Training Strength for Women: 3 Perspectives From Real Athletes

You've probably heard the latest news about the first two women to graduate from the grueling Army Ranger training. Pretty awesome stuff. When it comes to women and strength, the tides are turning in a positive direction.


Today we're featuring three of the strong women we've talked to on Breaking Muscle Radio: Kalli Youngstrom, Eva Twardokens, and Artemis Scantalides. They come from diverse backgrounds - bodybuilding, skiing, and StrongFirst - but they share a love for lifting heavy and striving to reach their fullest potential.



Meet Kalli Youngstrom

Kalli Youngstrom is a champion bodybuilder and coach who specializes in nutrition. But like many athletes, Kalli’s career began with a different sport. For her, it was wrestling.


Training Strength for Women: 3 Perspectives From Real Athletes - Fitness, strength, strength training, women, women's fitness, iron maiden


Kalli described why she got into wrestling and what it was like to compete in what was then a male-dominated sport.


In grade four I started wrestling, and eventually I dropped everything else to focus on wrestling. I wrestled at the national level through grade twelve and up to university, and then I had to actually retire because of injury and problems with concussions.


So that was the end of that, and then I had to find something else to do to keep me busy. I’m still competitive, and I can’t not be striving towards some new goal. I met my boyfriend and he was interested in bodybuilding, and that’s how I got introduced to the sport.



Kalli also played many other sports as a kid. So why did she focus on wrestling? She explained:


It was a unique thing, and originally when I started, my brothers wrestled, so that’s how I got interested in it. I would say it’s a little bit more popular in Canada for women than it is in the States still, but it’s really growing in popularity. Here I would say it’s 50/50 now, but when I first started it was definitely less.


There were certain years where I had no female training partners, so it was just me and my coach training with the boys. But I think I naturally excelled at it, and it was so challenging that I wanted to push myself in that way.



To hear more about Kalli’s story, her unique approach to training, and what she has to say about the Size or Shred program featured here on Breaking Muscle, click the link below:


Listen to the Full Podcast With Kalli Youngstrom Here

It’s a tradition to ask all of our podcast guests some bonus round questions to help us get us know them on a more personal level. Kalli's bonus round isn’t included on the podcast, so this is its premier appearance. Here’s a sneak peek at one of Kalli’s answers to the question, “What’s your least favorite exercise?”


 “Lunges. I hate lunges, and I’ll be honest – that’s one of those ones where you don’t do them because you hate them. That’s the one. But that means that’s the one you probably should be doing. Don’t tell my clients, who probably all have lunges in their plan!”


Click Play to Hear the Full Bonus Round With Kalli



Read about two-time Olympian and weightlifting coach Eva Twardokens on page 2


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