Competing in the NPC Eastern USA?

IFBB Pro Ava Cowan shares a little insight and personal experience to help you push through the next couple of weeks

November 4, 2012
Competing in the NPC Eastern USA?

Dear NPC Eastern USA Competitor,

As a competitor myself with a few shows under my belt, I feel compelled to share with you a little insight and personal experience. And possibly share how turn what seems to be a setback into your very best competitive experience.

This is your time, your opportunity to see just how a natural disaster can be something you feel completely grateful for. Right now, and from this point going forward leave any negative thoughts out of your mind as well as speaking about the situation as anything other than a total WIN!

I will tell you why.

I know you are tired, and cannot think or possibly don’t know what to think. So, if I may, or if you are open to my opinion and suggestions, I would like to offer them to you. It may help you, it may not, but I do care, and I do know how you are feeling.

My experience has taught me to shift my focus, and my immediate reactions, and to search for the positive that may be found in any situation. Today I was thinking about you and honestly, I feel compelled to help, even if just a bit.

I know you are exhausted and may not know what to do from this point forward. I only hope to bring you a little relief and possibly a game plan.

Here were first thoughts when I heard the news of the postponement of the show. A huge opportunity!

1. You could do a test run. Yes, get ready exactly as you had originally planned. Whatever that consists of, exactly as you would have done it. At the exact times the show would have been and takes pictures to document your result. Why not? It really is the only way you will know how your body will respond in your current condition, to the plan you have mapped out.

Think I am crazy? Possibly, but I like to refer to it as prepared. A test run is exactly what I did for the 2012 Figure Olympia. I had my complete peak and prepared exactly as if it were the Olympia 2 weeks before the show. I documented hour by hour with pictures, and noted how many carbs, sodium. protein, fat and water elicited what result. As a result of doing this homework, I found out exactly what I needed to do. How much I could eat and drink and then had the game plan, in it’s entirety for the Figure Olympia.

My goal: No matter what I wasn’t going to miss. My personal goal was to NOT be vascular, and as a direct result of the test run, I discovered exactly how many carbs/sodium/water I could have in order to present a lean, curvy fit body minus the vascularity. And because of that test run, I was also not nervous at all because before I worried if I would get it right on the day of the show. But this time, I knew what to expect. And as a result, there were no veins! This was a totally new protocol than at the previous shows and I wanted to make 100% sure I got the result I wanted.

Yes, it hurt and I starved and so what!

That is what it takes when you not only want to be a pro, you want to be the best version of yourself you can possibly be. If you are hungry, driven and want it badly enough you will follow this advice, and you will benefit immensely.

It is rare for me to just “tell you how it is or what to do”, as that’s not my style, but I wanted to get to you before you ate and missed the opportunity for yourself.

Then right after this trial run, you and your coach can decide how many more calories to bring back in to keep you on hold, and maintaining without pulling too hard, or dropping to low. If you are already peeled to the bone, you will get some more food. That’s nice! If you aren’t than you need the extra two weeks anyway.

Either way, it’s a win!

2. Practice that posing, stay very positive, and don’t complain not one bit. Be so grateful that you have the platform to do what you love to do. And that there still will be a show! That in itself is great news, and something to feel immense gratitude for. If it weren’t for the efforts of Steve Weinberger, Bev Francis, the NPC and IFBB supporting, plus all of the countless others who are tirelessly pulling hard for you to keep the show going, there would be no show. I really suggest that you use this situation to be a better version of yourself. Try something new, a new attitude, a different way to come into the show, find every single positive aspect and focus solely on that. And if you are getting my drift here, you can possibly carry that same tactic and vision into other areas of your life.

You will be so glad you did.

I will see you on November 18th, 2012 at the Newer and Better 2012 NPC Eastern USA’s! I myself cannot wait, as now I have an opportunity to meet you.

Good luck in your final weeks, and make them count.

See you soon!

IFBB Figure Pro Ava Cowan