Sunday, August 1, 2010

IFBB Pro Jackie Hoppe Team Universe Interview

Take pride, perseverance, hard work, dedication, and a great physique, add them up and what do you get? New IFBB Pro Jackie Swaim Hoppe. At Team Universe Jackie won her IFBB Pro card after just missing it at Jr. Nationals. In a short time I have gone from someone who was somewhat familiar with Jackie, to being a big big fan. Winning the Pro card is just another step in what promises to be an incredible future in the fitness industry. With so much time left, there is no end to how far she can and will go. Winning her IFBB Pro card is great for Jackie, but having Jackie represent them is also great for the IFBB,

Q: Jackie, thanks for taking the time out to do this.
A: It is my pleasure!!

Q: For those who may may not be familiar, can you tell a little about yourself.
A: I am 24 years old and I live in Huntsville, Alabama. I was a competitive gymnast as a kiddo and then transitioned in to All-Star cheerleading in high school and cheered on a competitive team in college. I started training for my first show in 2006, I had given up cheerleading and was ready for a new hobby that would help keep me fit and give me a reason to push myself to new limits. The sport has changed my life in many ways, it led me to my husband who is also a competitive bodybuilder and has opened many doors for me career wise as a personal trainer and fitness consultant.

Q: I must say congrats on winning the Overall at Team U and earning your Pro card
A: Thank you so much!! I still have to pinch myself to make sure I didn't dream it up!!

Q: What does earning your Pro card mean to you personally?
A: It is really validation to me that anything in life is possible if you give yourself to it 100%. When you work so hard for something and then actually attain it, the feeling of accomplishment is so's really hard to put into words!!

Q: As a show itself what did you think of it
A: I think it was a great show!! It was very well ran, although the venue did get extremely hot because there were SO many people there.

Q: How confident were you going in?
A: I was really confident....I had just placed 2nd at the Jr. Nationals 3 weeks prior so I felt like I was on the right track and I knew what changes I wanted to make before Team U.

Q: After pre-judging how were you feeling about your chances?
A: I felt really good about what I had brought, but I also knew that the other girls in my class were in incredible shape as well! So I was really hopeful for my chances but I knew that it was going to be really close!

Q: How did you feel about the overall package your brought to the stage?
A: I felt really good!! I had wanted to come in a little tighter than I had been at Jr. Nationals, and I think that I accomplished that. I was confident that I was bringing my best package ever!

Q: What part of your physique would you say was the one you have improved the most the last year?
A: Probably my shoulders. My main focus in the off season had been to grow my shoulders, I trained them twice a week and was able to gain a lot more size and keep them much fuller.

Q: Was there one aspect of your physique you thought could have been better or you wan to improve on?
A: I would really like to add some more width to my back, and also more shape to my glutes and hams. Genetically I have large calves so I need to get my hamstrings a bit bigger so they don't look small in comparison.

Q: Did your prep go as smoothly as hoped for?
A: Yea I would say so, I had no major hiccups along the way. Thank goodness!

Q: Is there a point in the prep process where you say "O.K. I am ready"?
A: I always go back in forth in my head! day I'll think I look ready to walk on stage and the next I'd be freaking out that I need 3 more weeks! is always a mind game!

Q: Anything about the prep process that you can say you want to do different next time?
A: That's tough to answer, mainly because I feel like every year and every prep my body responds differently. So I just try to stay mindful of what is working at the time.....I have dieted/prepped a little differently every year.

Q: After a show like that, are you mentally drained at all?
A: My mind was just a blur from being so excited and shocked and grateful all at the same time! I couldn't fall asleep that night because I was so amped up and couldn't stop replaying the night over and over again in my head!

Q: The week before a show like that, what were you thinking about? Nervous or excited, or what?
A: I was a combination of nervous and excited! Maybe anxious was really how I was emotions are truly all over the place the week before a contest!

Q: How about those last 5 minutes before you hit the stage, what were you thinking about?
A: Those last 5 or 10 minutes while I'm waiting in line are what I LOVE.....I can feel my heart rate speed up, I'm envisioning myself walking and turning and waving. I can feel in those moments that this is what I worked so hard for. I just try to take it all in and enjoy the moment. I keep reminding myself that all the hard work is done at that point so it's time to have fun and show it off!!

Q: When you are on stage did you try and read the judges reactions at all or just focus on what you are doing?
A: Somewhat....I look down at the judges and make eye contact with them, but I don't really try to read their reactions.

Q: Whats the first thing you ate once it was over?
A: My husband brought me a cheeseburger and fries from the Cheesecake Factory!

Q: Was there any other competitors you noticed who really impressed you?
A: Yes.....ALL OF THEM!! lol....I have so much respect for all the competitors....we all have different journeys that lead us to the stage and I am always amazed at the number of ladies (and men for that matter) that manage to juggle demanding jobs, children, and their training at the same time.

Q: Anyone you got to meet or see for the first time that you were excited about?
A: Yes definitely!!! I was so happy to meet alot of the girls that I have gotten to know on Siouxcountry!! There are so many I know I'd leave a few out....Stacy Wright, Tamee, Ali Moyer, Eryn Strickland to name a few!! I was also ecstatic to meet Dexter Jackson!!! He walked up and introduced himself and I about fell out!! if I didn't know who HE WAS!!!

Q: How important is support from family and friends at a show like this?
A: It is so incredibly important!! My husband and I say this is a team sport. I couldn't survive prep without his support and encouragement! To have the support of my family and friends as well is just a blessing!

Q: Have you decided when you will be on stage next?
A: I haven't made any decisions yet. I have just been absorbing this whole experience and I'm still letting it sink in that I am actually an IFBB Pro now. You will definitely be seeing me on the Pro stage next year, if not sooner!!

Q: Anyone you want to thank for helping you in the process?
A: I want to thank my husband, he has been my foundation through this whole thing. He is my best friend, training partner, coach and biggest cheerleader! Also all my family and friends who supported me through this journey!

Q: Anything you want to take this time to plug or promote?
A: I definitely want to give a shout out to the ladies and Jason at Siouxcountry for creating such a positive environment for the women of this sport!

Q: So how does this sound: IFBB Pro Jackie Hoppe?
A: Sounds like a dream come true!!!!!!!!!!

Q: Jackie, again congrats, you really deserve your success. Any last words before you go?
A: I just want to say thank you for giving me the opportunity to share a bit about myself! And to all competitors out there.....dreams can come true!!! Believe in yourself and your abilities and you can make it happen!!

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