Physical therapist, mother of 2 to compete in first bodybuilding contest

Published: Mar. 23, 2023 at 5:44 PM EDT
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LOWVILLE, New York (WWNY) - A mother and physical therapist is branching into the world of competitive bodybuilding.

Dr. Amber Astafan became inspired by her father-in-law, a competitive bodybuilder himself.

“Just seeing what the human body can do I thought was pretty amazing,” she said.

Astafan wasn’t satisfied by the physique a pair of pregnancies and her busy job left her with. So about two years ago she decided to make a change.

“I remember thinking I’m sick of being sick. I’m sick of feeling tired. I’m sick of feeling frumpy. Not the athlete I was growing up,” she said.

Now she’s down 37 pounds, up on muscle, and slated to partake in a pair of bodybuilding competitions.

“Women, they really want to see a nice deltoid development. Of course a nice butt, good glutes there, and a flat-toned stomach. Of course, for any woman that has had children, it’s really a challenge to get there,” she said.

On top of exercise, Astafan mainly credits her dietary changes and a focus on eating clean natural foods

“I have ground chicken with taco seasoning on it. I have sweet potato that I baked in the oven. Nothing added to it. And then Brussels sprouts,” she said.

Amber puts in about 3 hours of exercise 6 days a week - not an easy routine, but she tells us those results are more than worth it.

“I have way more energy and I think 18-year-old me is jealous of 36-year-old me with two kids,” she said.

Her first competition is coming up next week in Syracuse. The following week she’ll be heading to Buffalo for another.