Amber Baggett: Finding Balance

“I think through this journey I became a better version of myself and this had a great impact on all of the people in my life.”

SEAM MAGAZINE: When did you get into weightlifting?

AMBER BAGGETT: After giving birth to my second daughter and losing 35 pounds I hit a plateau in my fitness journey. In that moment I knew I needed a bigger goal so that I didn’t stall or fall back into old habits. Through my journey I watched Kat Ryan and she was an inspiration to me. Around this time she posted about taking new athletes to stage and I messaged her. I got signed up with her and jumped in head first. It was way out of my comfort zone. I had never lifted weights before. I watched so many YouTube videos in the beginning. Most of these lifts I had never even heard of and wanted to do them properly.

SM: What made you want to take your results to the stage and compete?

AB: Honestly, I didn’t know I wanted to. It started as a goal to keep me focused on my fitness and evolved into a passion. As I got more involved with the prep, my team and lifting I fell in love with the experience and my results. I knew that this was going to go further than just one show.

SM: What was the competition experience like for you?

AB: It was scary, exciting and intimidating. I wasn’t a weightlifter and I definitely was going to be way out of my element on stage. I originally planned a 9 month prep to allow myself the time to change my body. A few months later the pandemic hit and ultimately my original show date in September 2020 was canceled. My 9 month prep turned into 17 months. It wasn’t what I had planned for, but my results were far better after those additional 8 months. My biggest hurdle was my self- confidence and this translated into the posing for me. The workouts and the meal planning was the easy part for me during my journey. But feeling like I was worth being on that stage with all of these hard training athletes was challenging. With all that in mind, competition day was so much fun. I felt beautiful, I loved the vibe of the show and all of the women were so friendly and amazing. I have never competed in any type of environment like this before. I was so nervous, but it was worth all of the hard work to be recognized on the IPL stage.

SM: You are a mother of two. What are the ages of your children and how do your fitness goals impact them?

AB: Yes, they are 4 and 5 years old. They will join in with yoga or at home workouts. They both will proudly flex their biceps for you. They know they are strong. They love going on walks and sometimes we do small hikes, too. This has been a big motivation for me. I want my girls to know they can do anything they want and girls are strong. I also want them to grow up knowing how to be healthy.

SM: What affect do these goals have on the rest of your family?

AB: When I first decided to compete I didn’t expect my family to be as supportive as they were. My husband took on a lot more responsibility in his role as a father, especially the closer we got to the date of the competition. I did my best to schedule my workouts so that I still spent quality time with my girls and husband. My parents and grandparents supported me so much by cheering me on throughout prep, helped pay for bikinis, jewelry and hotels and then they were all there on competition day to cheer me on.

     I think through this journey I became a better version of myself and this had a great impact on all of the people in my life. Kat Ryan has her athletes complete mindset work as a part of her coaching. The mindset work helped me pinpoint and repair negative behaviors. This affected all aspects of my life. 

SM: How did the pandemic affect your career goals?

AB: I manage a Spa in a small tourist town and the pandemic left me out of work for 15 months. We are still working on getting back to the pre-pandemic functions. The pandemic came not long after a huge remodel of our spa, so this stopped all plans for increasing staff and capacity for our guests. I think I was lucky to come back to the same career and have stability.

SM: What have you learned during the pandemic?

AB: I learned the value of family and time. I was given this time with my girls and my husband that I otherwise would not have had. As a family we practiced finding the blessing in every challenge and change. Change during this time was hard for my family. My girls were too young to fully grasp what was happening in the world and it changed all of us.



SM: How did you cope with stress during the covid era?

AB: I wish I could say that I did amazing throughout this time. The truth is that I had some low moments. But when I was at my best I was focusing on what I needed to feel my best. Lifting weights and hiking were my go-to’s when I was overwhelmed or stressed. I focused on the things I could control like my health, my relationships with my family and our happiness during this scary time.

SM: What is one good thing that came out of the pandemic?

AB: The best thing to come out of the pandemic was the extra time I got to have with my girls and husband. It had its challenges. My girls love being active and outside and it was no longer an option. We were constantly looking for new ways to keep them active and happy. My oldest started Kindergarten in the fall of 2021 so we were blessed to not have to do home schooling during the pandemic. I know that was a challenge for most parents.

SM: Do you feel fulfilled in life? If not, what will it take for you to achieve this? If so, what do you attribute this to?

AB: Yes, I do. I have my family and that keeps my heart full. However, I always feel like there is something I can do to better myself and my life. I like mindset work to discover where these shifts can happen. I don’t think self improvement ever ends.

SM: What values and qualities must be present for you to have a fulfilled life?

AB: Living my truth. I’ve learned that I feel most fulfilled when I am being honest with myself, my needs and speaking up for what my family wants and needs.

SM: What are you committed to? (not goals… goals are the doings that happen inside the field of commitments.)

AB: This is simple for me. My health and my family.

SM: What actions give you the most joy?

AB: Feeling alive. I find this in the outdoors, pushing myself physically (lifting heavy or hiking longer), deeply connecting with others and working through challenges.

SM: What actions give you the least joy?

AB: Doing something that doesn’t have good worth and monotony.

SM: What two or three actions could you take right now that would create the most impact on your wellbeing?

AB: There are two things. First, I would love to get back to counting macros and sticking to my meal plan. The second, I would love to start reading more. This helps me relax and quiet the noise.

SM: What’s next for you?

AB: More training and prepping for the fall show in 2022. I am planning to compete in Bikini and Women’s Athletic. I cannot wait to work hard and surpass my previous results on stage. I am hoping to bring more confidence, with a little sass this time. Really show the judges who I am. I will be chasing a Pro Title. SEAM

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