Name: Arielle Puente Baker
Date of Birth: December 5, 1983
Ethnicity: Caribbean. The Dominican Republic
Hair Color: Light Brown
Eye Color: Hazel
Location/Hometown: Ås, Norway.
What is your athletic background, and how did you get involved with lifting?
My first competition was a runner. I ran 400 meters at the Inter-school league in the Dominican Republic. I won my first “Champion” trophy when I was 7 years old and after that my passion for sports, training, and competitions began.
I wanted to compete, I had 2 or 3 competitions a year and that is how I managed to be part of a military club of athletes at the early age of 11 and maybe youngest. I wasn’t a soldier or anything like that, I just trained with them like I was one.
In the 1996 the Olympic games committee of the Dominican Republic needed to selected two outstanding athletes of the year to represent the Dominican nation at The Olympic torch relay of the Olympic games Atlanta 1996 and also to bring a Torch as a gift to the President of the Dominican Republic, at that time the Dr. Joaquín Balaguer. A Junior basketball champion, Carlos Martinez was one of the athletes selected, and then a little young girl who loved to run, it was sweet, because I was only 12 years old.. That is how I got my first nutritional sponsor, the GNC (General Nutrition Center) and I felt that they were really proud of having the youngest Dominican athlete ever on their team. I’m still so grateful. Those years are just unforgettable for me, all experiences I got, no doubt the biggest honor!
When I say ‘My life’ it kind of sounds like ‘ My sports’ to me and it’s because that is pretty much what I clearly remember from my childhood, it was hard work, discipline, but even more, I was a dreamer. I did try many others sports such as Martial arts ( yeah, always thought: “I must be strong, ready to fight in case I need to defend my people!”-…) Skateboarding and gymnastics was also a very fun thing to do for me.
Things changed after moving to the other side of the world, I was 21 years old and I took a very long break with all kind of sports or competitions and I must say, it was hard. Far away from my family, you know, the Caribbean and Scandinavia are a little bit different, ha!
I got 2 wonderful children and really enjoyed the family, but I just couldn’t only be mommy and wife, or housewife and have a ‘regular’ life, I mean I could, but always felt like I was born with snickers on my feet, sports and competitions was the normal thing to me, I needed a comeback! And everything started once again in 2014 and that same year I got my two lovely foster sons. 4 children now. The family got bigger!
“ One day, or Day one!. I wanted to train hard again, have a goal, make a commitment, it was scary to make that step because I wasn’t that young anymore, but to be the Norwegian National Champion in Bodyfitness was really tempting a totally new arena for me, big challenge, but I did, it was no longer a dream, I became The Norwegian Champion in Bodyfitness in 2016. 🙏
What keeps you motivated?
Motivation is a feeling word. First of all is to set goals, short terms goals. I enjoy thinking about the journey. I know what it cost, is sweat, tears, but nothing like that taste of victory, just the fact that I know I will do my best, that I will have to deal with the challenges and fears, it is very motivating, because we learn so much about ourselves, we create new memories and even more now knowing that my kids are watching me, that I have my family and all my fans watching, making comments and getting inspired by the progress, of course, I want to give it all!
Who’s the most inspirational person in your life?
The most honest, brave, respectful, guiding person I know. He is the person who taught me how to fight for what I want, taught me to believe in myself, to have faith and to be mentally strong to face the reality of the life. That person is, -Nestor Puente. My father-
What does your current training split look like?
5 to 6 days a week.
At the gym or at home
Every day I have 1 compound movement ( squat, or deadlift, or bench)
By doing that I train the whole body without overtraining a muscle group that I for example trained the day before.
2 to 3 legs-day a week.
Cardio: 1 to 3 days a week
Monday: Legs & calf (focus on quadriceps)
Tuesday Chest & Triceps
Wednesday: Legs-day, abs & calf (focus hamstrings, booty)
Thursday: Back & Biceps
Friday: Booty building and Shoulders
Weekends: free or not!
What’s your favorite body part to train?
Numero uno: My back & arms. Just saying, ha!
Which do you prefer, and why…steady state cardio or HIIT?
I prefer HIIT. Because I have the time to breathe and then the time give it all! Intense, effective, good to increase the aerobic and anaerobic endurance. I get in the shape I want faster.
What are some of the most common mistakes made when someone is trying to get ripped?
Fat burn fat. You should not stop eating fat, jut moderate intake of it and make sure is a healthy fat and you will go down. A calorie is a calorie. It can be just a little apple, a little coffee with milk… That counts as a calorie.
A cheat meal will feel better than a day full of cheat meals, and you will get faster in that shape;)
Get tired of the food. Be creative, use spices and herbs, vinegar, lime, etc. Make your healthy food tasty.
Funniest thing you’ve seen at the gym recently?
I heard someone screaming really loud. I was looking for that big man, I imagined a big man, lifting some heavy shit, so I really wanted to see him and I did found him, it just that took a couple of seconds to my brain to understand what I saw… It was a boy, must be around 13 years old, trying the biceps curl machine and he was so skinny and sweet. He was using his headset very loud, so he probably couldn’t hear his own voice. That was funny and cool to watch because he was young and not very at all, but he had a big man spirit!
Who do you look up to in the fitness world?
Numero Uno. Arnold Schwarzenegger!
Lovely personality, great sense of humor and the best of him is that even though he is very funny, the guy works hard AF, he is a person that understood his role in this planet by grinding hard every opportunity, yeah, just like he used to do with deadlift! Willpower & humor is a pretty sexy combination.
