Caroline Pearce is a name which will be synonymous to many, as Caroline is a former International athlete, a nutritionist, fitness consultant, model and TV Presenter. In 2004 she represented her country competing as a professional heptathlete, then went onto represent Great Britain as a bobsleigher in the 2005 World Bobsleigh Championships. As well as appearing in numerous fitness magazines and advertising campaigns you most probably recognise her as ‘Ice’, from Sky One’s Gladiators, she has since gone from strength to strength and has presented the ‘The Worlds Strongest Man’ and ‘Europe’s Strongest Man’ for Channel 5 as well as the ‘UK’s Strongest Man’
While juggling so much Caroline has had to maintain the highest fitness levels throughout her career and she took time out from promoting her new Total Body Circuit Training DVD, where she shares her fitness secrets, to come talk to us at Flavourmag
What was it like competing as an international athlete? And do you miss competing?
High level competition was the pinnacle for me… Wearing the national kit to represent my country was such a huge honour and what I spent hours every day training for. It made all the sacrifices and hard work worthwhile and made me raise my game. I always pulled out my best performance at the big events. I miss the buzz of competing and having a true undeniable purpose for training hard and pushing my body to its limit. However, nowadays I interview a lot of athletes and report from events as part of my TV presenting job and it gives me a little taste of that magic!
How was it transitioning from an international athlete to being a gladiator? And what was your favourite event?
When I became a Gladiator I’d been out of International competition for a couple of years so I relished the opportunity to compete again in this different way. I had to regain my strength quickly but luckily muscle memory exists and within a month or so I felt ready to take on the challenge. My favourite event was Power Ball. I’d never taken part in any contact sports before but quite liked the physicality of tackling contenders and taking them out! I surprised myself and others I think. I also loved hang tough and was undefeated on the rings (if you don’t count my disqualification!)
How did you find presenting the worlds strongest man?
Just awesome! I really admire the strongmen and their dedication to their sport and it never amazes me to watch just how strong and super human they are. To present at the Worlds I had the best seat in the house! I’d had my eye on that presenting job for a couple of years so it was great to prove myself and be selected for the show. As well as asking questions and doing event links I’m there as a true fan cheering them on and getting caught up in the excitment of the event. I think that helps me to do my job.
Since presenting for the UFC have you become a fan of the sport?
Definitely. I had some knowledge of the sport before this presenting job for BT Sport as my boyfriend used to fight MMA and is a big fan but now I’m covering it every week, getting to know the fighters, the strategies, skills and techniques involved I’m blown away by how great a sport it is. I admire anyone who is dedicated to reach the top in their sport and the UFC fighters are the very best. When you understand the sport it is very impressive. My week is now consumed with following the events and latest news!
Tell us a bit more about your DVD.
My Fitness DVD ‘Total Cardio Burn’ is a reflection of my training method as an athlete and as a woman who wants to be in the best physical shape but without spending hours in the gym. It includes 3 x 20 minute programmes with three different levels of intensity. Each workout uses my tried and tested legs-arms-abs rotation system plus cardio burners to work every part of your entire physique and get your metabolism fired up. Users love that it’s a no-nonsense and fast way to workout. I move fast and I transition fast between exercises so there’s no time to get bored or start to lag behind. It has been a big hit both in the UK and US. I have 2 further DVDs due out at the end of the year ‘Total Body Sculpt’ and ‘Total Body Blitz’. I’ve literally shared everything I’ve learnt and tested in my 10 years in the fitness industry and 8 years as an International athlete to ensure optimal results. I also have my first book ‘Better Body Workouts for Women’ coming out in October.
What first made you get into the fitness industry?
I have a First Class honours degree in PE and Sports Science and Masters Degree in Physiology and Nutrition (both from Loughborough University). Combined with my athletic background work in the fitness industry was a natural fit and progression for me.
Who was your biggest inspiration?
Growing up as a budding heptathlete it was Denise Lewis. I read her book and was lucky to do some National training squads with her before she retired. My inspirations and role models today include Jake Humphrey and Clare Balding for their presenting skills and experience and Joanna Lumley for her effortless ease, talent and likeable personality.
After all your success what still drives and motivates you?
I’m never totally satisfied. Even as I’m wrapping up one project I’m already thinking about the next and how I can be better and do more. I watch my shows back and pick them apart to be able to improve every time. I love to learn, take on new challenges and evolve and this is what keeps me motivated. I will give myself a pat on the back every now and again and take stock of what I’ve done 🙂
What tips would you give to anyone who wants to follow in your footsteps?
- Set goals and work out the steps you need to take to reach your goal. And don’t forget to re-evaluate these goals as life and circumstances change.
- In sport I’d say work hard and smart and be prepared to make sacrifices.
- In media I’d advise doing everything and anything you can to show what you can do in front of camera…watch shows being filmed, practice interviewing your family and friends, offer your services at local events to get show reel footage and watch those you admire and model yourself on them.
What would be your 3 keys hints/ tips to staying in shape?
- Clean eating – I follow the paleolithic diet 80% of the time – it’s a primal and natural way to eat.
- Have consistency, intensity and variety in your training – for long term adaptation.
- De-stress – as stress raises cortisol (stress hormone) and prevents you losing weight!
Tell us something we wouldn’t know about you:
I have a naughty habit of eating the iceing off the top of cupcakes at parties and leaving the cake! My friends immediately know I’m the guilty party. That’s when I’m having a treat day obviously!!
Photography by SNHFOTO.com interview by Mehmet Edip