going on a special "diet" is way easier.

Speaking of food, I've been on a bit of a salmon bender. I've eaten salmon four times over the past three days (with my favourite, asparagus of course) and I love it, especially making the skin go all crispy. Yummo!

I'm enjoying a well deserved day off from the gym. It was funny to see a few members weighing themselves after the Bikram class to see how much fluid they had lost! I was hoping that today that I would nudge under the 61kg mark and closer to my happy weight of 58-59kg but it wasn't to be - 61.0kg exactly! However I must stress that I'm perfectly happy to be where I am right now - my training is improving in leaps and bounds, I'm eating copious quantities of salmon :) and Vietnamese food...yeah, yeah happy as a pig in .....

Saturday, December 06, 2008

Bikram RPM tales

From L-R Bottom Row: Ferny, Me, Lisa S
Left to Right Middle Row: Nicole P, Shelley S
Back Row: Steph D, Dori W, Carolyn G

Wow - had an awesome RPM session this morning with these guys from Blogland. Had decided to get to RPM early to warm up, but upon entering the gym found that the whole concept of warming up was completely unnecessary as the gym's airconditioning system was being replaced. I felt really bad that it was so stinking hot, but then remembered that I was teaching a tough-as-nails powerlifter(Lisa) , a chick that can deadlift 90kg for 4 x8 reps without batting an eyelid (Dori), a Tank(the Fernster), an ex-RPM instructor and Figure Competitor who is "told to have a go" (Shelley) two Figure Competitors (Steph of the great arms and shoulders and Carolyn who owns a beautiful back) and two retired competitors (Nicole and myself, who reminisce about the good old days but don't plan on going back there anytime soon).

"Ha!" I thought, "I'll make these guys toughen up instead!". Well, it turned out to be an awesome ride and everyone's enthusiasm was contagious. I must admit feeling a bit green during Track Nine and checking the countdown timer but there was no way I was giving in, especially with Dori's last blog post about wanting me to train until I puked :) It was so hot, I even broke out of my standard Canterbury RPM clobber and stripped off to my crop top. As you can plainly see, my belly doesn't see the sun..ever!

The plan afterwards was to train Carolyn and then join the others for a Vietnamese Feast at 10.30am. I had issued Carolyn with all these directives and stretches she needed to improve her squats and today I couldn't believe that I was watching the same Carolyn squatting. It felt really awesome to be making a difference and I can't wait to see Carolyn's butt next year (wait, did I just say that?) When Carolyn and I got out of the gym, everyone else was already eating - that's my kind of girlfriends - ladies that like a good feed! I was feeling so depleted by that stage I went bananas and bought a few of those yellow banana lollies we used to have in our childhood. Man, they tasted good!

Then we finally got to have our Vietnamese and some great conversation and then Carolyn and I went downstairs to buy her a pair of Nike Free Shoes for her weight training - I managed to negotiate 10% off and somehow the girl at the counter managed to give us 20% off, so I would say that it was a very positive shopping experience.

Back home now and I'm sitting here taking tea like Mrs Nesbitt - I watch far too many kids you can tell.

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Crazy Sh$t!

I had quite a memorable training session this morning - after doing 30 minutes of pretty hard elliptical work ( I feel I need to get good and warm before I do anything to my legs), I decided that I needed to bite the bullet and train my legs (which I find the hardest bodypart for me to train).

Yesterday I had the pleasure of watching Lisa suffer through her 6-12-25 protocol for legs and thought "it's been awhile since the ol' posterior chain has had a proper hammering" and decided to do the posterior chain part of the exercise. Well, I grunted and yelled my way through 3 sets of 6-12-25 torture and then because I had a grin from ear to ear when I had finished did 12 x cluster style reps of full deadlifts to finish it off (don't know if I got to 95% of what I could lift but I did 55kg which is pretty tidy for me). Then I grabbed a 15kg and did 2 x 12 1and 1/4 squats to complete the session in just under 25 minutes. It was hilarious talking to one of the other trainers - who said "you guys are doing crazy sh*t" :):)

I must say that for the hours afterwards, I felt like a good lie down and taking tea like Mrs Nesbitt BUT finishing a workout like that makes you feel very accomplished and I only did half - I can only imagine how Lisa felt after ripping both sides of the sucker! I wonder how the DOMS ometer will treat me in the morning.

Monday, December 01, 2008

Eating Frogs and Getting the Job done

As part of my own coaching, I've been giving the task of reading the above mentioned book by Brian Tracy. So far, it's been an excellent read and reminded me of two important issues:
1) the power of planning ahead
2) making the connection by putting pen to paper - this is an interesting one - people who have the greatest success in achieving their goals put their pen to paper. They don't blog about it, they don't use digital media - they put pen to paper. I wonder if this action actually sets up neural pathways in our brain tissue (Liz theory 102...I don't know but sounds good)

In the spirit of eating my frog (and the recommendation is to eat the ugliest one first) I knocked over a few tasks such as completing high school enrolment forms for the girls and sending them off, to banking my tax refund. I also planned out my day's nutrition and training. Today I wrote "bench press" in my diary and today was the first day in many months that I have performed a bench press without pain. I also did a cracking run - Reverse Pyramids - I'm sure my clients will know this one by the end of their training week!

Friday, November 28, 2008

Weekly Wrap Up

It's hard to believe the room this photo was taken in was pitch black at the time - here I am teaching Track 3 in RPM last Saturday. I desperately need a tan!

It's been a quiet day, poor old Miss S has been feeling under the weather, so a day off school was in order. I was grateful for the respite in personal training which has been pretty hectic in the last month. I've found myself gravitating towards taking less clients and my day often looks like
a) train one or two clients b) my own workout (about an hour) then c) train 3 more clients and done for the day. Even though I have been falling into this pattern, I've been feeling desperately tired and last night, knowing that I didn't have to get up at 4.45am slept in until 8am! I keep underestimating the power of sleep - felt a bit crazy this morning, but will feel even better when I get another good night in under my belt. I'm lucky in that when I do sleep I sleep extremely well, am rarely up in the night and normally wake naturally before my alarm.

On the training and nutrition side of things, I knocked out a killer workout during the week and have just recovered now and I'm looking forward to teaching RPM again in the morning. I usually have a 40 minute spin at home pre class - this has really been helping me feel nice and warm and feeling ready to hit it hard. Nutritionally speaking, a bit of a topsy turvy weekend saw me paddling back to where I started the week from. This week has been a little bit better and I'm sure I'll see that monster drop I keep talking about any day soon. I'm currently sitting on 61kg and my happy weight is 58-59kg so a little bit to go still.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Training Update

My training is continuing to improve - that is I am starting to move away from the rehab side of things into the "let's improve" type of things and get fitter. Today I enjoyed a nice steady run on the treadmill for 30 minutes and did some Sumo deadlifts and box squats to finish off. I'm not using a ton of weight, just focusing on the muscles that need to be worked and the stabilizers that need to be stable and revelling in just generally feeling a whole lot better. My abs are a different story though! I have ab DOMS that I haven't had in months! Ouch!

