Athlete Abigail Kennard

What made you want to compete for the first time?

Me and my roommate both got into fitness around my freshmen year at bellarmine and have been hooked since. I can remember looking through my phone all the time and seeing these girls who were just ripped and it inspired me. At the time I knew a couple girls at my school who had done a few and I reached out to them since I was so interested. Now I’ve competed in 3 shows and it’s been the most rewarding experience ever.  

What has been your greatest challenge?

Weirdly enough going through my first improvement phase. After competing in 2 shows I knew it was time to take a break since my body honestly needed it. It takes a lot of mental power to not put yourself down when you’re not as lean. I can see my improvements in this past show and that struggle just made it all worth it. 

What did you wish that you knew before you had started this journey?

Honestly how much time it would take. I eat, sleep, workout, go to work, and go to school for the most part. People think I’m crazy for it but I love it so much. 

What have you learned from your experience with competing?

I have learned to love myself more throughout each show. It still amazes me how much stronger I come out mentally and physically each time. This is what influenced my last tattoo idea! “I am strong because I have been weak” 

What advice would give to someone who is considering competing?

That it’s never going to be easy. People will put you down for doing something that’s different and that they are not used too. I urge them to get past that because it’s such a rewarding experience. Plus the food and added cardio as well… it’s all worth the struggle and more. 

Tell about your support system!

Mom and dad- these are by far my biggest supporters. Yes, even my dad. People always ask me if it’s weird that he has to see me in a bikini posing in front of people. It’s not, if anything he’s loved seeing me mature and have priorities. My mom has also been with me through cheer compositions so this isn’t anything new to her in terms of how to deal with me show day (i get a tad nervous). I love having them there with me during the whole day and before. I can remember living at home during my first prep and they were always making sure I had all my food made for the day and just kept my spirits up if I was ever tired. 

Next would be my best friend, Charli. Like I said, we started working out together maybe 3 years ago now. She has watched me smile and cry through each prep, I feel bad for her at times since she has to sometimes deal with my dieted attitude. Overall I am beyond blessed to have her in my life. Whenever I start to over think anything she finds a way stop it from going any further. 

Lastly I have my aunt Jenny, this lady is practically my sister. She has watched me grow up and has played a huge role in my life. She has never stopped encouraging me and found it amazing that I chose to do body building. She has been to every show so far besides the most current show but was a FaceTime call away when I needed her. 

What is your next goal? 

I would love to do a national show soon. I’m curious to see how much leaner I can get but also interested in how I would place against girls who have the same goal as me. 

Continue to follow Abi’s fitness journey on Instagram @abigailpaigee