Blackler in Auckland to realise her dream
Shelly Blackler is living the dream.
About 15 months ago she gave birth to her first child and now she is competing in a New Zealand athletic fitness model competition.
Supplement company BSN is searching for a model and Blackler hopes she's got what it takes to win.
At 153cm, she will compete in the ‘short' class of the competition, which is being held at the New Zealand fitness expo in Auckland on July 12 and 13.
"This is something I have always aspired to do. I am actually living my dream. Getting up on stage doesn't feel real for me, it makes me quite emotional thinking about it."
Blackler admits juggling being a mum with training has been hard but she has not gone into the competition half-hearted.
She has been working hard since January to prepare her body for the event, eating and training in moderation.
However, during the past few months she has implemented a gruelling regime that includes training between two and three times every day. "Preparation in the eight weeks leading up to the finals is crucial. My diet and exercise become super disciplined, everything is weighed and measured and I drink at least three litres of water each day."
The personal trainer gets up each day at 4am to prepare her vegetables for the day - even if she has been up all night with her son. She starts her day with a cardio workout and then has breakfast.
This is followed by weight training. She ends her day with another cardio workout.
"Weight training is most important because that's when I am shaping my body, building muscle, strengthening and toning it to create the symmetry."
Judges would be looking for good symmetry - where the shoulders are in portion with the hips, she said.
She would also be judged on her "athletic trim" physique and well-conditioned body.
The former figure bodybuilding competitor feels less pressure to look"ripped" because this competition was more about femininity, curves and tone. Judges also wanted to see the 25 competitors displaying confidence.
Blackler will be given a spray tan and will have a hairdresser and make-up artist on hand to glam her up.
A professional photo shoot (the day before) would also boost her confidence on stage, she said.
On the first day of the competition she would model fitness wear and then on day two, when the winners were selected, she would model her turquoise bikini on the catwalk.
Although fitness was her passion and she enjoyed preparing for the competition, she couldn't live long-term on her current regime. "I am really looking forward to the end of the competition, so can have a burger and chocolate. I think all the girls do."
The Southland Times