Amy Lee Martin continues the My First Competition series with her experience as a figure competitor making it to the stage for the first time. Amy’s competitive career started in 2007 and the NPC Indianapolis Figure was the stage where she took home 1st place overall. And this is how Amy got started…
How did you arrive at the decision to compete in the first place?
My first competition was inspired by my husband in 2007. He was competing in bodybuilding and talked me into getting on stage for figure.
After deciding to compete how did you map things out?
Lots of research on websites like bodybuilding.com and publications like Beverly International. We also had local friends who had competed in the past and helped us with posing and advice. We definitely learned almost everything on our own.
What was the criteria for picking that first show (date, location, friends competing in it, etc)?
It was a local show with an early summer date.
Did you have a trainer?
Was there a diet strategy in place?
Yes, we followed a Beverly International meal plan that we found in their magazine.
What internal or external drive/motivation kept you going?
Teamwork! Competing together we kept each other committed.Did you have a resource or resources to ask questions? Was it reliable info?
Yes, but the information was not entirely accurate. For example my posing was extremely ‘off’ I laugh now about learning figure posing from a bunch of bodybuilders, lol.
How did your family and friends react when you said you were going to compete? Were they supportive or always tempting you to stray off course?
Everyone was supportive, they thought it was a great goal. I have always been a gym rat of sorts so it was the perfect fit. Sure I have had food battles with family and friends, lol. Mostly just the typical “its just one bite it won’t hurt you” comments. I would always tell them “No way, I want 1st place not 2nd!!” I think they loved my determination.
What were some of the mental hurdles you had to overcome?
Should I eat the peanut butter or put the jar away like a good dieter…I think the hardest thing is getting in the groove of clean eating. The first couple years I competed it was hard to find a healthy food balance on and off season.
Did you feel prepared going out on stage for the first time?
No way! I was so nervous I almost had an anxiety attack. Again, taking advice from ‘old school’ bodybuilders I trotted out on stage for the first time with 3 hand painted coats of pro-tan and 1 awesome coat of Dream tan…lol.
Any regrets about the first competition experience? Any of those hindsight moments?
Getting on that stage was a great GREAT decision. I ended up winning the overall in my very first show. What a huge confident booster! All of my hard work paid off (even with all of the 1st timer mistakes with posing and tanning) I was instantly hooked.Did competing impact your outlook on training, friends, and/or other lifestyle changes?
Yes! I started believing in myself a lot more and reaching for goals that I otherwise would have let pass by. It also inspired me to want to share everything I have learned about health, fitness and competing with others.
What was the best thing about reaching that competition stage for the first time?
The enormous dairy queen oreo blizzard I ate afterwards?? Just joking…the accomplishment itself was amazing 🙂
What aspects did you like so much you wanted to compete again?
I loved the entire experience…Setting goals, being determined, staying committed, the excitement of backstage and the thrill of on-stage. Now I think of it as just loving to be an athlete.
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