Di Westaway

Di Westaway is the Chief Adventure Chick (CEO) and Founder of Wild Women On Top and Coastrek. She is a global leader and award-winning woman of influence who has inspired more than 25,000 people off the couch through shared hiking adventures, while raising over $20 million for charity and helping women lead adventurous lives they love.

She does work she loves with people she loves the way she loves and she’s keen to help families, friends and workers do the same.

When she’s not freaking us out by doing handstands on knife-edge summits, Di leads her team on a mission to connect, inspire and empower each other and our community.

She is passionate about motivating women to lead adventurous lives they love, creating pleasure, power and productivity from hiking adventures.

Di is an adventure coach, mother, motivational speaker, 2017 NSW Telstra Business Women's Awards Finalist, 2016 AFR/Westpac 100 Woman of Influence, world-record holder and author of Natural Exhilaration and How to Prepare for World Class Treks.

She is also a columnist for Great Walks Magazine and has written for The Sydney Morning Herald, The Age, The Brisbane Times, The Canberra Times, HuffPost Australia, Mamamia, Essential Kids, The CEO Magazine Australia, The Hoopla, Thrive Global and AG Outdoor.

She has climbed many extreme altitude peaks and holds the record for the world’s highest handstand on Mt Ama Dablam, 6,982m, Nepal.

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What’s your role in the WWOT team? 

I am the luckiest duck becauseI get to be the Chief Adventure Chick (CEO) at Wild Women On Top. That means I lead the strategic planning for both business and adventure, which I love. I also lead our awesome team to help them be the best they can be at inspiring and empowering women to lead adventurous lives they love. 

What is your favourite thing about the WWOT community?

My favourite thing is seeing the smiles on the faces of women when they immerse themselves in nature’s challenges and discover that they are capable of far more than they ever imagined. That look of exhaustion combined with natural exhilaration that comes from overcoming fear and going wild. 

What’s at the top of your bucket list?

The top of my bucket list is to touch the lives of a million women to create a happier world through shared hiking adventures. I have bucket lists of bucket lists and live the dream by challenging myself with at least one super scary adventure and bunch of mini adventures every year. That’s what keeps me sane.  

Where will we find you on a Sunday morning?

I love Sunday mornings because I get to indulge in physical activity in nature. Most often you’ll find me dangling off a cliff, riding trails, sipping hot tea on a lookout or hiking hills with wonderful wild women at sunrise. 

What’s the wildest adventure you’ve ever been on?

My wildest adventure ever was doing the world’s highest handstand on Mt Ama Dablam 6,978m, in Nepal. It was by far the hardest and scariest. I only succeeded because I paid a porter to cart my gear, slept with the guide (he was my partner at the time), and got an sms from wild woman, Danae, on summit night that said “Toughen Up Princess”. Like all my wild adventures, it’s the team that matters.

What motto or mantra do you live by?

“Be the change you wish to see in the world.”

 