Nutrition is also humming along and I'm still happily eating my starchy carbs - just a constant drip feed during the day is doing the job. Weight bounced up by 0.1kg today but I know I'm in for a good drop judging by the Fitness First WorkPantsometer.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

For The Love of Oats

Have just finished teaching my first RPM class of the day and have just had "second breakfast" - yes Shelley, that is 80g of oats in total :). I am just about to go and teach my second RPM class and am ready to cane it! I was asked to teach the second class yesterday and told John that I would love to because it would mean that I get "second breakfast" of my favourite, oats and protein powder. I've also snuck in some caffeine pre second class - caffeine is an excellent fat mobilizer and will help push my weight/fat loss along a little more. Went to my new low this morning, unflattering FF personal training pants are getting a little bit baggy - bring it on!

PS I came across a great blog with the same title. (the oats, that is)

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Having a laugh!

I got to train Shelley today - we did back - I made her work hard, I hope she's sore tomorrow! I told her that I was 'feeling the grip' - she cheered me up by telling me about all the fantastic shopping she's doing on Ebay at the moment. I am laughing at what you can actually pick up on Ebay....I feel much better now..thank you Shelley! I'm going for 2nd breakfast tomorrow..2 RPM classes how good is that ? Bring on the oats I say!

In the grip of my inferior function

This title sounds a bit odd but what the inferior function refers to in Myer Briggs terminology is the opposing side of your dominant function (ie the way you prefer to behave). My dominant function or way of behaving leans towards being more introverted/introspective (though I break to teach RPM, there's always gotta be a little bit of show pony in you if you're a group fitness instructor), intuitive and more fluid/global in approach, feelings oriented and happiest when well organized. Myer Briggs theory suggests that when you are stressed or out of balance, that your inferior function is triggered.

For me, this would be "extroverted, tell it like it is with no holds barred" behaviour. If I allow myself to get in the grip of this function, it's just a disaster in the making - not only do I potentially hurt the person I'm "telling it like it is" to, but I also end up feeling like aliens have invaded my body and that I need to be wrapped up and placed in a padded cell. The worst part is that I feel hollow and unauthentic.

In certain aspects of my life, I have been teetering on the edge of the grip for a few weeks now. Do I give in or do I take a big breath and step away? I'm looking to see whether being in the grip has actually got me anywhere and this morning decided a workout was the best medicine.

In true piss-ant fashion I started small. I am lifting less than half of what I could lift pre injury. But I did nail three sets of decline push ups on my I must be getting somewhere. Finished with a steady run and Bodystep training. Wahhoo - feeling more like my old self already.

Monday, November 24, 2008

PissAnt to Princess!

Not a massive post today (unlike how massive I will get eventually!) Trained five clients and managed to get a good cracking run workout in, actually the fastest and furtherest I've run post surgery. Then I attacked some pulling exercises - did horizontal pulling, vertical pulling (x2) and vertical pushing (neutral grip shoulder press - felt a bit weird but will watch the shoulder for any unusual signs). I had to look in the mirror and sigh today - I have lost so much muscle! My mind is made up for my December goal - I'm going from pissant to princess! That I'm even thinking this is good news - must mean I'm getting over my injury laden annus horribilis sooner rather than later!

The intensity pic is for Ferny - hoping that she doesn't find the vomit when she comes up and does RPM next Saturday with me!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

RPM Hotties Having Fun!

From Left to Right: Shelley, Me, Lisa and Dori

It was our RPM launch this morning - can't believe it's RPM 41 already! Our theme was "Bollywood" and it looks like after a good hard RPM class that I have lost my bindii! I did have a beautiful Indian Skirt that I wore, but it was too long to wear comfortably on the bike so I stuck to my traditional black clobber.

It was a full class and it was great to catch up and find out what everyone has been doing. Everyone put in a huge effort and the high you get after a tough class is amazing...except for the fact that I had to turn around and do the 9.30am class as Leesa, one of the other Group Fitness Instructors wasn't well. So I had to pretend that my 8.10am class was just a figment of my imagination - got out there and hit it hard again. I have to say that my Vietnamese Rice Paper Rolls after class and they were pretty awesome.

I love our Launch weekends - so much fun and it's going to a party and being paid for it!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Evaluation of Nutrition and Training Plans

Hello bloggers, I feel like I've been away from you forever....but I'm back!

Here's what is going on with me....

Over the past 8 weeks or so I have dropped 4.5kg (yes, I have mentioned that I was having to take a little action). Here's what I did:

*Trained on average about an hour a day - this was divided up into approximately 40 minutes of cardio and 20 minutes of strength training. If you add RPM into the mix, it's about a 75% cardio, 25% strength training split. I took on average one rest day per week, sometimes two.
*I had 10 days off any serious training due to tonsillitis
*I was away from home for approximately 5 nights
*I ate meals that contained starchy carbohydrates in them 4 times a day, and mostly did not log my food intake. When I did, my macronutrient ratios were approximately 40% carb, 40% protein and 20% fat (as an example, yesterday I ate: Oats and protein (pre training), Slim Secrets bar, 1/2 a banana , Big Asian Salad (which included a small serve of noodles) with 100g chopped turkey breast, oats and protein powder with cinnamon and the other banana half, 2 bunches of asparagus and hommus dip, Grilled salmon, small baby potato and buckets of greens/carrots.

Now many so called "experts" out there would look at this plan and say "too much starchy carbohydrate!", "not enough strength training!", "not enough application to training ". So why, using this model have things worked so well?

*when I train, I treat every session with specific intent, that is if I plan to smash it in RPM , I really try to cane it, if I'm focusing on my shoulder rehab, I work on my mobilizations. When I'm strength training, I'm all about doing a quality 20 minutes of what I can do and what is complementary to my current position rather than trying to waste my time on exercise which is essentially useless to me right now. Somebody at the gym asked me "Don't you miss doing bench presses?" and I was reminded about Lisa's post on Labels - my reply was, "I don't need to be doing bench presses right now." They were pretty surprised and asked me, "why" - my response was along the lines of that my body needs a lot more pulling type work to maintain a good posture and 3 sets of push ups on my toes (which I'm very chuffed about given the annus horribilus shoulder year) was all I needed to keep my chest muscles happy. If my specific intent was different, well the answer would be obviously different.
*when I eat, I really listen to my body - I'd been having the old "let's mow down the fridge" syndrome upon coming home from work - so I decided to trial what I call my "Mad Monkey" oats (thank you Shelley) - oats and protein and a sliced banana (no magical powers there, just tastes awesome) for afternoon tea. What a difference that has made - less stress, less cortisol and frankly (the best part), a nice full belly.
*I treat my body like a science experiment and encourage everyone to do the same - this is a cornerstone rec of PN and a good one - if you don't get the results over a two week period, then make a change. I had a bit of a stall there - so my strategy there was to "clean up " a little and it worked well.

