WBFF Fitness Pro Julie Bonnett Interviews with Directlyfitness.com
1. How did you get started with bodybuilding, modeling, and fitness?
I was a competitive tap and jazz dancer right into my teens, however when the demands of school and work no longer allowed me the time to travel into the city for dance class, I realized I would have to find another way to keep fit. I began weight training in the grungy basement gym of my high school with one of my girlfriends. I had read that bodybuilding was great for keeping fit, and years later took my interest and physique to the next level in competition.
2. What is the number one thing that has kept you motivated?
I feel happiest & most confident when I am fit. It’s really as simple as that – I love all the benefits that eating right and staying active bring.
3. What is your training routine like?
I like to keep my heart rate up in the gym, so I superset pretty much every exercise with a glute or core exercise, and stretch obsessively.
Being flexible has many benefits and it helps me injury free. My usual workout split includes 2 Leg Days per week, 1 or 2 Shoulder Days, Back/Arms and Chest every other week. Cardio is a daily activity for me – the duration varies depending upon my goals, from 20 to over 120 mins every day – yes – EVERY DAY! Even while on vacation!
4. What is your philosophy on nutrition?
My ContestPrep.com clients have heard this repeatedly – I don’t offer a temporary diet, but teach a lifestyle approach to clean eating that will save you from the frustrations of yo-you dieting. I love food, but get pleasure in life in other ways – another reason I avoid cheat meals.
Too many people go overboard with the idea of “off-diet” foods consumed during cheat meals – or cheat DAY – which blow my mind! Binging for an entire day sounds closer to an eating disorder than a way to reward yourself for eating proper foods all week. When you think of your meal plan as a ‘diet’ it is temporary, which means the physique you create & health benefits you enjoy will also be short-lived.
5. What’s your diet like?
I admittedly eat low carb when dieting for a show or big photo-shoot.
- Meal 1: Chicken Breast or Lean Beef with 3 Egg Whites and Fusion Omega Oil
- Meal 2 is (Pre workout) Protein Shake with Glutamend, SubQ and Purple K and Veggies
- Meal 3: (Post workout) Protein Shake with Glutamend
- Meal 4: Chicken Breast or Lean Beef with 3 Egg Whites and Fusion Omega Oil
- Meal 5: Salad with lean protein (i.e. Tuna, Salmon, Chicken)
- Meal 6: Lean protein (i.e. Tuna, Salmon, Chicken) and Nuts
6. Do you believe in cheat meals? Why or why not?
I basically spelled out my issues with cheat meals earlier, but should add that I do feel one shouldn’t completely deprive themselves of something they love – within reason! Food is one of the joys of life, and if it’s your birthday and you want to celebrate with a slice of your fav cheesecake – by all means – indulge! But taking the guilt away by earning it with a previous week of clean eating is a good idea.
You also have to realize your limits and weaknesses and avoid them, because a cheat meal or two can be a slippery slope to falling completely off your diet.
7. How does your on and off season training and diet differ?
Simple answer – off-season means 100% dedication and ZERO room for excuses.
I do not cheat on my diet, miss workouts or cut cardio sessions short. I reduce my carn intake leading into a shoot or contest, and amp up my cardio. I also start more supplements pre-contest, including Fusion Purple K to hold onto muscle and Sub Q to target fat loss.
8. Which physical feature you are most proud of?
I think you could ask any one of my female clients this one! I am OBSESSED with glutes!!
I began with no bum, and have had to diet and train exceptional hard to shape & maintain my lower body.
9. What supplements do you use if any? If not, why not?
I believe food is the best supplement – there is no quick, over the counter fix for a bad diet.
However there are certainly fantastic products that can help in addition to clean eating.
I use CLA, BCAAs (AgentM), Glutamend, Omega Oil, Pre-workout supplements such as Fubar, creatine (Purple K) and PurpleK Reps, SubQ at certain times of the year to help my fat loss and energy levels, protein powders, and ALWAYS incorporate a multivitamin such as Fusion’s Strongman to ensure my body has all the nutrients it needs.
10. Favorite Bodybuilders, models, and athletes?
I love pro bodybuilder Craig Bonnett! He is the most dedicated and determined person I have met – especially this past year, he overcame so many obstacles to win the WBFF Pro Bodybuilding World Champion Runner-up! Ashton Hurley is a rising star.
I am also a fan of Claire Ray, a fellow Winnipegger – she’s not only gorgeous but an overall cool chick. One of our ContestPrep.com Champions, Joelle Murphy, is already a Pro but watch for her to continue to gain popularity – she’s one of my favourite people and has become a close friend because of our shared enthusiasm for fitness.
Another pro bodybuilding who I have a lot of respect for is Ben Pakulski – he is an incredible Canadian IFBB Pro who successful balances enjoying his young family with his busy travel and training schedule.
I have to throw a few of my fellow Pros some love & respect – Jodi Boam, Diane Smith, Kristen Sesak, Santana Anderson, Jaclyn Wilson, Crystal Cunard, Melissa Morrison and like everyone else, I’m a fan of Dana Linn Bailey and her husband.
The industry is full of inspiring people – I am so lucky to continue to build friendships with such exceptional athletes.
11. Who inspires you most?
My inspirations are many, and I’m sure I can’t name everyone. During intense cardio sessions when my body want to give up, my mind reminds me that Craig Bonnett wouldn’t be proud of me if I gave less than 100%.
My friend Lara has been struggling with serious health issues for 6 years, and yet is always glowing with happiness and positivity – so I owe it to her to be thankful for my own good health and fortune.
Or that my amazing family at Fusion Bodybuilding believe in me and I would never take their sponsorship and support for granted… I could go on and on – I am so fortunate!
12. Favorite Quote(s)?
“Strength does not come from winning. Your struggles develop your strengths. When you go through hardships and decide not to surrender, that is strength” – Arnold Schwarzenegger
13. Any last words to our readers?
It’s never too late to change your life!
14. What do you believe to be your greatest weakness?
This feels like a cheesy job interview answer, but honestly, my greatest weakness is also one of my biggest strengths – I’m a workalcoholic.
It has enabled me to reach so many impossible dreams, but unfortunately I sometimes bury myself so far into my To Do list that I miss out on other important stuff.
How can our readers keep in touch?
Special thanks for images of Julie Bonnett to WForrest Photography, George Kontaxis, Envision Photography, Mark Bradfield, Fusion Bodybuilding, Jason Breeze.