IF you’re anything like the millions of Australians who have trouble sticking to a strict calorie-controlled eating plan, you’re going to love this diet advice from netball ace Kim Green. “My number-one diet tip? Don’t diet,” she says.
“Embrace a lifestyle, not a diet. Enjoy your food, but train hard, and do that extra fitness when you can so you can then go and treat yourself. Life is about balance, so just enjoy what it has to give you. Eat good healthy produce and lots of it.”
Whatever she’s doing, it’s clearly working.
The 32-year-old Australian netball champion and captain of the Canberra Giants netball team is already a two-time Commonwealth champion, a two-time world champion, and the proud holder of four national netball titles.
And as if her glittering 16-year career at the top of her sport wasn’t enough to keep her busy, Green has just partnered with teammate Sarah Wall to launch the Netfit app and website, which focuses on delivering a holistic approach to netball training, as well as helping to develop and inspire the next generation of netball-playing stars.
“The Netfit app is for all netballers,” she says.
“It’s fitness, drills shot by drones, nutrition, mediation, yoga — we’ve got everything.
“It’s a place where anyone can go to get fit, but also feel part of a community.
“But it had to be more than just drills. I’d always found visualisation really helps me before a game, even just picturing what I’m really good at. That’s one thing I always tell some of the young girls coming through — never concentrate on your weaknesses, concentrate on the really good parts of your game.
“The main driver was to get children active, which is where it all started, and then it branched out into adults, and now to where we are today as an online resource that people all over the world can access.”
Kim says the app is a reflection of her own approach to training, which, after a serious knee injury kept her sidelined for more than 12 months last year, suddenly involved so much more than just physical fitness.
“My knee injury last year required a full reconstruction. Everyone told me how tough it would be, but you underestimate it — I just didn’t realise how hard it would be. But it built a lot of resilience, too, and it makes you really appreciative of what sport gives to your life.”
Kim adds: “Mental health is an important topic at the moment. This world is so fast-paced, we need to take a moment for ourselves now and then, and I think we sometimes forget that.”
But the biggest takeaway from her time on the sideline, knee strapped up and desperate to get out on the court with her teammates? A reminder of why she started playing netball in the first place.
It’s something she hopes nobody else playing the sport ever forgets.
“It’s so important to remember why we play,” she says.
“We all get lost in this world of selections and high-performance, but never forget why you play. Just enjoy it.”
What’s your favourite healthy snack?
What does a healthy dinner look like for you?
Sweet potato nachos, or salmon with vegies and sweet potato mash. I love sweet potato — can you tell?
What’s your tip for staying motivated?
I never look too far ahead. It helps me stay present and in the moment.
What’s your favourite treat meal?
Has to be a big bowl of ice-cream
What’s your favourite type of exercise?
HIT training; short and sharp, smash it out and then get out of there.
ALL IMAGES COURTESY OF DARREN LEIGH ROBERTS