This post isn't meant to be "flipping the bird" to anyone who likes to approach things from a different perspective - everyone's journey is amazingly different - however I want to use it as an example that you don't have to blindly follow a fitness/food trend (eg low fat, low carb etc) or a rigid diet to get "results".

The actual mechanics of it is quite easy on paper - it's the application of the mechanics that will trip most.

Make small manageable changes, believe in your capacity to achieve great things, try to beat your own personal best (ie don't look at others, look at the wonder within) and most of all, ENJOY THE JOURNEY.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Carbs evil ? Let's break it down some more.

I am copying and pasting this post from David Gillespie, an Australian Author who has just published a book called "Sweet Poison - Why Sugar is Making Us Fat". It is an excellent article and I couldn't have written it better myself. As you Aussies know, Kerry Armstrong is spruiking the "benefits" of Coke which is frightening in itself and in North America, consumers are being bombarded by a similar campaign selling High Fructose Corn Syrup as being natural and "fine in moderation" because it comes from corn. David Greenwalt from Leanness Lifestyle recently sent me a copy of the HFCS commercial, then sent a page of related scientific studies which link HFCS with addictive behaviour etc - I loved this because not only did I see how awful the commercials were, I got a big wad of scientific studies which satisfied my inner propellor head, you all know how much I love stuff that has had studies done on it.

Bottom line is, nearly 100% of the population don't do well on this sort of crap. If you're talking about carbs being evil, we'll it's these sorts of carbs that fit the bill. Let's talk about HCFS being the work of the devil, not your Uncle Toby's oats!

Here is the except of David Gillespie's Article, published in "The Courier Mail " and "The Australian". I haven't read the book yet, but I plan to.

The Coca-Cola Chronicles: Big Sugar drops the other shoe


David Gillespie, author of Sweet Poison: Why Sugar Makes us Fat writes:

Here I was thinking that the Kerry Armstrong episode was merely the bumbling of ham-fisted PR mongers. I imagined the poor Big Sugar flaks being soundly spanked for underestimating the intelligence of the buying public.

Alas it appears it was I who misunderstood the higher arts of persuasion. Little did I realise that the Kerry Affair was merely the opening salvo in a far bigger campaign for hearts and minds. It is not a campaign for my heart or mind and probably not yours. I’m not an employee of the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) and I certainly don’t sit on the Parliamentary Inquiry into Obesity.

The Big Sugar campaign is not about convincing you and me that Coke is health food (although if we happen to come away believing that, it’s well and good). No, it’s about convincing ACMA (and Parliament) that Big Sugar does not market to children under 12. In fact Coke are so responsible that they’ve been voluntarily abstaining from such practices for years.

ACMA is proposing to update its Childrens Television Standards. At the start of its consultations it had toyed with the idea of (gasp) regulating the advertising of food and beverages to children. But after receiving some forceful submissions on the point, has decided now was not the time.

So what is Big Sugar worried about? When you read the fine print, the report says that ACMA won’t regulate for now. But the door has been left well and truly ajar. ACMA says it may change its mind if anyone comes up with a standard way of labelling foods which are high in fat, sugar and salt. This would then allow them to seriously consider rules aimed at limiting the advertising of such foods to children.

This is where those busy bodies over at the Parliament come in. Their inquiry into Obesity is turning up quite a few submissions from folks like CHOICE who want to see a traffic light system of labelling introduced to help consumers identify such foods. Big Sugar has attacked CHOICE for daring to propose such a thing, even suggesting that their researchers cooked the books.

Big Sugar doesn’t plan to sit back and meekly let unambiguous labelling be implemented so on Friday, the Second Act of the master strategy was unveiled on the media stage. Big Sugar in the guise of the Australian Food and Grocery Council (AFGC) announced they had a plan. They would voluntarily sign up to a code of conduct that says they won’t advertise to kids under 12.

What’s wrong with Big Sugar’s voluntary ban? Surely they’re helping out by jumping the gun? Well, in a word, no. This way they get to define the word ‘children’. In its initial examination of the need for reform, ACMA had been dropping disturbing hints about bans that defined a child as anyone under 16 (rather than 12).

Even worse than that, with ACMA doing the drafting there’d be no chance to parachute in weasel words like the ones proposed by Big Sugar. An example appears in the wording of the voluntary ‘ban’ itself when it says the ban should be applied “unless those products represent healthy dietary choices … presented in the context of a healthy lifestyle.

If you want to know what that looks like, you need look no further than Coke’s new website which is choc full of healthy lifestyle messages for Coke drinkers.

Big Sugar’s hope is that by showing what terribly good corporate citizens they are, they’ll head the Parliamentary Obesity enquiry and ACMA off at the pass. Parliament won’t insist on traffic light labelling and Big Sugar will avoid the cascade effect of ACMA implementing actual bans rather than voluntary ones written by Big Sugar.

It may seem like Big Sugar is jumping at shadows, but as Simon Chapman pointed out in Friday’s edition of Crikey, Big Sugar has paid attention to what befell Big Tobacco. They know it’s better to stop this particular train before it leaves the station. If they can’t, they fear it won’t be long before the only place you’ll be able to see a Coke ad will be in the sealed section of an adult magazine.

Poor old maligned carbohydrates and a word on SUGAR

I've been reading several posts about how "carbs don't agree with them" and have been chewing on this for quite a few days. In fact, I've been puzzled by the carb conundrum to a big degree especially as carbohydrates play such a pivotal role in the body. If you're an athlete, then carbohydrates become even more important.

For a start, our bodies run on carbohydrate in two different ways - through processes called gluconeogenesis and glucose oxidation (through the Krebs cycle) - anyone at University studying biochemistry would be pretty aware of this. This process is called glycolysis.

Here is the definition below:
Glycolysis is:
  1. An ATP-generating metabolic process that occurs in nearly all living cells in which glucose is converted in a series of steps to pyruvic acid.
  2. The metabolic breakdown of glucose and other sugars that releases energy in the form of ATP.
The metabolic breakdown of glucose and other sugars that releases energy in the form of ATP.The first stage in the production of energy by breakdown of glucose in body cells; a chain of chemical events requiring a specific set of enzymes, and resulting in formation of ATP (adenosine triphosphate). In aerobic metabolism subsequent sequences produce several times more ATP, thereby providing a greater quantity of energy per molecule of glucose, utilizing oxygen, and producing carbon dioxide and water — comparable to burning organic fuels in air. In anaerobic metabolism (metabolism which does not use oxygen) glycolysis is the only means of energy production from glucose, and lactate is the end-product. This occurs in cells which cannot utilize oxygen (red blood cells), predominately in some components of skeletal muscle (fast, ‘white’ fibres), and probably to some extent in all cells when there is a shortage of oxygen. However, it also occurs in the first 1-3 minutes after a sudden increase of demand in cells which will subsequently make all the necessary ATP aerobically, because the glycolytic system can respond within seconds whereas both the biochemical pathways of aerobic metabolism and the systems for supplying them with oxygen take time to adjust; the start of vigorous exercise, even in a trained athlete with large numbers of ‘red’ muscle fibres, is the most obvious example.

