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Bodybuilders raise bar on age barriers

Shape Shop trainer Linda Oldfield, left, flexing her muscles with fellow bodybuilder Jacqui Sefo. PHOTO/ELISA VORSTER

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Two Masterton women are getting on stage and flexing their muscles to prove to all women that age is no barrier when it comes to health and fitness.

Jacqui Sefo, 47, and Shape Shop trainer Linda Oldfield, 53, are both competing in National Amateur Body Builders Association [NABBA] championships in Wellington over the next two weeks — something they want more Wairarapa women to get involved in.

“There are no limits,” Sefo said.
“The only limit you have is what your own mind puts on you.
“People give up easy, don’t follow through and have excuses — it’s only when you stop the excuses will you get anywhere.”

Sefo’s passion for exercise began in her teenage years when she used to open a gym at 6am before running on to school.

“And I haven’t ever stopped,” she said.

Their training consists of a mixture of resistance weight-training and cardio, but Sefo was quick to point out success can be achieved without slaving for hours lifting heavy weights.

“It’s about being consistent,” she said.

Oldfield said it wasn’t uncommon for some of her clients to have had knee surgery or hip replacements, and training could easily be designed around historic injuries.

“Age doesn’t have to be a barrier,” Oldfield said.

“Draw a line in the sand and say ‘this is it’.

“Don’t be afraid to come and lift weights — being fit, strong and healthy is the way to be.”

Both Sefo and Oldfield have entered many bodybuilding contests over the years and said it was the love of feeling strong which kept them going.

“I love pushing more than the boys,” Sefo said, laughing.

They were hoping other women their age would see them competing and be inspired to start their own health and fitness journey.


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