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Tuesday, 20 August 2013

Females and the Steroids Taboo

Recently I was asked if I thought Michelle Bridges was on the gear - steroids, artificial enhancers, peptides, whatever- because of her square jaw. Far out it’s a tough crowd! Don’t wig out but here’s an idea, perhaps she has put in consistent hard work for years to look the way she does, square jaw and all.


 Crossfit kicker of ass and my girl crush
Annie Thorrisdottir

I have a decent sized gob which is habitually filled with food. What's more I get a great sense of accomplishment moving heavy iron objects repeatedly, along with other demanding activities I am vigorous 6 days a week, some days twice. Together with consistent hard work and a splash of dads genetics I can get pretty jacked. I've been strength training on and off for 7 years, aside from a short stint posing as a house wife (falling in love is not recommended, be selfish in your quest or partner with one who propels you to greatness). Prior to that as a teenager I was not so muscular. I actually wanted to be thin, model like thin, scary thin. I wanted to be what society shoved in my face via gossip magazines and celebrities. At that time in my life I was unmistakably delusional but don’t fret! I came to my senses.

 
 Childhood consistency, flexing calves on ballet point creates thickness 
 
 
To the masses - wake up and smell the coffee.... lifting weights does not equal a bulky/man like physique! Your body responds to lifting by breaking down your muscle tissue and building you back up leaner and stronger. Lifting gives your body definition, tone and lowers body fat. Pretty certain that’s every normal females goal, ever.  Now listen carefully to my revelation; if I reduce my fat burning efforts through injury or otherwise and maintain my diet my ‘bulkiness’ increases. The level of fat on top of my existing muscle expands if I don’t burn it off. That ladies and gentleman is what can create my bulk. Don’t say I never teach you anything. As I sit here and blog it literally brings a smile to my face to think about waking at 4.15am tomorrow and front/ back squatting some heavy ass weight. In my current program no bulgarian split lunges, no glute bridges or kickbacks, no holding in farts to create my ass. MOAR SQUATZ. Look how much fun we have lifting!


 


 


 Photoshopped or artificial on the left? Stereotyping yet...


Stereotypes are a sad part of life. I try not to use them but unfortunately it still happens. Hell there are odd occasions when I've caught a glimpse of myself mid set and thought – you are jacked as a MF! I often say ‘I just want to tone my arms’. That's a lie. I have never said that. My body is a by product of the way I train, I don’t train to create a particular physique. Alas no, I have never taken anabolic (banned substances) supplementation, nor will I ever. Anyone who knows me knows I would never put that shit in my body, ever, and my test results would prove that. The basis of the organisation I founded would be fraudulent. I advocate to thousands of people to lead an active healthy lifestyle eating as much pure food from the earth as you can – this would all become null and void. I would lose sponsorships. Professional athletes and their associated clubs would no longer work with my organisation. I would be the worlds biggest hypocrite! You get the point, I have far too much at stake and too many brain cells to do something so dumb. My brother Aaron is a natural bodybuilder (let’s save the associations definition of ‘natural’ bodybuilding for another blog) and powerlifter. Has he ever taken steroids or similar banned substances? No. Will he ever? I’d like to say a firm no. If he did I would beat the foolery out of him (at least attempt to, he’s much bigger & stronger than me). The ethics of his programming business ‘Natural Physique Sciences’ would be compromised, and his belief system would be an absolute joke.
 

