WHILE MOST OF US CRINGE ENTERING THE BURPEE STATIONS, OUR MARCH MEMBER OF THE MONTH LEAPS INTO THEM WITH GLEE. THE MORE CHALLENGING THE BETTER FOR CHANTAL NEGRI AND WE ALL BENEFIT FROM HER ENTHUSIASM, WISDOM AND EPIC CHEFFING HERE AT BODIES BY RYAN. NOT ONLY DOES SHE PUSH HERSELF TO THE ABSOLUTE LIMIT, SHE CHALLENGES ALL OF US TO DO THE SAME AND ACHIEVE THE BEST FROM OURSELVES. WHILE SHE’S BEEN OUTSTANDING FOR A VERY LONG TIME, CHANTAL HAS ABSOLUTELY CRUSHED THE RECENT INAUGURAL BBR EIGHT WEEK CHALLENGE AND HER RESULTS ARE MIND-BLOWING. THE BURPEE QUEEN HERSELF SHARES HER BBR EXPERIENCE, WHAT MAKES HER TICK AND WHERE SHE’S HEADED NEXT WITH HER BIG GOALS.
Above: Chantal before joining BBR and in March 2020 after completing the eight week challenge.
When did you first join Bodies by Ryan and what was the state of your health and fitness prior? Share with us a little about your sporting/fitness history before BBR…
I joined BBR in Jan/Feb 2018. As a child growing up, I played lots of sports always including athletics, basketball, netball, gymnastics and as a teenager I played netball at a state level for State School Girls and captained the team and also state touch football and captained the team. When I had the children, I kept playing division one netball and also trained at the gym, I’d drop them at the creche and train weights and do aerobics ha ha. I am also a qualified yoga teacher and have done yoga for 11 years now with the first eight years doing 90-minute Bikram classes every day. So, I have always been involved in sport and fitness of some sort.
What was the motivation to join BBR?
I was diagnosed in late 2017 with several Auto Immune Diseases (Systemic Lupus Erythematous or SLE, Antiphospholipid Syndrome or APS and Hashimoto’s disease) and my specialist advised I needed to do some more strength work as my muscles were weak and breaking down from the disease. I had also contacted Ryan about doing some training with my son and it all just fell into place for me to join also.
What was your first impression of the gym?
WTF?? Ha-Ha At first, I was worried it would be a real Boys Club with young guys with huge egos ha ha – I was like, these guys are my kids age and I don’t need their attitude!! But as I soon learnt they were all there to help and train and guide everyone, I could see they were nothing but encouraging and supportive. The training was hard and I was exhausted after every session – and that’s what I love – that same feeling I still get from when I walked in just over two years ago.
I was also like what the hell is a dog doing in the gym?? I am not an animal person, but now I love to see Forrest and love him coming up to me.
What challenged you the most in your early days?
My weight – the excess I was carrying made everything 10 times harder. My cardio has always been good and I could always keep going, but carrying extra kilos about made it harder to move and respond.
Please share your physical and mental transformation over your time at BBR…
So, since I have started, I have lost a total of 15 kgs and over 70cms. For me, the change has been in recognising that what I eat makes a HUGE difference to my weight but also my health and wellbeing. I used to think that if I exercised that I could eat what I wanted, or that weekends didn’t really matter what I ate as the week would make up for it…. and I never really realised the amount that I did or didn’t eat made such a difference. I have taught myself how to weigh and track macros and that’s been a massive game changer for me.
Above: Yassss Burpee Queen, looking fit after a recent online BBR Live session.
You’ve now been a BBR for a long time, how do you stay motivated and continue to improve?
I am a numbers person – so everything is about hitting goals and targets I have in my head. Initially it was three sessions a week, then four and then five until it’s every day. Then I moved on to numbers on the bike or rowers or box jumps in 50 seconds, or weights I can lift or squat, or burpees I can do etc. I also LOVE the community here and the absolute best thing I love is that I feel there is absolutely ZERO judgement. There is NO negativity towards others, no jealousy, no Tall Poppy Syndrome, only love and support, and an awesome support network.
What’s the biggest health or fitness challenge you have ever overcome or achieved?
My auto immune diseases- they are something I have to live with on a daily and lifelong basis now and take medication for daily, so it’s imperative that I keep myself healthy, both physically and mentally. Oh, and I also had a complete tear of my Right ACL and medial ligament in 2000, which I had to have surgery on and then rehab etc over the 12 months following.
Tell us about any of your daily health routines that help you achieve your goals outside of the gym?
Training and movement every day, I meditate at least once a day for 20 minutes doing Transcendental Meditation (TM) and twice when I can, plenty of green vegetables including a green smoothie most afternoons and ensuring I get plenty of protein in my diet too. I also use an infra-red sauna daily. Once a week I have a bath to chillax. I log off from social media and phones by around 8.30pm, then try to get into bed by 9.30pm so I get the sleep I need. Sleep is imperative for me.
What are some of the goals you are currently working towards?
I still have some weight to lose, but am now concentrating on building and toning the muscles to create some shape and strength in my body. AND I am working towards being able to do one unassisted chin-up…… Stay tuned!!
Tell us something special/surprising about yourself that we wouldn’t know?!
I have three adult children and have been married to my soul mate, best friend, lover and husband, Carl for 29 years. I was a child bride, ha ha! Carl and I also work together daily – offices side by side, and we have business here and in Europe. I do the accounting and finance for all our businesses, and manage all our commercial properties.
I’m allergic to Crayfish shells …. I can eat the meat but I can’t touch the shells and only Crayfish – very convenient hey!! Ummm, my father is French and my Father in law is Italian.
Fast five favourites
Fave HIIT/Strength station? Has to be Burpees -Erg Bike and Sled for HiiT and Strength always Squat Rack or sissy squats – actually any squats.
Least fave? Chin Ups both gyms ha-ha although have been working on that!
Fave café and your order there? Felix and Co in Nedlands and a Flat White on the way home from the gym, I pick it up for Carl and I 😊
Fave cheat meal? We don’t tend to eat out a great deal for casual meals as we love to cook at home. But I’d have to say a Mustard and Pickle Burger from Grill’d
Fave holiday destination? St Tropez France – Love me some beach clubs!!
Huge congratulations Chantal! What’s even more impressive, Chantal finished off the recent challenge online as she had to isolate earlier than other members with her auto immune diseases. BBR Live and online memberships are keeping our members fit AF and connected while we are physically apart. To chat over what we can offer you from BBR, email Ryan or call him on 0400 850 782.