Name: Zoë Daly
Background / Bio:
I love everything health & fitness!
I grew up on Sydney’s Northern Beaches so I have lead an active lifestyle enjoying this beautiful area.
I have been an athlete my entire life and have had abs since I was 16 from rollerblading at an extreme level, as well as skiing, snowboarding, surfing and skateboarding.
It’s not about aesthetics to me- it’s about being truly functional and feeling good J
Competition Title wins
- INBA State Title 2010
- IFBB State Title 2010
- ANB Asia Pacific Fitness Model Title 2011
- IFBB National Title 2011
- IFBB State Title 2011
- WBFF World Title 2nd Placing 2013, Pro Status earned
- WBFF Pro Debut 2014
I am about to embark on a new chapter with the goal of studying law, so 2018 is going to be busy!
What inspired you to get into bodybuilding?
Exercise has always been my happy place- my escape from stress & anxiety.
People always asked me when I was competing because of how lean I was, and I had no idea what they were talking about!
I just looked that was as a result of my love of being fit & healthy.
I became curious into what competitions they were referring to and looked into it in early 2010. I started competing before I started “proper” lifting, my physique came from years of functional fitness and my love of yoga & Pilates.
After placing 3rd in my first show, I was hooked and did 6 shows within 5 months of each other, winning 2 Sate titles & placing top 3 in the other 4 shows.
After a year of competing, I wanted to take my physique to new levels, so I that is when I started lifting weights 5 x weekly, and I loved the changes that came about.
However, it was not until 2013, when I became my own coach, and started strategically implementing more carbs into my diet, that my physique truly evolved.
That is when I went on to place 2nd in the world & earned Pro status with the WBFF.
How did you do in your first show?
As mentioned above, I placed 3rd in my first show, in a line up of around 35 girls.
It was the ANB Sydney Physique Championships, and it was on my Birthday, May 23rd.
Back in 2010, there were no height classes or ‘Novice/first timers ’categories.
I was thrown in the deep end with seasoned competitors and girls much taller than me!
I was stoked to place, I was not expecting it, and it would have still been a memory I will cherish forever if I had not placed.
What a rush!!
What gets you going? More importantly, what’s keeps you motivated to keep going?
My drive to constantly improve and my desire to feel fit & healthy definitely get me going and keep me going.
What is your personal fitness routine in an average week?
This will most likely change soon as my injuries are gone and I am ready for a new level, but the past 6 months this has been the right balance for my body:
Monday: 1 on 1 Clinical Pilates then an all over body weights w/ my PT
Tuesday: Body Balance class
Wednesday: Rest Day
Thursday: All over body weights
Friday: Body Balance Class
Saturday: All over body weights
Sunday: Rest day
What do you think about popular fitness trends like Crossfit and Orange Theory?
Crossfit is a great idea in theory- and lot of people are drawn to it as it seems like the perfect way to get fit: a combination of weight training & cardio, all at a high intensity… However even conditioned athletes get niggles from such high reps, and the lack of time to perform those reps with correct technique, so to the average person who spends 8 hours sitting at a computer, it is a sure-fire way of getting injured.
I also think it has a negative impact on hormones (for women anyway).
Not familiar with Orange Theory, so cannot comment on that.
If you had a weak body part how would you bring it back up?
Start with clinical Pilates to strengthen the neural pathways to that area, then activation work, then design a strength program to target that area.
I would train that area 2 x weekly until it became a strength.
What does a typical day of meals look like for you?
Meal 1: Quinoa flakes, WPI, crushed nuts and berries
Meal 2: Pre training meal: Cooked carbs & protein
Meal 3: Post training meal: WPI Shake and fruit
Meal 4: Lean meat, rice and veggies
Meal 5: Turkey mince and veggies
Meal 6: Steak, almond butter and veggies
Which is more important, diet or exercise?
Nutrition would pip exercise at the post as you simply cannot out train a poor diet, but in the absence of exercise, you can still make progress to your health & body composition with the right nutrition protocols.
What advice do you give to people trying to break into the Fitness Industry / Competition?
To first truly love health & fitness- to enjoy it for how it makes you FEEL- not just chasing the “aesthetics”.
What do you think is the most overrated exercise in the gym? Most underrated exercise?
Most overrated are Barbell Squats for sure!!!!!
Most underrated would be Single Leg Hip Thrusters or Reverse Hypers, both are amazing!
When cutting, down do you prefer to use HIIT or just normal cardio? What’s your favorite cutting exercise?
I never do HIIT, and the most cardio I ever do is a 30 minute brisk walk a few days a week.
I used to love Body Attack classes, as back in the day I was a full-blown Cardio Bunny. I was truly addicted to those classes!
I do not need cardio to get/stay lean though, and I am so glad I realized that!
What is your diet like?
My diet consists solely of wholefoods- except on cheat day!! Lean meats, chicken thigh and breast, turkey mince, eggs, fruit, veggies, quinoa, oats, rice, all nuts and my all time fave food is natural almond butter- yummo!
What is your supplementation like? Any particular favorites?
I do not use a great deal of supplements, as nothing beats good nutrition.
I use WPI (with breakfast and post training), BCAA’s during training and L Glutamine with my post workout WPI shake.
If you were starting over right now, what would you do differently?
Not jump into the splits in early May 2010. It was 2 weeks before my first ever show, and I was mucking around after a Body Balance class.
I jumped into the splits, and heard a popping noise from my left hamstring/glute insertion area.
It was agonizing L I did not rest though, I trained through pain (very silly) and I have never trained without pain or severe restriction as a result.
The entire time I have been lifting & competing, I have worked around pain.
It lead to a myriad of other injuries due to compensation and a very dysfunctional physique.
Every prep I pushed through real pain – until late 2015, my body said “no more”.
I spent all of 2016, literally learning how to walk again, completely rebuilding myself.
I am finally pain free and functional again and it’s liberating!!!
What’s the best training advice you’ve ever received?
If you’re having a bad day- GET TO THE GYM!!
Favorite cheat meal?
Pizza followed by Nutella for desert!
What has been your biggest accomplishment in the fitness field?
Other than being the first Australian to earn Fitness Pro Status with the WBFF (and in Vegas of all places) definitely building my online coaching business, which turned 6 November 1st.
I have clients in 50 countries around the world and I love helping others achieve their health & fitness goals, and becoming happier people J It’s the greatest career ever!