We are so excited to bring this story to you today! This is the transformation story of Hillary Lampers: doctor, long time friend of JillFit Coach Jillian Teta, and a newbie to the world of bikini competition. Hillary’s story is such a powerful one, to which I am sure many can relate. In only months, Hillary transformed her body, mind and spirit with weight training and clean nutrition–not to mention brought home some serious hardware at this years Emerald Cup Competition in Seattle, WA. Here is Hillary’s story, I hope you derive as much inspiration from it as I did! ox Jill
The Doctor is in…A bikini?
How the Fat Loss Lifestyle changed everything I thought I knew about health
By Dr Hillary Lampers, Seattle, WA
That’s right, I’m a doctor. I have an amazing (expensive) education, a fancy degree, and a rewarding career. Everyday that I go to work I help people feel better by trying to understand what makes them tick, how I can improve on their misalignments, and hope that when they walk out the door they feel some sort of healing. As much as I’ve put into that part of my life, this story is not about those patients, those people that I have worked tirelessly for with 10 years of college, and two degrees. It’s about me (or maybe you), the woman who comes home everyday to a husband of 15 years, a 2-year-old daughter, a dog, a cat, 7 chickens, and a little house in a rain forest. It’s about the transformation of a person who for once in her life decided it was time to feel that strength that I have tried to instill in everyone else.
Six months ago I was skinny. Actually I was skinny fat, with over 24% body fat at 121 lbs and 5 feet 7 and ½. Many people correlate skinny people as being healthy, but I’m here to tell you, I had a long way to go. After MANY years in school, stressed out, and well, stressed out, I started my medical practice (in two states- yes I love stressJ). Six months into that I got pregnant, and for 9 months after that I either threw up everything I ate, or thought about throwing up everything I ate due to “all day” sickness. Once my daughter was born she breast fed every 2-3 hours and did not sleep through the night for 19 months, which means I didn’t sleep through the night for 19 months.
In September 2010 the little cutie brought home a cold from day care that turned into pneumonia, pleuritis, and months of respiratory problems. I was self medicating with caffeine (of which I do not do well on), sugar, and lots of carbs like bread and pastas. I was barely taking any supplements, was moderately depressed (my husband would attest to this), was not sleeping, and had what I like to call “the watch what you say to me, or I’m liable to either start crying or never talk to you again” attitude. My relationship with my husband was tense, and looking back on it now, my patience with my daughter wasn’t the best. Basically I was EXHAUSTED. Not very healthy I know, but the truth is, many doctors are not that healthy. We’ve spent years trying to figure everyone else out, that we don’t always follow our own advice. As my current slogan goes “Heal thyself, but get someone to help you.”
My healer came in the form of a long lost friend, Nate DeTracy, who after 10 years of absence in my life, resurfaced and opened my eyes to the world of physique training. I had been introduced to it before through one of my closest and dearest friends from med school, Dr Jillian Sarno Teta. She had been involved in training for years, and had competed in figure, gaining her pro card and pretty much kicking butt all over the Eastern seaboard. (Go Jillfit!) I knew Keoni (Jillian’s husband) and Jade Teta, founders of Metabolic Effect and had even tried the Metabolic Effect diet in the past, but had never “really” done it.
I remember when Jillian started competing, her pictures were incredible, but that too seemed like something that I could never attain to, I was just too busy, or tired, or skinny, the excuses were endless. So in November 2010, Nate invited me to his gym to talk about my medical practice. A natural pro body builder who has won nationals in his weight class 3 times, Nate is a specimen to behold. He took one look at me, and pretty much told me I needed help. It was then that we had a talk about making changes to my diet, exercise, and supplement regimens (which were at best POOR). He even mentioned something about a bikini competition called the Emerald Cup in April 2011, but I truly laughed at that notion. I just knew I needed help, and so I let him become my doctor of sorts.
This is where my life changed and will never be the same. In that moment I let someone else help me, and put my trust in the knowledge that I could do it. Basically, what I’ve discovered is that physique athletes have it figured out. They know how to eat, what to eat, and when to eat. They take their supplements, eat their proteins, drink their greens (and vice versa), and they know exactly what type of exercise they need to be doing to reach their goals. They eat, live, and breathe the “fat loss lifestyle”, and I’ve yet to find a group of athletes who understand the “metabolic effects” of lifestyle modification better than them.
