Friday, May 6, 2011

Gina Batcheller Interview

Looking for inspiration? Looking for proof you can get on stage one day? Look no further than Gina Batcheller. Gina overcame a problem with emotional eating, and still deals with an eating disorder, and after two years convinced herself she could compete. Not only did she compete, but took a very respectable 6th place out of 15 girls.With plans to compete more, I am confident we will see her climbing up higher and higher in placings.

Q: First, Gina, I want to thank you for taking the time to do this.
A: Of course, Jason! Thank you for contacting me!

Q: Can you start out by telling a little about yourself.
A: I grew up in Forest Lake, MN. I never moved once as a kid, my parents are still in the house I was born and raised in. My parents just celebrated their 25th wedding anniversary last year. I have one older brother, we are just 12 ½ months apart. Although we are very close in age, we were never really that close on a relationship level. We are complete opposites; he is very introverted and shy, and I am a total extrovert and outgoing!

Q: Before the gym were you an especially athletic person? Play any sports or anything?
A: As a kid, I tried a few different sports; baseball, basketball, track.. but was never very good at any, and didn’t stick with anything. I was never very athletic in school. I did try cheerleading my junior year, and found I was good at it, and loved doing it. We took 1st place at a competition that year.

Q: What initially led you into the gym?
A: I had always been the skinny girl in high school, But the year after I graduated, I had been in a long term relationship, and we put on the “love weight”. I wasn’t overweight, just a little bigger than what normal had always been for me. After we broke up, I battled with overeating for my emotions and gained some weight, so I started working put.

Q: Was training something you picked up fairly easy? How long before you started to see results?
A: I had no idea what I was doing in the gym when I first started working out. So, I first started working out with a personal trainer. It took me over a year to see results from the gym, since I was still dealing with emotional eating..
About 6 months into working out, I became group fitness certified and started teaching a class called Bodypump at Gold’s Gym. It helped keep me in check knowing that others were looking up to me as a fitness professional.

Q: What made you decide to compete for the first time?
A: When I first went through training for Bodypump, I met a few people who were a little more in to the fitness field then I was. After talking and learning more about this new world, I started looking into more opportunities to get more involved. It took me over two years to realize that I COULD actually compete, so I started training for it.

Q: Is competing something your family and friends supported?
A: I have an AMAZING support group of friends and family. I had probably 20 people who came to cheer me on at my first competition.

Q: Was competing what you expected or did anything surprise you about it?
A: I guess all the emotions tied in to competing surprised me. I didn’t know how emotionally tied I could be to one goal.

Q: Can you share your contest history.
A: I competed in my very first competition on April 23rd with the FAP at the Mall of America called The Great North Natural Championships. I competed in the Bikini Short class, and out of 15 competitors, the top 5 placed, and I got 6th overall! I was very happy with that for my first competition. I plan on doing at least one more, and possibly two more competitions this year.

Q: As far as body parts, what do you feel is your best one?
A: I really like my shoulders and arms. I like being a little more buff and muscular than “normal” women.. I think it’s sexy to be strong!

Q: Do you have a part you most like to train?
A: I really like working my abs, especially obliques because I can feel the burn for a couple days after, and it makes me stand taller for those few days!

Q: What is your normal training routine and diet like and how do you alter it for contest prep?
A: I really don’t have a “normal” anything! I just try to eat as clean as possible, and cut my carbs for contest prep.

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: Definitely more positive; I have people telling me I look great and I get complements on taking the challenge of competing all the time.

Q: When they see it that first time, what is the one question or comment you are most sick of hearing?
A: “What made you want to compete?” I’m only sick of it because I don’t really have one reason; it was more of a lot of things adding up that drove me to compete for the first time.

Q: What is the biggest misconception about women who train and compete or the one thing you wish people understood?
A: I think the biggest misconception about women who compete is that we are all vein, full of ourselves, and bitches. Don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of women out there that are exactly that, but as for myself and a lot of the women that I have met in these past few months of training, there are a lot of amazing ladies that are willing to help others and are some of the sweetest people I have ever met. I have definitely made some lifelong friends through competing.

Q: What is the best and worst part of training for you?
A: The best part of training is seeing how my body is changing, the worst is waiting for those changes.. I’m an instant gratification person, so it’s hard to be patient!

Q: Do you have any favorite competitors or any you admire?
A: Lori Harder has one of the most amazing physiques I have ever seen! I want her abs!! Some ladies I have had the pleasure of working with are Tara Thatcher and Megan Moon. Tara is such an amazing person inside and out, willing to help with anything!

Q: Do you have a favorite cheat food?

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: Listen to yourself and your body as much as you can. It is really hard getting a lot of different information and opinions from everyone out there. It can be really hard to do your own thing when you’re hearing 100 different things at one time. Things like diet and training will never work the same for two people, so listen to how you are feeling and looking to be your best indicator on what you might need to change.

Q: Do you think its becoming more common to see women using the weights in the gym as opposed to just doing cardio and things?
A: Yes, I see a lot more women using weights in the gyms compared to just cardio. There are also more classes geared to weight lifting rather than pure cardio classes as well.

Q: Outside of training, any other hobbies or activities you enjoy?
A: I really like doing anything outdoors.. Biking, hiking, playing summer sports, anything active for sure! I do really enjoy time to just sit and relax as well.. curling up on the couch with my heated blanket and a good movie can be sooooo nice every once in a while!

Q: Can you describe a typical day in the life of Gina Batcheller.
A: Let’s see.. typical is hard! Right now, I’m just working at a golf course as a bartender. I usually work evenings, so I will get up, have a nice breakfast, surf the net for a little while, head to the gym, shower, and off to work I go!

Q: Describe Gina Batcheller in five words.
A: Outgoing, Ambitious, Cute but Sexy at the same time :-), Bubbly, and Caring

Q: What is one thing people would be surprised to know about you?
A: I am still battling an eating disorder, and have a very distorted self-body image.

Q: Any set plans for the near future as far as competing or anything else?
A: I would love to train hard for this summer and possibly do one or two more competitions this year. I would love to someday compete somewhere out of state, like Miami or Vegas!!

Q: Anything you want to take this opportunity to plug or promote?
A: Tara Thatcher and Perfectly Prepared.

Q: Are you looking for sponsors? If so how can they reach you and what are they getting in Gina Batcheller the athlete and competitor?
A: I am very much looking for sponsors. Competing is an expensive sport and I hope to find a sponsor that will allow me to reach my fitness goals as an athlete without having to hold back financially. I am very confident I will go far in this industry, as long as I can get some financial help!

Q: Gina, again, I thank you for taking the time to do this. Any last words before you go?
A: I want to thank you, Jason, for allowing me the opportunity to share my story. I am loving the fitness industry and am excited for the future ahead of me!!

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