Name: Meg Gallagher a.k.a. Meg Squats
What does being a Girl Gone Strong mean to you?
Girl Gone Strong stands for being someone who was taught that she should be small, and conformed to those expectations until she decided she wanted to follow her heart, and her body, on a quest to grow and gain.
How long have you been strength training, and how did you get started?
I’ve been strength training for five years now. I started with a New Years Resolution to try CrossFit, and that was my first introduction to a barbell.
What does your typical workout look like?
I compete in powerlifting, so I focus on building the Big Three (squat, bench, deadlift), so my training usually has some sort of main compound movement, a secondary variation of that specific movement, and a ton of accessories.
Despite my namesake, I’ve been loving bench lately.
Most memorable PR:
Hitting 402 pounds in my last powerlifting competition.
Top 5 songs on your training playlist:
Top 3 things you must have at the gym or in your gym bag:
Do you prefer to train alone or with others? Why?
I love training with friends. Unfortunately those sessions usually last two hours longer than intended, but I love talking about training and supporting my friends while they hit big lifts in the gym.
Most memorable compliment you’ve received lately:
I had a colleague who recently said, “Everyone I talk to says that you’re on top right now” and it’s so surprising to me because I’m always looking over my head, admiring my friends and peers who have seemingly accomplished so much more than me. I always feel like I’m trying to catch up.
His compliment reminded me that although I might feel like I’m wading water trying to make up for lost time, there’s someone who I’m inspiring who is longing for success like mine.
We are all playing catch up, so celebrate your wins, and get motivated for the next one.
Unless you’re Oprah. She’s on top, case closed.
Most recent compliment you gave someone else:
I recently hired my first member to my team, Sophia. Right now she edits videos for YouTube, but her creativity is so amazing. She’s working on another issue of her very own zine, about women in weightlifting, and I gush over them with every image I see. I love seeing creativity, and especially when that creativity is used to empower strong women.
Cheeseburger and fries.
Favorite way to treat yourself:
I’ve been following Arianna Huffington’s night routine. She starts winding down and relaxing at 9 p.m., takes a bath and listens to relaxing music and reads in bed. It’s been one of the best ways to shut off at night and give myself time away from work and my laptop and phone.
Don’t let the bastards grind you down — Margaret Atwood (The Handmaid’s Tale)
Ready Player One, by Ernest Cline
What inspires and motivates you?
I love going on social media and being amazed by the women in strength today. Every day we’re seeing someone accomplish a task or lift we thought was impossible.
The women who redefine what women all over the world can do and set records of strength inspire me to see what is within my own capabilities.
What do you do?
I’m owner of Strong Strong Friends, a strength coaching business, co-owner of Strong Strong Supply Co., a lifting equipment business, and I do design work on the side, for fun.
What else do you do?
I spend a bit of time in Whistler Canada, so like to snowboard or try snow sports while I’m here. Other than that a perfect night for me is grabbing a burger and a beer with a few friends, and watching Netflix. I’m currently obsessed with Fargo (the series).
Describe a typical day in your life:
There is no such thing as a typical day for me, so I’ll give you today’s agenda:
5 a.m. — Wake-up
5:30 to 8:30 — Email and admin tasks
9 a.m. to 10 a.m. — Breakfast and planning meeting with my partner Ryan
10 a.m. to 2 p.m. — Film for YouTube, client check-ins, coaching project
2 p.m. to 4 p.m. — Cook, eat, chill for a bit
4:30 to 7 p.m. — Gym & film for Instagram and YouTube
7 p.m. to 9 p.m. — Eat, clean, and chores around the house
9 p.m. to 10 p.m. — Wind down and get ready for bed
Your next training goal:
Right now I’m drowning in projects, so my training goal is literally to just stay consistent in the gym and healthy. Mid 2018, I’m hoping to have a bit more time to dedicate to training, recovery, and minimized stress.
For what are you most grateful?
My partner, Ryan. He’s the most positive person in my life, and has been supportive of my career and living a non-traditional lifestyle.
Of what life accomplishment do you feel most proud?
When I hear a woman tell me that they started lifting heavy because of me.
Which three words best describe you?
Strong. Strong. Friend. (Can I use strong twice?)
Tell us about a time when you overcame fear or self-doubt.
I was really nervous to enter the Bodybuilding.com Spokesmodel Search this year. I was afraid other communities wouldn’t accept an outsider, and terrified that the people who support me would suggest I was moving away from my focus. The opposite happened, everyone welcomed me as a bit of a wild-card (with no current plans to bodybuild) and my people were so happy to see a strength athlete in the mix. I even won the the entire competition!
How has lifting weights changed your life?
Outside of organized sports through college, I was never motivated to be in the gym for long periods of time, or to actually work while I was there. I’m more motivated than ever.
What’s the coolest “side effect” you’ve experienced from strength training?
The lifting community is so welcoming and awesome. We are like the island of misfit toys, but with more muscles.
What do you want to say to other women who might be nervous or hesitant about strength training?
You won’t lose anything by trying! Start slow and at your own pace, and keep following the fun. You might get hooked on seeing how much you can add to what you tried last week.
You can find Meg on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube.
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