…age is just a number for powerlifting champion Nadina Taharally
They say age is just a number, and for Nadina Taharally that number gets ‘younger’ with time. Many may know her nationally for her prowess in the bodybuilding and powerlifting disciplines, and some may know her as an avid trainer who oversees the enhancing of physiques at gyms across the city. But the woman of substance has a unique personality, one which sees her paying strict adherence to maintaining her physical appearance.
Taharally told Guyana Timesduring a recent interview that she started out as a model several years ago. She said she modelled for designer Sonia Noel at several events nationally, before she decided to enter the bodybuilding arena around 2010. “I liked the whole idea of weight-training,” the 5-foot, 5-inch-tall Taharally said.
She performed at multiple events across the country, and captured many titles along the way, but as time progressed, another calling came her way.
In 2015, she decided to become a powerlifter. While bodybuilding requires a strict diet, powerlifting is much different, Taharally said.
“Powerlifting is a movement. As long as you stay in your weight class, you can eat anything, as long as you don’t come out of your weight class,” she said.
Taharally’s winnings overseas are among her greatest achievements in the sport. Having competed on the local scene soon after she entered the sport, her first exposure on the international stage came in 2017, and on her debut in Orlando, Florida, she captured gold at the 16th North American Powerlifting Federation (NAPF) and 32nd South American Powerlifting Federation (FESUPO) Championships, held at the Hyatt Regency at Orlando International Airport.
At the time, she captured Guyana’s third gold medal in the Masters Class whilst achieving Personal Bests in the benchpress and deadlift.
A year later, she snapped up several gold medals once more on the international scene. This time it was in Mexico. There, she made the Golden Arrowhead fly high when she bagged gold and silver medals on the opening day of IPF/NAPF Regional Power Lifting Championships in Mexico City.
At the time, she won a Gold Medal in the Women’s 72KG Raw Masters 1 category, and a Bronze Medal in the Women’s 72KG Raw Master’s Open.
Taharally, who has been coached by one Martin Webster since 2015, as well as several others, said it was one of the more challenging trips she experienced, since the altitude was difficult to compete in. “I was 9000 feet above sea level, and there the air is very thin. I had nose bleeds because of the altitude,” she said.
Taharally is a member of Team Guyana, which is currently preparing for the 19th Annual IPF/NAPF North American Regional Powerlifting Championships in Panama City Panama, from 15th to 20th August 2022.
She said she trains three days each week in a routine that happens during the early morning hours. This may come as a walk in the park for her, since she currently works as a gym instructor at the popular Fitness 53 Gym owned by former West Indies cricketer Ramnaresh Sarwan.
She said she works from 3pm until 8pm during her three-day stint at the gym. She is also a personal trainer, she added, noting that during her career, she spent some 12 years on the West Demerara as a trainer at a popular gym there. Besides the gym, Taharally is also a qualified massage therapist, and on Saturdays she attends to her clientele in that area of work.
“So my days are scheduled,” she said, noting that on Monday mornings she would do training and undertake to massage her clients. “I am pretty much packed,” she added.
With her ‘Don’t sweat the technique’ embedded in her training regimen, she said that one has to like the sport and be disciplined in order to perform well. “It is all about health, it all depends on how you eat and sleep. If you don’t sleep adequately, you won’t perform well,” she said.
As to her social life, she noted that she tries hard to make time for that aspect of her lifestyle. She explained that she is usually taxed or taken up with her plans, such as ongoing training for the championships in August. In addition, she noted that she carries out her daily responsibilities at home like any other woman, and these include cooking, cleaning, washing, and buying her groceries.
The woman of strength noted that she has a bucket list with a few items which she plans to pursue and save under her belt. One such feat is learning how to swim. She said that her body prevents from her being flexible in water, and swimming requires her to be more flexible.
As regards her appearance, Taharally said there are many ‘oohs’ and ‘aahs’ whenever she walks down the street, especially when she passes the males. She said from her days as a bodybuilder, persons would admire her physique, and in return, she smiles.
She said some of the men are very open with their compliments, and would say things she doesn’t want to hear, but she hears them anyway. “I like the way I look,” she said, noting that she has grown accustomed to the comments and remarks even for a woman her age. As regards her age, it is one of her best-kept secrets, but she noted that she is a mother of two boys, and she added that her sons are fathers.
Guyana will participate in the 19th Annual NAPF North American Regional Powerlifting Championships in Panama City between August 15 and 2022. Persons can contribute to the team getting to Panama by making donations to Guyana Amateur Powerlifting Federation in its Republic Bank account number #962356552194.