sierra-merchantHeight: 5’6″
Weight: 123 lbs.
Age: 26
Residence: San Diego, CA
Facebook: Sierra Merchantfit
Measurements: 34-25-36

Muscle & Fitness: What did you do before modeling?

Sierra Merchant: I was in banking for about four years. I barely worked out, but once I had kids I wanted to figure something else out. I quit banking and got into the world of modeling and promotional modeling, because it worked well with my schedule and my children. I got offered [a promotion], but said it’s not my thing, so I decided to see what else life had for me.

You started modeling after you had kids?

Yes. I’d heard of bikini competitions, so after I had my son, I saw an ad for one and started working out. When I signed up, he was four months old; I gave myself four months to get back into shape, then went to my first competition when he was eight months old. I placed fourth—but to even be in the top five felt huge. For me it was personal, getting myself back into shape. I was smaller and even fitter than before I had kids.

What’s your diet like?

As far as my protein, I use Dymatize products. I usually have a green with protein for lunch and dinner, and I do oats in the morning with my shake. It’s pretty basic. A lot of greens and a lot of fish, chicken, and tuna. I don’t eat much red meat.

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What’s your favorite body part to train?

My legs and my glutes. They grow fast, and they make me feel more attractive, with nice curves. I’d rather not be a stick figure—I love having curves. I train six days a week with my boyfriend. He doesn’t do the same leg routine I do. [Laughs]

So, you don’t get hit on that much in the gym?

If I’m there by myself, I get hit on all the time. I get the “Oh, wow, where are you from?” or “I love seeing a girl lift.” I get that a lot. I lift fairly heavy, so they’re like, “Wow.” I’m in such a zone, but I still say, “Thanks.”

If you were single, what would you want in a guy?

Physically, I’d want him fit. That’s a huge thing for me. I don’t want a meathead, though—there are a lot of meathead guys out there who overdo it. I want somebody who has the same interests I do. As far as personality goes, he shouldn’t be cocky. Most girls are attracted to bad boys, and that’s horrible.