An Insight to Wonder Woman – Janet Kane By Mark Ottobre

“Second? What do you mean second? She is damn near perfect!! No! She is perfect!“

The head judge carefully replies, “Her symmetry is slightly off, you need to bring up her legs,” he says. “She is out of balance and you as her trainer have some work to do…”

This was our reality earlier this year at the Australasian Pacific titles.

At first I couldn’t swallow the thought of second place so I did what most people do, complain that physique contests are rigged and that the winners are only those that are friends of the judges. But I learnt early on that complaining never solved anything.

So I did what I do best, pull up my socks, tie up my shoes and got on with it. Knowing Janet, I knew second place was just the fuel that would spark an even bigger fire to become Ms. Olympia.

The INBA Ms. Olympia is the biggest title in female figure and physique championships. Win it and you are the best in the world, no questions, no excuses or complaining. This is where Janet wanted to be and I had to stop thinking about that 2nd place and start carefully planning her training if she was going to stand a hope in hell.

So I wrote the program up, “The Protocol.” It wasn’t pretty, but Janet said “I don’t care how hard the training is, write me up what you think will work”. So I did, and believe me, it was brutal!

The 4 separate programs I devised Janet were each more evil than the last. Most people complain about leg day, Janet was training legs almost every day. And once more, she did it with a smile on her face.

To give you some background; Janet and I started our road to Olympia as training partners. I have been through my fair share of training partners over the years, most of which struggled to keep up with my pace. So when I first started to train with Janet, I thought to myself “I wonder how long she is going to last?” It wasn’t long before I realised I just may have found my equal!

That was back in late 2007. So we’re back in the gym, Janet is ripped, ready and waiting to do another set; just before she does I shout “Wait!” Go heavier”. For a second she doubts herself, and I remind her of our mantra, “If I say you can, you can”. So she does, and without question.

Every training session we have together, I think to myself, “Ok, there is no possible way we can top that!” But each week, Janet manages to get the best out of me as I do with her.

In my years of training bodybuilders, figure competitors and gym junkies, Janet is by far the hardest working of them all. From her hours of early morning cardio, to her regular 2-hour long training sessions with Mr. No Excuses (me), Janet’s work ethic is nothing short of inspiring.

After her set, gazing at her perfect set of abs, I forget she is a mother of two young children. She just pushed her body beyond the pain barrier and now it’s my turn. Now, she is the one telling me, “I went up (in weight), so that means you have to”. Janet’s competitive spirit is only superseded by her ability to encourage others.

“Is end of month as crazy for you as it is for me?” Janet asks after we finish training. Beneath the wonder woman exterior Janet is a very savvy business owner. As a Senior Sales Manager for ENJO cleaning products, it’s one of the very many roles Janet excels at.

As Janet goes home, she picks her two young children up from the crèche; I see her reach into her child’s bag to pull out their favourite snacks. She watches them enjoy it for a moment then realises it’s her meal time. So she digs into her bottomless Max’s gym bag searching through the many carefully portioned pre-cooked meals to find meal number 3 for the day.

As I leave the gym I think, “Man, two kids, two businesses, a hubby and she still finds 2 hours to train hard with a super-fanatic like me?” As I leave the gym I can’t think of a better way to have started my day. I don’t know if it’s the endorphins after training, or Janet’s positive vibe, but I leave the gym with a big smile after yet another massive training session. Her energy is simply contagious.

In 2008, every contest Janet went in she won. “You’re not allowed to do anymore local or State shows, it’s simply not fair to the other girls”, I say jokingly, but serious at the same time. Even though she doesn’t see it, I tell her with sincerity, “You’re in a league of your own”.

This couldn’t have become anymore clearer to me than when I saw her win her second Australian title in 2009. It was when I saw her there; I knew we pretty much had the Olympia in the bag.

“Beep, Beep” I open my phone and it reads, “Janet wins her division, she’s in the Overall.” As a trainer, this is the most nail biting few hours you can experience. Waiting for the call between a competitor winning their division and the Overall Show where the winners from every division butt heads (and nail polish)! She’s on the sunny Coast in Queensland about to step on stage at the Olympia, I’m in a restaurant in wet and cold Melbourne.

“She won, congratulations” … Oh my gosh, she won!

I can only think, thank you Janet Kane for believing in my ability. Along the road to any goal you will always encounter naysayers. Well for all the naysayers, you will never exhaust a flame that is lit by possibility. The secret to wonder woman’s success is, there is no one on this planet who forces Janet to do anything… she does it because she can.

And I can’t wait to be a part of the next title she decides to chase… As the old saying goes - “How you do one thing is how you do everything”, so to me, its no wonder why Janet’s a “Wonder Woman”.

Mark Ottobre
Wonder Woman’s Trainer

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