Friday, July 13, 2012
Jaime Filer Interview
Jaime Filer's story is one everyone should read. Jaime suffered from an eating disorder at a young age. She went from that all the way to competing in her first bodybuilding show at the age of seventeen. She competed several times those first two years. Overcoming such a disorder is in and of itself a challenge, but to overcome it to the point of being able to get on a bodybuilding stage is an amazingly inspiring story. She also has such a great outlook and perspective that makes it impossible not to be a fan.
Q: Easy! Eating disorder. I was about fourteen years old and I played basketball obsessively, Provincial team, National team, and had gone on my first diet. I was maybe 5'5" or 5'6", maybe one hundred and twenty pounds and decided I was too big. So I lied about how old I was to get into the gym. I met with a trainer who gave me beginners workout plan and started cardioing non-stop. I got started because I had an eating disorder and decided to start my first diet.
Q: When you started lifting did you ever think it would become so important to you?
A: It wasn't until I decided to get better that I knew lifting would be an essential part of my lifestyle. My mom between sixteen and eighteen tried to put a kibosh on my going to the gym. By eighteen I had managed to convince her that the only way that I would be willing to get better and work on getting better was if she would let me go to the gym and build muscle. I would show her pictures, not necessarily the Iris Kyle type, but more Cory Everson and Rachel McClish, and say "this is the girl I could be but I am scared to start putting on weight unless you let me weight train, that is the only way I will start eating again". So it was what started killing me to begin with but it helped me get better.
Q: It isn't the most common hobby for females, did family and friends react negatively when you started adding muscle?
A: They started reacting negatively when I took it off. When you are walking around at 5'7" and weighing between ninety-five and a hundred and fifteen pounds, everyone reacts negatively. Once I started getting back to a healthy weight, because of my past, people were happy for me. When I told everyone I was getting into bodybuilding, they didn't understand, but they saw it changed my body for the better, and it was one hundred percent support.
Q: Coming from the disorder, how hard was it to adjust to the bodybuilding diet?
A: It was relatively easy because for the past six or seven years I was OCD about what I ate. I would count every calorie and make sure to burn more than I ate. It gave me permission to eat the same things but different quantities.
Q: Why did you decide to compete?
A: I did my first show when I was 5'7" and one hundred and four pounds and if you saw pictures there is no way you would say I was above six percent body fat. To me, when you are at six percent you look like a bodybuilder because bodybuilders are lean. It didn't occur to me that I also had to put on size, I just thought I had to be shredded. So, I figured why not do a show, there is nothing to me but muscle and bone.
Q: How nervous were you that first time?
A: Extremely! I was seventeen years old, so I was one of the youngest on stage. Also, I had no practice with posing, I got my mom to put on my tan and she knew nothing about it. It was a new experience for all of us, but I was nervous cause I was young. I saw how big the girls were and thought "uh oh, somethings not right here".
Q: When you look back, do you wish you had waited?
A: Yes and no. I mean, the only way to get over stage fright is by getting on stage. So I am glad I had eight shows under my belt before I did my most recent one. I don't wish I had waited, I wish I had looked different on stage. I wish that instead of a hundred and four I had been a hundred and thirty-four. It was not a good look for me. But no, I don't regret being a seventeen year old female bodybuilder.
Q: A lot of people say after the first show it becomes and addiction, was that the case with you?
A: Yeah a hundred percent. Except I was addicted long before I knew it was a sport. I was addicted to the weight training. Once I found out I could compete and was doing well, I said "lets make a career out of this". The hardest part is realizing you have to make improvements between shows and have to take time off. That wasn't something I thought about. I did four shows my first year and four shows my second year. It was the eight show when I realized my body wasn't getting different and had to take time off. It was what I had to do to make myself better.
Q: Any idea when you want to compete next?
A: Yeah, ideally somewhere between fifteen and eighteen weeks from now. When do I wanna compete again? I wanna compete again last year, but when will I be ready? Between fifteen and eighteen weeks.
Q: What improvements do you want to make for the next show?
A: Last time I weighed one hundred and thirty-nine and not lean enough. My body fat was probably ten to twelve, it's low for a girl but not for a female bodybuilder. This time, I don't care what my weight is, I want my body fat to be lower, I want to be one of the leanest girls on stage.
Q: Do you have a favorite part to train? If so, whats a typical workout for it?
A: Legs and glutes. I have two leg days a week. Day one is heavy, heavy deadlifts and then heavy squats, leg curl, calves and probably abs. Four to six reps and three to four sets. I am out in a half hour. I go heavy and I go home. Second day is eight to twelve reps and three to four sets. I switch up the type of deadlifts and squats and then a couple isolation type exercises.
Q: In the gym, do you get a lot of the unwanted attention or stares?
A: I get a lot of attention but I wouldn't call it unwanted. I'm a bodybuilder, I get on stage half naked. If I dint want attention I wouldn't be a bodybuilder. I work out at a great facility that is respectful of what I do. The guys that look aren't pervy, it is more "wow, that is impressive" way. I am fortunate that is how they look at me in the gym.
Q: You just started writing for my blog, why did that interest you?
A: Don't get me wrong, every individual is different, but I think it is important for girls to know that there are other individuals and competitors ho struggle. I have the past I have and there is nothing I can do about it. That is also unique to a lot of competitors. No one talks about the tough side of the sport where your mind gets the better of you, you binge and restrict and binge and restrict. People think it's so easy for all competitors, the day they decide to compete they just go on auto-pilot for sixteen weeks. Thanks to having a coach all their meals and workouts are taken care of and they don't have to think anymore. The truth is that if you are a human being with a pulse, there will be emotions there, if you get in a fight with your boyfriend or your parents upset you or you live alone, you will struggle on a daily basis with something. Competing isn't so easy. I wanted to do the blog to let people know their are real human beings out there who screw up in prep and set themselves back.
Q: If a girl reading this is going through an eating disorder like you did, what would you tell her?
A: Tell someone. You don't have to tell all your friends, but tell somebody. if you keep it inside, I promise you won't get over it alone, you keep yourself in denial. You can make excuse for yourself on why you aren't eating or why you think you look fat or whatever. If you keep yourself accountable and tell a friend or a sibling or parent, there is someone who will help you get better.
Q: If you can spend a day training with anyone who would you pick?
A: Can I pick two?
A: One would be Charles Glass. H comes up with so many new exercises and has such a novel approach to training. I love his method of training. The other is Layne Norton. His intensity and drive is second to none, especially among natural pros. Also, he has got an intensely scientific background. Coming from someone with a that background, I appreciate someone who appreciates the science of the body and can tailor their training and sets and rest to a bodybuilder. Layne has a gift for that.
Q: Anyone you want to thank?
A: Team 3DMJ and my coach Alberto. My friends, training partner, CPX Supplements, and you. You, for giving me so many opportunities.