Previous posts

As I wondered what I was going to do with all this stuff, some of which I would never use, it hit me that the experiences and adventures I was given bring me far more joy than stuff.
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I used to think I was tough but I’m not. I realised this not when I was climbing a particularly painful mountain, navigating a challenging divorce or even in childbirth. I realised it when my knee started to hurt and I couldn’t damn fix it.
Not Fitness HERO
Recently, as I stood at the finish line of Adelaide Coastrek, our first event in partnership with mental health charity Beyond Blue, I realised our business had found its true heart. We weren't only walking for fitness, were walking away from fear, anxiety, hopelessness, depression, desperation and overwhelm, and towards hope, resilience and recovery.
Ama Dablam 50!
We often hear that women feel invisible after fifty, but I refuse to accept that my worth has a “use-by” date. I know I’ve got many more fabulous years ahead to serve, to laugh, to love, to climb, to bike, to hike, to travel and to explore this magnificent earth. Plus, I often wear entire outfits of purple and ride my bike through the shopping centre, so I really don't blend in. Here's how you can put more life into your later years.
Luvmyhike HERO
Badass hikers aren’t born, you have to train to become one. In addition to learning advanced hiking and backpacking skills, you need to train your bum, legs and core as well as keeping your body supple. Here are five functional exercises you can do to become a badass hiker.
Di Cliff3
I’m a morning exerciser. Every day, my alarm goes off when it’s dark and I leap out of bed, full of enthusiasm and energy, ready to take on the day. Except I don’t. Ever. In reality, my brain sounds a little something like this when my alarm goes off...
Di handstand patagonia
Here at Wild Women, we're all about adventures - travelling to far-flung places and getting out of our comfort zone - and enjoying the wild ride that follows. But overseas adventures can also mean long-haul flights, dodgy plane food and not enough sleep - leaving you feeling less than your best. Here's how I stay healthy while I travel. 
Walk in the park
In Australia and all across the developed world, we've got a serious obesity crisis. We all know exercise is good for us, but many of us can't bring ourselves to do it. Well, Di Westaway thinks she's found a way to make it not only easy, but fun.
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Do you often exclaim to others (or yourself) that you're just SO busy? Do you feel like you're constantly time poor? Are you stressed, tired or wrung out often? That used to be me. Here's why I stopped wearing busy as a badge of honour.
Beach Walk
From the time I quit gymnastics at 16 until my early forties, I was constantly beating myself up for not exercising regularly. I struggled to find workouts I could sustain long term. The gym was okay for a while. Then I had kids, and fitting in the gym became impossible. Just packing the nappy bag took too much time and energy. So I ditched it completely and I've never looked back...
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When the alarm kills delicious dozing on a dark winter’s morning or your lover tempts you with a glass of red as you snuggle up together on the couch, it takes an iron will to honour your commitment to a walk in the cold. Despite knowing how exhilarated you’ll feel when you’re out there, and how satisfied you’ll feel when it’s over, getting active outdoors in winter is a tough gig. Our brain tells us to snooze that little bit longer, stay indoors after dark and slow down. But our body needs to move.
wild women tents
My first taste of hiking came from the world of men. A world in which we raced silently through the bush; no clifftop cuppas, no plunging in mountain streams, no photo shoots, no inhaling wildflowers, no giggling, no exploring little side trails and definitely no gourmet food. It almost frightened me off, until I realised hiking was not the problem, these men were.
Di Tania laughing
Mother’s Day was once about worshipping mothers as a community or tribe. A day for celebrating the incredible value of mothers. Now, for many families, it’s a day to give Mum flowers, presents and brunch... it's become a Hallmark holiday. So how can you make it meaningful again?
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Staying clean and healthy is an important issue when hiking, particularly in developing countries where you may be exposed to illnesses and diseases against which you have no natural immunity. When hiking in a group, there is a greater likelihood that bacteria will be passed around the group, so personal hygiene is critical. So, what’s the best way to stay healthy on a hike?
Handstandladies
We know the people we spend the most time with influence our behaviour, but did you know that as much as 80% of our health is determined by our environment? Yep, who you hang out with can make or break your health, and, in turn, yours can make or break theirs...
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Do you think you're too old to pose in your undies in the middle of the snow? Perhaps you're too dignified? Too ladylike? Well, Di Westaway isn't, and this week she tells us why.
Laughing with friends
Sometimes I just snap. My inner moody bitch appears without warning, dumping on those I love the most. It usually happens when I’ve been deprived of real human contact, after spending a work-from-home day in my office/bedroom, alone with only my devices for company. Often I’m so filled with remorse I fly into my bedroom riddled with guilt, further driving myself from what I need most: connection.
Once you’ve been forced, by circumstance, to wee in front of other people, there is no turning back. In fact, weeing on the side of a trail can actually be quite liberating. But public squatting isn’t the only wee-related lesson you need to learn if you want to be a hard-core Wild Woman. When you spend time in extreme weather wilderness locations, where it’s too cold, windy or dangerous to leave your tent, you must develop other essential skills to avoid both a frost-bitten arse and pee in your pants!
Choc Chip Cookies
These cookies are the most delicious choc chip cookies ever. They are best enjoyed with a cuppa on a clifftop after an awesome hike.
Be my Valentine
Dear Valentine, I hope you won’t think me rude, but given the incompetence of my past lovers, I’ve decided to give you some tips so you don’t stuff up your Valentine’s Day.

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