Name: Karli Funk
Weight: 125 lbs
Years Bodybuilding: 1
How did your fitness journey begin?
At age 3, I started gymnastics and continued until my freshman year of high school. I fell in love with fitness at a young age, and despite being a cheerleader during my first couple years of high school, my craving to train wasn't satiated.
I began by setting fitness goals. My first goal was to run a half marathon before I graduated high school. I completed the Baltimore Half Marathon in October 2012 during my junior year. I started small on a typical cardio regimen on the treadmill and stepmill but quickly progressed into lifting. I researched on Bodybuilding.com to learn more about lifting and implemented my knowledge at the gym. I saw gradual development in my shoulders, back, arms, and legs.
I became infatuated with the beauty of training and bodybuilding. Planning and prepping meals and counting macros became second nature. Soon after, I created my next goal to compete in October 2013. Figure was my calling and I gradually increased my calories to maximize my metabolic capacity and put on additional size in my upper body.
By August 2013, I began my prep after making necessary gains during my improvement season. I stepped on stage shortly afterwards in an absolutely stunning suit designed by Renee Paz. I was surprised and delighted to win class B and the novice figure division!
What workout regimen delivered the best results?
I despise machine cardio, so I opt for metabolic conditioning, also known as MetCon, which incorporates sprints, track work, barbell complexes, ropes, kettlebells, rowing intervals, and circuit training. MetCon burns more calories and conditions your physique in ways that cardio machines can't. I typically do MetCon four times per week in the evening and train six days per week in the mornings. I train abs during MetCon in the evenings.
- Barbell Upright Rows
3 sets of 10-12 reps
2 warm-up sets of 10-12 reps, 4 working sets of 6-8 reps
- Barbell Rows
4 sets of 10-12 reps
- Wide-Grip Lat Pull-Downs
4 sets of 8-10 reps
- Dumbbell Rows
3 sets of 10-12 reps
- Straight-Arm Pull-Downs
3 sets to failure
- Dumbbell Shrugs
4 sets of 10-15 reps
5 sets to failure
What nutrition plan fueled your body?
What supplements gave you an edge?
How did your passion for fitness emerge?
As high school became increasingly strenuous and stressful, the gym became my sanctuary. I found solace amongst the weights and became infatuated with the beauty of muscle. There's an essence of beauty in the way the body moves when we train and pose. Building muscle and sculpting a physique takes meticulous effort and careful attention to detail. Fitness completely transformed the way I view life.
What or who motivated you?
In 2012, I streamed the Arnold Classic on my laptop from Bodybuilding.com and saw Erin Stern, Nicole Wilkins, and Candice Keene radiating on stage. It was an instant obsession. Instead of looking at celebrities in magazines and longing to be like them, I looked at gorgeous, muscular competitors and craved that spotlight. I'm extrinsically motivated by other athletes and also find that much of my motivation comes from within.
Where did you go
I always remember why I started. When I set a goal, I will do everything in my power to achieve it. Quitting isn't an option. It may be easier to sleep in or conform to what others do in a social setting, but at the end of the day those who put in work will ultimately succeed.
What are your future fitness plans?
After speaking to judges at my show, I determined it's crucial for me to put on additional muscle mass. For the next couple months, I will take time to gradually increase my calories and limit cardio to gain lean mass. If your dreams don't scare you, they aren't big enough. Now that I'm nationally qualified, my goal is to step on a national stage for the first time at Team Universe in July.
What is the most important fitness tip?
Do your research. Competing is a brilliant experience, but finding the right training and nutrition plans that suit your needs will benefit you greatly. Understanding the basics of how the body and metabolism function allows you to maximize your results. Fostering a connection between your mind and physique is crucial. Visualize every aspect of your journey. If you believe in your heart that you're a champion, success will be inevitable.
Who is your favorite competitor?
Erin Stern is my favorite competitor. She has an amazing physique and is a natural athlete, which I admire. She is proof that hard work, dedication, focus, and positivity make dreams a reality. I also love Victoria Adelus. Victoria won her pro card in 2012 and achieved success throughout 2013.
How did Bodybuilding.com help you reach your goals?
I was clueless when I first started training, but Bodybuilding.com provided me with training videos and information to properly fuel my body and compete. The wealth of information available on the site is incredible. I order my supplements from Bodybuilding.com and they arrive in one day.
Karli's Top 5 Gym Tracks
- "Right This Second" by Deadmau5
- "Drive It Like You Stole It" by The Glitch Mob
- "Graduation" by Gemini
- "Blue" by Gemini
- "Me & U" by Ultra DJ's
- 2013 NPC Natural Pennsylvania Championships - 1st Place Class B and Novice Figure