Name: Candice Perfect
Location: Los Angeles, California
Weight: 115 Lbs
Achievements: 5th Place, 2012 NPC USA Championships, Las Vegas, NV
2nd place, 2012 NPC Los Angeles Amateur Grand Prix, Culver City, CA
4th place, 2012 IRON MAN Magazine Naturally Bodybuilding Championships, Los Angeles, CA
2012 FLEX Magazine Bikini Model Search June Online Winner
1st place 2012 NPC Tournament of Champions, Culver City, CA
When did you get started with fitness?
I began training exactly a year ago, at the end of August 2011. A friend introduced me to it and got me familiar with lifting. I got into it initially to get back into shape but then fell in love with competing. When I first started, I will admit it was hard for me to make it to the gym… but after seeing the results I was hooked!
How do you stay so motivated? What drives you?
I’m constantly looking to improve my current condition. I love the fact that I can compare stage competition pictures and see how my body has changed over time. It’s crazy how much improvement can occur so quickly. I stay motivated because every time I let myself slip and start to gain “extra padding,” I am reminded of how much work goes into achieving a great physique.
It’s not enough for me to know that I can look good… I actually want to look good all the time.
Now that I’m living in Los Angeles, it’s necessary to be in peak condition all the time. What if I schedule a photoshoot and am not ready? Passing up opportunities is definitely not something I intend on doing simply because I want to eat amazing things. It’s not worth it. Furthermore, if my intentions are to make a career out of being a fitness role model, then follow through on my part is of the utmost importance.
What has been the hardest obstacle for you to overcome?
The hardest obstacle has been the fact that until a month ago I lived in Anchorage, Alaska. I was born and raised there. In order for me to pursue my career, education, and dreams I have moved to Los Angeles, California. So I guess I would have to say that I have overcome the hardest obstacle 🙂
What does your current training schedule/program look like?
My routine is constantly changing and I don’t have a set workout schedule. Recently, my workouts have changed drastically due to the fact that I want to stay in NPC Bikini Division. The focus of my workouts have shifted from the need to gain muscle to more of a maintenance stage. Due to the fact that my quads are well developed, we have incorporated tons of plyos to lean them out. I no longer do squats, lunges, or other compound movements that engage the quads and instead use lots of hamstring exercises such as good mornings, stiff legged deadlifts (wide and narrow), various backwards kicks, cable kicks, and varieties of reverse extensions and glute-ham raises. Below is an example of what my normal workouts used to look like.
4 sets for 30 seconds each- kettle bell sings, jump squats, curtsey lunges
2 minute wind sprints on incline trainer
4 sets for 30 seconds each- box jumps, jump lunges, ice skaters
2 minute wind sprints on incline trainer
4 sets for 30 seconds each- broad jumps, leap frogs, mountain climbers
3 sets x 12-15 reps-straight bar curls superset with tricep rope extensions
3 sets x 12-15 reps-alternating seated dumbbell curls superset with one arm reverse grip extensions
3 sets x 12-15reps -alternating dumbbell hammer curls superset with skull crushers
3 sets x 12-15 reps-cable/rope hammer curls superset with assisted dips on machine
20 minutes of cardio on elliptical, high incline and high resistance
6 sets of 5 reps-assisted pull-ups; various hand positioning; lower pounds of assistance
4 sets x 10-12 reps-lat pull downs
8 sets x 10 reps-T-Bar Rows (change hand positioning/over-under for every other set)
5 sets x 20-25 reps-cable rows
Pull ups on smith machine (laying on back) to failure
45 minutes cardio.
5 sets x 20-25 reps-free bar squats superset with squat jumps for 30 seconds
5 sets x 20 reps- walking barbell lunges superset with alternating weighted step ups with a leg kick back
5 sets x 20 reps-leg extensions superset with 100 butt raises with 25lb plate on hips
5 set x 20-25 reps-hamstring curls superset with ball curls for 30 seconds
5 sets x 20-25 reps-stiff-legged dead lifts
4 sets x 10-12 reps-standing calf raises (drop set as 5th set)
4 sets x 15-20 reps-seated calf raises (drop set as 5th set)
3 sets x 10 reps-windshield wipers
3 sets x 10- 12 reps-cable crunches
3 sets x 12-15 reps -cable oblique crunches
3 sets x 15-20 reps-Swiss ball crunches
30 minutes cardio.
