Strong women they inspire me, they make me want to grab the world by the lapels and go kick ass. When I see a woman in the gym who has defined muscles and is throwing some serious weight around, I have immediate respect for her. Sure, I respect the outer displays of strength, but mostly I appreciate the inner resolve that goes into achieving that level of physical success.
I was fortunate to get the opportunity to talk to such a woman, Wendy Heaslip, a 48 years old woman who backs up all that strength in the gym with being independent and charming.
She shared with me her strategies for creating a lean physique (along with a workout at the end of the article) and for the record, Heaslip is a mother, engineer, photographer, friend and cares for her dad who has Alzheimer’s. If she can do this with her busy life, you can too.
Here are those strategies she shared for developing a fit physique.
Secret #1 She wakes up early.
In her words;) “I’m up at 4:30 AM and out the door to walk the dogs (2 ancient Chihuahuas and 1 young ‘ratdog’). Then breakfast with my man, which he cooks.”
🚶get in a few minutes of activity, like walking, to boost your mood and energy levels throughout the day.
😉 allow your man to make breakfast. New research shows that women find men most sexy when they’re working in the kitchen…Sounds like a win-win!
Secret #2 She meal preps for the week.
Heaslip is an engineer during the day and doesn’t get home until around 6pm. How many of us can relate to this? Walking the dogs and going to the gym doesn’t leave much time to make a meal, so her and her boyfriend, Richard, meal prep on Sunday.
During the week all they have to do is a “quick warm up or veggie prep and dinner is ready.”
Heaslip’s tip: Focus your meals on protein. She suggests investing in shaker bottles. Protein shakes are good for supplementing when you can’t get enough protein with food during the day.
Secret #3 She eats clean during the week and plans a splurge meal on the weekend.
Restrictive diets generally backfire so it’s important to plan a splurge and enjoy it without guilt. When planning your splurge be clear on your boundary and eat a moderate portion.
While food is wonderful, it’s important to find other ways to bring fun and sweetness into your life. For Wendy, she gets to play with her weekend job/hobby of photography.
Secret #4 Meet yourself where you are.
Wendy said she got into lifting a few years ago after she read an article about the importance of resistance training to fight osteoporosis. She said, “I found a fitness app with some beginner routines and started doing them at the gym. I’ve always loved to see muscles move in response to lifting something heavy. It appealed to me right away.”
Takeaways: There are free resources available all around you so take advantage of those.
⚫️Ask your gym if they offer a complimentary session with a personal trainer.
⚫️Find out from your human resources dept. if they offer any wellness programs. I’m a health coach for Omada Health and many of my clients receive access to our program through their HR dept. https://omadahealth.com/
Secret #5 Enjoy fitness with your family.
Around 2012 when Wendy started getting into fitness, her daughter, Tess, started showing interest too. It was all fun and games until Tess got her personal training certification in 2014, and Wendy became her 1st client/guinea pig. This is when her training was taken into a whole ‘nother ball game.
Just another day at the gym for this powerful mother and daughter duo:)
Tess developed programs tailored to her mom’s personality and goals, which involved training like a powerlifter. Wendy lapped it up! Deadlifts, squats and bench she loved it all:)
These big lifts that stereotypically you see big bearish men performing in the gym became part of my routine. The heavier I lifted the more I dug it. I’m a little woman lifting heavy weights and there is just something so kick ass about that.”
While Wendy is extremely serious about her workouts I have often seen her on her phone and wondered what the heck she was doing;) She said that Richard and her text each other in the gym, sending funny memes or support to each other.
Secret #6 Make a bucket list.
Heaslip is training for a figure competition for Fall of 2016, and she said, “The competition is a bucket list thing for me right now.”
A bucket list reminds you of what’s really important to you and brings some color and motivation into the regimented lives that most of us have Monday-Friday.
The preparation is stretching Heaslip past her comfort zones. Currently she is in the stage of bulking and this has been really challenging for her, as all of us women can understand. Heaslip says, “it’s hard for me to wrap my head around (Gain weight? On purpose?), but I’ve been doing it for about a month now and have noticed larger, fuller muscles and I can lift heavier so I’m slowly getting on board.”
Takeaways: Create a bucket list of anything and everything you’ve ever wanted to do, be or have.
Secret #7 Get a workout plan that excites you.
Wendy shared her special leg/glute routine:
Barbell Squat 6×5
Straight Leg Dead Lift 4×10
Smith Machine Hack Squat 3×10-12
Single Leg Curl 3×20 each leg
Goblet Squat 3×12
Leg Extension 3×15 (dropset last set)
Wendy didn’t start out with all these habits, she developed them over time. Pick 1-2 small goals that you can do everyday and start. No one is too busy to take care of themselves. Everyone gets the same 24 hours a day. We make time for what we really want. The thing is, when you honor your health it makes room to give even more to the people and work you love so much.
Tess Redsky Heaslip is a personal trainer in Houston, TX and this is her boyfriend, Brandan Lacatino, with Richard. Talk about a #fitfam?! I think if Pixar ever needed a modern day family for The Incredibles, this is the one! lol