This week on That Girl we are celebrating Brittany Armstrong, a soldier from the Army National Guard who just so happens to also be a bodybuilder and NPC bikini competitor. Brittany is a true inspiration because she is always looking to improve her health and fitness. To her, each morning starts with a question: What can I do to be better today? She also draws fitness inspiration from her job with the Army, saying that she needs to be able to keep up with the men and drop to a knee and cover fire if she’s ever in a situation that requires it. Take a look at her story and how she juggles a military career with competitive bodybuilding.
23 Years Old
Soldier, Army National Guard
Fitness/health accomplishment you are most proud of:
I am proud of making the choice to be fit. It’s a battle every day to find the motivation to eat healthy and get in the gym. It all starts with making that one choice that really sets off everything else for me. If I hadn’t said, “You know what, I don’t like what I’m doing and I am not happy with my body,” then I wouldn’t be a competitor or running races. That in itself is the biggest accomplishment of all.
What inspires you to get fit every day?
There are several factors that inspire me. Number one would be myself. I am my biggest competitor. I wake up thinking, “What can I do better today?” That could range anywhere from being spot on with my nutrition to making a PR on my 5K run. Number two is most definitely my job in the Oregon Army National Guard. I might only be 125 lbs, but I still have to carry my rifle, ammo, 9mm, rucksack, rations, video camera and wear my body armor. That could easily be 50 pounds. I need to be able to keep up with the men that I am reporting on and, God forbid, drop to a knee and cover fire if I am ever in a situation that requires it. Number three, my boyfriend! We constantly push each other to not only be better people but to improve ourselves in the gym. Couples who work out together, stay together!
What do you do when you don’t feel like working out?
I’ll straight up give myself a pep talk. It’s the same thing I do when I am having a hard time finishing out that half mile in race or those last three reps in the gym. A lot of the times, I talk to myself. “You got this. Don’t be a wimp. The other girl is kicking your butt.”
Favorite energizing meal:
It’s so hard to pick just one “meal”. I’m a glutton at heart and will pretty much eat anything if I’m not careful. My favorite meal would have to be 1 cup spinach, 1/4 cup mushrooms, chopped olives, and halved grape tomatoes slowly cooked in olive oil. Then about 4 egg whites scrambled in and a bit of sriracha sauce on the side. Oh, and black coffee!
What’s your favorite way to chill post-workout?
I clean! Honestly, I am a high energy person. After a work out my blood is pumping so hard that the last thing I want to do is sit down. If I go home, I start cleaning! If it’s at work, I usually pace the office a lot until I’ve calmed down.
What is your top kick-ass workout?
I love having a big butt. My favorite work out would involve any combination of glutes! It’s important to go heavy to really feel the burn.
3 sets of 12 – Smith Machine Lunges, kicking the foot as far forward as you can, getting deep to create that shelf on top of your glutes. 12 on each leg.
3 sets of 10 – Leg Press, Keep your feet together, high up on the plate. Push through with your heels.
3 sets of 15 – Cable kick backs
3 sets of 12 – Hip Abductor, really gets the side of your glutes.
3 sets of 12 – Weighted Steps Ups, really bring the leg up and then squeeze your glute.
I like to finish off with 10 hill sprints if I am outside or 15 minutes on an inclined treadmill.
Where is your favorite/most unique place you’ve ever exercised?
I did CrossFit for three months a few summers ago. I had a lot of fun, powerlifting is a whole different ballpark especially when you include anabolic cardio. Other than that it would have to be bootcamp!
What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned through sports?
The biggest lesson for me, sportsmanship. I was a bit of a loner growing up. I wouldn’t say it made me anti-social, I just had a hard time playing nice. I played rugby for 6 years when I was a teenager. If you don’t know how to play nice, you would learn the hard way.
Photo: courtesy of Brittany Armstrong