 


 Traps how I roll


My brother and I share many things in common, one is being stereotyped into using banned substances. This one always makes me laugh, I used to get offended but no longer waste my energy on peoples ignorance. In the world we live in, we can not control how people treat us, only how we let their treatment affect us. Marianne Williamson said it beautifully ‘There is a feeling of inner peace that comes from total relinquishment of judgment. We don’t feel the need to change others and we don’t feel the need to be different than we are. We can see, for whatever reason, the total beauty of another person, and we feel that they can see the beauty in us as well’ oh hold up, she screwed the end part up. Aaron and I also share a high level of commitment and our work ethic is unsurpassed. This is why we look the way we do. This is why we succeed in reaching our goals in training and in life. Sadly for him he got mums legs, sorry pal. Do I know others who use steroids? Sure, anyone who mixes in my circles is bound to meet those types. Surely you’ve seen the PPP (puffy pimply patrol) in the gym who balloon rather suddenly. Other side effects include seasonal and erratic gym attendance with copious amounts of mirror watching. I wholeheartedly disagree with what they’re doing but who the hell am I to judge their choices and what they put into their bodies. Surely they’re not out for my approval (as I am not theirs) what they do has sweet FA to do with me. I don’t treat them any differently, they might be using to mask another whole realm of self confidence issues, who knows. My conclusion? The idea of getting big artificially, then stopping to somewhat lose those gains, seems like a vicious cycle. Don’t cut corners, gear your lifestyle toward getting big and strong and you will.

 
Did the streaker have a good pre season leading up to origin debut?


Late in 2012 I had various surgeries, some planned others not. Breast augmentation, double groin hernia, melanoma removed from leg, lymph nodes removed from groin blah blah blah you get it, I was all banged up. Couldn’t laugh let alone think about exercise. Mentally I handled that 3 month period of complete inactivity surprisingly well. It was only when I stepped back in the gym and saw the gains I’d lost it hit me like a tonne of bricks. I remember one of my first sessions back exploding into a sprint and a. not having the knee drive to propel forward b. shuffling to almost trip over my own two feet and c. being as uncoordinated as a baby giraffe. Sure I had a strong, thick looking pair of trunks but I was learning to walk again.

 
My first outing after surgery (don't mind Aaron, his prep wasn't the greatest)
 
My first public outing was to watch the kid bro compete. I’d shuffled my way into the auditorium of Castle Hill RSL on the arm of my Dad with a forcefield of bodies moving with us shielding my fresh wounds from being knocked. After what felt like a lifetime squeezing through crowds of hundreds of screaming people we get to our seats and there’s people sitting in them. Normal circumstances you respectfully show your tickets ask them to move and they do. But these young girls don’ t want to move and decide to give my mum some lip. My mum Gail is one classy lady. She doesn’t swear nor does she accept cursing around her, she's a bit stiff but I respect her for maintaining a standard and I refrain from swearing around her. She watches me play sport, while I'm trash talking on the field she calmly takes notes of every curse word from the sideline. Queen Beast the fearless warrior on the field gets the biggest hiding after the game from her mum. I digress! While in my head I’m giving the people in our seats ‘The Rock (move the hell on) Eye’ in reality I’m exhausted, dizzy, heating up and feel like I could cry and/ or pass out any second. Moral of the story do not attempt a bodybuilding comp within a week of surgery. The combo of stank broccoli farts, rank slap on tan and not being able to stick up for my mum meant it was a shitty, shitty day.
 

 
 
Cutting a long story medium, thanks to effective muscle memory by body transforms after rest periods quite well. After lifting consistently I made some incredible gains in only 6 weeks. It’s time like these a coach is separated from a trainer. I needed a stable supportive base to have a decent comeback. A number of my coaches label me ‘the perfectionist’ athlete. Positives? An incredibly strong work ethic, highly motivated, committed to my goals and want nothing more than to learn and improve. Negatives? Criticize myself for mistakes, hold extremely high demands on my performance, get frustrated easily after making mistakes and even after a successful result can analyse with negative self assessment. I had surgery complications throughout rehab and was riddled with condition after condition preventing me from an ideal full recovery. When it would be easy to give up one must power on. Victory is achieved through adversity, resilience creates champions not a perfect ride. It irks me when people get all down and out ‘I've torn a hammy I'm out for 6 weeks I'm so pissed off I can’t train’ go deal with it! Take your tales of woe to someone who cares, you still have 2 arms and legs quit complaining.