Q&A With Bikini Competitor Candice Perfect

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Q&A With Bikini Competitor Candice Perfect

 Strong-Athlete.com Interview with Candice Perfect

| By Vince “Fitness Financier” Pe |

Candice Perfect is on her way to make a huge splash in the NPC’s bikini division.  Aside from the obvious last name that seems to be predetermined for success, Candice has been hard at work fine tuning her physique under the tutelage of Ingrid Romero and Joe DiScuillo (Team Edge) for the NPC USA contest in Las Vegas.  I’ve been to so many NPC USA Championships and know that this will be one heck of a competitive show.  I can already see Candice making quite a name for herself.

Having the opportunity to do a full exclusive interview with this Alaskan beauty and being in the industry for as many years as I have; I know this girl is destined for success and has a really great shot at competing on a Las Vegas stage again in the very near future but for bigger stakes: The Olympia!

Q:  Candice, you are one of the NPC’s newest bikini competitors. What made you decide to enter the competitive fitness world?

Strong-Athlete.com: Q&A with Candice Perfect

"I'd look at pictures of professional competitors and think, I want to look like that!"

A: 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 middle and high school.  Once I started working full time and had adult responsibilities, I didn’t really partake in athletics any more.  After an arduous two years of college, work and extracurricular activities, the lack of physical engagement began to take a toll on me.  I still fit in my clothes (barely), but didn’t like how I looked in pictures and could feel my energy levels lagging.  I knew I needed to do something.

A friend of mine 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.  She 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%.  I couldn’t believe it.  After two months we measured again and it was down to 18%!

When I first started working out my body fat measured at 26%. A week out from my 1st show it was down to 9%!

This was when I became seriously committed to 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 level 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%!

I have always been interested in nutrition and alternative healthcare.  The first degree I ever applied to college for was Dietetics because I wanted to be a Registered Dietician.  This degree was not offered in Alaska (my place of residence) at the time and after deciding that I didn’t want to leave state for college, I opted for a more broad degree in Political Science which allowed me to explore the public policy side of healthcare.  My original intention was to go to law school, but I have recently decided to obtain my Master’s in Public Health Care from the University of California, Los Angeles.  I will be applying there for 2013 admissions.  Although I wasn’t able to complete the degree I originally wanted, bodybuilding provides me the opportunity to exercise my knowledge, and consistently expand my knowledge of nutrition.

Q:  You train under Team Edge which is run by Arnold Classic bikini champ and 3x NPC overall winner, Ingrid Romero, and nutrition/fitness expert, Joe Discuillo. I hear they have you prepping for the NPC USA Nationals.  What improvements can we expect in your physique come July? I know everything was progressing well but then I heard a bozo at the gym injured you. What happened?

Strong-Athlete.com Q&A with Ms. Perfect

Candice will be competing for her Pro Card at the NPC Nationals in Las Vegas in July.

A: Yes, the injury occurred at the gym. Someone unloaded four 45lb. plates from one side of the free bar in the squat rack without evening out the other side.  The bar flipped out of the rack and landed on my leg.  225lbs. landed directly on my vastus medialis right above the knee.  Immediately after it happened, I couldn’t move my leg and the muscle was completely flat.  I thought it had torn off and rolled up on itself.  I had a bad bone bruise and a horrible contusion and tear on my VMO.  So painful!  I was on crutches the first 1.5 weeks and couldn’t even walk except to hobble for the week after that.  I have to do rehabilitation treatments every single day that include IFC, ultrasound, deep tissue massage (which I refer to as torture), and stretching and strengthening exercises.  I have written some blogs on my injury and recovery.  Here’s the link to read more: https://www.facebook.com/candice.perfect/notes

The bar flipped out of the rack and 225lbs landed directly on my leg!

