Martina is a 44 year old mother of 4, who has taken the Crossfit world by storm. A passionate and dedicated coach and athlete at Crossfit Waterford, Martina has competed in many throwdowns, Oly competitions, and most recently, finishing in the top 5 athletes in the masters division (40-44) for the Crossfit open in Europe. Martina has always been a massive inspiration to me and it’s a pleasure to interview her for Primal Piggy.
Primal Piggy: Hi Martina, I know you’re extra busy at the moment following the open, congratulations on your ranking and thanks so much for taking some time out of your busy schedule to answer some questions.
Martina Galgey: Hi, Thanks so much for interviewing me!
PP: When and how did Crossfit come into your life?
MG: Crossfit came into my life over 3 years ago through mutual friends. I heard about this guy doing some funky shit in his garage, so looking for a new challenge, I met up with Tom Dunphy for my first session. One I will never forget 21,15, 9 Thrusters and Burpees.
The rest is history!
PP: How has Crossfit changed your life?
MG: It has changed so many things in my life; how I eat, sleep , the person I am today both mentally and physical , I look at things nowadays from a totally different perspective…because that’s what Crossfit does for you, it teaches you how to become a better person.
PP: Love it! What was your Athletic background prior to Crossfit?
MG: My Athletic background originally was a runner (sprinter), then Karate came into my life, and just general fitness in the gym. You could call me your average gym bunny. But I loved being active my whole life.
PP: Did you know immediately that you wanted to compete?
MG: No, not immediately I was a bit apprehensive at first, but once you do your first comp. you’re hooked. You just want to get better and to learn more skills , lift more weight, and when you win it’s a nice reward for your hard work.
PP: Favourite & Least favourite WOD, Why?
MG: My favourite wod is Grace, Why? Because it’s so simple to pick a bar up, throw it overhead, and gasp for air after 2 minutes, I can’t think of anything in that short time domain that can do that much damage.
My least favourite is Karen OMG !!!!! #IHATEWALLBALLS or Thrusters, those 2 movements in any wod is enough to make me feel sick.
PP: I know that feeling. I couldn’t walk for a week after Karen!! How do you stay injury free?
MG: I think I have been lucky with the injuries, nothing too bad. I am spending more time on stretching and mobility now, and I will generally have a maintenance rub about once a month. I think the strength I had coming into Crossfit has helped me from developing any shoulder injuries. My shoulders were strong, so they can take a bit of pounding.
PP: Do you think strength/fitness is down to genetics or dedication?
MG: I think genetics have a huge factor in your strength. Some people have a natural strength inside, but being dedicated and consistent with training will help you achieve your goals.
PP: What inspires you to go to the gym everyday & do you ever have an off-day?
MG: People I have met through Crossfit always inspire me, and I suppose I inspire myself if I’m honest. I go to the gym each and every day to achieve my goals, to get better and to see where I can take this journey. I think when you reach my age, people expect you to be a certain type of stereotypical human being ie: a woman that looks after the home, family, kids and that’s me as well, but I just do fun things at the gym. If I can inspire one person to get up and be a healthier person then I achieved what I set out to do every day! Do I have an off day? Yes I do but it’s only normal, when it happens, I just put the bar away and come back and hit it harder the next day.
PP: Being a coach, how do you fit in the time to train yourself?
MG: I coach the afternoon classes which consist of 4/5 classes back to back, Mon – Fri so my training is done in the morning. I manage most days to get the work load done, if not I will stay back and finish it after class in the evening.
PP: How do you program your training?
MG: I don’t program for myself, I leave that up to my coach. I reckon I’d be too easy on myself if I did.
PP: How do you manage to improve on your weaknesses, whilst building on your strengths?
MG: Strength is king and also the hardest thing to keep, you have to keep on top of it, but that can sometimes leave you forgetting to focus on weakness and skills. So I’ll put my weakness into my warm up and work on them there and anything I need to address, my coach will have it programmed in for me also.
PP: Do you think Crossfit has changed the fitness industry for woman?
MG: Oh yes!! It has given woman a new focus, a very different style of training and more importantly; results.
It promotes that it’s ok to have a lean looking body, and not a skinny stick insect image that magazines promote. Strong is the new skinny….
PP: It definitely is…What advice would you give anyone wanting to begin Crossfit?
MG: My advice would be to give it a go! You have nothing to lose, you will either love it, be addicted or you will hate it! I always ask my clients to give it at least 3 months to see the changes that occur. The majority of them love it after the first few sessions!
PP: Do you follow a specific diet and what supplements do you take?
MG: I’m about 85 % Paleo but I also let myself live a little, if I’m looking for a treat I’ll have one but generally, I’m very good.
As far as supplements go, I take Fish oil, Zinc/Magnesium, Vitamin D/ Vitamin C, Protein shake after training, and of course my GLC2000.
PP: Do you schedule a cheat day or are you 100% strict?
MG: Sunday is normally my cheat day, I will have some desert like tart and cream, or custard, or maybe a takeaway, like pizza.
PP: How much sleep do you get each night?
MG: I get between 7/8 hours per night and on the weekends I’ll generally sleep in until 10 am so not too bad. (us girls need our beauty sleep)
PP: What’s next for you?
MG: Well, next on the cards is the next stage of the masters top 200 in the World complete the next 4 workouts, which will be done on the 17 of April and after that I have Raising The Bar European Masters comp on the 26/27 April. I have been invited to the Grand Prix in Germany to lift for Ireland; a team of 5 masters are going out this year, so I have accepted my place on the 1st June. Generally to keep progressing from year to year.
WOW busy lady, Congratulations!! Thank you so much for a truly inspiring interview- I can see how you earned the nickname “Machina” you are brilliant!!