Cliff has been called ‘an enigma wrapped in a riddle’. In clinical practice he is a naturopath and nutritionist with specialities in mind-body medicine and holistic performance nutrition. As an athlete he is a former world champion and world record holder in All-Round Weightlifting, and is currently a competitive submission grappler. His journey in strength sports began as an outlet after making the tough decision to not pursue boxing further due to a series of concussions.
His interest in ‘old-time’ weightlifting and strength exploits lead him to the sport of All-Round weightlifting, and after battling the effects of Crohn’s disease for several years he was able to regain his health and win two world championships and set several world records for feats of strength.
As a mind-body and nutrition coach Cliff has worked with a diverse clientele, ranging from athletic programs at prestigious universities such as the University of British Columbia through to Olympians, world champions and national teams and professional fighters.
His coaches have included Richard Dryden and Andy Rodgers (weightlifting), Wilf Betz and Chris Martin (boxing and kickboxing) and more recently Brazilian Jiu Jitsu black belts: Shane Rice and Pedro Fernandes, for BJJ and submission grappling.
Cliff’s passion lies in helping people to be happier and healthier. His focus on happiness has caused him to be known as ‘the happiness coach’ amongst his readers, colleagues and clients in the US and Canada. He believes that whatever we do, whether it’s sport, getting on top of our health, being involved in artistic pursuits (or anything else that is intrinsically rewarding) is helping us to become that little bit happier...and so happiness is the goal, and the focus.
When he’s not lifting weights or wrestling, Cliff can be found working with patients, writing, at the library or regaling beautiful women over a glass of fine wine (or tea...)
Sports: Crossfit Wakeboarding Skateboarding
Top Achievements: Runner up Trainer of the Year in 2009 – NZ Fitness Awards Finalist Group Trainer of the Year in 2011 – NZ Fitness Awards Fitness Life Cover Girl and editorial feature – June 2012 Co-presenter at Filex 2007 & 2008
Will Never Give Up:
Doing what I love, surrounded by people I love......oh and dark chocolate & red wine!
Vivacious, positive and armed with an indestructible zest for life, Fitness Life cover girl Amber Moltzer embodies the 'real' quintessential Kiwi gal. Runner up NZ Trainer of the Year 2009, finalist in 2011, with over 10 years of industry experience, Amber Moltzer Lifestyle Fitness Coach is on a mission to help people from all walks of life to be fit, healthy and happy. Leading by example, Amber believes the key to reaching your full potential in life is to go back to basics, the way nature intended.
Amber’s passion lies with creating healthy athletic bodies that work and are strong and functional. She takes a very effective multi-disciplined approach to training that leaves clients looking and feeling amazing, leaving them with an athletic body that’s in balance. Focusing on movements not muscle groups, strengthening the neuro-muscular pathways so clients not only look better they move better.
Working with a wide range of clients including NZ television personalities, stay-at-home mums, professional athletes and weekend warriors. Amber works with anyone with a good attitude and a burning desire to evolve.
‘I constantly encourage clients to establish and embrace a holistic wellness regime, and ensure that they understand the connection between holistic exercise, good balanced eating, rest and recovery. Life is all about balance, you need to eat, move and be healthy. I lead my clients from the front with courage and positivity. I like to think that my passion for what I do will spill over to my clients, and in turn they will find it infectious’. www.ambermoltzer.com
'The Highlander' Craig McMillan
Top Achievements: 6 x National Titles 7th place - World Championships, 2004
Initially entering the iron game wanting to be a bodybuilder, Craig soon realised that his body was more suited to gaining strength than muscle.
In his 14 years of competing he has become known as a lifter who while not being the most naturally gifted, has made up for this lack of genetics with technicality and a lot of hard work. Craig has been more or less self-coached in his strength career but counts men like Derek Pomana and ‘Mad Dogg’ Matt Jonson and other powerlifting legends as his inspiration in the sport.
He is passionate about keeping the sport of powerlifting alive and vibrant and shows his commitment to this by giving his time as a National Referee and is president of his local association. His other love in the sport is being able to see lifters overcoming barriers and succeeding and to this end he has helped several lifters including his sister: Celia McMillan and recently the Holah boys (Rob and John) in their pursuit of greater strength for the Firefighters Combat Challenge.
Outside of the sport of powerlifting Craig counts his family as the most important thing in life, taking first place and narrowly over his veggie garden - where you’re likely to see him spending Sunday afternoons getting dirt under the nails and growing food for the table.
Craig would like to be remembered as “Someone who always had time for people and was friendly and always helpful with a smile or a joke.”
Top Achievements: 2 x 4th place finishes at the CrossFit Regionals
Will Never Give Up: CrossFit, 85% dark chocolate, and anejo tequila
Sick of getting sand kicked in his face by bullies as a scrawny 11 year old kid, Te Awamutu born Darren Ellis began training in martial arts and eventually (after not growing) became hooked on training in the gym at the age of 16.
A rotator cuff injury started Daz on a journey of rehabilitation that saw his interest in physiology and the art and science of strength training piqued - prompting him to go back to University and complete a Masters degree in Exercise Physiology.
Daz is known for being the man to introduce CrossFit to New Zealand, founding CrossFit New Zealand (CFNZ) in 2008.
Darren is now a beast in the CrossFit and strength worlds, but unlike those who exhibit machismo and bravado, he is one of the most humble athletes we at IA have come across. He prides himself most, not on working with big name athletes (although he has) but on helping ordinary people with “kids, jobs and a mortgage” to achieve their own incredible feats of strength.
He counts amongst his coaches and mentors his good friend Matt Swift from CF Brisbane, Andy Petranek from CF Los Angeles, and CJ Martin from CF Invictus, San Diego. He also credits Mick Shaw and Commando Steve Willis from CFX, Sydney with helping him get his head around starting a CrossFit business.
His passion outside of the strength game is travelling and experiencing the wonders of foreign places, people, sights and sounds, and this is something he continues to make time for in his life of balance, passion and purpose. And when he’s not training, competing or coaching at CFNZ you’d be most likely to find him in the water surfing, diving or swimming, and he plans to at some stage in the near future take up kite-surfing and spear fishing.
“People who train CrossFit are a special breed, and I am fiercely loyal to every single member of my community as in my opinion they are in the top 1% of the population - the other 99% of reality tv watching, fast food consuming people who hate their jobs and hate their lives don't want to be helped.”
“If I would like to be known for a particular philosophy, it would be that exercise and nutrition is not that complicated. Just stick to real movements and real food, and do it everyday.”