Amateur Fitness Competitor of the Week: Jennifer Kersten

Amateur Fitness Competitor of the Week: Jennifer Kersten! - Pics and info and more!
  • Name: Jennifer Kersten
  • E-mail: www.jenkersten.com
  • Age: 24
  • Where: Victoria, BC Canada
  • Height: 5'2"
  • Weight: 114 Lbs.
  • Years Bodybuilding :4
  • Favorite Bodypart: Back
  • Favorite Exercise: Legs/Glutes
  • Favorite Supplements: Bio-X Power Whey Isolate, Bio-X Extreme Glutamine, and Bio-X Xtreme Creatine

How Did You Get Started?

My journey into competing was not much different than a lot of competitors. I was a competitive gymnast from a very young age, and as I became a teenager my body changed rapidly, crushing my dreams of being as successful as I wanted to in the sport. At that time I turned to disordered eating habits and began a cycle of bulimia and anorexia that encompassed my life for a few years.

My recovery from the disorder happened from the Grace of God and a wake up call when my best childhood friend was in a car accident that left her comatose and head injured. Watching her recovery and strength changes your perspective on life immensely.

I then began getting involved in fitness through aerobics and weight training at a local fitness center and from there I learnt of 'fitness' competitions. I never thought I could get on stage in a bikini, I hardly wore shorts in the summer, let alone get on stage.

My first competition wasn't as successful as I had hoped and I think that's what has been the catalyst to keep me going ever since. I love knowing that I'm competing with myself everyday and every time I hit the gym.

What Workout Plan Worked Best For You?

I definitely make the best gains when I train each body part only once per week. I'm very bottom dominant from years of gymnastics, and the best way to get my lower half in shape is through plyometrics, sprinting, cardio, and stretching. I don't train my quads or calves, but I do train hamstrings heavy. I train my upper body as heavy as I can with sets of 3-4 and a rep range of 6-10. I'm constantly trying to bring up my upper body to match my lower...sigh! lol.

What Nutrition Plan Has Worked Best For You?

I have been diagnosed as insulin resistant (due to polycystic ovary syndrome) and I have a lower thyroid (not enough to medicate). So keeping my carbs at a lower level is very important. I can utilize carbs because of a medication I'm on, but in order to stay in good shape I have to watch my diet year round.

I eat lean proteins, EFA's, veggies and low glycemic carbs at only two meals for the day. Whenever I feel like a treat I'll have it, but that is usually only once or twice a week. At this time my health is more important to me than a cookie. I always remind myself that this isn't just about esthetics for me, it's about not developing a more serious illness and keeping an illness under control.

What Supplements Have Given You The Greatest Gains?

I always use protein powder and glutamine. If I miss my glutamine I notice my recovery is a lot longer than normal.

Why do you love Bodybuilding?

I love fitness for the challenge, the stage and the friendships I've made. I love being on stage! I was always one to entertain when I was a kid, break dancing at X-mas dinner and singing at other family functions. Although the idea of being half naked on stage wasn't so appealing, just being on stage and having all eyes on me, was like a dream!

What Are Your Future Bodybuilding Plans?

What One Tip Would You Give Other Bodybuilders?

Give yourself plenty of prep time. I see a lot of girls that suddenly want to compete but only have a couple months to prepare. You need a solid offseason of training to prepare your body for the routine and physique round. It's just like in any sport, there's an offseason for preparation. You don't just go into football game with out first practicing plays, drills, etc...you could but probably wouldn't be as successful as the athletes that did their homework.

Who Are Your Favorite Bodybuilders?

There are so many...Jenny Hendershott has a great attitude and is a sweet person. I think Adela and Jenny Worth have great physiques and they're both about my height, I am always wanting emmulate either of them. Kelly Ryan has fantastic routines! There are also a lot of competitors at the national level that I think are amazing athletes.