Candice Perfect: NPC Bikini Rising Star
I was recently approached by Candice Perfect, one of the NPC bikini competitors from Ingrid Romero's Team Edge. She sent her bio and after talking to her I learned that she is a really cool person with an awesome story. She has great things coming in her future with her fitness career as well as her educational & professional goals. Candice is a very positive woman and has a lot to offer. I wish her the best of luck this season and hope to hear more from her. Read what she has to say here:
Name: Candice Perfect
Hometown: Anchorage, Alaska
Occupation: Waitress and soon to be NASM Certified Personal Trainer
What sparked your interest in training and how did you get started?
I had always been active in sports since I was very young. When I was 5 years old I started doing gymnastics and competed until I was 17. I also did sports such as track and field, cross country running, and cheerleading all through school. Once I started working full time and had adult responsibilities, I didn’t really partake in athletics any more. After a rough two years of college, work and extracurricular activities, the lack of physical engagement began to take a toll on me; I knew I needed to do something.
My friend Jessica Fulton had competed in bodybuilding shows and began encouraging me to come to the gym with her. I had gone to the gym before but didn’t really have any experience with lifting weights or even how to properly use the cardio equipment. Jessica got me familiar with lifting weights and doing cardio on a daily basis. When I first started working out with her my body fat measured at 26% and after two months it was down to 18%!
At this point I became seriously interested in competing in a bodybuilding show. I began to see the changes in my body and it was addicting! I would look at show pictures of IFBB Professional competitors and think, “I want to look like that.” I began doing a TON of my own research and began experimenting with different workout and dieting techniques to see what worked for my body. After another two months I measured my body fat a week out from my first show and had dropped to 9%!
What motivates you to continue training?
Training has become a major part of my life. Anybody who is serious about this sport knows that it requires a major change in lifestyle and priorities. You have to be willing to commit to making a change- one larger than just dragging yourself into the gym every day. It requires perseverance, planning, rearranging your schedule, waking up extra early, going to bed extra late, abstaining from indulgence and resisting temptation. You have to have a certain drive from within that continually pushes you to want to be better. So many people become complacent, lazy, content, or just plain give up. What motivates me to continue training is the commitment I have made to myself to continually improve upon what I have already built. After all, if you let yourself down isn’t that the biggest betrayal of all?
What mistakes did you make as a beginner?
One of the biggest mistakes I made as a beginner was thinking that I would make faster progress if I lifted heavier. When I first started my legs needed a lot of work. I had built up a lot of cellulite on my lower body and was in a hurry to get it off! I would load up the weight on leg days and push through the discomfort thinking that heavier was better. Boy was I wrong. I had a bunch of pre-existing issues from my gymnastics history that were only exacerbated by heavy lifting after years of inactivity. My aches and pains became debilitating and would set me back for almost two weeks every time I did legs. Very unproductive, right? So I began doing research and tried different techniques, incorporated different movements including more free-bar and less machines, and started doing different types of cardio. After about a month of using my new techniques, I was pretty much pain free and didn’t even have to use my knee braces anymore!