Handstand pushups against wall (as many as you can get before failure)
4 sets x10-12 reps-dumbell shoulder press
4 sets x10-12 reps-front raises
4 sets x 10-12 reps-upright rows
4 sets x 10-12 reps-Arnold presses
Burn out drop set on shoulder press machine.
Various abdominal exercises.
30 minutes cardio.
Glutes: various kicks on cables.
Plyos and HIIT circuit cardio.
Rest (or light cardio)
Rest (or light cardio)
Give us a breakdown of your daily diet.
My diet is very clean and well balanced. One common misconception about a “diet” is that the person on a diet is being starved. This is simply not true. I prefer to think of my diet as fuel for my body to accomplish everything I demand of it on a daily basis. As an athlete I demand a lot from my body and it doesn’t make sense to not give it what it needs in order to do those things. I have a carbohydrate, fat, and protein in every one of my 6-8 meals.
I believe in obtaining the majority of my nutrition from real food. However, I do supplement with whey protein in addition to my regular meals. I work at a busy restaurant and sometimes don’t have time to scarf my food down. During times like this I will drink a protein shake instead of my regularly scheduled meal. I will usually eat the meal at a later time.
I eat primarily chicken, mahi mahi, tofu, and tuna as my protein source. Sometimes I’ll switch it up and eat salmon. I also only eat whole eggs. For carbs I primarily use Ezekiel Bread, brown rice cakes, brown rice, quinoa, sweet potatoes/white sweet potatoes, oatmeal, and granola. I also eat a ton of fruits and vegetables including apples, strawberries, blueberries, tomatoes, spaghetti squash, cucumber, broccoli, and spinach. The healthy fats in my diet are primarily derived from avocados, almonds, walnuts, and peanut butter. The dairy in my diet is cottage cheese, Greek yogurt, and assorted high quality cheese such as goat or feta.
Here’s an example of what my diet might look like for one day:
Breakfast: ¾ cup oatmeal, 5 whole eggs, 1 cup of spinach
Snack: apple with 10 almonds
Lunch: 5oz. chicken, 1 cup of brocolli, 4oz. sweet potato, ¼ avocado
Snack: ½ cup of quinoa, 5oz. tofu, 5 almonds
Snack: ½ cup of low fat cottage cheese with ½ cup blueberries
Dinner: 6oz. mahi mahi, ½ cup veggies, ½ cup brown rice
Do you take any supplements to reach your fitness goals?
I supplement with whey protein, magnesium, bromelain, and omega-3s.
Is there anyone in the fitness industry you look up to?
My number one inspiration is my Team EDGE coach Ingrid Romero. She is one of the most genuine, helpful, caring, and driven people I have ever met. She is such an amazing coach, mother, wife, role model, and friend. Ingrid is someone I look up to and she never hesitates to give guidance to her EDGE girls.
Name a fitness “Myth” that just isn’t true no matter how many times you hear it?
Everyone is on steroids. Not true. A great physique is attainable through hard work, proper nutrition, and a positive attitude.
Tips for our readers to achieve their fitness dreams?
1: Set mini-goals in order to reach your ultimate goal. Setting out in pursuit of a huge goal can be intimidating, daunting, and may lead to pessimism. If you set small daily, weekly, and monthly goals to work towards the larger goal you have a much better chance of success.
2: I hate to be the bearer of bad news… but there’s no easy way to achieve your fitness goals. It’s not easy. It’s a lot of hard work, discomfort (pain at times), change, and dedication. You either want it or you don’t.
3: Learn the basics of nutrition!
4: Stop drinking your calories! A 16oz. white chocolate mocha has more nutritional value than an entire meal should! Not to mention the fact that it’s all empty calories and simple carbs… bad for your blood sugar and ultimately stored as fat.
5: Eat more fruits and vegetables.
6: Make sure you eat protein with EVERY meal.
7: Stop buying pre-packaged, pre-made, canned, and frozen food. This stuff isn’t real food. Shop on the outer perimeters of the store where the fresh produce, meat, and dairy are kept. I rarely ever venture into isles.
8: Don’t contemplate going to the gym. Just do it. Don’t even think about it. Just get in your car and go. You’ll be glad you did.
9: Don’t be afraid to lift weights! Muscle is HARD to build (meaning you won’t look like the hulk). The more muscle you have, the more calories you burn.
10: Find a workout class or bootcamp that you like and invest in some sessions. They’re fun, kick your butt, and keep you motivated.
“All men dream, but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds, wake in the day to find that it was vanity; but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act on their dreams with open eyes, to make them possible.”
-T. E. Lawrence
– Candice Perfect