If you have read my blogs and facebook posts you know I LOVE having a coach. Like I want a coach for life! 🙂 A couple years ago I turned to Christy Allen for online coaching and a meal plan. In all honestly I got great results for the two months I completed, and when the last month turned to carb cycling, it was too hard core and I couldn’t complete it. At first I felt bad about it but after many conversations with Christy, I realized that I had gained some serious insight about what it takes to actually achieve this look, and how it is not meant for everyday life. Like Christy said to me numerous times, “Unless you have to be in a bikini, on a stage, with people judging you it is really hard to be motivated to eat this way.”
And with no show in sight I decided to call it quits on the meal plan but gained a BFF from afar (we think we were separated at birth) and have gained so much insight on food, nutrition and exercise and just a small peak at what goes on in the experience of preparing for a fitness competition. It is not about simply working out harder and eating better, it is a very tedious, detailed progress that requires some serious dedication.
But more importantly Christy has an amazing story and I am so excited that she took the time to sit down for an interview and I am happy to be able to share it with you today. 🙂
First of all I want to thank you for taking the time to do this interview. I love your story and your work ethic and dedication to your goals! I know you have had a huge physical transformation and shift in mindset regarding fitness. When and how did this begin?
It began all as an effort to become a better, healthier version of myself. After college, I found myself unhappy with my appearance, with zero energy, horrible eating, drinking and smoking habits! (eeek!) It was time for a change. I put the smokes down and started walking. My efforts at the time were minimal, but I made a promise to myself to always keep moving forward. I found such solitude in my walks and this fueled my desire to be more mindful of what I ate.
I set out to learn everything I possibly could about health & fitness. I reached for every magazine and article known to man and I also began to study for my NASM personal trainer certification. Slowly, my walks turned into some jogging and week by week, step by step; I
became stronger not only physically but mentally too!
The day came when I was ready to face my fear … the big scary gym! I
needed an army to carry me in but I haven’t looked back since. I signed up with a trainer to help show me the ropes. I remember him early on saying that I should train for a figure competition. I told him as serious as canbe, “You are crazy! I am just trying to train to fit into last years’ jeans!” I’m the biggest advocate of “never say never!”
As my journey progressed, I set a number of both short & long term goals. Four years into my life changing journey, the day came when it was time toset the biggest, most scariest goal of them all! A figure competition! And after winning my first one, well – I was hooked!;)
You have clearly worked very hard to develop an amazing physique. What does your training program look like when you are competing vs not competing?
Thank you so much Adele! I always say, the training is the easy part. When it comes down to competition time, my training still consists of a 5-6 day split, moderate reps and heavy weight whereas my nutrition is completely different. I am often referred to as a hard gainer, so my off seasons are very important. To build, I am required to eat 500-600 calories over maintenance levels so I definitely feel the pain when it’s necessary to start a caloric deficit! Hungry bodybuilder! Lol
A lot of people look at fitness competitors and strive for their physique, when often this is not a look that is easy to maintain ongoing. What can you share with us about being in show shape vs everyday life?
Show shape and everyday life requires a very happy balance! The woman’s body was not designed to carry only 6% body fat. It’s just not physically healthy to maintain that look for a period of time. I call it a “look” because it is not everyday life but a challenging, rewarding & temporary goal. With that said, it’s not ok to go completely from one extreme to the other. I like to keep my “stage look” and “offseason look” within about 10lbs of each other. It’s a lifestyle!
How does your eating change when prepping for a show vs when you are not?
When prepping for a show, my eating becomes much more regimented. It’s down to only a certain number of foods that I know my body performs the best on. Fun fro-yo nights with the fam have all been postponed. My cooler & food scale are now permanent accessories and cold food has become the regular. When I am not competing for a show, I am more lenient on my eating as I
strive for balance and making memories with my family. I have rules for myself; competition or not. You will not see me in a McDonald’s
drive-through or overindulging in the fried-food buffet. Sure, I’ll enjoy a slice of pizza, just not the whole pizza! I set boundaries & goals and it really helps maintaining the overall competition season vs off season balance.
I know you have given CrossFit a try recently. What are your thoughts about that type of training?
I began CrossFit this year as a way to help get me back to where this all began: my love for fitness! It’s so easy to get caught up in striving for a certain look that it can almost become a chore. I love CrossFit because it completely takes the aesthetics out of it. You are training for performance. It’s just you against you. It pushes me mentally and
physically and fuels my desire to become the best athlete I can be. My
confidence for the stage has increased immensely. For me, I have found it to be a great addition to my training program.
What are your hobbies outside of fitness?
I married the love of my life, Scott, last year. His precious boys (12&8)
keep us very active and always on the go! I love watching their games on the weekends, we have one soccer player & one baseball stud. All three of them are my number one fans! They love the sport of bodybuilding. When I am not with them, you can find me with the other love of my life; my horse. I enjoy both English and Western disciplines and plan to start showing later this fall!
My favorite hobby is definitely helping people. I am a full-time personal trainer as well as online fitness & nutrition coach. Fitness has changed by life for the greater and I want to give back!
Fro-yo with Reese’s crumbles on top! A weekly
occurrence for me.
One thing you eat every day?
That’s a tough one… I eat many things every
day, lol! I would have to say oats … can’t live without my oats!
Least favorite exercise?
I had to think about this one for a second. I am going to say the front squat!
Favorite motivational quote or mantra?
“Whether you think you can or think you can’t …. You’re right.”