I'm a completely different person now, inside and out!
Jessica Cant, 28, shares her secrets to fitness success, what motivates her and how she turned her life around.
Name: Jessica Cant
City: Wodonga, VIC
Day Job: Recruitment and HR Consultant
Weight Pre-transformation: 65kg
“I HAVE ALWAYS BEEN ACTIVE, PLAYING FIELD HOCKEY FROM THE AGE OF FOUR AND LONG DISTANCE RUNNING BUT AS I GOT OLDER I FOUND MORE AND MORE EXCUSES TO DO LESS AND LESS EXERCISE.”
I also had a demanding job managing a cinema centre at the time where my hours varied 7 days a week 9am-12am. I found myself regularly eating the food at the café because I hadn’t taken lunch or dinner to work with me. Although I was still running, I was untoned, had no muscle definition and because I wasn’t eating right I was always tired and felt sluggish.
HOW DIFFERENT DO YOU FEEL NOW COMPARED TO THEN?
I am a completely different person, inside and out. I am so much more positive in my outlook on life, I don’t
let things get me down anymore and I worry a lot less. I now have the energy to get through my day.
WHAT MOTIVATED YOU TO START TRAINING?
I moved to Melbourne and started a desk job, and I found myself not fitting into my work clothes like I used to and thought I have to do something now before this gets out of hand, I needed to stop making excuses and putting everyone else first and spend sometime on me and my health.
DO YOU REMEMBER YOUR FIRST TRAINING SESSION?
My first training session was with my current trainer and coach Aaron Curtis and boy was that an eye opener for me! I thought that I was still active, but little did I realise how unfit I had gotten and how poor my technique was.
WHAT’S YOUR TRAINING LIKE NOW?
It’s more specific on body parts rather than full body training, and I have also worked my way up to lifting quite heavy weights.
WHAT HAS BEEN THE MOST REWARDING ASPECT OF TRAINING?
When I was doing my competition preparation, setting a goal with a set timeline, pushing my body to its absolute limits, testing my willpower like I have never done before and the results were just so rewarding. Never in my wildest dreams did I think I could get my body in this shape.
WHAT HAS CONTINUED TO MOTIVATE YOU THROUGHOUT YOUR TRAINING?
The support I have received from everyone. I am contacted regularly by people I haven’t spoken to in a while who have watch my progress on Facebook and Instagram and tell me I have inspired them to get their health back on track.
WHAT OBSTACLES HAVE YOU OVERCOME?
Definitely my food habits! Prior to training I ate whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted. I would skip breakfast, finally eat lunch and then not eat again until dinner. I also have a very sweet tooth. I had to change my eating habits completely. I now have six meals a day, my meals are completely focused around my training, and I now think of food as a way to fuel my body for training and recovery rather than just eating for the sake of it.
WHAT IS THE NUMBER ONE LESSON YOU HAVE LEARNED ABOUT HEALTH AND FITNESS?
Do not listen to fads and remember that there is no quick fix. If you are looking to improve your health and overall fitness for the long term then it requires hard work, sweat and tears (and yes, possibly blood) but trust me, it will be work every second!
What do you wish you had known when you were 16?
I wish I had of known that it doesn’t matter what people think of me, and that comparing myself to others is a waste of time.
DESCRIBE HOW TRAINING MAKES YOU FEEL.
Training makes me feel strong, empowered and in control. It pushes me to my limits, and makes me realise I can do things I never thought I could do. There is no better feeling than finally being able to beat a PB. It makes you feel invincible and quite often I can’t wipe a smile off my face!
DO YOU HAVE A QUOTE THAT YOU LIVE BY?
“Remember how far you have come, not just how far you have to go. You are not where you want to be, but neither are you where you used to be.” No matter how I am feeling, whether I am struggling to find motivation or feeling amazing, it reminds me why I started this journey.
WHAT WAS YOUR REASON FOR TAKING HEALTH AND FITNESS TO THE LEVEL YOU HAVE?
When I first started training it was just to lose a few kilograms. As time went on and I was taking progress pictures, I realised how much my body was changing and how much body composition was changing. I was becoming toned, which created a whole new level of motivation. I went from wanting to lose a few kilograms to wanting to build more muscle. It’s important to me now because I love the feeling of setting a challenge and I love seeing the improvements I am making.
WHAT IS THE MOST IMPORTANT THING WOMEN NEED TO REMEMBER WHEN TRAINING?
Don’t try to go to heavy too early. This is one mistake I have made a couple of times, I get a bit excited and try lift far to heavy when I’m not ready or if I haven’t warmed up enough, this was the reason for my shoulder injury last year.
DO YOU ENJOY TRAINING ALONE OR WITH A PARTNER?
I train 70 per cent alone, I enjoy putting my earphones in with my music on loud but then when I do train with someone they can push me even further than if I was training by yourself.
In my first season of bodybuilding/fitness model competing, I competed in the INBA Victorian Championships where I placed 2nd for Novice Fitness Model. I then competed at the INBA Victorian Championships and place 2nd in the Open Under 30’s and also won the Most Photogenic Award. When I first set my goal of competing it was just to see how far I could push myself, so to then place in my first comps was a bonus.
Breakfast: 100g Cottage cheese, 200g Chobani yoghurt, 100g mixed berries, 1 banana, 60g rolled oats and cinnamon. 11am: 3 boiled eggs and15 almonds
1.30pm: 100g chicken and mixed salad with 25 almonds
4pm: (pre-workout meal): 100g chicken, 100g raw weight brown rice and mixed salad
After training: protein shake 7pm: (Post-workout meal): 100g chicken, 120g raw weight brown rice and mixed salad
Monday: Back and biceps
Tuesday: Chest and shoulders
Friday: Back and biceps
Saturday: Shoulders and triceps
Sunday: Legs and glutes