We produce energy by converting ADP to ATP. In other words, carbohydrates make us move.

When we cut carbohydrates from our diet, our bodies begin to rely on fat or protein to be chemically converted into carbohydrates for use in our bodies as energy. I can hear some people saying "but that's what I want to do to lose body fat!"

In theory this may be good, but carbohydrates also are intimately tied up with neurotransmitters, for example serotonin, which control brain function. Our brain functions exclusively on glucose. Although we have control of what we consume most of the time, if our brain senses a lack of carbohydrate through a drop in the neurotransmitter serotonin, then it will do almost anything to override our thinking that carbs are evil and we'll basically go for anything that will boost serotonin levels FAST - that is have a giant great big binge on sugary fatty foods. Not unsurprisingly most people I have ever met who espouse a low carb diet have often had trouble with "bingeing and overdoing it" in the past.

In athletes and specific situations, low carb days are not harmful and can have benefits in certain situations, however as an every day thing, they are not conducive to muscle gain, increasing fitness or wellbeing. In my opinion if you want to turn into a bingeing mad monkey go low carb, the longer the better!

Where I think people "go wrong" is in their choice of carbohydrates - put simply, the more refined or processed the carbohydrate source is, the worse the "reaction". This can be tied up with the Glycaemic Index - most highly processed carbs are high GI which cause insulin to spike rapidly and fall just as fast, hence giving you that sugar high/sugar crash that most of us have talked about in the past. In my opinion it's important that 35-50% of intake comes from carbohydrates - a mix of low, medium and high GI carbs and that nutrient timing is looked at. Focus your starchy carbs post workout and then try them at other times of the day as well if you feel you need a bit more. Try less processed grains like quinoa, oats and buckwheat for something a bit different.

What I think people are really trying to say when they say that CARBS ARE EVIL is that sugar and high fructose corn syrup are the work of the devil and I'd have to agree with them. I'm going to add another post to this to stop this from getting too long

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Where is your honour, dirtbag?

It's funny how sometimes lines from movies stick in your head and replay over and over again. I saw "Toy Story" with the kids on TV the other night and the line above comes from "The Sarge" who is the top dog toy soldier in Andy's Bucket O Soldiers kit. He asks the question of Woody, after Woody engineers a nasty accident for Buzz Lightyear.

All week I have kept asking myself the same question as I've struggled with balance - "where is your honour, dirtbag?" After my coaching session last week, I've come to the conclusion that something has got to give. I know I've said this before and I probably sound like a broken record, but that something "giving" is going to take some time because I still have to work out what that is! I'm always surprised by how much I am pushed in my own coaching sessions, it makes me think long and hard and the question of honour in the context of honouring myself with my own behaviour has been playing a pretty persistent loop in my thinking so far this week. I've caught myself being overstretched at both ends of the day and feeling rather stressed have asked myself the question, "where is your honour, dirtbag?" rather than mowing down the contents of the fridge with stress eating, baking or the like. Not that is is a regular occurrence for me, but it has been known to happen from time to time.

Today after 8 clients, I asked myself the question. The answer was taking an hour or so to decompress and read the paper and having oats for arvo tea. Consequently my belly feels full and happy and I am refreshed and ready to tackle the online side of my day.

The other thing I am making sure happens is getting my training in - after being sick I am finding the cardio a real struggle but punched out a good session on the elliptical, bike and rower and trained legs yesterday (I am in a world of DOMS today) and upper body today with the most conviction I've had since the surgery. It's time to start transitioning back from rehab into real life me thinks.

On the scale thing, weight has been up and down like a mad yo yo. But I feel my pants get looser every day despite some really wacko numbers and know that in the fullness of time, I am winning the race back to my happy place.

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Paarty girl

This is an extremely rare once a year photo of Yours Truly (and the gorgeous Hubster) in high heels. We had Hubby's work Christmas function which had a cocktail theme. As I may have blogged previously, buying cocktail dresses fills me with dread, but I quite liked wearing this little number. I have to admit that as soon as we hopped into the car to come home the heels were whipped off straightaway (I didn't want to encourage my poor posture any further). Had a fun evening and went to bed too late. Even allowed myself a half hour sleep in before RPM HiPerformance this morning.

Had a great class and got to see Tara and Rob - I tied Tara up with a resistance band which I'm sure she was impressed with - but our mission is to get freaky massive over the next year so the foundations of her squat and deadlift technique have to be hunky dory. Nothing worse than training like a demon only to injure yourself before the event and have to miss out!

We also had morning tea with Shelley at the Vietnamese and now I'm hope and thinking that a little nap may be in order. It felt great after being so sick to give the bike a good smashing!

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

What moves you?

In reply to Steph's comment on my last post about reading about one's motivations, I thought I would share a little bit about what motivates ME. It is probably different from the next blogger, but also frighteningly similar!

Knowing WHY you want to do something is absolutely essential to your success no matter what it is you're trying to achieve. As I work in the health and fitness industry it seems logical to focus on this area, but there is so much more to knowing WHY - how is what you want to achieve going to better you, your relationships, your work - how is it going to impact on other areas of your life? What else are you going to achieve by nailing what seems to be just one little goal?

Losing body fat and getting fitter or getting competition ready is what most clients come to me for. They are looking to find "the push" they need to make it to where they need to go. I can provide excellent extrinsic motivation all the way through to the end. What needs to be developed by the client is intrinsic motivation so that when extrinsic motivation falls away - the coach is ill or the competition is over, there needs to be reason to keep on keeping on. Many competitors crash and burn because they have failed to see what is important to them AFTER they have reached the physical goal.

For me, my personal time has been focused lately on intrinsic motivation. Although I have a few external events coming up in my future where I need to look really good (not a comp!) , my main reason for getting into shape is purely internal. Because my work requires me to coach others, I tie my own authenticity up in my work - for me, I want the outside (external appearance) to reflect what is inside - a fit , strong, healthy woman! Where I have been going these days is asking myself "what do I really want?" and "why do I want it?". It's what I call a "jellyfish" response to just say "I want to lose weight", because you can't "hold" on to that why. However the response of "I will lose 3kg in six weeks, see my physio regularly, work on my rehab because I need to be fitter, faster and stronger for taking a shot at becoming an RPM presenter" - well, that's got more teeth. I think I've ticked off most of my New Year's goals - this is the last one - so I want to be well on the way to achieving this by the New Year.

