I first fell in love with Victoria after seeing her beautiful legs reposted by Stylerunner in some of my favourite leggings. It was love at first sight, a woman that loved tights and chocolate, we were practically destined to be BFFS. I have followed this lady for well over 12 months now (could be more, who can tell these days), and have loved watching her develop her own unique style of writing, content and inspiring imagery.
Victoria has even recently released her first e-book showcasing her creative gummy making abilities. Her story behind why she started her Instagram however is worth getting to know. It wasn't always drinking smoothies in her activewear.
What’s the inspiration behind training for chocolate? Love the name!
Ha! I get a lot of women saying that. It's basically the story of my life. Yes, I love to train (now, although that hasn't always been the case) but I love chocolate too. I train not so my body looks a certain way, or to achieve a PB on a back squat or to compete in a marathon. I train so I can stay fit and healthy, have a load of fun and eat chocolate. Training for Wine didn't sound quite right, but that's also applicable ;)
Why did you start your instagram account?
About five years ago, I started getting active and a couple of years later I began to really educate myself about food and nutrition. I had pretty much been a couch potato my entire life. I smoked at least a packet of cigarettes a day, ate junk food every single day and had literally never moved a muscle. I never did sport as a kid and I certainly didn't exercise as an adult.
So here I was at 40, a mum taking small steps towards becoming a healthier fitter woman. It was a slow and gradual process until I agreed to take part in a 30 Day Challenge at my hubby's CrossFit gym at the end of 2014. Those 30 days catapulted my nutritional knowledge, thanks to the amazing nutritionist who put together the meal plans and info (Danielle Minnebo) and surprisingly sparked a love of group training. I was learning so much and having a great time with a bunch of like-minded women, it was awesome.
I figured if I can do this, anyone can. Seriously. You'd have been hard-pressed to find someone less likely to be a fitness junkie than me haha. And so I started my blog (and the instagram account to go with it) to encourage other women to get active and sort their food out.
At the time, I thought 'who's going to be interested in a middle aged mum from the burbs when there are all these amazing young ripped fitspos around' but in actual fact that perceived weakness ended up being a strength. People tell me I'm 'relatable'. I guess they can see that I'm just a regular mum giving it her best shot and having a good time. I try to set a really natural and positive example to our kids and anyone else watching. There's nothing fake about me. It's all about real and authenticity at Training for Chocolate HQ.
Yes, I work out and yes, I eat the food. No, I can't do pull-ups and no, there are no abs to speak of. But I am fit and healthy and I'm happy with that.
My blog and insta have been going now for 2 1/2 years and I honestly can't imagine life any other way. I'm so thankful that I discovered this lifestyle.
What can people expect when they follow you?
Well you can expect to see me giving all sorts of training a red hot go.
You can expect heaps of yummy and easy healthy treat recipes.
You can expect interviews and expert advice from all the best people in the health, fitness and wellness worlds...and a fair few pairs of tights and sneakers!
When you’re not being insta famous, where can people find you?
Usually the skatepark! My son is obsessed with scootering, and is awesome at it. I spend a LOT of time at skateparks!
Also the kitchen (making all the yummy food and drinking a bit of yummy wine).
And, obviously, the gym! Or the great outdoors, even better, with my fam bam.
How many children do you have?
I have an 8 year old son and a 16 year old stepdaughter - so two VERY different kettles of fish there ;)
Do you work? If yes, what do you do?
My first job is being a Mum. When I'm asked to write my profession on a form it's always Mum/Blogger.
Before becoming a Mum, I was a 'suit' in ad agencies, did that for about 16 years.
What do you love the most about your job?
About being Mum - well that's obvious, the two amazing children I get to share my life with. My son is my world, such a mammoth source of joy and the cause of multiple heart explosions every single day.
About blogging - definitely the people I've met along the way. OMG so many brilliant, lovely, inspiring people. A close second is all the super fun stuff I get to do... seriously, how can I not love a job that allows me to do a spin class on the rooftop of the Hilton, or a yoga class on the beach? I pinch myself regularly and don't take any of it for granted.
What’s the least favourite aspect?
About being a Mum - No. Freaking. Sleep.
And blogging - um, I honestly love it all, but it can be hard to juggle life and the blog, and sometimes it's very overwhelming. Oh, and maybe the technology side of things (which is where hubby comes in, thanks hubby x).
Would you like to become a full time “blogger”?
Who would do the washing, school run and cook dinner though?
What have been the biggest perks since starting your blog?
Again, I'll say the people I've met. Some have become great friends. I'm privileged to be able to mix in a group of people who have such positive attitudes towards movement and nourishment. I've learned so much. Like how to meditate, for example. Like how to push myself out of my comfort zone and not worry about what people think if I suck. Like how to feed my family properly to lay a lasting foundation of good habits and great health.
Also you get to go to some cool events, which is fun. And a lot of lovely lycra!
Tell us about your new ebook…why did you write it?
My new eBook - The Little Book of Healthy Gummies - was borne out of my obsession with homemade gummies. So easy to make and so good for your gut health among other things. I wanted to show everyone how easy it is to make yummy treats (for kids and grown ups) that are actually good for you. It's like I'm a gummy preacher hahaha.
Download The Little Book of Healthy Gummies by Victoria Norton HERE.
Was it hard to put together?
Time consuming, yes. But fun.
I was lucky to find a local lady (friend of a friend of a friend) Felicity Dick-Smith who's a keen amateur photographer. She'd never done a course, didn't have a studio or lights or props or anything. She's also a mum of 3 and a trainee nurse, so it took a bit of scheduling. I actually don't know how she had the time. But we did it. We found this one day that we could both do. I rocked up to her house after school drop-off one morning armed with all my gummies (I was making them days in advance) and plates and bowls and we just went for it. We only had a few hours to do all the shots because of the light and school pick-up, but we managed. She powered through, she was amazing.