Friday, December 17, 2010

Kerri Bolen Interview

First time I saw Kerri Bolen I wondered "Why have I not seen her before" I was so very impressed by her photos. But I have since found out there is much more to Kerri than a great physique and beautiful photos....... much more. She says you can do anything you set your mind to, and she doesn't just preach it, she proves it. In 2011 she will do her first National level show, and no doubt she will prove it once again.

Q: First, Kerri, I want to thank you for taking the time to do this.

Q: Can you start out by telling a little about yourself.
A: I currently live in Williston, SC - Barnwell County. I've been here most of my life. I was raised by Christian parents with good values. I am married to a wonderful man with two boys, and I have a 19-year old son and a 21-year old step-son. My son is actually on the waiting list to go in the Air Force. I'm proud that he is going to be serving his country.

Q: Before the gym were you an especially athletic person? Play any sports or anything?
A: I guess I was always athletic. We had horses from the time I was two years old, so I was really into horseback riding. I also played football with all the boys in the neighborhood and boxed in my uncle's front yard with the rest of the kids. When I got older I played softball. But weightlifting was my true love!

Q: What initially led you into the gym?
A: I think I initially got interested in working out through my uncle. He was really into working out and when I was a teenager (probably about 14 or 15), I started lifting some with him. It's been in my blood ever since.

Q: Was training something you picked up fairly easy? How long before you started to see results?
A: Yes, I picked it up quickly by watching others and reading every Muscle and Fitness magazine I could get my hands on. Actually, it didn't take long at all for me to see results. I have pretty good genetics.

Q: What made you decide to compete for the first time?
A: Looking at the magazines I was always interested in bodybuilding and fitness. I wanted to look like the women in those magazines - Rachel McLish and Cory Everson. I am a very competitive person, so I made myself a goal and just went for it.

Q: Was competing something your family and friends supported at the time?
A: Actually, my parents aren't very interested in the competitions. My husband is very supportive. I wouldn't be able to do all this without him. We train together, he diets with me - the whole nine yards. I'm blessed to have him.

Q: Was competing what you expected?
A: Yes, pretty much, it's a lot of hard work, but well worth it.

Q: Can you share your contest history

*1991- Georgia Bodybuilding Championships- Atlanta , GA- Lightweight Div.- 6th place
*2003- NPC Palmetto Cup, SC- Lightweight Div.- 1st place & Overall
*2003- SNBF Supernatural, Duluth , GA- Lightweight Div.- 3rd place
*Aug 2010- SC Upstate Classic- Spartanburg- 2nd place- Figure A, 1st place Masters Div.
*Aug 2010- Excalibur, Charleston, SC- 3rd place- Figure A, 2nd place Masters Div.
*Oct. 2010 -Jen Hendershott's All Women's Wknd- 3rd place- Figure A, 5th place Masters Div.

Q: As far as body parts, what do you feel is your best one?
A: I think my biceps are my best body part. Everyone is always teasing me about "my guns".

Q: Do you have a part you most like to train?
A: Shoulders is my favorite part to train and abs is a close second.

Q: What is your normal training routine and diet like, and how do you alter it for contest prep?
A: My husband and I are pretty intense with our training. We lift heavy, but then we will do something different once in a while to shake things up. In my off season diet, I still try to eat pretty clean, but I do take in more carbs. When I'm dieting down for a contest, I might do more drop sets and gradually drop most of my carbs.

Q: When someone sees your physique or hears you compete for the first time, what is the most common reaction? More positive or negative?
A: The reactions I get are all positive and I get them mostly from women.

Q: When they see it that first time, what is the one question or comment you are most sick of hearing?
A" I guess the thing I hear the most is, "I LOVE your arms". Everyone sees my arms more - rarely are my legs seen in the gym, because usually I am wearing sweat pants. But I wouldn't say I'm sick of hearing it - it actually makes me feel good when I get a compliment like that.

Q: What is the biggest misconception about women who train and compete or the one thing you wish people understood?
A: I guess that it DOES take a lot of hard work and determination, but that anyone can do it - if they set their mind to it.

Q: What is the best and worst part of competing?
A: The two things I love about competing are 1) working out hard, and just all the show preparation and 2) when they announce your name for first callouts at the night show. That is such a rush!
The worst part, for me, is getting nervous. I have only competed in figure three times and I still get a little stage fright.

Q: Do you have any favorite competitors or any you admire?
A: I really admire Shannon Meteraud. Not only is she a great competitor and trainer, I believe she is a wonderful wife and mother. She loves to compete, but she puts her family first.

Q: Do you have a favorite cheat food?
A: Cookie Dough Ice Cream

Q: If another woman told you she wanted to start training, what is the one piece of advice you would most want to give her?
A: Maybe start out with a good personal trainer to get off on the right foot. Then, be consistent in your training and diet, stay focused and you will get there!

Q: Do you think it is becoming more common to see women in the gym training as hard as men?
A: I don't see a lot of it where I work out as far as weight training. There are a few women at my gym that train pretty hard, but for the most part, I see most of them just doing cardio and the various classes at the gym (which is good, too).

Q: Outside of training, any other hobbies or activities you enjoy?
A: I love horseback riding and spending time with my family.

Q: Can you describe a typical day in the life of Kerri Bolen.
A: I work a full-time job (10 hours a day). After work, I go to the gym. I am also a part-time personal trainer and I usually have a few clients to train. Then I have to train myself. LOL! My husband will meet me over there. We are there usually about an hour and a half (or more right before a show). Go home, check my emails, get in the bed, cause I have to get up at 4:30 am and start all over again.

Q: Describe Kerri Bolen in five words.
A: Christian, Fit. Determined, Funny, Caring

Q: What is one thing people would be surprised to know about you?
A: Well, probably that I sing at church. I have my own built-in guitar player (my husband).

Q: Any set plans for the near future as far as competing or anything else?
A: I'm in my off-season now, but I plan on competing at the Jr. USA next May in Charleston , SC. This will be my first national-level show, so I am hoping to do well.

Q: Anything you want to take this opportunity to plug or promote?
A: Actually, I would like to offer my personal training services. I am an ISSA Certified Personal Trainer and I am working part-time at Achieve Fitness in Aiken, SC. I can help with general weight loss and also competition prep. I have competed in bodybuilding and figure so I have a lot of knowledge and experience in those areas, also. I love helping people.

Q: Are you looking for sponsors? If so how can they reach you and what are they getting in Kerri Bolen the athlete and competitor?
A: Sure, I would love to have sponsors - all these competitions get expensive. "Hey all you supplement companies out there, I am a sucker for a good-tasting protein powder and a chocolate protein bar." If I believe in the product, I will definitely speak up and promote the product. If someone wants to contact me, my email address is

Q: Kerri , again, I thank you for taking the time to do this. Any last words before you go?
A: I would just like to say that it's never too late to start healthy eating habits and get in shape. I didn't work out too much the last few years because I was having back trouble. I just started back working out in April 2010 and by August 2010, I was competing in Figure and placing in the top five every time. You can do anything you set your mind to.

1 comment:

  1. So excited for you Kerri! Can't wait to see you on stage again :)