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Kidney donor Scoffins wins silver at bodybuilding nationals
Kim Scoffins is a bodybuilder in the truest sense of the term.
Like other participants in the sport, the 37-year-old Mission resident is focused on sculpting her physique through rigorous workouts and a highly regimented diet.
But few of her competitors take on that challenge with just one kidney.
Six years ago, Scoffins donated one of her kidneys to her father Raymond, who had his own fail during a knee replacement surgery six years prior. He'd been on dialysis in the interim, and wasn't faring well.
"He didn't want [my kidney], but we basically said to him, 'If one of the family members is a match, you're taking it,' because the dialysis was not making him feel good," Scoffins recalled.
"When I was a match, it was a very clear thought to me: This is family, and to me, you do whatever you can do for family."
Scoffins, who had been a competitive bodybuilder since 2005, knew that donating a kidney would complicate her chosen hobby.
She had to be extra-vigilant about her protein consumption, so as not to overwork her lone remaining kidney. She also had to be careful not to overdo it when cutting down her water intake in the days before a competition.
But she's not only managed to compete, she's thrived. Six months after the surgery, she finished sixth in a figure show. And last month, she notched her best-ever result at the Canadian Bodybuilding Federation's Bikini, Figure, Fitness and Physique Championships in New Westminster, taking second place in the "fitness tall" category.
"To me, the goal is, 'Can I bring a better me every time?'" Scoffins said.
"As much as everyone wants to win, I enjoy the whole process of it. I enjoy the dieting, I enjoy the regimented routine of it, and the fact you have to be so organized it's not even funny. All my food is weighed out for 16 weeks (prior to a competition), and it's science. What you put into it is what you get out of it."
Giving away organs doesn't seem like a great way to kick-start a bodybuilding career, but Scoffins is celebrating her recent success knowing she's contributed not just to her own fitness, but to her dad's as well.
"He's doing well – he's golfing up a storm, so he can't complain," she said.
"It's absolutely rewarding."