Member Spotlight: Mackenzie | Elite Training Centre Gym Geelong


Mackenzie is a 16-year-old athlete with a pretty awesome record! Her dedication and commitment to her sport is hella’ impressive and we’re lucky to have her as a member here at the ETC Geelong… We couldn’t think of a better person to be our next member in the spotlight!  

Mackenzie, congratulations on being the newest member in the spotlight! Tell us a little about your athletic background and how you came to train at the Elite Training Centre?

I started doing athletics about 7 years ago and instantly fell in love with the sport, javelin and shot put especially. In 2016, I won my first national championships in javelin, which is when I decided to get ‘serious’ so I started doing some work in the gym where I trained in Ringwood.

In the end, driving all the way to the other side of Melbourne just to go to the gym seemed a bit unreasonable. Anula Costa, who I used to do run training with, suggested I check out ETC so I wouldn’t have to go so far, so I joined up. I also knew Marty Jackson trough athletics also trains at ETC and he also suggested it.

We notice that you come here straight from school most days and are extremely dedicated to your training. How do you manage your school/training/work balance?

I’m extremely lucky that my school allows me to leave early a few days a week and is very understanding of my sporting commitments so school and training have always worked pretty well. Being in VCE now the workload has increased but Clonard allowed me to drop one elective to free up my timetable to give me more spares and time to do homework during school hours instead of trying to find time at home.

I often have competitions and training commitments that require me to have some days off school which Clonard is also very understanding of. I also have a casual job at McDonald’s, I only work on Friday evenings after school and Sunday afternoons after I get home from training in Box Hill so work has never been an issue for me, I’ve always had a very well balanced schedule and I manage to fit everything in.

We have noticed you do a little work with a previous member in spotlight (and all-round superstar), Marty Jackson. What sort of things has he helped you out with?

Marty has been a huge help over the past probably year and a half, helping me out down at the track and in the gym. I missed practically all of the 2017/2018 athletics season due to injury, so I stopped training in Melbourne as much and did most of my recovery and training in Geelong, Marty was always offering me help at the track and showing me new techniques to better my throwing. Once I started training at ETC he wrote me a gym program and incorporated javelin and shotput specific exercises, which I previously hadn’t had.

Do you have any major events coming up?

I’m currently in offseason training so there are no events until the season starts later this year. I’m just focusing on building strength and fitness in the gym and working on technical things with my coach in Melbourne.

Do you have any future goals you’re working towards?

My next goal is to defend my national title again, my biggest goal for next year would be to make the Australian World U20 Athletics Championships team for Javelin in Nairobi mid next year. My ultimate goal is to represent Australia at major international championships, the big ones being the Olympics and the IAAF world championships, also the commonwealth games and to compete at the IAAF diamond league.

What is your favourite thing about the gym?

I love how laid back the gym is, it has a really chill vibe. Everyone is really nice and usually keeps to themselves, so everyone is just able to do their own thing.

Being only 16 there are not many gyms that allow minors to have a membership without needing adult supervision so being able to come to the gym and train by myself without needing someone with me is great. The equipment is also amazing, there’s everything I need for my program so I can get everything done in one place and it’s great that it’s never crazy busy so you’re never waiting to use equipment or an area of the gym.

Having the sauna and ice bath available is super handy, recovery is really important to me and having these things on site allows me to get my recovery done straight away.