How these 6 amazing real women stay fit How these 6 amazing real women stay fit

We asked some of our Fernwood Franchisees and staff to lend their faces (and bodies!) to help us lift awareness around the benefits of strength training.

They’re not models – they’re six of the fiercest, fittest females we know. All six of them are in fine form thanks to regular strength training. So we couldn’t think of a better group of women to ask: what does strength training mean to you?

MT, Franchisee at Fernwood Preston, 40 years old


It’s hard to believe our Fernwood Preston Franchisee MT turned 40 this year. But perhaps we can put her youthful looks down to strength training. She’s been in love with Body Pump since she started uni (literally half a lifetime ago!) and can’t imagine life without regular strength training. Even after the birth of her son, she was back in the gym within four months, and lifting weights again within six.

Unsurprisingly, MT is getting her whole team behind Lift the Nation this year as she wants every woman to know the benefits of strength training. ‘Strength training makes you feel stronger as a woman and more confident about your body, because even after one session, you can actually feel your body starting to tone and sculpt.’

Lee Squire, Franchisee at Fernwood Ballarat, 52 years old

Lee Squire

Our Fernwood Ballarat Franchisee Lee didn’t start strength training until much later in life. An aerobics-addict, her love of strength training didn’t start until about 15 years ago, when the benefits became too big to ignore. She started working with a personal trainer and needless to say, she hasn’t looked back.

‘I could immediately see the benefits – my metabolism improved, I was getting stronger, and I was creating lean muscle mass.’

At 52, Lee still runs rings around most 20-year-olds, and she intends to stay young for the rest of her life by continuing to lift weights.

Wendy Brookman, Franchisee at Fernwood Canberra City, 34 years old

Wendy Brookman

For Wendy Brookman, Fernwood Canberra City's Franchisee, strength training is all about injury prevention.

‘I had a back injury, and running and aerobics were out, so strength training was in.’ the mother of five says.

Today she lives pain free with no injuries and feels 10 times fitter than ever before. The 34-year-old would deadlift for days and believes every woman should start strength training to avoid future injuries, rehabilitate from old injuries, and strengthen for the future.

We totally agree.

Adala Bolto, Franchisee at Fernwood Ryde, 37 years old

Adala Bolto

Adala Bolto is a true Fernwood success story. She started as a member with over 30 kilograms to lose, fell in love with lifting, became a Body Pump instructor, and eventually bought her own Fernwood Franchise in Sydney’s Ryde.

‘It all started 11 years ago. I had two children very close together and gained 32 kilos. So I joined Fernwood and did what the typical woman does - cardio. Three months in I switched to strength training and that’s when the results started.’

Adala lost the baby weight plus more, shaving her size 14 down to a size 8.

‘There are a million reasons women should strength train,’ 37-year-old Adala says. ‘Weight loss if obviously one of them, but it’s also about maintaining the muscle mass you had when you were young so you can stay young.’

We couldn’t agree more.

Dawn McCorkell, Fernwood Head Office employee, 32 years old

Dawn McCorkell

This year Fernwood Head Office employee Dawn McCorkell took her love of lifting one step further, entering herself into several female body sculpting competition.

For 32-year-old Dawn, strength training has been a large part of her life for five years. The qualified PT still trains with weights most mornings before she comes into the office and on the weekend too.

‘I love it because I like feeling strong, I like seeing new muscles coming through and I like continuously improving on my lifts.’

Her dedication paid off, earning Dawn a place on the podium in all competitions she entered this year. We can’t wait to see what she does next.

Roxi Bruton, Fernwood Head Office employee, 27 years old

Roxi Bruton

27-year-old Roxi strength trains because she loves the feeling of empowerment and confidence she gets from lifting weights. The Fernwood Head Office employee discovered her love for weights and the gym shortly after she finished school, and it was love at first ‘lift’.

The size 8 ‘sometimes model’ is living proof that strength training doesn’t make you bulky, ‘So many women are worried that strength training will make them look bulky, but that’s not the case at all. Strength training makes you feel toned, defined and helps with weight loss!’

She keeps those gazelle-like legs in perfect shape by doing lots of squat variations and loves working her legs.

Looking at Roxi, we’re definitely going to add more squats to our workouts!