Di Westaway– a Wild Woman On Top

. Posted in Lifestyle

You may recognise Di Westaway as the woman behind the World’s Highest Handstand, a former Australian Gymnastics Champion or from her many media engagements. As the CEO and Founder of Wild Women on Top, she has turned her passion into a career that has inspired thousands of people to achieve extraordinary goals whilst raising over 4 million dollars for the Fred Hollows Foundation in the last four years. We had to ask HOW – and here Di shares her secrets to creating your own reality.

 "The secret is to think about what you really love doing, what gives you the best ever “WOW” feelings. Then create a goal with that WOW experience on steroids. Create a Big, Hairy, Audacious Goal, write it down and break it down into little bite size morsels. Then, do something every day towards your goal."

 Be a Coastrek’er!
This year’s Coastrek takes place Friday 28th February to Saturday 1st March. The event is normally a sell-out so you’ll be lucky to grab a spot, but why not start training for next year’s event? The website is packed with great tips and advice for how to hit the outdoors and test your limits. You’ll find anything from advice on nutrition, mental tuffness, blister aids and fast fitness training.

 "Walking with women in nature is the BEST EVER form of exercise and it’s so pleasurable that most women think it’s a waste of time. But it’s not. Research into the health benefits of movement is irrefutable."

Looking at you, I cant’ help thinking “What’s the secret”? Do you have any inspirational tips and advice for how to identify your dream – and then making it come true?
I was lucky to grow up in a family that believe exercise, nature and food are our best, in fact, only medicine. And also, that “we are what we think”, like Buddha says. We live in our head most of the time, and it’s here we create our reality. After becoming a national Gymnastics champion at 16, I learned that you can create AND live your dream. I’ve been doing it ever since. For example, I know that climbing a high altitude mountain is tough, challenging and often not fun. But by taking it, literally step by step, you can climb Mt Everest. Then the exhilaration that comes from the experience is so incredible, you will become addicted. Making a dream come true brings happiness on a grand scale. And YOU can do it.

What does exercise mean to you – I get the notion it’s much more than just fitness…
Exercise is happiness – I believe we’re only ever one workout away from a good mood. Exercise is physical and mental health and the key to making a difference on the planet. Exercise is why I get out of bed every morning. Exercise gives me health, and health gives me life. It allows me to adventure in amazing ways around the planet, which is awesome. They say “everybody dies, but not everybody lives.” I believe exercise allows us to live.

Many think of exercise as a necessary evil. Do you have any tips for how to make exercise a joyful part of your life, not just a means to a healthier and happier life?
If you think exercise is a necessary evil, you’re doing the wrong exercise. And you’re WRONG. We believe exercise must be fun, social, goal oriented, and adventurous. We were born to move. And when you exercise in nature, it’s even more joyful. Exercise for health does not need to be hard.

The secret to making exercise joyful is to find movement that you enjoy and do it daily. And, if you have trouble with motivation, get yourself an adventure goal in a team that motivates you to get fit. Try trekking to Everest Base Camp, or Trekking the Coast of Sydney for charity. That will REALLY motivate you to get fit and have fun with your friends in nature.

What are your thoughts on goal achievement and how to stay dedicated even if we don’t succeed the first time around?
You stay dedicated to achieving your goal by:

1. Choose a goal where you commit with others so you’re locked in
2. Write it down
3. Get a plan on how to achieve it
4. Turn obstacles into opportunities and remember, we learn MOST from our failures
5. Make a financial commitment to your fitness and health goal and see it as an investment in your future. If you don’t invest in your health, sooner or later you’ll be investing in sickness.

What is the best thing about Sydney Coastrek? And what does it mean to you?
Coastrek is about fun, fitness, friends and Fred (The Fred Hollows Foundation). Sydney Coastrek, 50-100km Team Challenge is an opportunity to prioritize your fitness and health for a good cause. It’s an excuse to go walking with your friends at sunrise on Sunday mornings on the most stunning coast in the world, sip cappuccinos and feel fantastically full of happiness hormones. And, it’s also an opportunity to change the world by helping restore sight to nearly 100,000 people. What a win, win, win that is!

Do you have any favourite walking tracks in Australia to inspire us to join the next Coastrek?
Absolutely! If you’re in Melbourne, you should walk sections of the Great Ocean Walk, along the stunning coast of Victoria, in WA there’s the Bibbulmun track, and SA has the Heysen Trail. Queensland has heaps of great walks: The Great Fraser Island walk, plus heaps of walks in the hinterland

of the Gold Coast and Mt Coot-tha right in the heart of Brisbane. That’s where Susie O’Neill and her team are training for Coastrek. If you live in Sydney, you’ve got the iconic Sydney Coastrek and 90 minutes south is the Royal National Park Coast Track. Or, go to the Blue Mountains for World

Heritage stunners on the Grand Canyon, or Wentworth Falls tracks. Best to check National Parks websites in your state. Australia’s made for bushwalking and there are spectacular trails everywhere.

Di Westaway
CEO and Founder, Wild Women On Top. World’s Highest Handstand, former Australian Gymnastics Champion, and leads a team of women at Sydney Coastrek, which has raised over $4million for The Fred Hollows Foundation in the last 4 years.