I realized I was skinny because I was metabolically starving myself. Two or three meals a day (of carbs and sugar) were not enough for my very fast metabolism. My cortisol, neurotransmitters, and blood sugar were constantly out of whack for a reason: I was starving for more food and nutrients. I’ll tell you though the first few weeks were rough; I felt like I was eating a small grocery store everyday and it wasn’t very comfortable. I also began taking supplements (the list is pretty exhaustive- my favorite- Post Recovery Workout Shake and BCAA’s from Advocare), proteins, and drinking more water.
And of course, my exercise was increased. Nate took all cardio out of my workouts, and put me in the weight room for 4 days a week. What an experience that was, on my first day a trainer at my gym, when he saw the workout Nate had given me, actually laughed at me when I told him I was training for a bikini competition (he isn’t laughing anymore :)). Yeah that’s how pathetic I was. However, the weights have become the new “love” of my life. Just two weeks in I was hooked, feeling high as a kite every time I left the gym, it was as if I could feel the “energy” of my body for the first time in many years. Supersets, dropsets, ham-tie, sweep, these are all words I have come to know and love. I realize now how most women are doing it backwards, cardio and no weights. Get off the cardio girls and get in the weight room!
Over the last 5 months, I trained religiously every week, my husband, a self obsessed hiker, backcountry sporstman, and exericise addict, became my rock, helping me with my daughter at every chance, encouraging, even forcing me, to get in there and go for it. At one point I felt so bad about always leaving for the gym the minute he would get home, but his reply would be “ at least NOW you have a hobby…that makes me happy!”
After only 5 months of training, it was time to compete. Now less than 15% body fat, and 128 lbs (yes total of 7 lbs of muscle gain), it was time to get in those 5-inch heels and strut what my mamma gave me. One thing I haven’t told you, I’m sort of old in the bikini competitor world. At 38, I’m considered a Master, and proud to be one. My first competition was the Vancouver Natural (Vancouver WA) and my second was the Emerald Cup (Seattle, WA)–both two weeks apart, over 35 Masters division.
For all of you competitors, the week before prep is pretty brutal, but well worth it. Getting up at 3am to tan, do hair, apply makeup, all with no water, and then to wait for hours for only seconds or minutes on the stage seems crazy, but again worth it. I took 2nd in my division in Vancouver, and 3rd at the Emerald Cup- quite an accomplishment for a skinny minnie, accumulating two trophies and a diamond tiara that my daughter likes to carry around the house like her prize (which they are of course :)).
I now have my sites set on Nationals in Vegas where unfortunately there is no Master division, but I figure WHY NOT? It’s all an experience and like every other task in my life, goal setting has been vital for my success. I also have set goals this year to become a trainer, implement proper supplementation and dietary protocols for my future clients, and focus on physique competitors. I’m definitely addicted!
Looking back on that night when Nate brought the “bikini” up, I know now I didn’t realize how this experience was going to change my whole life. I’ve also had some friends and family wonder why I would ever want to “flaunt” my stuff in a little bikini (at my age no less), it somehow seems degrading. Well I thought that too before I did it. Now that I know the lifestyle these women lead to get into those bikinis, to walk on stage, and to say to the world “that’s right, I’ve worked hard for this” I respect that commitment, and it is no different than the medical degree I earned. Those few seconds on stage are the icing on the cake. The cake is all the health, friends, self-respect, sleep, and mental clarity I have gained from the experience.
Do I think this is healthy? It’s more than healthy, it “healthfull” and my entire family is healthier and happier. Do you want to compete, but are too afraid? Need to gain? Need to lose? It doesn’t matter, if I could do it, so can you, its only as far away as you make it. So stop making excuses and remember; ”Heal thyself, but get someone (like Jillfit) to help you”! Doctors orders!
Thanks to Nate DeTracy, Jillian Sarno, Jill Coleman, Advocare, and Metabolic Effect!! And of course, Ryan and Pailey Belle xoxox.