Name: Jennifer Canales
Why I Got Started
After graduating from college and joining the workforce, I became a grumpy, cynical and unfit cubicle employee. That's how I felt everyday despite being a stellar honor student in school. I was disappointed, not only in myself, but at life and everyone around me.
I thought life outside of structured academic programs would be so much more liberating and rewarding. Working a full-time job in finance wasn't what I expected. The three walls of a cubicle and an expensive, ergonomics chair took a toll on my body faster than I thought! I gained over 20 pounds after college, was on a perpetual state of "tired" mode, and was depressed.
I knew I had to act fast or I would lose all hope in regaining my once extroverted, ambitious and energetic character!
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I had to act fast or I would lose all hope in regaining my once extroverted, ambitious and energetic character.
How I Did It
I walked into a gym one day after another "long" day at the office. I instantly felt a vibe of good energies coming from people of all ages and races into one big room for a good work out! And what was even better, I saw people working up a sweat with a smile.
I knew walking into this place would change my life. I would be a part of a team again, even if I wasn't competing in a group sport. I felt getting a gym membership was exactly what I needed.
After a month of going to the gym, I worked up the courage to talk to the personal trainer that had the biggest biceps. I wanted to talk to him since the first day! After some chatting, trainer Ryan Mark told me he was a bodybuilder.
I was so happy he said that! I found someone who would be able to help me take my fitness goals to another level. And suddenly, I gained that feeling of ambition again! I had so many ideas running in my head, so many questions to ask him.
I hired him as my trainer and I saw my body transform quickly! I was so excited and life had new meaning for me again. He introduced me to the wonderful world of weights. My trainer not only gave me great information and training, he gave me hope!
I gained so much confidence in myself that I signed up for my first figure competition. With my dedication and my trainer's expertise, I was stage ready in 9 months. I went from 185 pounds to a lean, tight and sculpted 120 pounds!
Before Morning Cardio Session:
Afternoon Pre Workout:
- USPlabs Jack3d: 1 scoop (cycle period of 5 days on, 2 days off)
Afternoon Intra Workout:
- Scivation Xtend: 1 scoop
Afternoon Post Workout:
- Nature's Best Isopure Whey Protein: 2 scoops
My nutrition is simple and structured year round. The only difference is 12 weeks away from a show I start watching portion sizes like a hawk!
The numbers never lie!
Meal 1: Post Cardio
Meal 4: Post Workout
Most of my training is designed so I don't have to do too much cardio. Low rest times and speedy sets work best for me.
I typically work towards 4 sets of every exercise, up to 12 reps each.
Day 1: Chest
- Chest Press: 4 sets of 12 reps
- Incline Dumbbell Press: 4 sets of 12 reps
- Cable Crossovers: 4 sets of 12 reps
Day 2: Back
- Dumbbell Rows: 4 sets of 12 reps
- Wide Grip Lat Pulldowns: 4 sets of 12 reps
- Machine Row: 4 sets of 12 reps
Day 3: Legs
- Leg Extensions: 4 sets of 15 reps
- Walking Lunges: 4 sets of 15 reps
- Barbell Squats: 4 sets of 20 reps
- Hip Extensions: 4 sets of 15 reps
- Front Squats: 3 sets of 12 reps
- Dumbbell Step-up: 3 sets of 12 reps
Day 4: Arms
Day 5: Shoulders
- Arnold Press: 4 sets of 12 reps
Day 6: Cardio
- Cardio: 45 min
Day 7: Active Rest
I still workout but I walk into gym with no game plan. I just enjoy being at the gym!
With the help of my trainer and cleaning up nutrition plans, I've consistently made improvements to my physique in my short 3-year lifting experience.
I went from last place at my first show to Top 5 the following year. I am currently 10 weeks out from my 3rd show and am confident that I will be Top 5 if not better, I am training/eating/thinking daily to win first place!
- NANBF St Louis Natural Bodybuilding, July 10 2010: Top 5, 5th place
- Musclemania Miami, June 20 2009: 15th DNP
Suggestions for Others
My fitness journey started with a vision. I knew I wanted to be fit, happy and competitive again. I encourage anyone that has been putting their personal fitness goals aside to write them down and let them take real form on paper.
We show up to work up every day and work countless hours in front of a screen for others. It's only right to show up and show off for yourself. Chances are you wouldn't leave work without getting your job done so don't put off your health and happiness a day longer either.
My motto is "If JenCan ... YOU can!"
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