By Stu Cooke
Stu: We met Angeline Norton (pictured above) at Sydney’s Fitness Expo earlier on this year. With enough protein supplements and chemical potions to make your head spin, it was refreshing to meet a sports/fitness model who was passionate about what they put in their body and doesn’t buy into all the hype.
Impressed with her approach to health and sports modelling and an all round great girl, I asked Angeline if she would share some of her tips on what it takes to get that sports modelling look… Enjoy!
You are a personal trainer and sports model. How long have you been in the fitness industry and how long have you been sports modelling for?
I’ve been a personal trainer for almost seven years now and I’m pretty much new to the whole competitive sports modelling industry. I’ve just finished my second season of my first year competing having tried a few different categories to see where my body fits in. I go between sports model and bikini model depending on how my body is looking at the time.
What got you into the health & fitness industry in the first place and then later on sports modelling?
I’ve always been into health and fitness even from a young age trying out every kind of sport from Karate to cross country running to ballet and dance classes! My mum in particular was very much into healthy eating and I think that played a huge part in how I looked at food and tried to stayed away from processed unhealthy junk food the majority of the time. I got into sports modelling through a friend who was also a personal trainer and came along to one of her competitions and immediately knew I wanted to give it a go and see how far I could push myself to achieving a body like the ones I saw up onstage!
I know you work directly with clients and weight loss, why do you think so many people seem to struggle in this area (weight loss)?
I think it has a lot to do with all the misleading marketing and advertising that’s out there at the moment. People get so confused and get hooked into thinking that particular products are healthy for them, when in fact it’s the complete opposite and it’s actually preventing them from losing weight. Also not enough education from a young age about nutrition and how to go about eating a health nutritious diet. A lot people don’t know what a calorie is or what protein is so therefore the whole process just seems to overwhelming and they give up!
You mentioned you were working for many years as a personal trainer, yet couldn’t shake the last few percent body fat to get that bikini body you wanted. What was the defining factor that made the change to allow you to go on and become a bikini sports model?
I think the defining factor was hiring a sports model coach, someone with experience who was able to prescribe me with a detailed eating plan which then made me realise how much sugar I was inadvertently consuming and how my portion sizes were too big and that I wasn’t eating enough meals.
Would it be fair to say that following closely to what is known as a paleo diet as helped?
Yes I think it’s helped immensely, getting back to basics and cutting out refined processed foods, dairy and sugar has definitely helped me.
How often do you exercise per week, how long is each session generally?
I work out 6 days a week, I do 5 weights sessions a week for about 45 minutes where I work on different body parts and then do 2/3 cardio sessions of interval training increasing that amount of cardio coming closer to competition time.
Should women be fearful of weight training?
Absolutely not! This is the biggest misconception that I come across in my line of work that women will get big if they weight train and they should stick to cardio to drop fat. This is so not true and a myth that’s being going around for a long time. Our bodies are designed differently to men and we have a much lower level of testosterone in our bodies to build big muscles, so physiologically it’s pretty damn hard to get big muscles for us girls!
I believe weight training to be so important for women not just for aesthetics but to also build strong bones so down the track as we get older we have that strong support within our bodies so if we do have a fall our bones won’t break and we still can have a very high quality of life. Another reason to weight train is that lifting increases the number of calories you burn even after you’ve finished your workout, our muscles need energy to repair fibres so while your sitting on the couch after you’ve trained the calories keep on burning! Another reason to weight train is to create lean muscle and decrease body fat because fat takes up more room than muscle so therefore clothes will fit better and the body looks tighter and leaner which is a number one goal for women who come to me that want to change their bodies.
What did you eat yesterday?
Breakfast: I usually have eggs for breakfast either in an omelet with turkey or scrambled with some extra egg whites and some smoked salmon, or a 180 Superfood Smoothie with some berries, 1/4 avocado and some unsweetened almond milk.
If I’m back to back with clients, I find boiled eggs amazing to munch down on for brekkie on the go!
Lunch: For lunch it’s chicken and colourful salad with some nuts and dinner I alternate between fish, beef, pork or lamb with some green veg.
Snacks: For the meals in between lunch and dinner I normally have something similar or if I’m on the run I’ll have a 180 smoothie or a protein pancake with some berries and dairy free coconut yogurt. For sweet craving after meals I find having a herbal tea helps sweetened with some stevia or 1 or 2 pieces of dark organic chocolate does the trick!
How far out do you start planning for competition?
I normally allow 12 weeks to get my body ready for a competition but try to maintain a healthy and clean diet all year round and train hard during off season to build lean muscle.
How much does your body fat percentage change and life style, from day to day living to competition time?
It definitely drops down close to competition time and my lifestyle certainly changes along with that too. I eliminate alcohol 8-12 weeks out which means I go to less social events where I won’t get tempted to slip with my diet and I spend a lot more time training and getting my cardio done!
Do you count calories?
No, but I used to a few years back and it never got me anywhere. I became obsessed knowing the calorie content of every food and use to have this little book telling me the calories of most foods but I still never achieved the body I wanted through counting calories!
You have just written an eBook. That’s a great achievement in itself! What made you write it? What did you hope to achieve by writing your Ebook and what’s your overall message?
I wrote my ebook to help inspire others that it is achievable to get a bikini body. I’m not blessed with genetics where if i diet for two weeks I drop body fat rapidly and I’m ready to hit the stage. I did it through hard work and dedication and sacrificing nights out with friends and consistently being aware of what I was putting into my body and weighing my food and know what the correct portions where for my 5 meals a day. I also wanted to show people that it is possible to change life long habits and form new healthier ones and make lifestyle changes that will not only benefit yourself but also the people around you.
My other message is that you shouldn’t believe every ad you see on tv guaranteeing you a healthy product because at the end of the day these companies are driven by profit not to improve your health,to do a little more research into what your putting into your body and to start reading the nutritional content of food so you know exactly whats contained in these foods!
Learn more about Angeline here.