I hope this little ramble makes sense, it's one of those "off the cuff" Liz written diarrhoea moments!

In other news, I finally found a dress to wear to hubby's work Xmas function on Friday. Found a great "little black dress" at the Cue outlet at the DFO. There's another advantage to being fit - all the size 10s on the rack fit beautifully!

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Moving and Grooving

As usual another busy day on the work front. I'm still not feeling 100% today but have managed to train and eat well. Old scale weight has yet to come into line but I'm feeling leaner today so I know that it's only a matter of time before it behaves. Sometimes it feels like a bit of a slap to wake up to a higher number - I think due to the conditioning most women have about the scale, a "higher" number is associated with fear and panic but the most important part is how you choose to react to it. Do you throw your hands up in the air and moan about the scale doing your head in or do you just get on with the job?

Today, although I felt a little annoyed, I chose to get on with the job. I have so many reasons right now to get into better shape, external and internal leverages. Figure comps have always been a tremendous external leverage but now things are different - I don't have that as a leverage any more but I've got all sorts of interesting stuff in the pipeline. One thing is that once you step on that scale and see that number there is no turning back, only the opportunity to move forward and decide what you are going to create that day - that has also included creating my favourite dinner, grilled salmon with none other than snow peas, carrots and asparagus!

Despite having mainly back to back clients, a late cancellation allowed me to get in my first decent run since my knee issue flared up, mobility work and lower body training. I admit to feeling frustrated about this darn shoulder - but know that I'm doing everything I can to get it right. I am starting to feel some pleasant DOMS building in my hamstrings and glutes already.

I am attending another seminar run by Paul Reid at - on the shoulder girdle. Paul is associated with Mike Robertson who is coming out in February so if you want to see Mike in Brisbane, please email me - we need to know Brisbane numbers ASAP. I cannot speak highly enough of Paul or Mike - and the knowledge that they so freely share.

Monday, November 03, 2008

Monday - back into it!

Back into the swing of things today, finally. I have to admit that I'm still feeling rather weak and sick but nevertheless got some training done as well. I had the luxury of actually participating in RPM today which was nice and I did upper body/shoulder stuff and more glute work. I have "piss ant " glutes which have improved (like a fine wine) but can always do with more muscle! Tomorrow I have a window of opportunity (40minutes ) to train so I will make the most of this with a run and some deadlifts.

Weight is bouncing all over the place - after reaching a new low, I bounced back when I started eating normally again and had what my mate Hazel would call an "ill timed" splurge meal last night which didn't help the situation any. So one step at a time to paddle the old canoe into calmer waters.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

The worst is over...I think!

I finally feel well enough to post after a week of being pretty sick - I ended up going to the doctor on Wednesday afternoon after summoning up the courage to check out my throat in the mirror with a torch - diagnosis - acute tonsillitis. Yuck - my throat has been a pussy mess for the past few days. Now it is just red and sore. I've spent most of the week in bed and couldn't entertain the thought of eating vegetables or doing any training whatsoever - I have lived on chocolate icecream and iced water and am only just starting to eat normally now.

Anyway I hope to be back into it tomorrow, last week I was fully booked for the first time and now I feel like I am going back to square one. Oh well, these things happen - just have to look forward and do the best you can with what you have.

Can't wait to feel well enough to train again!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Feeling like death warmed up

On Monday was working with a client who had lost her voice and I swear that pretty soon after I was not feeling 100% myself - I woke up yesterday morning with a sore throat from hell and overall feeling pretty ordinary. I had to cancel all of my clients yesterday and RPM this morning. I've spent the better part of the last two days in bed and once I finish this blog post that is exactly where I'll be heading.

I'm continuing on in the theme of blogging about my scale weight - when I got sick and sore (as well as having killer DOMS from Monday and weekend), my weight spiked again by just over a kg. Today it has dropped to a new low and I can literally see the bloat coming out of my fingers of all places (they looked like little sausages yesterday). The point is that when you know why weight does what it does, you're eating and training properly there is absolutely no need for the scale to do your head in.

On that note, it is time for me to be a complete slug and head to bed.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Weekend musings

Decided to shove this photo in there of me at my first comp - I've always been lucky to be able to pull out the legs when I need to!

However, I'm nowhere near that condition right now and rightfully so! Though I have made mention of sticking my paddle in a little more vigorously. This week, as I predicted last week was a tough one - overall scale loss amounted to 0.3kg due to wildly fluctuating levels due to TOM and PMS. By Thursday, at the peak of things I had logged a 1.5kg gain over my previous low for the week but on Saturday morning had lost the 1.5kg and a smidge more to put me at a new low for the week. I had my treat meal last night, but haven't spiked as high as last week, which is telling me there's a loss on the cards sometime this week. When you know exactly what is going on with the scale, there's no need to attach any emotion to the number that is reflected back at you. On Thursday morning I was more like "wow, check out that spike (you little ripper...crikey!)!" rather than "I'm such a fat pig!" - though I was thinking I was looking a little puffy.

What I've really nailed home this week is the importance of having a proper treat meal - on Thursday I had a Skinny Cow and really didn't feel very satisfied (no offence to all the SC lovers out there, but I've discovered SC doesn't do it for me) - so yesterday I had a Double Chocolate Icecream with 2 Kit Kat sticks and felt like I'd done my Dirtiest Diana for the week properly. Yummo!

Today has been a rather mixed day emotionally for me after the high of teaching Step yesterday - my Inner Gollum has been playing on my mind and being a bit of a "mad monkey" but I've told him "to leave here and never come back" - Gollum comes out to play when I've got too much work to do and too little time or when I'm feeling overwhelmed by everything. So I've had a bit of computer time, polished off about 3 cups of Salad and Turkey mmmm... and am ready to get stuck into it!

DOMS Report: Oddly enough, not a lot of lower body DOMS going on, except for my calves - however my upper body waited 48 hours to come to the party! I am feeling faint DOMS in my glutes when I sit down, so I should be in full swing by tomorrow...thanks Shelley!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

I feel good!

Have just finished teaching my first Bodystep class since before the surgery and shoulder injury. I am feeling sheer exhilaration because:

-I moved my arms above my head and felt no shoulder pain
-my knees (albeit strapped) felt good!
-I was a bit scrappy in places but everyone was wahooing and being noisy so I know that my efforts were enjoyed!

Shelley turned the tables and did a little lower body strength training. I could see a twinkle in her eye when she handed me a 15kg plate for my box squats and said "you're doing 12 reps!" Fun, fun, fun!

