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👋 Hi! Tell us about yourself and your training
My name is Kim Bilyk. I have been living in Los Angeles for the last nine years. I am originally from Edmonton, Canada. My “full time” job actually is not in fitness but in rehabilitation. I am a licensed occupational therapist and currently work mostly with seniors.
I am also a yoga instructor, yoga therapist, and health coach and currently am building my personal practice Amala Living. I do have a training background as well as my undergrad degree is a Bachelor of Physical Education with a major in sports performance.
Health, fitness, and sports have been a part of my life from a young age. I started playing soccer at age nine and played until I was 24.
When I moved to LA at 26, I really found my personal yoga practice. This personal practice eventually lead to me teaching yoga, which I have now been doing for over six years.
In 2017, I completed my first bikini completion in the WNFB, which is a natural federation.
⏱ Describe a typical day of training
My training varies based if I am prepping or not for a show. A general look at my week is two upper body and two to three lower body days.
Cardio three to five days a week depending on time in my season. Even though leg days take the most energy, I always love a good booty workout, with weighted hip thrusts being one of my favorite exercise.
I don’t like to train with people. I like to be in “my zone.” And I don't take supplements aside from a multi vitamin. After a workout I also make sure I get my protein in. You will always find a canister of protein powder in my car.
One piece of advice I can give regardless where you are in your training is to also have a yoga practice. Not only a physical yoga practice but also meditative. This is going to get you focused on your goals and prevent injury.
👊 How do you keep going and push harder?
I have a type A personality and love going to the gym so finding motivation is not usually an issue for me. In saying that we all have our days.
For my last bikini competition, I switched gyms and started going to Golds Gym Venice, which was very motivating to push myself to new limits as I was surrounded by so many professional male and female competitors.
Not everyone has a Golds Gym Venice at their doorstep but I would suggest finding a gym/studio that has a good motivating community and that is not just a “social hour.”
Also, an awesome playlist on your Spotify is a must to push through those workouts. :)
🏆 How are you doing today and what does the future look like?
I’ve currently decided to take a break from competing to focus on building my business. Even though I am not training for a show, I am still in the gym four times a week with two to three cardio sessions and whatever else fitness stuff I feel like doing including yoga, pilates, and hiking.
With that being said, my fitness goals now are mostly on a business level to continue expanding my yoga therapy and health coaching practice with private clients and guest speaking at events and workshops.
🤕 How do you recover, rest and handle injuries?
Most important recovery practice for me is yoga, yoga, and more yoga (this does include meditation). I also take epson salt baths, roll out my muscles with a baseball, and use a thera-gun.
I travel a lot and don’t let travel get in the way of training or my diet. I plan ahead. I will research if there is a gym or studios near where I am going, I’ll pack some bands, or I’ll alter my training schedule the week of travel and do my lifting days while I am still home and save the cardio while I am on the road.
I believe if you want to stay on schedule with your training there is always a way.
🍎 How is your diet and what supplements do you use?
People are often shocked when I tell them I am a bikini competitor and VEGAN! But where do you get your protein?!? Lol. That's the first question all the time. My answer, be creative.
My main sources of protein are vegan protein powders, green veggies, mushroom, lentils, beans, oatmeal, and some veggie burgers and meats. My favorites are Beyond Burger and Dr. Praeger because they are made with pea-based protein instead of soy and they have minimal additives compared to our brands, and good macros.
As I am cutting I laugh I want the biggest bang for my buck so I eat a ton of greens. It gives me lots of volume of food and very low calories. Whether I am on season or not I follow a macro diet.
The app My Marcos is what I use to track my food. This way I can work in a treat or two when I feel like it and it gives more flexibility with eating out as well.
I don’t let prep season get in the way of being social. I believe you need to keep that in your life to some extent to stay sane. My tips for eating out whether you are on prep or just on a diet, look at the menu before you go. That was you can work your meal at the restaurant into your macros for the day.
I have even gone to the extent of bringing my own protein to a restaurant. As a vegan you don't always have many options when eating out.
👍 What has inspired and motivated you?
Most of my inspirations come from my yoga background. I have multiple teachers from my yoga therapy training that are fairly influential in the yoga community. Some of them have become my mentors and friends/colleagues. They are also supportive of my bikini competitions and that keeps me going.
Some names to mention are Dr. Linda Lack, Larry Payne, and Dr. Eden Goldman. When I am prepping for a show of course my coach Dani Taylor (@veganproteins) is always motivating me and such a supportive, positive person to have in my life. I also have some close friends that are my cheerleaders.
✏️ Advice for other people who want to improve themselves?
If you are new to fitness or bodybuilding I would say do your RESEARCH and get a coach to get you started, at least to teach you some basics for diet, training principle, and actual proper mechanics when lifting.
You want to make sure this person is not just an influencer but knows their stuff, and aligns with your beliefs and values. I’ve already said this but I will say it again having a good balance of lifting and yoga in your life will help give awesome results both MENTALLY and PHYSICALLY. Hack for out of the gym.
Have a healthy, balanced life! You can have a nice body and eat healthy but if you have bad relationship(s), hate your job, have a poor home environment, etc. in the long run you are not going to be “healthy”
🤝 Are you taking on clients right now?
Yes, I am currently taking clients but not for training. I am taking private clients for yoga therapy. I am sure you are wondering what that exactly is. I like to say in simple terms yoga therapist is like having a personal training program but with yoga principles.
It’s more than just yoga postures but can also include meditation, breath work, creating body awareness. It varies person to person and can address chronic illness. I am also taking clients for health coaching.
My goal when working with clients is to improve their life mentally, physically, and spiritually.
📝 Where can we learn more about you?
You can learn more about me on my website; amala-living.com. On my website I do have a blog on health, fitness, vegan recipes, and yoga. The blogs come out on Thursdays.
💬 Kim Bilyk quotes
Kim shares some great, motivating insights in this interview. Feel free to share these quotes on your Instagram, Pinterest and so on 😍