Your Story Matters – Siss from @the_fitway
I came across Siss on instagram about a month back and love her attitude to health and fitness. She loves yoga and weighlifting and has a rocking body too!
Can you tell the readers of North of Here a bit about yourself and your lifestyle?
I am 32 years old (going on 21) , living in Gold Coast with my hubby and cat. Puppy isn’t too far off, and hopefully we’ll make little mini me’s soon too. :) I’ve always had an active lifestyle, but its just over the recent years where I really have started to enjoy the journey. I’ve realized health and fitness isn’t about trends, body type, looks or weight, but rather something for your overall health and well-being.
Before moving up the Gold Coast I was working full time as a Business Development Manager in Sydney, and about to start a new job as a Sales and Account Manager, which means my work hours are quite inconsistent.
What does a day in your life look like?
Normally it would be a 5am wake up, quick bite to eat then off to the gym. I’d either do weights or a HIIT session. I’d then get ready at the gym and off to work, whilst eating my prepared breakfast.
Due to my line of work being quite inconsistent re my work hours, I would either be out on the road all day visiting travel agents, I could get stuck in meetings/planning days etc, or I could be working from home all day. Depending on the day, I would either bring with me lunch and snacks, or if it’s a lunch meeting etc, I’d have to take it as it comes. Hehe my day does revolve around food and I would always have some form of snacks with me, being nuts, some vegetables to snack on or homemade Bliss Balls.
Again, the afternoons would vary depending on my day. I could be home early, I could be home late, so all depending on how I’m feeling. It would either be time out on the couch, a nanna nap, afternoon swim or yoga/foam rolling.
I’m normally the cook, so I’d cook up a nice balanced healthy meal for hubby and I , before watching some TV and then bedtime around 9-10pm. I try to get 8 hrs of sleep, but again, it all depends…
What keeps you motivated?
Feeling good from the endorphins is my main motivator. I get really grumpy if I don’t exercise (to the point where hubby will send me out for a run as he cant handle me haha!) I also find it motivating to see progress, and I have to have some form of routine. I’m so lucky now that I have a great friend that I train with, and she keeps me motivated as well. You show up because you look forward to your session together. You know if you don’t show, you will disappoint someone, as well as your self, and you have someone there to keep you accountable and push you to do your best.
What motivates me is progress! Set achievable goals so that you have something to work towards.
I would say though, make sure if you are looking at finding a training partner, or starting to train with a friend, that you have the same goals and similar fitness levels. Surround yourself with like minded , POSITIVE people.
Can you tell us about some of the challenges you face when it comes to looking after yourself?
Oh this would definitely be to listen to my body when it needs a break. I tend to push myself perhaps a bit too far at times, and it’s doing me more harm then good. Our bodies need rest to be able to recover properly, and I have sustained some injuries because of my ignorance to exactly this. I do often feel ‘guilty” when I skip a workout, and this is definitely something I am working on overcoming.
I also have the worst self-control. If there are sweets, cheeses, ANYTHING chocolate related, I will eat it. So I try to avoid buying all together. But that doesn’t mean I enjoy a treat. I’ll have something pretty much everyday; I just can’t buy it in ‘bulk’ lol.
As women, we often neglect a part of our own health/wellbeing – what is one thing that you’ve been neglecting, and would like to get on top of? (And are you working on this, if so, how?)
I guess this ties in with the above. I’m so addicted to fitness that sometimes it’s more of a downfall then it is a positive. I am getting better, so when my body is feeling extra tight, or I’m just downright exhausted, I will take a time out. It could either be via a “de-load’ week at the gym lifting lighter weights, doing a Yin Yoga class or taking time off completely.
Women tend to have some mixed up body ideals and as much as I am happy with who I am today and the body I have, I really used to struggle with my own body image, insecurities and having unrealistic goals (Victoria’s Secret Models hello!!). I still have those days where I’m just not happy, I’m feeling fat, weak and just plain useless, but I also understand where those thoughts are coming from I also understand that taking one day off, or having one ‘bad’ meal won’t make me fat, just as well as one healthy meal wont make you skinny. It is all about finding your balance, and something I do live by is “everything in moderation”.
What does your training routine look like?
My training routine does vary, as I believe to make progress, your body needs to be challenged. I also need to change up my training for my own sanity as I get bored very quickly.
However, even though it changes, I do have a structure. 3-4 weight sessions a week, one to two HIIT sessions and Yoga/Stretching. I also enjoy going for walks on the weekends it’s a great way to catch up with mates whilst keeping active, AND another excuse to wear active wear ;)
You are a beginner yogi, what made your start yoga – and why did you keep the practice up?
Yoga has been, and still is, an interesting journey for me. I started based on an advise from my previous PT. He said my training would benefit from more mobility work, eg Yoga and stretching. I have a neck injury from a car accident years ago, and it would give me a lot of grief. I didn’t realize back then that I had a really bad posture. My back was really weak, I had an extremely tight chest and my hip flexors were just a joke.
I was also following some very inspiring Yogi’s on Insta, so I thought I’d give it a go, and I haven’t looked back since!
My posture got better, my neck injury was hardly noticeable and my strength was increasing in line with my flexibility. I also noticed what calming effects it had on my mind so yeah, I’m definitely a converted Yogi.
You also spend time in the gym, lifting weights, tell us what motivates you on the gym floor?
My main motivation is how it makes me feel. I feel strong, I feel fit, and it makes me feel sexy. It’s a confidence booster, and nothing is more motivating then seeing your own progress.
Ladies, I hear it all the time, and I used to be one of them, weights will not make you big. They will however, make you fitter, stronger, and SEXY!
Can you tell us why you love yoga and lifting weights together – what makes them complimentary for you?
The two just works so well together. Increased flexibility has given me increased strength, as my range of motion is higher. It is also 2 completely different forms of exercise, both helping you get stronger, however on a completely different level. What I also like about it is, everyone can do it regardless of fitness level. Yoga helps my lifting, and my lifting helps my yoga. For me, it’s the perfect Yin and Yang.
Grocery shopping is generally a pain, what are some of your favourite foods that you buy that make you feel great?
Ahh this is hard one, as I looove FOOD! I actually don’t find grocery shopping a pain at all, as everything food related is exciting to me. I do get very excited when its Mango season though, so I’ll have to go with this.
What is your favourite recipe at the moment?
I’ve recently become addicted to smoothie bowls, and my fav is when I mix my Banana/Mango smoothie with a Berry Acai, it is seriously to die for (see pic!) .
What are your three top health tips for living a healthy lifestyle?
- Find a form of exercise you enjoy doing. If you don’t enjoy it, you will fail
- Set realistic. Resonate why this is important to you and go for it 100%.
- Understand the importance of nutrition. You don’t have to “diet” for the rest of your life.
What does ‘wellness’ mean to you’?
In means you are in tune with your body and mind. You’re feeling well about yourself, you enjoy your training, and you have a great energy that stays with you throughout your day.
What are five things in your workout bag?
Gym Card, Protein Shake, Gym Towel, Waterbottle and weightlifting gloves.
What is one thing you do for yourself, for your sanity/health/wellbeing that you do everyday without fail?
I move. When I’m not training, I’ll do some form of active recovery, in form of Yoga, Stretching, Walk etc. I just have to move.
You can find Siss on instagram @the_fitway (she also tells me to stay tuned for her blog launching soon)!
Your story matters: Is a regular series where I sit down at chat with women like you about your health and fitness story. Everyone has a story to tell and we can all learn from each other. If you would to be featured please email me: hello <at> northofhere.com.au