you can say that you have almost 15 years of training and almost 5 years of competing with over 15 competitions under your belt, it's safe to say that the sport of bodybuilding and how to go about it is nothing new to you - as is the case for Only Approved Supplements athlete Svenja Siewert.
Svenja is 36 years old and recently moved to live in Hamburg - a major port city in the northern part of Germany.
How did you get into working out and how long have you been doing it for?
"At the age of 18, I developed an eating disorder that eventually would lead me on to weigh as little as 49 kg (108 lbs). Luckily, though, I had somewhat of a barrier in my head making sure I didn't get any lighter than that."
"When I was 21 years old, I attended a great, big techno music concert with a lot of my friends. The place had a great vibe and all of the people around me were amazing, but somehow I still felt sad, and to be honest I felt like the ugliest and fattest girl there. That night, I decided that I wasn't going to go through life like this. I wanted to feel happy and be positive."
Photo by Sebastian Sobota
"I started jogging the very next day, which went on to become a daily habit. Soon after, I realised the importance of good nutrition for your body to function and sheer wellbeing. Around 8 months later or so, I'd been looking through Google enough to see how beautiful and classy well-trained women looked. I signed up to get a gym membership and the rest is history."
"I've been working out for a total of 15 years by now."
What's your fondest memory from competing, training etc.?
"I have a lot, and the best thing that ever came out of my years of competing is the all of the amazing people I've met and become friends with."
"If I was to pick one competition memory that stands out in particular, it would probably be when I won the DBVF German Championships in 2017. I worked really, really hard for that show, and just being able to say that you're the new national champion was something very special to me indeed."
Photo by Eos Delta
Which muscle group is your favourite one to train and why?
"I love training every muscle group, which I bet everyone else on the team has said as well."
"Come contest preparation and diet time, I really like the look of my upper back, which is also why I love training it. The details and separations just look aesthetic."
Photo by Oliver Rink
Which muscle group is your least favourite one to train and why?
"Biceps. Definitely. I think mine are weak, so they're not that fun to train."
"It's still getting done and I obviously hit them hard every time too, because I need them to be well-developed for my look on stage."
What's your current training program looking like, and can you name a few of your favourite exercises/techniques?
"My regular training split is pretty much always looking something like this:
- Day 1: Chest, triceps & shoulders
- Day 2: Legs & calves
- Day 3: Back, biceps & abs
I do it like this because I prefer training 6 days a week. It does get cut down to 5 days a week sometimes, though."
"Favourite exercises.. I guess I like to do pull-ups, but that's only if I'm on a diet and at a lighter body weight
(I obviously feel stronger)."
"I've started to like bench pressing and regular, old-fashioned front raises with a straight barbell for front deltoid development lately as well - and who doesn't love to deep squats?
- wins every time!"
What kind of music do you like to listen to while working out?
"It's generally more up-tempo and 'harder' stuff. I like various DJ sets from the field of Progressive Techno,
but artists like Disturbed, Rammstein, Volbeat and even certain rappers I also like listening to when I work out."
What's your favourite foods and how do you make your food tasty?
"My favourite diet foods are steak with salt and pepper, chicken with linseed oil and salt in conjunction with jasmine rice."
"I also like cooking up some vegetable stews with frozen Italian herbs and some light cream cheese. Egg whites with whey and a little bit of nut butter is also a safe winner for me."
"As far as cheat meals or non-diet foods go, I love sushi and cheese,
and if I have the time for it, I'll make my own homemade Snickers or bliss balls."
What's your worst habit?
"Well, I often forget to close the lid on shakers and supplement tubs etc. tightly enough so when I move the thing around, the containments go everywhere."
"On a more serious note, I'm a very impatient person and everything needs to happen right away, even if there is no disadvantages to doing it or having it done later or so."
"If I can help other people, I tend to put myself and my own interests aside. For example, I make bikini sets for competitive athletes and sometimes work for 15 hours,
only getting paid €4 EUR per hour because I feel bad placing the burden of having to pay a hefty price on the competitors since the bikini itself and materials are very expensive in the first place, plus I know how much a physique competition in and of itself costs from past experiences."
Photo by Sarah Porsack
If you could go back and start your fitness journey over, would you do anything differently and if yes, what would you do?
Photo by Sarah Porsack
"If I got the chance to go back and start over, the only thing I'd actually do differently would be training harder."
"It's kind of hard to say because obviously you have to push your boundaries gradually as you get older and more experienced, and I think most athletes or fitness enthusiasts feel this way when looking back at their earlier years."
Finish this sentence: before this year ends, I ...
"Before this year ends, I promise that you'll hear much more about and receive far more inspiration, motivation and information from me."
"I have a bunch of cool recipes to share as well, and you'll definitely get to see all of them."
Photo by Maik Wöll
Can you name some of your favourite supplements?
"One supplement I would never go without is MPA Supplements' CelluVOL Stimulant-free Pre-Workout. The pumps that this stuff brings are just awesome."
"Obviously I always want to have a good multi-vitamin/multi-mineral supplement as well as some fish oil in my arsenal too."
"My favourite supplement stack is 100% Whey Protein Professional and L-Glutamine by Scitec Nutrition."
"I also love the combination of ArthroMINE by Yamamoto Nutrition and Super Bio-Curcumin by Life Extension. It's very good for my joints and anti-inflammation in general."
"For contest preparation, I love to use products from the Vaso Series by MPA Supplemenets: VasoBurn plus VasoDry and VasoDry Professional."