Medowie couple Benny Chessum and Rebekah North have physically powered their way through national strongman competitions to earn a shot each at world titles.
In her first 18 months of training and competing in strongman, North, aged 27, has established herself as the ACT's strongest woman and the second strongest NSW woman in the open division.
After winning the ACT title, North was invited to compete in her first Australian Strongman Alliance Nationals where she placed second and earned an invitation to compete in the USS Pro Women's Worlds in Texas in October.
Chessum, aged 42, who has been part of strongman for four years, won his masters division at the same national event, held in Brisbane in July, and has been invited to go up against the best in the sport at the Strongman Games in Florida in November.
"It's pretty amazing for us both to be invited to international events," Chessum said. "When Bec qualified for nationals it pushed me to want to qualify, too.
"I went and competed at a competition, the Return to Odin, specifically designed to get that qualification. To go there and win the masters category was pretty awesome."
Strongman is a weightlifting-based sport where the athletes compete in several events that test the mental and physical strength, speed and endurance of the competitor.
Chessum, who competed in the Arnold Strongman Australia earlier in the year, was introduced to the sport by a friend four years ago and has not looked back.
"I fell in love with it straight away," Chessum said. "It's the most inclusive individual sport I've ever been part of. It's a small community but it's a very supportive one. Your greatest rival on a competition day will often be your biggest supporter. Everyone wants to see you succeed."
When Chessum and North began dating two-and-a-half years ago, she would accompany him to competitions, eventually getting into strongman herself.
"I love pushing myself to see what I can achieve and just what my body can do," North said.
"I want to show the world I'm not just a mum - I'm a strong mum. I want women to know you can do anything you set your mind to."
Chessum and North have established the Coal City Strongman club at the Hunter Strength and Performance gym in Beresfield.
The couple are now fundraising to compete in their international events. Chessum said the cost to fly to the US and compete would be about $5000 for each competition.
Both have a fundraising profile on the Australian Sports Foundation website.