How and when did you get stared in training and living a fit lifestyle?
I have been pretty active my whole life. I had always participated in team sport, but when I discovered cross country running, a sport I could do on my own on my farm and continually challenge myself with distance and timing, I fell in love. I continued my love for running and then fell even deeper in love with strength training in University. I had lifted weights before in my basement on my dads equipment, but had never had access to a full gym until I moved away to University. I felt at home and I get that feeling still today, every time I walk into my own Anytime Fitness clubs or any clubs abroad. It makes me happy to be in the presence of others with ambitions and strong energy.
What got you started in the fitness industry?
I had been consistent about strength training and cardio for a few years already, but when we opened our first Anytime Fitness franchise location, I decided that it was time to hire a training and nutrition coach and to pick my first competition. Although I had always tried to eat healthy and train hard, this was the first time that I had committed to a strategic plan in nutrition and training to accomplish a fitness goal.
Along your fitness journey, have you ever felt like quitting… and if so what/who motivated you to keep going?
I don’t know if I have ever felt like quitting, but I have felt the struggle of finding just exactly the path I wanted my fitness journey to take. Fitness photo shoots and competitions can become a very expensive hobby and I don’t like not knowing what exactly I am working towards.
I had competed my first year from a Novice to a National level and every experience that year was brand new to me. Just the accomplishment of stepping on stage and making it that far was something I had not planned for and had only dreamed possible, but it actually happened.
After that first year, I went on to compete the following February at the Arnold Sports Festival where I placed 5th out of many girls and competed alongside Ashley Kaltwasser before she became “Ashley Kaltwasser IFBB Pro”. I came back to my province and competed again to not place well enough to nationally qualify that year. It was at that time that I discovered my need to compete, to be fit, to continually improve was to not reach my pro status, but my purpose was more than just a title. I was disappointed in my performance, but I was willing to continue. Not knowing what I wanted out of any of it, I knew that I just wanted to do it. I wanted to reach people and be a part of the fitness community and lifestyle. I wanted to contribute my spin on life and inspire others to live their best any way they could. I decided to sign up to compete with an alternate federation and away I went again. One particular moment that sticks out to me at a time that I was unsure of my purpose in the industry is when I was backstage and lined up, ready to walk out and do my thing and the girl in line in front of me turned around and said “you are the reason I decided to compete today”. It was that moment that I knew that I had won regardless of my placing that day. I had successfully reached and inspired someone that I did not know.
My daily life will not change if I have a title behind it or a federation tied to it…my purpose is to be the best me I can be. To be the happiest and live this lifestyle because it makes me feel beautiful and the people that I reach and inspire along the way make every last second worth it.
There are days that I feel like resting, so on those days I rest. There are very very few days that I do not feel like lifting, being active or eating according to my fuel needs. I contribute my successes mentally and emotionally this past 2 years to leading a balanced lifestyle with my mhbworld.com coach. With this balanced approach, my body has responded like never before and I am so happy with the changes I have been able to make with my physique.
What types of cardio have worked best for you?
I love the power mill or the summit machine. I do not include outside lifestyle activities towards my mandated cardio because I do them every day willingly and for fun. I love walking my dog, hiking, biking and running so if I feel like doing any one of those, I do it without mandating myself to do a specific amount. The only cardio I am assigned is indoor on an incline or stepper and it ranges from 15-60 minutes as I get closer to my goal day.
What supplements do you use… and what are some of your favorites you would recommend?
I use 100% Magnum Nutraceuticals in my supplementation. It changes as I get closer to a goal and on what phase I’m in; building or leaning out, but the staples I cannot live without are:
— Magnum Acid – I take this every day to help metabolize fat storage
— Magnum Hi5 – This is my complete BCAA Complex and I sip on it throughout the day to maintain muscle gains and metabolize fat storage
— Magnum Volume – This is my pump product and I love taking this before I lift for a great workout and quicker recovery
— Magnum DNA – I use the for strength gains and stack this with my Volume right before I train
— Magnum Tonic – This product is great for me to increase my natural testosterone levels, helping me lower stress levels and increase my lean muscle mass.
— Magnum G Spring – This is Magnum newest product and it might just be my favorite! It aids in Growth Hormone Secretion and enhances Sleep quality. I am more fueled, well rested and making changes like crazy in strength and fat loss every day with this product.
— Magnum Limitless – This is Magnums amazing feel great, lift longer pre workout product. It is amazing!
— Magnum Quattro – This is my post workout protein powder. I mix this up immediately after my workout and it tastes amazing!
When you look back what do you think has been the key to achieving
100% it has been consistency and the network I have surrounding me every day and everywhere I go.
Anytime Fitness – Owning the clubs and being able to spend my time around like-minded, healthy people inspires me every day to be my best and to not be a hypocrite.
Magnum Nutraceuticals – Being a part of this team has opened so many doors that I never knew possible. Learning this business from Markus and Bert is priceless. They are inspiring and knowledgeable and have taught me so much. They treat everyone equal and with respect and I am so lucky to have been brought into the fitness world by being a part of this team. I have met my best friends through this team and feel truly blessed to be a part of it.
My Husband – He believes in me, supports any goal I set and provides guidance. Although sometimes I can be stubborn, he pushes me to be better every day.
What’s one tip you would give to a person just starting their fitness journey?
My best tip is to surround yourself with people that inspire you, that lift you up and to be influenced by others that are successful in life, not just a competition. There is so much room for success in this business for everyone and it does not have to come at the expense of someone else’s success. If you continuously work towards being your best and your happiest self, you will be offered opportunity after opportunity and will have many years of success in the fitness industry. Find your place and continuously better yourself for yourself. No one knows your ultimate happy better than you.
What’s next for Holly Barker?
I am currently working on launching my first App – Total Body Fitness Challenge and increasing awareness of mhbworld.com inspiring others to live their adventures with me. I am currently adventuring North America with my husband on a 3 week drive from my Prairie Province Saskatchewan through the west coast and down the 101 and then through AZ, Utah and Montana. And lastly, I am prepping to see you all at the Olympia 2015 in Vegas! xoxo
Model / Holly Barker / IG @hollsbarksfitness
Photos by LHGFX / IG @harrylhgfx