This injury happened at the most inopportune time… 7 weeks out from the USA National Bodybuilding Championships.  As a result of being unable to train lower body (even with bodyweight) for 3 weeks, I lost a significant amount of muscle in my quads and glutes.  The leg on which the injury occurred was visibly atrophied.  After my doctor gave me the green light to begin training legs very lightly, I began doing a little bit every day.  I started with body weight stuff only and stretching in order to get the range of motion back.

In addition to needing to gain muscle, I also have to lean out.  I have a couple body fat percentages I need to lose in order to be stage ready.  As a result of this, I am experimenting a lot with timing of carbs/carb loading around my leg workouts.  I am also training glutes every 2 days.  On days that I am not training glutes I am doing massive amounts of cardio—2 hours to be exact, in addition to my regular upper body workouts.  I’ve been doing this for about a week and a half and can already see improvements.  It’s down to the last few weeks when every other competitor is already built up and fine tuning, while here I am basically set back to where I was before my last show almost 3 months ago!  It is amazing how long it takes to build muscle, yet how quickly it goes away.  I didn’t anticipate losing what I had worked so long and hard to build in such a short period of time.  Prior to my injury, I had made significant progress in my glutes and calves—my two weak areas.  I’m working hard to get that progress back within the next couple of weeks so that when I step on stage I look better than my last show in April.  I am busting my butt at the gym (literally) and am hoping that the hard work pays off ASAP!


Candice Perfect Interview on Strong-Athlete.comQ:  Absolutely horrible.  You are vying for your pro card; can you tell us why you are so passionate about achieving pro status?

A:  I am so determined to earn my IFBB Pro Card because it validates a competitor as best of the best.  It also requires you to kick your training up a notch in order to compete on a professional level.  Obviously they are highly sought after for a reason.  I am a very competitive person and it’s a goal for me to work towards.  I love competing and can only imagine how exhilarating it would be to one day compete on the same stage as the current IFBB Pro competitors that I have looked to for inspiration since I first began.

I’m determined to earn my IFBB Pro Card because it validates a competitor as best of the best.

Q:  Can you tell us some of the fitness projects you’ve had the privilege of working on?

A: Up until now, I have primarily focused on self promotion and getting my name out there.  I have been fortunate enough to be featured and/or interviewed on most of the popular bodybuilding websites, a couple of magazines, and have won multiple online contests.  One of the biggest ones I just won was the FLEX Magazine Bikini Model Search July 2012 Online contest!  I am so excited because it secures me a spot in the FLEX Bikini Finals on the Olympia stage in September!  I am currently working on several fitness-related projects that I’m not ready to unveil yet.  I intend to own my own brand one day soon, so I have started working on several things that are related to that.  It’s a work in progress and I’m still trying to decide exactly which direction I want to go on certain projects, but I have set plans in motion!

Q:  You graduated with various honors including Magna Cum Laude.  It takes a special person to work both academically and physically.  How did you fit training and nutrition into your hectic schedule?

A: Oh geez!  Well when I first started training I was in my last semester of college.  I had two senior seminar classes, both of which had a huge senior project (including my senior thesis), in addition to my already overloaded class schedule.  I had no choice but to make time.  Training was important to me and so was school so I made time for both!  I would fit in gym time whenever I was able.  I would rush to the gym between classes and get up extra early to do cardio.


Candice Perfect Interview - Strong-Athlete.com

"Maintaining my nutrition has added chaos to my crazy schedule."

Maintaining my nutrition also added some chaos to my crazy schedule.  Food prep was usually done the night before and I would just lug my huge bag of food around with me all day.  I remember one day during class we had to go to the library for a guest speaker presentation.  The class overlapped with my “feeding time” and I had to eat while in the library presentation.  It was so quiet and here I was using a knife to dig peanut butter out of a jar and put it on my Ezekiel Bread.  Goodness.  People were giving me the stink eye and I just glared back at them because I was hungry and it was time to eat!

People say they don’t have time, but everybody always has an hour per day that they can spend at the gym.