Happy weekend everyone!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Still selling

I also have this DVD for sale - all the DVDs I sell are shrink wrapped but I had to unwrap this one as the DVD was rattling around inside. This is brand new and plays well - probably one of my favourite Cathe DVDs and one that I used extensively in Woop Woop pre and post comp. I usually sell it on my site for $58.00 but I will part with it for $40.00.

I will post the description below......that's it for selling anything for now! Paperwork up to date today and everything is now sorted!

You canemail me

if you're interested. Sheesh, this has got to be better than Ebay , wink wink


Supersets is a unique 53 minute full body weight training program that incorporates a series of exercises that are grouped by varying body parts and performed in rounds. While this may not be the traditional association that many are used to with supersetting, superset training is also classified as doing two or more exercises at a given time with little or no rest between exercises (or sets). Round One, Group A, consists of the following body part and exercise:
Legs...........barbell squats
Legs/Back...barbell deadlifts
Chest..........barbell bench press
Shoulders....dumbbell front/side raise on stability ball
Core............wood chops on the stability ball

Round One, Group B, repeates the body parts but uses different exercises:
Legs...........barbell plie' squats
Back...........dumbbell pullovers on the stability ball
Chest..........dumbbell incline fly on stability ball
Shoulders....dumbbell rotator cuff side raises on stability ball
Core...........roll outs on the stability ball (no weight)

Round Two, Group A, consists of the following body parts and exercises:
Legs..........dumbell one leg squat
Shoulders...dumbbell seated overhead press
Biceps........barbell preacher curls on the stability ball
Triceps.......dumbbell extensions on the stability ball maneuver

Round Two, Group B, repeats the body parts but uses different exercises:
Legs..........explosive lunges (no equipment)
Shoulders...dumbbell rear and front delt raises prone on stability ball
Biceps........dumbbell concentration curls on the stability ball
Triceps.......seesaw tricep push ups (no weights)
Core...........side oblique crunches on the stability ball

Because the specific exercises themselves only do one set without repeating, you are encouraged to go as heavy as you can with good form. Of course the first few workouts will take some practice since you will not know exactly what weight will bring you to fatigue by the end of the set. Many exercises also contain a non-traditional set (ie: up 4 down 4, low ends, lunge forward lunge back then jump for 4 etc.)
The music is fun and recognizable. Here is a list of the songs: On and On Somewhere, Somehow I'm Glad Don't you just know Whats Up Golden Eye You are not alone Unbreak My Heart This ain't no love song Eternal Flame

Push Pull

Push Pull is a 45 minute total body workout which features many new and refreshing exercises to keep your muscles stimulated in new ways. The focus of this workout is to promote muscle balance as well as strength and endurance gains through exercise variety and balance challenges. We use the stability ball quite a bit in this workout to create this added balance challenge which in turn promotes even greater muscle recruitment. It's important to point out that when using a stability ball you should use a lighter weight than you typically would for a given exercise since the unstable environment makes the muscles work harder to stabilize. As your body gets acclimated this "wobbly" environment you'll find that you are able to gradually increase your weights again.

The soundtrack to this workout is filled with soft rock classics. Here is a list of the songs:

Walking In Memphis
Our Friends Are Electric
Breakfast at Tiffany's
In The Living Years
Sleeping Sattelite
This ain't a love song

Keep in mind that for muscle balance we are doing one muscle group then the opposing muscle group. In most cases this is anterior (front) and posterior (back) but when it comes to shoulders we have both anterior (front delt) and posterior (rear delt) as well as superior (mid/top delt) and inferior (lats) which are directly beneath them.

The exercises for Push Pull are as follows:

Barbell Squats (legs with focus on quads)
Deadlifts (legs with focus on glutes/hamstrings)
Static lunge with heel lifted (legs with focus on quads)
Leg Press (legs with focus on glutes/hamstrings)
Bench press on ball (chest)
Deadrows (back)
flys on ball (chest)
Y's on ball (thats the Push Pull picture where we had our arms going back with thumbs up...for upper back)
Inverted shoulder press on high step (top/mid delt)
One arm row (back/lats which are beneath shoulders)
Front raise on ball (front shoulder)
Rear delt raise on ball (back shoulder)
Bicep curls with ball (biceps)
Slow Dips/immediately to kickbacks (tricep)
Outer thigh on ball
Inner thigh with ball
Superman on ball (low back)
Crunches with ball (abdominals)
Calve raises
Tibialis Anterior w/ball (shins)
Full Body Stretch

You may initially find this workout to be easier since you are learning to make adjustments for the new variety, but once you have worked through this, form and concentration is of the utmost importance for optimal muscle recruitment. Feel free to add sets to any of the exercises for an even greater challenge.The DVD version will offer premixes with multiple set options.


Short Dated Nutrient Secrets for Sale!!

Hi everyone,

Just to let anyone that may be interested that I have a couple of boxes of short dated Nutrient Secrets bars - that expire in Dec/Jan 08 for sale - they are one x box of NS Smart Vanilla Almond and One box of Mixed Bars (Radiant Peaches and Cream and Cranberry Crumble) - They usually retail for 31.25 per box but I am selling them for 22.00 per box (plus postage) - up to 3kg anywhere in Australia.

You can email me if you're interested.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Well, who's a blog whore then?

Two blog posts in two days, whoa~ another busy day - taught RPM this morning which was good and then went and had a Bodystep practice. I've still got bits and pieces to go - namely 5, 6 and the cooldown tracks but all is going well and knee is not too bad - nothing a bit of Fixomull and attitude won't fix at the moment.

Fitted in a couple of clients today - I have non officially taken Wednesdays off, but today just seemed to develop a life of it's own, not helped along by the fact I've got raging PMS/TOM and I could eat the arse out of a rhino today. It felt like every time I ate something I wasn't satisfied and by mid afternoon I was reaching for junk. Realized in the nick of time and thought that if I was to apply my 200, not 2000 calorie law then it had better be on decent stuff - so I've mown my way through a couple of large carrots and teamed it with hommus dip. It's just lucky there weren't any bunches of asparagus in there (I would be having orange hands and stinky wee in combination!)! Adding some fat in the form of a red curry (with regular coconut milk) also helped fill the gap.

I'm hoping that tomorrow I can do some strength training for the first time this week. Overall this week has been pretty good shoulder wise, so I'm one step closer to recovery! Yeah!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Going to be a Step Diva!

I have to teach Bodystep on Saturday, my first class in six months or so. It's definitely going to be a bit of a challenge with my knee (patellar tracking issues) and my shoulder (about 80% healed but not there yet) but I think that I'll be able to manage. I'm going to teach Release 71 (pictured), work on my knee (this will involve more glute work and quad/hip flexor stretching) and enjoy it.

