OUR RESIDENT POCKET ROCKET, LOU IS PETITE IN SIZE BUT HUGE IN HEART AND GRIT. SHE WORKS HER BUTT OFF EVERY SESSION AND HAS ACHIEVED SOME EPIC RESULTS AT BBR, SO MUCH THAT RYAN AWARDED HER THE MUCH-COVETED WEAPON OF THE WEEK AWARD RECENTLY. LOU’S ALWAYS UP FOR A CHEEKY CHAT (BEFORE OR AFTER THE SESH, SHE’S ON DURING CLASS PEOPLE) AND A LAUGH AND REPRESENTS ALL THAT WE LOVE ABOUT OUR BBR MEMBERS. SO HERE’S WHAT MAKES LOU TICK…
BBR: What’s your fitness background?
LR: Right from when I left school I’ve loved going to gyms. In fact, so much that I eventually ended up buying a health club. So, I’ve come from the health and fitness industry, and I’ve always done weight training and various cardio training. I’ve mixed it up a lot, I’ve done triathlons, weight training, swimming – I think I’ve just about tried it all! When I sold the health club, I wanted to do something different. So, I tried F45 but found the trainers really didn’t know you as a person, or what you’re capable of, so I wasn’t getting much from the sessions. Then, one of my girlfriends told me about BBR.
BBR: What were your first impressions?
LR: When I first rocked up, I thought it was smaller than what I was used to but it only took one session and I absolutely loved it straight away.
BBR: What’s different about BBR to your previous gym experiences?
LR: What I love is that when I walk in the door, all the trainers greet me straight away by name and chat because they have a genuine interest in their clients. That’s exemplified in Ryan who lives and breathes what BBR is all about, he really cares about getting members into that wellness space and I believe that’s where the industry needs to head. It’s more than just losing weight and gaining muscle, it’s about making sure our bodies are feeling healthy. The added bonus is obviously when we do embrace that lifestyle we tend to lose fat and put on muscle! For me, I feel my fittest and healthiest ever right now. I outran my husband the other day and that felt really good!
The sessions are shorter than other classes but they’re so intense they really help your fitness and fire up your metabolism. In the first month I really felt my fitness dramatically increase, which I found transferred across to my running because I was stronger thanks to legs strength training. I’ve become so much stronger in the leg muscles and combined with the interval training at HIIT, it has been amazing for my running. I’ve also found I’m not plateauing with the continually changing program, I keep improving in different areas.
The social side is also amazing, Ryan has created an incredible community at the gym, plus the private Facebook page is really great for sharing ideas, great sessions and generally inspiring each other.
BBR: What’s been the biggest changes for you since starting at BBR?
LR: Since training at BBR, I’ve got such a positive outlook on life. When I’m not training, it resonates with my whole life. When I’m training and in my space, I feel like everything is positive inside and outside the gym. I achieve so much in my day when I train! It sets me up with the mindfulness aspect that makes me really conscious of the food I’m eating and when I’m eating it to support the training.
BBR: What about nutrition, has that changed too?
LR: For me, I’ve created my own variation from the BBR nutrition plans. Working with the macro program from Ryan meant giving my body the right amount of protein and calories, which I think I probably deprived myself of in the past. I built a lot of muscle following that program, but I have had to make adjustments because I only have one kidney so I can’t have too much protein as well. So I shake it up with intermittent fasting, because research has shown there are a lot of benefits to doing this such as reducing adult diabetes, cardiovascular disease and cancer. I don’t feel like eating in the morning, so I do my training on a coffee and then I’ll go on and follow Ryan’s program afterwards. So I’ll have my protein shake within 30 minutes of training and then plenty of protein and veggies, plus reduced alcohol.
BBR: Tell us more about your intermittent fasting…
LR: I’ll eat my dinner at 5.30/6 o’clock at night, which is usually fish and veggies and then I won’t generally eat until 11 o’clock the next day. So with that 14 to 16 hours fasting period, research shows that’s really good for the body. I don’t do it every day because some days I wake up and feel hungry, so I’ll have my oats and fuel my body. I eat when I’m hungry, it’s very intuitive and it’s really working well for me as a complement to Ryan’s program. Some of my girlfriends have followed Ryan’s 30 Day Challenge plan to a tee and had amazing results, so as females we really vary in what our bodies need and it’s important to find what works for us as individuals. It wasn’t an overnight thing for me and I’ve struggled over the years with what works and what doesn’t. At the moment, this is certainly working perfectly for my body and lifestyle.
BBR: What challenges have you overcome at BBR?
LR: I was struggling with results a lot before BBR. I felt like I was doing everything yet I couldn’t drop the weight and it had been going on for a few years. What I love about Ryan, he is so dedicated to finding solutions for people and he’s always there for a chat and so are the other trainers. Today I was doing squats with 15kg dumb bells and Mike knows I can do more, so he came over and loaded me up to 17.5kg. It’s those little things where the trainers really take notice and know how much to push you, that’s when you get results. The trainers here want to see you succeed as much as you do and Mike has actually become a really good friend to me. We have a personal training session each week and he helps me with physical results but heaps of other aspects of my life as well!
BBR: What’s your favourite HIIT station?
LR: I love working shoulders, so mine would probably be the shoulder press. I also love the ropes in the strength gym (what a sicko).
BBR: Least favourite…
LR: Ass bike! They can get rid of that thing (laughs). It’s always there though, isn’t it? Every session!
BBR: How do you mentally tough it out each session…
LR: I approach every session by taking it one station at a time. I focus on the moment, station by station and push myself the most I can for that one and tell myself that if I need to pull back next time, then I will. I keep that thought in mind through each station! Apart from the ass bike when Ryan is around… I just grit my teeth!
I’ve also gradually built up to taking on new challenges in the gym. You don’t need to come to BBR super fit – you can break everything down and build from it. The box jumps for example, you can start with just a step up and I’m incredibly impressed with my own box jumps now because I can finally do them! I mentally couldn’t get myself to do it before, I had an issue!! I love that I can do them now and I’m working on the next height.
What are you upcoming goals? Inspire us!
LR: I’m off on holidays to the Maldives in six weeks so, as everyone does, I want to look my best on holidays! So I’m really putting the hard yards in right now so I feel and look my best when I go. I’ve been mixing it up between the HIIT and strength gyms, so I get my cardio blitz with three to four sessions at HIIT and then some heavier weight training twice a week in strength, plus I’ve been doing one PT session a week with Mike. It’s really nice to have that mix of options at BBR and so I’m hammering it right now! I’m aiming for some real muscle definition.
Café? The Other Side, Swanbourne
Coffee? Chai latte
Cheat meal? Flipside burgers
Holiday destination? Maldives
Spirit animal? Dog for sure! I’m a dog whisperer even though I called Forrest ‘Boris’ for the first few weeks! He still loved me despite that (laughs). I really love dogs and have a spoodle called Ralph.