Jamie Eason is by far one of the most recognizable fitness models in the industry. However, Jamie wasn't born with a silver dumbbell in her hand; she had to fight tooth and nail for where she is today. And like any great success story, Jamie had to battle in the trenches before she reached the summit of success.
Jamie overcame every woman's worst nightmare: breast cancer. Her personal struggle with the disease flipped her motivation switch. She began to make healthy lifestyle changes, building the body she never thought she'd have again, but better!
With 7 years under her belt since her bout with cancer, Jamie has accumulated an array of health and fitness knowledge that has aided her in her own rendition of survival of the fittest.
In an exclusive Bodybuilding.com interview, Jamie shares her best tips about training, nutrition and supplementation—tips that she has used to set herself apart in the world of fitness.
So sit back, relax (but not for too long), and learn the insider secrets that have set Jamie Eason apart as a tried and true fitness professional.
Jamie Eason's Fitness Program
Tip 1. Train For Your Weaknesses
- Everyone seems to have that certain body part that lags behind and won't change no matter how hard you work at it.
- Put extra emphasis on that body part, by training it 2 days a week rather than just one.
Tip 2. Hit Every Muscle Group At Least Once During The Week
- If you're limited on time to work out during the week, adjust your schedule to accommodate every muscle group.
- If I can only make it into the gym one day, then I'll combine everything into one full body workout.
- If you do have the luxury of time however, you can never train your back or shoulders too much. This also applies to your weakest body part as well.
Tip 3. Set Your Heart On Your Ideal Physique And Go For It!
- When you first start to train, you should be committed to reach your goals and work out 6 days a week with only one day off.
- Give your muscles the attention they need to grow, by focusing on one major muscle group per day.
- By eating healthy and getting enough sleep, you will be able to put all your energy into growing that particular muscle.
Tip 4. Don't Overtrain
- Exercise is obviously good for your muscles, but it can also be bad if done excessively.
- Exercise can break down muscle and release free radicals in to your body, so it's important to allow your body to recover with rest, proper nutrition and supplementation.
Tip 5. Lift Heavy To Break The Muscle Building Plateau
- It takes a lot of effort to gain quality muscle, and lifting heavy with low rep ranges can stimulate muscle growth without burning muscle from high intensity exercise.
Tip 6. Increase The Intensity When Trying To Cut Down
- When you're trying to get in your best shape for a special event, you should increase your intensity in the gym by doing more sets and higher reps.
- You also want to limit long extended periods of cardio, because it can eat away muscle rather than fat. I stick with plyometrics, interval training for cardio, or sprints.
Tip 7. Be Flexible With Your Rest Days
- Because my travel schedule is so hectic, I don't really plan a rest day. I don't want to miss out on any of the fun things in life, so if something cool or exciting comes up on a day during the week, I want to be able to take a complete day off and get right back on my program the next day.
Tip 1. Track Your Meals To Stay On Track To Your Goals
- You need to know exactly how many calories you are taking in on a daily basis, so you aren't overeating or undereating, which can be just as detrimental to your goals.
- If you know your calorie range, you can eat more calories when you train harder, and fewer calories when you're not training as hard.
Tip 2. Space Your Meals Out In Even Intervals Throughout The Day
- Eat small complete meals every 3 hours to keep your body fueled with sustained energy throughout the day. You want to keep your body at homeostasis the entire day rather than having a bunch of peaks and valleys.
- Going long periods of time without eating can be detrimental to your goals.
- Keeping your body properly fueled can keep your blood sugar levels stable, your mind alert and your body fed and energized.
- If your body knows it's going to be fed at a certain time, it will start to release fat because it knows that doesn't need to store fat for future energy stores.
Tip 3. Eat 5-6 Small But Complete Meals Throughout The Day
- You body can process several smaller meals better than just a few larger meals throughout the course of the day.
- Your body will only use what it can for fuel at that moment, the rest will be stored as fat.
Tip 4. Manipulate Your Carb Intake Depending On Your Goal
- If you are looking to grow your muscles, then increase your carbohydrate intake but if you're trying to lean out, then decrease your carb intake.
- If you take in carbs with your protein directly after training, the carbs will act as a broom to sweep the protein into your muscles for optimal growth and recovery.
Tip 5. Be Creative To Make Your Healthy Meals Taste Good Too
- Eating healthy doesn't always have to mean chicken, rice and broccoli - you can spice up your meals by thinking outside of the box and coming up with some healthy yet tasty recipes.
- Sometimes I incorporate baby food into my recipes because they're convenient, healthy and don't contain preservatives.
Tip 6. Cook Your Food In Muffin Tins
- Lean meats have a tendency to become very dry when cooked. Using muffin tins to cook your recipes can help regulate the heat to each serving.
- Also the vegetables or other ingredients will help keep the moisture in when being cooked.
- In addition, the muffin tins make perfect portion sizes, and are convenient for on-the-go meals.
Tip 7. Food Preparation Is The Key To Success
- If you don't have healthy food readily available, when you get hungry you'll just reach for whatever is convenient and most of the time it's unhealthy.
- By preparing a lot of food in advance, you'll always have healthy options that you can eat, even when you're in a time crunch.
- You can even freeze meals that you cook ahead of time to keep them fresh until you're ready to eat them.
Tip 8. Don't Eat Snacks, Eat Meals
- The word snack has a bad connotation and usually means grabbing something on a whim that's small but extremely unhealthy.
- When you eat clean and unprocessed foods, you can eat a substantial amount and still eat fewer calories than a typical "snack".
Tip 9. Avoid Cheat Meals
- I personally don't like cheat meals, because they're a slippery slope! If I have one meal that's unhealthy, then I start to develop more cravings for bad food.
- I prefer to make healthy food that still tastes great, so I never feel like I'm being deprived.
Tip 1. Use Supplements To Fill In The Gaps Of Your Whole Foods
- To be successful with supplements, you first need to eat right and exercise often.
- Supplements are not a magic pill that allow you to eat bad and not be active, but still expect to see results—it just isn't going to happen.
- Supplements like protein powder can be convenient for when you're on the go and need something fast. I travel a lot and protein is a life saver when it comes to staying nourished.
Tip 2. Choose Supplements That Can Help With Your Specific Needs
- Supplements can support a wide range of bodily functions that pertain specifically to women and our needs, such as hormone support.
- Find the supplements that can help you with your individual needs and reach your goals.
Tip 3. A Multivitamin Is A Necessity For Everyone
- Regardless of your fitness level, it's important to take a multivitamin everyday because no one can get 100% of the daily values of every nutrient that our bodies need.
- Weight bearing exercises can be hard on your bones, so it's important to get plenty of calcium which is available in most multivitamins.
Tip 4. Don't Leave Home Without Your Protein
- There is a little window of time after you workout that your muscles are most receptive to utilizing protein for growth and recovery. I like to bring my protein powder in a shaker bottle with me to the gym, so I can drink it immediately afterward.
Tip 5. Use Bcaa's As Your Fitness Insurance
- Branched Chain Amino Acids are the building blocks of protein, and can help build and maintain muscle through the recovery process.
- I add BCAA's into my water so I am constantly replenishing my stores before, during and after my workout.
Tip 6. Eliminate The Unknowns Of Your Diet With Quality Supplements
- In today's society, it's hard to know exactly what you're getting from your food and what's being added as filler or preservatives.
- Supplements ensure that you are getting all the nutrients your body needs by filling in the gaps where your whole foods may be lacking.