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When I was 11 I was diagnosed with juvenile idiopathic arthritis, which threw a spanner in the works for my teenage years and set out a load of challenges in the years to come! Having spent years with no control over my body, pain and inflammation ruled all! But with some kick-ass meds and a friend who saw an opportunity to help a brother out, he invited me to the gym with him. I remember shaking like a leaf benching just the 20kg bar! But after persistence and a solid few months of determination, I saw changes in my body and my confidence grew exponentially. My body is nowhere near perfect but I love it and what it can now do.



At the age of 11 I contracted a nasty food poisoning - Salmonella. Other than the usual sickness, I didn't think much more of it! However, after a couple of weeks my wrist inexplicably became very painful and swollen. The doctors were baffled and couldn't find a cause. They put it in a cast and sent me back to school, however one by one other joints worsened as well. My knees, my ankles, my toes, my thumbs, ahhh! I didn't know what was happening and neither did the medical professionals. 

Eventually I was referred to a rheumatology specialist who diagnosed me with juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA). My body had reacted to the salmonella by attacking my joints, thinking that they were the bug. I remember a few weeks after being diagnosed I could no longer attend school, meet with friends, even leave the house because of the pain and soon became depressed. One morning I slowly went down the stairs on my bum to try and make some toast and couldn't even hold a glass of orange juice as my wrist was so painful and bent.

Fast forward a few years and I've tried nearly every anti-inflammatory and painkiller under the sun by the age of 15! I had less than 50% attendance at school and was losing hope of ever leading a 'normal' life. Until I started on a biological EpiPen treatment which flipped my world upside down, my inflammation slowly reduced, my pain started to subside and I was absolutely LOVING this new life! After a couple of years of ups and downs, a few cortisone injections later, and another new version of the biological EpiPen, I was much, much better than before, pain free in fact. With my new found health I was mountain biking, running, partying! and having the best time. On my 18th birthday I was gifted a 1 month gym membership and threw myself into it.

I met my best friend outside the gym ready for my induction. Lifting with my fused wrist was a struggle and my knees crunched every time I squatted but the feeling it gave me was incredible. After a few weeks I was noticing changes not only in my body, but my confidence and sense of self.

I've now been training for 9 years, and over this time I've gained invaluable knowledge and experience. I've been lucky enough to turn my hobby and passion into a career and I'm so grateful! Its a cliché but working out really did change my life! 




Image by Joseph Gonzalez

Nutritional Therapist


Level 2 Gym Instructor

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Level 3 Personal Trainer

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