KELOLAND.COM - Breaking The Bodybuilding Norm
For many, weightlifting is simply an act of physical fitness. But for bodybuilders its an absolute passion. And while it's always been a male-dominated sport, it's become increasingly popular with the opposite sex. And a mom from Brookings is starting to flex her muscles.
Meet Jackie Geppert, 32-year-old nurse, mother of two, and champion bodybuilder...enjoying a family dinner at home with her kids.
"They'll ask me, how did your lift go today?" said Geppert. "Because they can probably tell if I'm crabby or happy how it went."
The gym is Geppert's second home.
"Every time I come here, it's a challenge," said Geppert. "It's mentally challenging, physically challenging, emotionally challenging, and I guess I like the challenge. I like the drive to see if I can get another rep, heavier weight, whatever it is."
"This is a goal and a dream of mine to be able to compete, and so I said, I'm going to go do this for me."
She started doing it at night after putting her kids to bed. Now, she has a babysitter for her daily two-and-a-half hour workout.
"I lift five days a week and I do cardio twice a week," said Geppert.
And she's also very strict about what she eats. Her kids help with that too.
"He will remind me, 'mommy, you don't get any SDSU Ice Cream because you have to stay focused for your competition, you have to eat clean.' Jackson was just telling me today at dinner that 'you've got to stay focused mommy, you've got to bring me another trophy. I like them trophies,'" Geppert said.
The trophy is from the NorthStar Bodybuilding Competition, which Geppert won in November...in her first competition.
"I didn't go down there with the expectation of that I was going to come home with a trophy," Geppert said. "I went down there with the expectation that I'm going to do the best I can, I'm going to be confident in myself, and what happens happens."
What happens, Geppert says, is a boost in self-confidence and self-esteem, something she encourages everybody to find.
"Whether it's bodybuilding or something else that you want in life, don't be scared to go get it. Just go get it. Nobody can do it for you. Just go get it," Geppert said.
And there's at least two little people who have heeded her message.
"They'll flex their little muscles," Geppert said.
Geppert's win in Minnesota qualified her for February's national bodybuilding competition in Las Vegas, though she doesn't plan to go. Geppert says she doesn't feel ready for that level of competition just yet. But it's definitely a goal for the future.