Issue #119Issue #119


by Juan Carlos Lope

20 Questions with Cover Model Brittney Milliken

Video Interview with Amateur Bikini Brittney Milliken

Brittney Milliken, Lisa Rothman, Rachel Gilmore, Rachel Strout & Rachael Loftis

Video Interview with Amateur Bikini Sarah Park

Product of the Month
by Heather Hirmer

Video Interview with Amateur Bikini Robin Castro


20 Questions with Cover Model Brittney Milliken

Brittney Milliken

1) Please introduce yourself? What makes you special? Who is Brittney Milliken? 

I am a 28 year old mother of a beautiful 9 year old little girl. I haven't always had the easiest life, getting pregnant at 17, single mom, then divorced at 27, struggled through depression, suicide attempts, cervical cancer and many more ups and downs in life... but one thing always remains the same, I NEVER give up hope. I never let me struggles define me and I always try to see the silver lining in life. I've often found that I become my strongest when times become the toughest, when others would break, I find an inner strength that I didn't know I had.  

2) Please tell us a bit about your family, friends and surroundings?

I have an amazing little girl who is 9. She is the light of my life and often times the reason for breathing. She brightens my day by simply just being her. I grew up with one sibling, a sister, who in our younger years fought like crazy! But as we have gotten older we have become best friends. I know that God placed her in my life to make me a better person. My parents are tough when they need to be and raised us with a no-bullshit attitude. My dad was a marine and ran our house with stern and order. As a teen I definitely challenged them but now that I have a child of my own I see they were exactly want I need so that I wouldn't be TOO crazy! :) I most definitely get my love of fitness from them! My dad has always lifted and has a deep rooted love for the sport of bodybuilding and my mom competes in figure. Watching her on stage at 51 gives me the drive and determination to never give up when my preps get tough, she's simply amazing. 

3) How did you start competing in bikini?

My first competition was Nov 2013 at the Valenti Cup. I knew NOTHING about show prep, bikini posing or even how to lift (I was a cardio bunny). But I thought, Hell if others can do it so can I, how hard can it be?.. Right? So I asked my parents to come down and do a few workouts with me, they wrote me a workout plan and a basic diet. I researched top IFBB Bikini competitors and try to figure out what they did. I Youtube posing videos and worked my butt off! I placed 2nd in that show and from that day forward I was HOOKED! I loved the feeling of pushing your mind and body past its limits and overcoming obstacles to reach my goals.

4) What is your personal policy (not what the judges want) about conditioning and muscularity when coming into a show? Soft or hard?

I LOVE the hard look on girls. I know that doesn't always translate in a win for bikini but I admire and look up to girls who press the boundaries on muscularity in bikini. My body unfortunately doesn't like to be hard so I always come into shows hard. So my mentality is to train like a figure girl and by the time I come into a show I have usually lost some muscle and look like a bikini girl. I just a hard gainer :(

5)  What is your idea of what judges want in a bikini competitor? Do you think judges are clear enough with competitors about how they want you on stage? It seems in Europe they are very clear unlike in the USA and now in Canada things are confusing.

I don't think the lines are clear in bikini judging especially in the NPC. There isn't enough consistency in the sport yet. Bikini is still so new and I think the industry still doesn't even know what they want. But from what I can gather I think judges like to see a girl who is lean (but not too lean) muscular, with nice rounded shoulders, glutes and hamstrings. Not a lot of back or quad definition but some calves and soft abs.

Brittney Milliken

6) For the next shows what do you think you need to work on physique-wise/conditioning-wise? If anything!

For my next show I'm definitely getting a new coach and adding some muscle to my frame. My previous coach dieted me on low carbs, fats and a lot of cardio. My body tends to lean out FAST and then starts eating away at muscle. I feel like my last few shows I looked great about a week out but when it came to show day I feel as if I lost too much mass and too lean.

7) What is your typical training routine in the gym (per day, include sets and reps!) How much cardio do you do before a show? 

My past few shows have been a little different from what I'm doing now. I want to have my diet do the leaning out and only use cardio as a "fine tuner" the last few weeks before a show. As of now I do 30min of fasted cardio 3-4times a week on the Stairmaster.
Mon: Quads/shoulder I kind of mix up my exercises but try to do high volume this day so 3-4 exercises per body part at 4x20-30 depending on the weight and exercise preformed.

8) What is your pre-contest diet? (per day, 1 week before the show)

Again I don't agree in my pre contest diet, I don't think it was enough food and definitely not enough carbs and ZERO fats. :( wont be repeating that, that's for sure!

9) How do you go about dropping your water before the day of the show? How much water do you drink the day of the show. Please be specific.

Peek week is when I start water manipulation. If a show is on a Saturday my water sch is as follows
Mon: 2 gallons spring water
Tues: 2 gallons distilled
Wed: 1.5 gallons distilled
Thur: 1 gallon distilled
Fri: 1/2 gallon distilled before 2pm
Sat: 20oz spring water as needed

10) What motivates you to train/diet and compete? Are there any competitors you looked up to?

I find motivation from others yes, but mostly from within myself. I feel like I'm a pretty determined person and when I set a goal I don't want to let myself down. I don't ever like looking back and thinking "I could of done better", so I just try to make everyday better then the last and give everyday MY best. I set mini goals as well as long-term big goals and I just take one day at a time and focus on what I can control, like my diet and training. I also find motivation in showing my daughter that she can do anything she wants if she works hard enough and focuses on her goals they can and will be accomplished. She dances competitively so I relate my competing a lot to her when I feel she loses focus or motivation with her dance or school. The competitors I admire and look up to very and I admire them for different reasons. Amanda Latona because she just simply beautiful, sweet and kind. Sarah Leblanc, she is my ideal body. I love her physique, posing and overall stage demeanor. Samantha Hill, I also love her body. I admire all the hard work and sacrifice, willpower, and commitment she has put into her training. She started off as a bikini girl and literally built her physique from the ground up.

