Karla Gilbert

Ep 033: From Ironwoman to Ironmum

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with Karla Gilbert

Karla Gilbert is still one of Australia’s most loved sporting icons, still considered the Queen of Surf Lifesaving  even post retirement.

She dominated the beach and waves during a professional sports career that saw her win the first ever professional Ironwoman race in 1990 at only 15 years age, against much older and more experienced competition.

She went on to win back-to-back Ironwomen titles, multiple gold medals in the World Titles, and was a dominant force for more than 20 years.

When she retired from her professional sporting career and became a mum, Karla went from being an Ironwoman to an Ironmum, and launched a blog (Ironmum Karla), which kick-started a new career as a health coach.

She has built her following and coaching business organically over the past six years, one step at a time and has since redesigned her online presence to more fully focus on her health and nutritional coaching.

In this interview, she explaons how she took the lessons she learned conquering the surf into business, combining her resilience and health knowledge.

The beginning of the interview had some tech issues, so we join Karla as she explains the how and why she started her website as a way of doing something beyond motherhood and as a creative outlet for herself.

She says in started from just wanting to do something for herself.

“I felt a bit like a caged animal being the mum looking after the kids, from having such an active lifestyle previously. I was wanting to get my teeth stuck into something. It wasn’t purposely to create a business out of it when I started it, but more of a avenue or a pathway for me to share my experience.”

Despite the fact Karla had a career in the public eye when she was competing, she wasn’t comfortable putting herself ‘out there’ as a blogger, so she had to navigate what she was willing to post about her life and what she wasn’t.

What she was excited about though was a new career that was focused on helping others, rather than one in which she was as a professional athlete focused on herself.

Also in the show you’ll hear how Karla was able to take the tools of perserverance and resilience that she developed as an athlete tacking the surf and use them in the process of building a business.

Sport taught me a lot of positives that I have taken into business and in a way it has allowed me to grow a thick skin so that I can easily go back to the drawing board. I learned how to reassess.Karla Gilbert

Karla’s advice is to be authentic in what you choose to do.

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