One of the most common excuses people use when they’re out of shape is that they don’t have time to go to the gym.  News flash!  NOBODY HAS TIME!  People who are committed will make time because it’s important to them.  Everybody always has an hour per day they can spend at the gym.  Even on my busiest days when I thought I didn’t have a minute to spare I would just go without even thinking about it… and I still managed to get everything else done.

Q:  With the vast amount of talent in the NPC and IFBB, who are some of the huge personalities that inspire you?

A: There are several people within the industry that I am inspired by and look to for motivation.  The person who has inspired me the most however, is my coach from Team EDGE, Ingrid Romero.  I am a very driven, dedicated, and optimistic person with an excellent work ethic.  It is rare that I find somebody with the same qualities that I can look to as a role model.  Ingrid is a wife and new mother of twins, fitness writer, blogger, model, and sponsored athlete.  She is currently writing her own books on fitness and creating her workout clothing line and bikini line.  In addition to all this, she still manages to find time to train and get her pre-baby body back!  Moreover, she is available to all of her Team EDGE girls whenever we need her.  Ingrid is not only a wonderful coach, but has become a great friend and someone that I admire as not only a force within the industry but also as a person.  She is one of the few who leads by example and her motivation and drive definitely rubs off on all of her EDGE girls!

NPC Competitor Candice PerfectQ:  I’ve worked with athletes for many years and everyone always has some memorable stories about competing in their first few shows.  What are some of your fondest (or worst) moments?

A: Well, when I think of competing one of the first things that comes to mind is the smell and stain of spray tan… and asparagus.  I know it seems completely random, but those are the first two things that come to mind.  I seem to get spray tan on everything!  The purse that I carried during my first three shows was victim to pink/orange stains.  Also, the car we rented had a cream colored interior… there were definitely some reddish hued stains when we gave it back.  The asparagus seems pretty self explanatory.  It stinks and gets stuck in my teeth.  Need I say more?

Despite my injury, I’m prepping for the NPC USAs like I’m in it to win it!

Q:  What are some of your short-term goals as a competitor? Also what are your long-term goals for the Candice Perfect brand?

A: Despite my injury, I am prepping for the NPC USAs like I’m in it to win it!  Got to give it my all or I’ll kick myself later!  I plan on doing more national shows later this year, as well as another Jon Lindsay show.  I would love to take an overall title.  That is definitely one of my goals!  I will also be coming in strong for the FLEX Bikini Finals on the Olympia stage in September!  Super excited for that!

My longer-term goals revolve around building a name for myself within the fitness industry.  I plan on taking on clients who are committed to making a healthy lifestyle change once I begin personal training.  I want to help people achieve their weight loss goals through nutritional counseling and hard work in the gym.  My brand is also being worked on!  I don’t want to go into any detail yet, but as I said earlier, I have set plans in motion.  The brand will be released in phases with the first phase scheduled to launch by the beginning of 2013 (if not sooner).

Thanks so much for spending time with us, Candice! We’re looking forward to the results of the USA’s and following your career much closer. I’m certain you’ll be stopping in to visit us in the near future.



"Strong Athlete Contributor: Vince Pe"Vince “Fitness Financier” Pe

Vince Pe, founder of the Fitness Financier, has spent the last ten years in the fitness and bodybuilding industry. He has worked for some of the most prominent sports nutrition companies in North America, dealt closely with the IFBB, NPC, WNBF and WBFF organizations, and managed some of the industry’s top athletes, including Mr. Olympia champions. Vince will be a regular contributor with feature interviews from some of the most interesting personalities in bodybuilding, fitness and martial arts. For more info about Vince, check out his company website at www.fitnessfinancier.com.

By |July 23rd, 2012|Articles|

About the Author:

Strong Athlete was founded in 2011 by Strength & Conditioning Experts PK Mills and Gaétan Boutin. With over 40+ years of combined experience in sports nutrition, athletics, and fitness, the Strong Athlete team is dedicated to helping athletes achieve their maximum potential through a holistic approach to training, nutrition, and mindset.

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