11) Please tell us an interesting experience you had at a show recently, be it a fun thing or something rather not so fun?

haha... Well... My last show was NPC Nationals in Miami. I love it! I loved being on stage, being surrounded by so many amazing competitors and meeting so many beautiful people. I feel as I am forever changed due to Nationals. I knew going into that show I was too lean, lost too much muscle during the last few weeks of my prep and had zero expectations going into the show. I just wanted to go, have fun, and soak up as much of the experience as possible, and I did. I stood on stage with my head held high knowing I was proud of how far I came. My road to nationals was a rocky one, I was finishing up my divorce, adjusting to being a single mom, feeling uncertain about my coach and his plan, but through it all I never gave up, never got down and never wanted to quit. I love that I was able to push through all the obstacles and still stand on stage feeling like a winner in my own mind.

12) What is your personal opinion about the figure, fitness, bodybuilding industry we are in? Anything you would like to see changed? 

I love NPC Bikini and I like where I feel it is going. I think adding the bikini division was a great move for the industry and bridged the gab between the regular fit chick on the street and a figure girl. I love how we have freedom on stage with our posing and can show the audience a little bit of our personality. The only thing I would change would to have consistency throughout the industry and have a specific guideline as to what the "perfect bikini girl" would look like.

Brittney Milliken

13) What has been your hardest challenge to overcome either in your personal life or competing career?

I would say overcoming my own insecurities, in all aspects of my life. I often time will second guess myself or doubt my own progress because I feel that I'm not good enough. I love following other competitors on social media but often times I have to block them out of my mind because I will start comparing myself to them. I have to remind myself (sometimes daily) that it is Me vs. Me and that I can't compare myself to anyone. Not just physically but in all aspects of my life, career, being a mother,, etc

14) Did you make any changes to your contest prep for your last show? Water intake, carbing up, etc...

yes, this past show prep was completely different then previous ones, some good and some bad. My body wasn't responding as fast as previous show preps so as a result my coach changed my diet, upped my cardio and added supplements to burn fat faster. All of these things combine is why, I think, I came in looking too lean and not enough muscle.

15) What do you think of bikini division?

I love it! I honestly don't see myself being in any other division. I do how ever want to eventually be one of the more muscular bikini girls and press the boundaries of maybe being "too big" for bikini, but that's the look I personally like.

16) What are your favorite foods to eat right after you compete on a Saturday night? It honestly depends and every show I have craved something different. But I always want sweets! I'm a  fat (no obese) kid at heart! I love donuts, brownies, cookies, banana pudding... if it has sugar in it I want it!!! Oh and alcohol! haha... always want alcohol! After nationals I went to the cheesecake factory and had Louisiana Cajan pasta, pb choc cheesecake and countless drinks :)

17) Please tell us about how you were raised and did you have any interesting experiences while growing up?

I was raised by my mom until I was about 3, that's when she met my step-dad. From their first date on they were inseparable. She had found her prince charming, who not only loved her but her children as well. At age 7 my step dad officially adopted my sister, Brandy, and I. We didn't grow up with much, in fact really poor, I just didn't know it at the time. My parents busted their ass to put us in any and every sport we wanted to play. My mom made most of our clothes until we were in middle school and even then when times got though she made a few outfits to get up by. What they lacked in money they made up in love and laughter. My parents are honestly two of the goofiest people I know! They are always laughing, dancing around, making up crazy songs and doing whatever they can to make our days just a little bit better. Our house wasn't always perfect and trust me, I challenged their authority more times then I can count, but they stay strong; a united team, never allowing my sister and I to see the cracks. I look back on my childhood and Im happy to say it was an amazing one and I couldn't have asked for a better up bringing.

18) Do you have an athletic background? Gymnastics, soccer, volleyball or what?

My dad was always active, lifting, running etc. Well one day, at age 7, I asked my dad if I could run with him. He was running on a mile long dirt road leading to our house. From that day on I loved running. I had one speed and one speed only, fast. With every run I ran my heart out, I became competitive and would ask my dad to time me. I always wanted to go farther and faster then the last time! I begged my dad to let me run my first 5K so he said yes, at age 7 I not only beat him but beat kids and adults double and triple my age. In high school I ran cross-country, track, tried out tennis, but always loved to run! It was me time, my only time completely alone. I could sort out my thoughts and just space out... listening to my breath, hearing my heart pound and allowing each foot to pound down with purpose and determination.

Brittney Milliken

19) What is a typical day in the life of Brittney Milliken? From waking up to until going to bed?    

I'm pretty boring lol... My schedule flucates depending on the day, my work schedule and my daughters dance. But on a usual day I will wake up at 4:45am, make my coffee, pop an Enriched Nutrients Stimulated fat burner in my mouth and get on my stepmill (or treadmill) for fasted cardio. After cardio shower and wake up my daughter, Alyse. I then make our breakfast, get ready for work and out the door by 7am. Drop off my daughter at school and off to work I go. After work I taxi Alyse to dance, while she's at dance I go to the gym. 7-7:45pm I get her from dance, feed her dinner (often food prep her food on the weekends as well due to our busy schedule throughout the week), finish up homework, spend time together and she showered and in bed by 8:30pm. I don't have TV so I will read or watch part of a movie while packing lunches and meals for the next day, then off to bed I go! Pretty boring I know but I would change it for the world!

20) What is your current occupation? Please tell us more about it, what do you specifically do in your job?


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