Issue #5


by HardFitness

California NPC and IFBB Championship Results

California NPC and IFBB Review

Video: Self Tanning an Alternative Part 2
by Shelly Leversage

ATTENTION Professional Make up for USA's Vegas
by Brittany Thorsch

Video Interview: Andrea Giacomi New HardFitness sponsored competitor

My Emerald Cup Experience
by Amanda Ogden

Video Interview: with IFBB Fitness Pro Stephanie Worsfold

Pre-Contest Abs Training by Katie Szep

20 Questions With Our Cover Model

Video Interview: Nancy Hirsch Pro debut at the Cal Pro

Prepare Yourself
by Shelly Pinkerton

Video Interview: Vicky Oates Amateur Figure: A mix of class and sex appeal

Women: Competing and their Menstrual Cycle
by Tanya Pennington

The Transitional Athlete
by Katie Madden

Training Video Jane Awad talks about working out legs

Ephedra and Estrogen
by Darlina Acampora

Stephanie Worsfold, Christine Moore, Karina Nascimento, Jane Awad, Amanda Ogden

Video Interview: Bodybuilder Christine Moore at the Arnold speaks about her upcoming shows

Down the Wire
by Shelly Pinkerton

Video Interview: Amanda Ogden upcoming Fitness Star

A Month After Pittsburgh
by Kristi Wills

A Month after Pittsburgh by Kristi Wills

The last time I wrote, I was 3 weeks away from my NPC Pittsburgh show. Now, a little over a month later, I'm still on cloud 9, as I left the show winning the fitness short class and the fitness overalls. My next goal is to earn my Pro Card in August at Team Universe. The countdown begins again, as I'm currently 9 weeks away from the show. I still have a lot of hard work to do and there are many outstanding fitness competitors who have the same goal as I. It is these competitors that I keep in my mind with every workout I do and every meal that I eat. The road to earning your Pro Card is very long and difficult, as you have to do your time, stay strong mentally and physically, and often fight through major and minor injuries. Each time you step on stage, the judges want to see that you are looking better than the time before. Whatever feedback the judges have given you from previous shows, you'd better use. They remember!! You many not always like what you hear, but if they tell you that you need to tighten up certain areas, add/take away muscle, and/or revamp part of your fitness routine, do it! With the feedback and the help of my nutritionist Kim Oddo and choreographer Cathy Savage, I have stepped on stage each time better than the time before, helping me get closer to becoming a pro. It isn't overnight that you develop a pro physique. It can take years of tweaking diets, workouts, poses, and fitness routines to finally get what the judges want. You just have to hang in there and sometimes this can be the hardest battle of all.

I took a week off from the gym and dieting after my NPC Pittsburgh show. I got a lot of rest and enjoyed all of my favorite foods and hit all of the restaurants of my choice. Ice cream and Godiva Chocolates became my best friends!! After this feast week, I was 12 weeks away from Team Universe. This time around for 12 weeks, I am not including any cheat meals, not even 1 meal a week. I am keeping my body extremely clean so that I can lower my body weight and lean out a lot slower. This will give me time to add some more muscle to my back and shoulders and tighten up my legs some more. I am also able to keep in more carbs for a longer period of time, which helps out my weight training considerably and gives me a lot more energy to practice my fitness routine. Currently, I'm doing cardio 5 days a week for 40 mins. I will not start my double sessions of cardio until I'm closer to my show, so that again, my body will have more time to add some muscle on the areas mentioned above.

One thing that's difficult for me is that when I complete a show, I'm rearing to go for the next one. After dieting/training for 12 weeks, then competing, and then having to wait another 12 weeks to compete, it can get to be very difficult mentally and physically. A one week break isn't a long time, yet, one needs at least 12 weeks to get the body ready for a show. However, you don't just jump right back into double sessions and a diet with low carbs like you've been use to right before your show. You need to take several weeks to improve your weaknesses and build upon your strengths. You need to eat a lot more calories and carbs. At times, you may feel like you are going backwards or that the show is miles away. You may look at pictures of yourself a month ago, and wonder not only if you'll get that lean again, but will you look even better for your next show because you know that that is what the judges are looking for. Also, you have your own personal goals that you are striving to reach. The best things that you can do when you're in this situation are to stay focused on your goals and build a strong support system. This is when you need your family, friends, trainers, fans, etc.,. They're the ones who see you working so hard day in and day out and they can give you the pep talks you need and the encouragement you're calling out for with each rep and stride. I still have 9 more weeks to go, but in 9 weeks, whether I receive my Pro Card or not, I will be standing up on stage knowing I gave it my all and I will have my support system surrounding me either in the audience or in spirit. Because of this, I'm already a winner.

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About the Author...

Kristi Wills

My name is Kristi Wills and I have been a fitness competitor for 1½ years. I compete in the NPC. In April of 2004 I was the overall fitness winner at the Jr. USA's. I then went on to place third in the short class at the USA's in July. My goal for 2005 is to earn my Pro Card. I am very fortunate to have great genetics and a strong background in gymnastics. In addition, Cathy Savage from Savage Choreography and Kim Oddo from Body By O have developed a workout schedule, diet, and fitness routines that have helped me to be a top contender at the national level. The best things about competing for me are being able to entertain the audience with my fitness routines and walking out on stage with the confidence that I know I did everything I could do to look my very best. With each competition, I learn how to better prepare myself, not only physically, but mentally. However, the most important thing is that you compete for the love of the sport and strive to reach your own personal goals.

As a 4th grade teacher, I promote a healthy lifestyle to future generations. I have led class discussions about the importance of diet and exercise. In the past, my students have nicknamed me “Miss Muscles” and get excited when they know I have a competition coming up. They wonder about some of the foods I have to eat and ask me if I went to Florida recently because of the tanning products. In the words of a nine-year-old, they find it to be “cool” and “I can’t believe my teacher can do flips and one-arm push-ups.” Besides the students looking forward to seeing how I do in competitions, I also hope that they will choose to follow my example of eating healthy and exercising regularly.

For present and future fitness competitors, I am also available to help you learn the ins and outs of the sport. Over the past year and a half, I have gained many resources necessary for the high heels you need to walk in, the stage make-up you should wear, costumes, DJs, etc. This is a sport that you can’t go into blindly, as too much goes on behind the scenes. If you have questions about anything, feel free to e-mail me at:

With my past experiences and list of reliable resources, together we can get you the help you need. Good luck to you all, and remember, it’s all about having fun and being proud of the personal goals you have reached.

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