Apart from that I've been head down, tail up doing the PT thing, answering emails and the like. I taught RPM yesterday but forgot my cycle shoes which was a bit of a blow - once you move to cleated shoes, you never turn back! Also got a bit of glute focused X trainer in and this morning spent 30 minutes on the X trainer (hard) , 10 minute run @ 11km/hr (focusing on toe off) and 30 minutes of stretching/foam rollering and glute activation work. Tomorrow I will be attacking the upper body and teaching RPM, this time with my cycle shoes firmly in tow. I will use "Carolyn Mix" again tomorrow morning, who doesn't love waking up to Acca Dacca at 6 in the morning?

On the weight front my canoe has hit some turbulence going upstream, namely I think I may have PMS - I'm always hungrier when the little beastie strikes, though the treat meal induced spike I had on Monday went away and I was left with a win this morning of 0.1kg down. My goal is to get to 0.4kg or 0.5kg this week as PMS/TOM is around so keeping this in the back of my mind, I'm going to be realistic about what the scale may say. Definitely feeling smaller - my amazingly unflattering Fitness First pants are a bit looser again today (or maybe it's been demonstrating all of those box squats

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Dream Tan in my ears!

Yes, somehow I managed to get Dream Tan in my ears yesterday at the Nationals! It was a great night and although neither of my girls placed, they looked sensational up there in their beautiful blingy suits. I got to see so many of the blogger girls which was awesome - only blip in the evening was temporarily losing my mobile phone - but the legendary Tim Martin found it - thank you for your help Tim!

I also had the pleasure of having Michelle C and Carolyn come and do RPM with me yesterday - I knew that Carolyn was coming so I made sure I loaded the class with Motley Crue, AC/DC and Nirvana, especially for her!

Have spent the rest of the weekend on an excellent postural analysis course - cannot wait to apply what I've learned on Monday!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Another Busy Week and Report Card

Another busy week up here in the world of Chez Liz - I'm going to take a leaf out of Miss Katie's book and write about my week based as a Performance Review.
Monday: After wanting to give the scale a swift kick on Sunday, I was returned to my previous week's low on Monday morning. I'm usually not one for talking about what is going on with my scale weight every day but as I've written previously I've had to whack the paddle back in after my small flirt with carb cycling (after 5kg flew on to be exact - and 5kg that has nothing to do with water or glycogen..hmmm). I committed to eating really well but "dirty diannaed" it with a can or two of Pepsi Max and I'm sure a Slim Secrets bar may have popped in there as well.
Had three clients, RPM and a whole lot of online work to do. Put in the most serious upper body training session I have done for seven odd months. Did four big boy push ups! (watch out Shelley!)

Tuesday: Woke up to another scale moment the next morning. Not moving, not one iota! Look at myself in the mirror. Put on my flattering (not!) work pants - swear the butt area is feeling roomier. Train seven clients from 6am through until 1pm - decide that today I'm going to get more incidental exercise in and I do some errands around Indro, walking briskly the whole way.

Wednesday: Down 0.4kg this morning...whoosh! Aaah, that feels much better. Log my CK for a client to look at. Haven't logged in ages. Surprised by how much I'm putting away whilst paddling - a few hundred cals more than my usual comp level..good stuff. Teach a good RPM class - as usual start off feeling uncomfortable and am in my element by Track 3. Have my coaching call - learning to be on the end where I'm not dishing out any thoughts is hard but learn something about myself - I can be nervous about defining what I want for myself.
Spend the day doing lots of online work and have dinner with good friends...yeah!

Thursday: Another big whoosh this morning - another 0.3kg - that's 0.7kg for the week, spot on! Five clients today, including having a training session with Miss D - this was great fun - it's always so inspiring training people who already have a burning passion to go places - so I'm looking forward to seeing what the next month brings there. Visited Louise my physio in the middle of it all - she reckons my shoulder is moving the best it has, but I'm still winging around my inferior scapula border - yes, more serratus work for me - hard yakka. She also taught me a few new cues to do "clams" - all I can say is "wow"...I have learned so much.
Got home starving and had to take girls to swimming lessons - shall we say that being hungry and tired is not the best combination - lesson learned is to refuel before going out!
Have a really good chat to Shannon (not only my client but my good friend and personal stylist!) - it's always so nice to catch up with friends.

Friday: Scale up 0.4kg - pants are baggier and suspect that the jump is real carb bloat - train today on the elliptical and do 10 minutes of rowing intervals. Then 30minutes of pilates and rehab on my own. Really feel like giving the bench press a good smash...sigh and say "your time will come!" Train six clients around my training. Go home and email Shelley - "when are you coming home? " and start to prepare tomorrow's RPM class - Motley Crue is definitely going to be on the playlist for someone I know!

Saturday: National Titles and Centrality Course - I've planned ahead and will have all my meals prepped and will get the opportunity to see whether the carb bloat has left the building. Look for a Nationals report early next week :)

Summary: Like Katie, I like to know WHY and pilates/rehab bores me to tears - however, I do feel better afterwards so I will keep going. Having fun with the scale and enjoying the journey back. As an experiment I'm not logging my food and I'm relying more on intuition - at some point I will probably need to keep closer tabs on the intake but basically I'm following the guidelines I give all my clients and I'm nearly 3kg lighter for it. 2-3 km (I mean kg) to paddle!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Riding, not hiding!

I've checked my diary for this week. Oh boy, it's going to be a busy one culminating in the INBA Nationals at the end of the week. I'm scheduling some training this week - I felt like I'd turned a corner on Saturday and I want to keep the momentum going - so I'm teaching RPM tomorrow and doing more upper body weights. It's all slow but it's definitely happening!

I did a Shelley this morning and nearly kicked the scales across the room, uttering "f*ckers!" (every time I think of this I just want to laugh until I cannot laugh any more) but I was expecting a temporary increase in reading after having a rather delicious treat meal of homemade pizza and TWO Skinny Cows (I had to try each flavour right?)

I'm sure I will have better news to report on that front in a day or two...

Friday, October 10, 2008

Dagging Out and on being a "Dirty Diana"

I have a confession to make - when it's cold outside (well by Queensland standards anyway) and raining, I love nothing more than to dag out inside wearing holey tracky daks and old TShirts and my fluffy slippers. I must look quite a sight, but I am as happy as a pig in mud and love getting all contented reading bits and pieces and sipping a cup of tea. Today has been that sort of day - had a cancellation and got to train Shelley (I am currently waiting for a post describing what she thinks of straight arm lat pull downs and whether she's bringing her mixing bowl with her oats in it to Hi Performance tomorrow). I went and did the grocery shopping (reminder to myself - take a list next time - through my own stupidity I now have 6 cartons of eggs in the fridge - frittata city here we come!) Then I stretched out, answered some emails and read the paper in my dag out ensemble - couldn't have been better.

