Build Muscle

Expert Interview: Joslyn Thompson Rule – Nike Master Trainer

This week we chat to Joslyn Thompson Rule recently voted Nike Master Trainer of the year 2015. She’s been in the fitness industry for 12 years working as a personal trainer and sports therapist. In addition to this she also has a history of competing in numerous sports including rowing, dancing, triathlons, Olympic weightlifting, CrossFit and gymnastics.

Matt first met Joslyn at a strength competition, check her out here pulling a truck….


He told me I needed to meet this inspirational lady so I was really pleased to be invited to speak at Her Story, an event run by Joslyn. Not only was she just as awesome and lovely as Matt had described her, but also incredibly humble about her amazing feats of strength, if I had achieved half the things she has I’d never shut up about it, you would know every detail!

IMG_8180I always love meeting positive female role models in the fitness industry. I feel many more are needed to offer more constructive advice and guidance to help buffer the pressures women experience to conform to images of physical perfection and avoid slipping into the realms of overtraining and orthorexia. Joslyn appeared as a guest on Fitter Food Radio Episode 53 and details her journey and transition toward more of a focus on rest, recovery and restoring her body after intense training sessions. She’s also recently had a little boy, Bjorn, and offers some pearls of wisdom regarding fertility nutrition and adapting exercise during pregnancy.

Joslyn is speaking at the Fitter Food Academy on 21 November covering the fundamentals of strength training and the impact it has on health and longevity. I’m really excited about listening to her talk. Here’s a little interview with her to keep you going until then:

How did you start out on your health journey?

It’s hard to say…I think I’ve always been interested in health in one way or another.  My interest in working in the industry however, came when I coached the novice rowing club in my third year of University as Vice Captain.  I enjoyed the coaching and seeing the girls get results, it was extremely rewarding to me.

How has your approach to health evolved over the years?

I think it has and continues to become more holistic.  Initially, I was all about training and injury prevention and rehabilitation.  I then became interested in the part food played, and now I am obsessed with recovery.  I’m also enjoying delving into the world of mental preparation, it’s an untouched realm that is incredibly powerful! 

What did you use to do that now makes you do a face palm?

I’ve been very lucky to have always been surrounded by good, supportive coaches that have guided me well.  That’s not to say that there are plenty of things in the future that could totally make me face palm at a later date.

What mistakes do you think women often make in terms of their approach to training? 

Probably the expectation that what works for one person, should also work for them.  Also just being impatient with how long it takes to get results, there’s a great quote I read recently “the longer it takes to make the shape, the longer the shape stays” 

Joslyn Thomson Rule 2For women concerned about getting bulky what advice do you offer?

I always say ask any skinny guy at the gym how hard it is to bulk up without making him cry!  Women don’t have enough testosterone to do so.  Of course there is always an exception to every rule but I’m confident that most women that are worried about it are not the exception.

How do you guide women to ensure training supports their hormones and fertility health?  I always ask them whether they have a menstrual cycle before I start training them to try and get a loose idea of where they are at.  There is no point in having an eight pack and a low body fat percentage if your hormones are out of whack.  I spend a lot of my time trying to get them out of prioritising HIIT multiple times a week when the don’t have the right recovery protocol in place to allow them to do so.

Tell us what a typical day of nutrition looks like for you?

At the moment I am still breastfeeding my 7 month old, so I really prioritise what I eat around ensuring I am providing him with the right nutrients.  Breakfast will typically be a blend of raw milk, eggs, butter, coconut oil, gelatin and cacao powder.  I may also do some sort of green blend as well.  The mornings are all about getting nutrients in quick that won’t take a huge amount of time.  Lunch will be something like chicken, rice, and plenty of vegetables.  Dinner will be some sort of protein again, maybe with some sweet potato and a big salad.

Do you take any training or nutrition supplements to support yourself?

Right now I take fermented cod liver oil, a probiotic and vitamin D3.

Name something you do every single day without fail to look after your health?


Joslyn Thomson RuleWhat do you think are some of the factors most people neglect or forget about in regards to their health?

Probably the unsexy stuff.  Getting enough sleep, meditating, stretching, journaling (I do this to get things off my mind or if I’m feeling overwhlemed) and drinking enough water.  They are things that are easy to do but also easy not to do.

What has been your biggest health breakthrough in the last few years?

Focusing on recovery. 

Who inspires you?

Anyone that is willing to give something a shot rather than giving up at the first hurdle.  This also requires a respect and some patience for baby steps.  A lot of us are fortunate enough to have a roof over our heads and food in our belly, there is no real reason why we can’t do a little extra to help ourselves or others.

What are you passionate about?

Living life to the full and for me this always starts with health.  I want to be able to kick a ball around with my grandchildren (need to work on my ball skills first obviously!)

Do you still have days lounging on the sofa eating chocolate and watching films? 

I try to schedule relaxation in because it’s important but I must confess I’m not very good at it, which is why I make sure I meditate daily!

FFA21NOVJTRPromoTileIGJoslyn Thompson-Rule will be discussing how to strength train like a pro at the Fitter Food Academy on 21 November. Limited tickets are available and selling fast so don’t miss out on a chance to learn from the best.