How did you get started in bodybuilding/fitness?
After having my son and moving to a new area I felt alone and so isolated. My husband and I decided to join the gym a mile down the road. I met a bunch of great people who became friends. They became my encouragement and my fitness foundation.
Was there a defining moment that got you to start training at a whole different level?
Yes. Last fall, I decided I wanted to compete in natural bodybuilding shows. I wanted to do figure. I had danced around the idea a little bit, but then decided to just go for it and not look back! I’m so glad I did!
What are the top 2 ways you keep motivated?
My husband is a great motivator. He is a weightlifter/bodybuilder as well. We keep each other motivated and in check! I also teach Zumba at a local gym. The ladies in my classes are such wonderful motivators as well!!! They inspire me to keep going when I feel like I can’t. They are just simply amazing!
What was the biggest hurdle you had to overcome in your fitness career/goal thus far?
Adding muscle! My first two shows I worked with some people who had misguided me. In turn, I lost some muscle and was just very lean. Women tend to think if they lift weights they bulk up like He-man. Not the case! I’m still struggling to add about 5lbs more to my upper body before my next show.
In your opinion what is the hardest part about being a fitness model and competitor?
Not know exactly what the judges want! Figure is a difficult class. In bodybuilding it’s who’s the biggest and most ripped. Figure you don’t want to be too big but you can’t be under-muscled. One show I placed very well and the next show I didn’t do as well as I had hoped. Some of the criteria you need to meet are stage presence, hair/facial beauty, poise, and symmetry. Some organizations dismiss some of those criteria. You never know how you’re going to place from show to show.
If you had to ratio the importance of training, diet and rest, what would the percentages look like and why? (e.g. 20% training, 30% diet, 30% rest)
In figure, I would say the majority; at least 50% is diet. I don’t mean low calories by diet either. I mean knowing what to eat, when to eat it and the quantity. For instance, I am being trained to cluster my carbs around my workouts. I would say that training and rest are the other half of the equation. You obviously need to workout to gain muscle, and rest to repair and replenish them. Hitting the gym for 2 hours and then hitting the drive thru on the way home probably will not produce the results you are hoping for.
How useful do you think supplements are? Do you use supplements? What is your current top supplement?
I use supplements, however I don’t think they are an absolute necessity. Yes, it’s great to have a pre-work out supplement like Jack3d to give you energy. However, if you had a good night’s rest the day before and are eating nutrient rich foods, you’ll probably do alright without it. Personally, I am a huge believer is CLA. I have found it useful in banishing my little belly pooch just below my navel. I am currently using Methylburn for the first time. I’ve been using it for about 3 weeks now. I am seeing results, but I don’t know if it’s from that supplement or the energy it gives me to put more into my workout.
What is your current training routine?
My current training routine is a little inconsistent right now. I teach Zumba 3 times a week and currently getting ready to launch Les Mills Body Pump into our gym (which is the original barbell weight training class). Due to the amount of prep, training, and rehearsing, I don’t really have a set day for different muscle groups. I have a feeling that will all change tomorrow when I meet up with my figure coach and we start prepping for my next show!
What is your current diet routine?
Again, it’s been pretty inconsistent. I just had my birthday, and was out of town for a wedding so I’ve been living it up! And again, that will all change tomorrow! My coach does have a diet constructed for me. I have a set amount of fats, carbs, and protein that I need to consume daily. I am supposed to cluster my carbs around my workouts, about 35% pre workout and 25% of my daily intake post workout. I am so sick of chicken breast and egg whites right now that I am probably going to be doing a lot of whey protein shakes this time around!!!! I love my dairy (cottage cheese and yogurt)!! A few weeks before my show I will probably have to cut them out.
How did you get those awesome arms?
Haha, thanks! LOTS and LOTS of tricep pushups, skull crushers, and kickbacks. I love working my tri’s!!!! Of course, you can’t just pump iron and expect them to magically get to where you want them. This is where diet and cardio come in! Also taking care of my 4 year old son and lifting him a lot works the arms pretty well!
Who is your favorite fitness model/bodybuilder? (other than yourself!)
I have always admired Kiana Tom. I remember as a teenager flipping the channel and seeing her on Kiana’s Flex Appeal TV show. She’s always been an inspiration for me!
Describe what you see when you look at yourself in the mirror!
Like most women, I always notice the negative things about my body first. Dealing with an eating disorder 10 years ago was hard to overcome. Fitness has really helped me in that aspect. I try to focus on the positive stuff. I am known for my quads and glutes. So I try to first look at my legs and see the tone and definition. I hate my abs! Sure, they look great for shows and in pictures, but that is after weeks of dieting and cutting! I am genetically programmed to store all my fat in my lower belly. So that bugs me. I am hoping to train to the point that I can banish that once and for all!
If you could tell a fitness noob just one sentence of advice, what would it be?
Don’t give up because it’s all worth it!
What is your favorite workout song?
Shut it Down by Pitbull. It’s also on the new BodyPump Release we’ll be launching at my gym next month.
Best type of cardio?
Zumba, of course!!!
What do you like to do outside of training and dieting?
Spending time with my husband and son…and shopping!!!
What is the dumbest thing you have done or witnessed in the gym?
Ego lifters are a huge pet peeve of mine. If you can’t use proper form and technique, or if someone has to question what type of exercise that is, it’s time to drop some weight off the machine/bar!
What is your favorite bodypart to train? Your least favorite?
I love training my legs because they are already so strong and I can lift a lot of weight for my size. I hate doing abs! I know it’s crucial in bodybuilding/figure, but crunches and planks get boring. And I am not a fan of leg raises.