Fasten your seatbelts, folks, it's time to meet TrueFN client, Kayla Amodeo! Kayla is no-nonsense - from her professional life to her lifting life, she gets it DONE and is also a great person to be around. She radiates positive energy and strength, and has the professional and fitness accomplishments to prove it. From her days in bodybuilding, to her times on the powerlifting platform, Kayla sets an example for anyone seeking to take their pursuits to the next level.
TrueFN: What's your professional background, Kayla?
KA: My educational background is in public health. I earned my Ph.D. from the University of Alabama and have since been working for the Arthritis Foundation as the Legislative Research Manager. My goal is to provide substantive evidence for policy priorities, building a solid foundation for successful advocacy work. I have always worked in healthcare. I've been on the academic side, clinical side, the insurer side, the preventative health side, and now the policy side of the health system. I also teach research methodology and health policy for Concordia University in Chicago and I just co-authored an article on arthritis and it's public health burden. https://issuu.com/dam-dpha/docs/de-jph-chronicdisease-march2017_032/36
TrueFN: How long have you been working with your coach, Elliott?
KA: I've been working with Elliott since December 2016, but he's be critiquing my lifts for a few years now!
TrueFN: Why did you start working together?
KA: I wanted to become a better technical lifter. I've done several powerlifting competitions and have a solid lifting history, but I feel I need to be an expert technician to keep progressing my strength.
TrueFN: How has your physique, strength, and/or mindset changed since you started?
KA: Since working with Elliott I've gained a lot of confidence in myself as a lifter. I was always proud of how strong I was but now I'm proud of how good my lifts look. When other people watch my lifting videos or see me lift in person, I want to set the best example. Physically my body feels great! I've gone through several meet preps where I experienced injuries or pain associated with poor technique. Since working with Elliott, I'm pain-free and I'm getting stronger!
TrueFN: How many days a week do you lift?
KA: Four days of lifting, but I'm extremely active on other days, whether it's walking, biking, or hiking.
TrueFN: Life gets busy and people miss workouts, what's your strategy to stay on track?
KA: Well, I'm a planner! I try to always plan things ahead of time, whether it's meals or training sessions. But in the off chance I haven't prepared for something that comes up, my strategy is to remain calm. Missing one training day or having to change that day around is not going to hurt me in the grand scheme of things. You can always make good food choices no matter what or where you are eating and you can always get in extra activity if you have to miss a training day. Take the stairs, go for a walk after dinner, or even just stand up and stretch at your desk. Consistency is key, and if you are consistent most of the time, an off day wont hurt you.
TrueFN: On a scale of 1 to 10, how hard do you work during your workouts?
KA: Most definitely a 10. I give 100% to my training. There are days that I don't feel as well or I'm tired, but I don't short change my training. I've often found that the days that are hardest to drag yourself in are the days that actually turn out to be the best!
TrueFN: What is your favorite exercise/lift?
KA: Deadlift - any style, any amount. I love to deadlift.
TrueFN: How does being strong benefit other aspects of your life?
KA: Being strong is certainly a confidence booster! It's a good feeling to know that in an emergency situation I'm strong enough to carry another person, lift something heavy, or even just be able to run up or down stairs. Being strong transfers into all aspects of life, not just emergency preparedness. My posture is better when I have to sit for long periods of time, I have increased energy, and an overall heightened vigor for adventure! Further, the community of strong women that I'm a part of is completely irreplaceable.
TrueFN: What’s your #1 piece of advice to someone who wants to make significant fitness progress?
KA: Make it a priority. Make it a part of your routine. Fitness should factor into your priority list, just like brushing your teeth and bathing.
Coach Perspective from Elliott White:
TrueFN: Elliott, what is like to coach Kayla?
EW: Kayla is a breeze, and I'm really excited to see her progress over the next couple years. She works hard, and takes care of the details so all I have to do is point her in the right direction. She has improved her technique tremendously, and is always 100% with her nutrition and recovery to maximize her progress. Having such a well rounded experience in figure and powerlifting means she understands the nuances to training and nutrition and how important it is to be consistent. Add her scientific knowledge of the body and she can't lose. If I could change one thing about Kayla it would be her femur length, but I guess you can't have it all :). Kayla rules!