What are some of your favorite motivational quotes?
*God doesn’t give the hardest battles to his strongest soldiers, he creates the toughest soldiers through life’s hardest battles.
*Work hard until your idols become your rivals.
*If you feel that you can do better, then do better.
*The only person I want to be better than, is the person I was yesterday.
What’s a sport or event that you would LOVE to try?
What are the contents of your fridge?
Well… I have 4 children in this house. You will find a lot if things there, ha!, but for my diet:
*Onions, limes & garlic
How do you prepare meals? Do you cook daily or cook for the week?
I like fresh meals, but rice, potatoes, and vegetable are food that I normally prepare for the 2 next days.
Who is your favorite superhero? And why.
Strong, smart, funny… You know! ;-p
What are your favorite cheat meals and foods?
This question is a hard one! Well, I normally agree with the children about the food I eat on a cheat day. Tacos with a looot of things on can be a great cheat meal, and of course, a Topped salted caramel Brownie from Ben & Jerrys😈👌💖
Ice cream, gelato or fro-yo?
Workout music – what’s on your playlist?
Oh Lord. I come from The Dominican Republic! From Salsa, Merengue and Bachata, to rap, hip hop or regueton. I can even hear Metallica when I want to lift heavy or while I’m doing my training and I love classic music to relax with my kids before bed or in the morning.
I have a list on Spotify: I have to update it, but please take a look: Arielle Puente Baker.
What is the most challenging thing you deal with about consistently staying in top shape?
I must be honest… Watching my kids eating everything I want to eat is very challenging. But the human mind is powerful. After 8 months of watching and not touching… I have learned that: goal, commitment and discipline is all you need!
What is your greatest achievement so far?
Greatest is definitely representing The Dominican Republic in Olympics games Atlanta 1996. (12 years old)
But after my comeback was becoming the Norwegian Champion and best debut as a Bodyfitnes Figure in 2016 (32 years old)
If you could interview one person alive or dead, who would it be and why?
There is a couple of people I would like to have an interview with, like Newton, Mohammed Ali and my grandfather… But I know more of the mind of Newton and Ali, so I will say My grandfather, Caonabo Fernadez.
I choose him because he also was an athlete in the times of “Trujillo”, a dictator of the Dominican Republic. He worked for the government in a historical and very complicated political time. I would like to hear how he got so far into sports and his political career. Sometimes I wonder how he was dealing or thinking when he felt that he had difficult moments in his life.
What are some of your best diet, nutrition and supplementation tips for someone who wants to get ripped?
If you eat enough healthy food you will not need a bunch of supplements. Clean and healthy food is the most important!
Supplements that you should have:
Multivitamins, Omega 3, C vitamin.
Before/during workouts: Coffee or pre-workout. BCAA.
Post workout: Protein shake, carbs, creatine, glutamine.
Before bed: ZMA
Food is extremely important! Eat clean, avoid sauces with lots of fat, sugar, do not overeat, but eat enough healthy food according to the activities you have during the day.
Work hard, but you have to rest as well!
Get a coach to help you out with a training program and a plan for your diet. We all have a different metabolism, and genetics do play a role when it comes to getting the results you want. Everything is possible, you just have to get yourself a goal, make a realistic plan and go and get It!
What does your current supplementation plan look like?
Morning: Multivitamins, C vitamin, Te extract, omega 3.
Before/during workouts: Coffee, or caffeine or pre-workout and BCAA.
Post workout: Protein shake, carbs (Bananas or oats), creatine, glutamine.
Before bed: ZMA
What are your favorite 5 muscle building exercises and why?
Squat, leg press, deadlift, bench, pull-ups. I do all of them during the week. I also like to surprise the body from time to time with a variation of the exercise I usually do. Why? Because I hit a large muscle group in one exercise and then I just work around that muscle group almost as an architect we have to go into details. The body gets used to the movement, but by doing a variation I have to go out of the comfort zone and stress some other muscles that may be thinking that they will scape of the struggle.
Favorite activities and hobbies you enjoy when away from the gym?
Activities with my children, watching a good film, modeling or make videos. I am a pretty social person so I enjoy to meet friends, go out with them & dance!
What’s your favorite place to vacation?
Visiting a place where I don’t need too many clothes. A place that my drink is so much colder than the air, the sun becomes like God and the water the holy spirit. Yeah… A place just like paradise! 🙂
What are your future goals, dreams, and plans?
I’m always looking for that mindset, willpower, get inspired and give inspiration back to the people who are following my journey. Is a way to connect with people and that is so motivating!
I’m planning to create a website where my followers can watch training programs, videos with exercises, ideas of healthy and tasty food. I will be giving tips on supplements. I am extremely lucky and in love with my sponsor Xcore Nutrition by Prozis. I like the products and the results. It’s also a great experience every time I go to Prozis’s website to buy my products from Xcore Nutrition. All my followers get a 10% discount just by using the code: arielle10. I am always giving feedbacks to my friends and followers on Instagram about all the products I use from Xcore and Prozis. Stay tuned!
If someone wants to connect with you, where can you be found?
On Instagram: @arielle.p.baker
YouTube channel & a website are coming soon!
Thank you so much to all of you at the Barbell Battalion all the great and positive daily vibes you guys share with the world, thanks for having me as one of your feature athletes! This is truly A Place “FOR” Lifters “BY” Lifters 👊👊👊