December 5th, 2016 | Fitness

Interview with Hailey Bettencourt

Hailey Bettencourt is lighting the social world on fire. The fitness guru sparks inspiration, positivity and motivation amongst her followers with her transformation, competition journey, recipes, workouts, and candid look at day-to-day life. All the while, she competes in fitness expos around the world as she pursues her certificate in personal training. Today, we find out what pushes her to keep moving forward.

Was there a defining moment or tipping point that made you change your eating and exercise habits?

Yes. I was so sick and tired of not fitting into my clothes, and not fitting into small/medium items like I was used to. I wanted to make a change instead of accepting the weight gain and buying new clothes — so I did!

In the early days of the transformation, how did you motivate yourself to keep going?

I definitely didn't motivate myself by seeing progress. I don't really know what kept me going... maybe just the hope that things would be better and things would eventually change. I kept pushing on with the workouts. Even though I wanted to die during every one, I could feel myself getting stronger both mentally and physically. It definitely made a huge difference.

What does a typical workout look like for you? Or, what is your favorite workout?

I think my favorite workout would either have to be glutes or shoulders. A typical workout for weight training is a compilation of 5-7 exercises ranging from 2-4 sets of generally 10-20 reps. This is what I'm currently doing, prepping for my upcoming fitness competition. There will be weeks when I incorporate more strength training and do sets with less reps to build more muscle, but not right now so close to my competition.

Was all the hard work worth it? 

So far? Yes! I haven't been perfect with any of my preps for all three of my competitions. But it's only been a little over a year since I started working out, and less than a year since I started to really be healthier with my diet, avoid processed foods, and eat clean 80% of the time. I think that I definitely have more progress to make if I want to compete at higher levels. But for now, being able to eat cake and still have abs is good with me!

Are there any tips you'd recommend to someone starting on a journey similar to yours?

I think a good tip is to always try a little bit of everything! No one likes every food group or every style of clothing — everyone has tastes that are unique to them. I think that people tend to feel discouraged when they try and use a cookie-cutter regime or workout plan and it doesn't mesh with them or how they like to train. Then, they don't see progress because they don't really like it. Everyone has their niche, you just need to find it!

Are there any blogs, social accounts, etc (other than your own) you recommend to people who are looking for more encouragement to get started?

I think social media accounts like @kayla_itsines and @thebod_ and accounts that have guides are great starting points for people trying to break into fitness. Also, @bodybuildingcom has great tips for both men and women, with loads of rotating bloggers and specialists coming in to write about almost everything!

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Linda Cheng, Social Media and Content Manager

Linda graduated from the University of California, Irvine with three majors in Psychology, Urban Studies, and Social Ecology, as well as a minor in Global Sustainability. Her goal is to promote sustainable healthy living by providing the resources needed for success. Using smart data services and motivational psychology, she aims to move users towards long-term lifestyle changes for better health and fitness.

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