We got an exclusive interview with Rene at Forest Gym, where she trains, set in a lovely part of the country and in the middle of a forest. Rene told us about not watching any tv, wanting to drive a Mustang and being disappointed with the IFBB’s decision.
1. What did you want to be growing up?
Growing up I wanted to be a scuba diving instructor so that I could always be surrounded by the energy of the ocean.
2. Please describe the high and low of your bodybuilding career
My high would be winning the IFBB World title and overall title in 2012. It made me the first British female to win that title and it also earned me my Pro Status.
The low would be the move made by the IFBB federation to limit the Pro Shows that female bodybuilders can compete in. This means for me to compete I have to travel all the way to the USA leaving behind family and friends who would normally support me at the shows. Sadly, the IFBB federation have decided to do away with the class altogether meaning that to compete now I would have to downsize to compete in a smaller class.
3. What are your 3 top tips for amateur bodybuilders?
My 3 top tips for budding bodybuilders would be:
4. What was the best piece of advice you were ever given?
I was told to always remember a very important life rule:
"What you give out in life you will get back." This rule is very valuable and applies to every situation you may find yourself in.
5. If you could meet anyone in the world dead or alive who would it be and what would you say to them?
I believe its important to have more than one hero - someone who awes you and inspires you. I would love to meet Eddie Vedder from Pearl Jam, Anthony Robbins, Lance Armstrong, Mother Theresa and ask them what motivates them in life and what life lessons have they learnt that have been invaluable and which they would pass on.
6. What is your motivation to keep going, even on days when you just don't want to go to the gym?
"The pain of discipline versus the pain of regret" -
I remind myself of this and think of the feeling of regret that will be inevitable if I don't have a consistent training routine.
7. How do you spend your spare time?
I love putting my feet up and reading.
I will never watch television. I heard a guy say once "I find television very educational - everytime someone turns it on, I go out the room and pick up a book". I can relate to this!
Why sit and watch someone on the other side of the glass achieve their dreams and goals while you deaden your senses by watching mindless hours of unimportant trivia when instead you could be out there learning and achieving your own goals!
8. What is your best and worst body part and why?
My best body part would be my legs. I can keep up with guys at my gym who are 25kg heavier than me and match them rep for rep, weight for weight. I love feeling the strength I have in my legs.
My worst body part would be my calves - not for any other reason other than they really hurt more than any other muscle group when I'm training them!
9. What are your ambitions for the future?
Learn how to play the guitar. Learn another language. Drive a Mustang. And above all - open my own gym.
10. Who is the most famous person you have ever met?
Kai Greene - and let me tell you - he is such a genuine, humble guy. I don't have anyone on my phone that's famous. I don't like chatting on the phone, ever. If I can avoid it, I will. I much prefer face to face.
Please share with us your favourite picture and tell us why you like it so much.
My favourite picture was taken when I won my Pro Status. It signified to me that I had achieved the ultimate goal in terms of bodybuilding that I had set for myself. It was proof to me that you can achieve anything you put your mind to.
I have learnt to believe in myself and to follow my dreams - even if it means facing fears and defying adversity from the skeptics and ultimately proving how powerful the mind is.
I was told after my first bodybuilding competition by someone close to me that it was all very nice, but I should face reality and get back to "normal" life because I would never amount to anything. Listen to yourself and follow your heart -
"Believe it to Achieve it!"
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