T Nation

Diary of Smallstrong


Hi everyone....My name is Emma....some of you have read my other log attempts at various times, both of which i have been hopelessly crap at keeping up to date...

With the new year approaching, I have decided to have another go at this and try to be more reliable in logging all my training and eating progress etc.

History - 36 year old female with long chronic history of not eating enough, lots of stress which a year ago led to an emotional breakdown of sorts and seeing my weight drop back down to below 40kg...this was combined with training too much...

In july this year, i changed gyms and coaches and started to only train 3 times per week, with more of a focus on what was good for me and strength, not what made me feel 'satisfied' which was to be run into the ground every session....

Since then, the ups and downs have continued emotionally, but im getting there with lots of help. My body has responded to this type of training and lifting really well, gaining kg's...I was a womens size 6 and now am at least an 8 in most clothes. The weight I have gained now does not shift easily like it used to...

The rest is long and dramatic and this is a training log, so im going to try to spare you the up and down emotions that i have shared in logs before and leave you with the lifting...which is afterall, the thing i love most in the world...
I love lifting because it brings order to my chaos, it brings confidence and selfworth...I just love it..

So here's my numbers
BW - dressed in gym gear + shoes 2 days ago = 48.6kg (this is the scales i usually weigh in on)
- stripped down to bikini for comp weigh in 2 weeks ago = 46.3kg

Deadlift - 105kg PB - aiming for 107.5kg+ on new years eve PB smashing session
Squat - 62.5kg PB - aiming for 65kg new years eve
Bench - 37.5kg - aiming to finally push up 40kg on new years...damn sasquatch arms...

Other goal
wide grip pull ups (overhand grip) - currently can do 10-15 assisted with band - aiming for one full dead hang unassisted by new years...would like to do at least 5

So, if you are interested i have posted a couple of 'get to know me' vids below of my recent performances...this afternoon, i train and tonight i will come back and log what i did...squats on wednesdays...love squats...love deadlifts more though..lol..

Hope i can do this whole 'powerful women' section of the forum justice..there are so many really strong girls here...

(at 2min20 - 92.5kg, 97.5kg and 105kg, fail 115kg national record attempt)

(1st lifter, 3min20 and 7min20)



I remember your posts in I think Beginners?


My goodness you are light! Very strong deadlifting for someone of your size. Blimey.


Ta Cal, hi Hallowed...yep, thats me..you remember right...the strange deadlift with a rolled upper back, or weak upper back as the case may be. I pulled 105kg in August at a local comp...didnt add to that in the recent national comp...long complicated emotional story...but my 105kg pull now is a much safer and stronger pull than it was then. I can pull 90kg for triples and stay tight now, last deadlift session on monday was 75kg for 5 x 5, no probs staying tight. The focus on strenthening my upper back continues with lots of rows and 50 pull ups per session x 3 per week, aiming to reduce the number of sets and the assistance by bands over time.

I was pretty dissapointed that my deadlift hadnt improved more (as in got the chance to lift more weight) by the dec comp (yep, there was a meltdown) but now I realise how much stronger and safer I am and will be as my upper back strength continues to improve. Im prone to wanting things immediately without waiting, i'm learning that powerlifting is not a sport that works like that. I have been doing this for less than 6 months, I am a beginner in this sport and there will be plenty of comps and plenty of opportunities to lift heavier in the future if I just put in the eating work and train. I am learning to be patient..and it's a lesson that will serve me well I think.


Welcome! You have a great training philosophy and you have good numbers for someone your size. Good luck with your training.


WOW! You are powerful! Looking forward to seeing your progress!

Also I don't know if this is your case--and if it isn't I'm begin incredibly rude and I apologize !! but there are plenty of us former E.D. chicks in here..I've been there myself and its shit and it never quite goes away.. I'm glad to see training has benefited you so much!


No offence taken...this is more a case of chronic disordered eating (and yes, it never goes away) secondary to lots of things but primarily depression and anxiety...this is actually the heaviest i have ever been in my life..and while i definately have patterns of gaining and losing weight, i have always hated being scrawney and boney..training changes that for me, it adds tone and definition, it gives me curves that i love and most of the time that is enough to drive me to put the food in my mouth...you cant do 20 rep bodyweight squats without eating properly...i know what ive got coming up to train for and that means to eat for as well...sometimes it derails for a few days but overall i am the most consistent ive ever been with my diet...well..it isnt really a diet...i just eat whatever i want, but i just make sure i eat...that and my 1000cal smoothies...and now i have hips and thighs and a decent butt...smoothies and 35kg BB lunges...lol...


WORD! You seemed determined and fucking badass!! No shame in your size either, it only emphasizes just how much power you got in you. I've no doubt you surprise people with your strength!

Total respect! :D!!


Training Report Wednesday Dec 14th...got busy eating when i got home and fell asleep on the couch before doing this report...but better late than never!

37.5kg for 5 paused singles, all good, slow but good

Tried out low bar squating for a change, coach said by the time i got the hang of it, the whole movement looked better than my high bar squat..worked up from 30kg for triples to 50kg for triples...no problem with the weight, felt lots of bits of me working harder that i dont commonly feel mid squat, like my lower back and abs and hip flexors...just working, not hurting. Coach said we will stick with it for a bit...felt really comfortable and stable...

KB swings
16kg for 3 sets of 20....this is the most cardio i ever do...and it shows..lol...hard work.

50 x wide grip pull ups, assisted by red band looped once.
Busted them out in 4 sets last night instead of 5...11/10/11 and then a mammoth set of 18 that came from i dont know where...was really proud of myself....and then i realised that means i now go up a band next session and it gets harder...bugga...oh well...

Was a top session, worked hard....next training Saturday.

I have what some people may see as quite odd pre-training musical taste...yesterday...it was Amy Winehouse...'Back to Black'...i believe its about lifting weights...
"I go back to black".....makes me smile...ALWAYS!


Woo kettle bell swings! That's my favorite kind of cardio :slightly_smiling: They always make me feel like there isn't enough oxygen in the room.


Haha...yep...suffocation was definately the major issue at the time...
im just glad my coach says i cant do any of those crazy KB complexes until Im at least 55kg...no complaints here!