Tonight was a different story - had to do an RPM fill for a dear friend and who does RPM at 6pm Friday night? Most of Fitness First apparently! Absolutely smashed myself silly which felt awesome and can't wait to do it all over again tomorrow. Am starting to feel a bit weary though now - nothing one of Kerryn's Lindor Balls (how did you know?? ) won't fix.

I've also been mulling over all of the competition preps I have done this year and come up with the conclusion that if you keep your diet a bit "dirty" you more often than not come up with the better results - I think that knowing that you don't have to give up your favourite foods and that you are following a set of guidelines rather than hard and fast rules works very well for most competitors and transformationists alike. Which is why I enjoyed Kerryn's posts about her chocolate souffles so much - yes, she was eating them in the final week and enjoying an Indian meal on the Saturday beforehand - she had arrived in terms of leanness the week before and all we had to do was cruise in for the final week. My other client Caryn, had pasta , which most competitors would consider a no no on the Tuesday prior to her win in the INBA Vics last Saturday - again reaching the required levels of leanness was no problem with her balanced food intake.

Which leads me to my own personal theory that eating super super clean can be detrimental to a transformation or a competition prep. I read so many posts on various forums and blogs about people feeling virtuous because they've meticulously consumed all their vegetables (which isn't in inself a bad thing) , good fats and proteins (which isn't bad either), taken all of their supplements (which isn't so terrible either) - but I think the combination of all and trying to be "perfect" takes a toll on those trying to live that way. For example during my first comp prep I had to go up to Woop Woop to check out our housing situation. There was little good stuff up there and in the end I had to eat what the locals had on offer - if I had decided, for example that only organic yoghurt would do, then I'm sure I would have burned up bucketloads of muscle by stressing that I could only get the artificially sweetened diet stuff and that all that phenylalanine was going to kill me. A focus on keeping nutrition "pure" is not only stressful, it's unhealthy - if you can't switch gears and go for the dirty stuff now and again and if your digestive system has become so rarified you can't enjoy a gorgeous restaurant meal, it's time to rethink what you're doing.

I know that I have at times got myself caught up in the clean eating bandwagon - and for the most part I enjoy eating healthy whole foods - but I also enjoy a daily Pepsi Max and I hate eating vegetables at breakfast. Sometimes I don't eat starchy carbs after a workout and sometimes I have oats for dinner because that's what I feel like! I hate being told what I have to eat and what supplements I need to take. I eat well because I enjoy it and when I want to be a Dirty Diana and have a Pepsi Max and a Slim Secrets bar together - I do so and enjoy every mouthful. Having this balance is what has got me on stage so successfullyand keeps me successful in the long term.

I'm choosing a lifestyle, not a diet - one where I can wake up every day and know that I can live and enjoy it for the rest of my days! I train because I want to and I teach others how to train so that they can live lean and love their life too. Nothing better than sharing knowledge and sharing the love.

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Huge Weekend

Wow what a weekend - and to think we're nearly at the beginning of the next one.

Hmm - where to start - Saturday...

Taught RPM HiPerformance and then it was off to the Sleeman Centre at Chandler for the INBA Qld Championships where Tara and Gil competed and did us all proud - Tara placed 3rd and got her ticket to the Nationals - great job Tara and Miss Shelley did an amazing job getting Gil ready for her moment on stage. Gil came fourth but was just amazing on stage - it was just a shame that everyone did not get to see her routine - it was unreal (Gil has a dance background so you can imagine how good it would have been).
It was also fantastic to catch up with so many friends at the show - this is the best bit for sure, getting Dream Tan all over you and socializing!

Then it was on the plane to Melbourne Saturday night and I got to bed at 2am - then up at 7 for a walk around the Treasury gardens which was a great eye opener, followed by a quick breakfast - then it was time to transfer to the Ibis where I met up with Amanda - we caught a tram out to the show and Kek kindly picked us up and took us to the venue in her little black car (perfect for when you're brown and wearing Dream Tan) - bought some Deli Rolls from Maccas on the way for lunch and then met Lindy ( ) at the venue - Lindy compered the show and did a fantastic job, no doubt aided by my stealthy supply of food and Pepsi Max to keep her going - the show went until 10pm and it was the biggest show (apart from INBA nats ) that I have ever seen.

I eventually got out the back to see Charlotte who looked stunning in her blue bikini and Miss Caryn who got the fastest coating of Dream Tan from me that I think I've ever done - she was surprised when I told her she was looking a bit flat and shoved copious amounts of jellybeans at her (kind of reminded me of an excavator moving lots of dirt in a specific direction) - she was just amazing on stage and got harder and harder the more she posed. She came a very credible 5th out of 14 competitors in Figure Novice but the best news was that she WON the INBA Figure Novice Division on the Saturday - yay Caryn! Charlotte also competed in this event and although she didn't place she looked fantastic and also got harder as she posed and did her routine. Caryn is the pink INBA cover girl!

Then after a little while it was Kerryn's turn to shine up on stage - she totally nailed the prep beautifully and came in 0.1kg lighter than I had predicted she needed to be. The funniest part in the afternoon was her asking me if it was "OK to have a Lindor ball" - yeah, sister - you gotta love a Lindor ball before you hit the stage. I got to meet Sara ( ) as well who did an admirable job being Kerryn's backstage slapper and I also helped Wendy with her tanning and pumping up. The hardest part was working out the timing - the show ran really late and often the competitors had pumped up only to have to re-pump (that sounds hilarious) later on.

Then it was off to Lygon Street for some well deserved Indian with Lindy, Kerryn, Amanda, Sara and partner Jason. Then Lindy, Amanda and I collapsed into bed - Amanda and I trained at Fitness First in the morning, whilst Lindy caught up on a bit of shut eye.

There's more to come but that's most of the weekend covered. The worst part was coming home and having my car break down in the middle of the city - I became one of those pests you hear about on the radio blocking traffic in peak hour! Finally got home at 10pm last night and posting this at 5.30am this morning. Have missed blogging and hope to blog later today.

Monday, September 29, 2008

The Backstage Slapper

Finally beginning to recover from the weekend! Saturday was huge. This ANB show definitely had a different feel from last year's show- I think it may have been that it was at Southport, not at the Tivoli. There were some outstanding competitors and excellent routines( I have to mention Raechelle's routine here which was amazing ), but there were also many competitors there who weren't "quite ready". To know when you're ready is a tough call, particularly if you don't have an experienced coach or mentor - hats off to everyone though who did make the effort to get up there and compete!

Next weekend I am looking forward to the INBA show on Saturday ( Tara and Gil) and then flying down to Melbourne for the ANB (Kerryn, Charlotte and Miss C who as far as I am aware isn't a blogger which is why she shall remain anonymous for now. Shall we say I am looking forward to a big weekend of backstage booty slapping....hee hee.