Amateur Fitness Competitor of the Week: Melody Chao

Amateur Fitness Competitor of the Week: Melody Chao! - Pics and info and more!
  • Name: Melody Chao
  • E-mail:
  • Age: 37
  • Where: Corona, New York
  • Height: 5' 2"
  • Weight: 125 Lbs.
  • Years Bodybuilding :5
  • Favorite Bodypart: Back and Shoulders
  • Favorite Exercise: Legs
  • Favorite Supplements: Protein,Glutamine, Animal Pak

How Did You Get Started?

I had gained so much during and after college. When I started my new job in 1994, I decided it was also time to get into shape. I started slowly and within a year, I had lost over 50 lbs., became a certified group fitness instructor and have never looked back.

I always wanted to compete, so in 2000, I decided to compete in bodybuilding. I hired a trainer and he got me ready in 9.5 weeks. I won my first bodybuilding show and I was hooked. I started admiring the look of the Figure competitors, so in 2003, I switched over and I'm having a blast competing in Figure.

What Workout Plan Worked Best For You?

All year round, working one body part once a week works well for me. My weight training schedule is as follows on and off season:

arrow Sample Training Week:

I hit each session hard and continue to lift heavy up till the week of a show. In the off season, I do cardio 5 mornings a week and a couple of times at night and abs 3xs a week. During pre-contest, I do cardio 2xs a day, 6 days a week, abs 5xs a week. I also teach a couple of fitness classes, but I don't really count those as cardio sessions because my focus is on the members.

magnifying glass Click Image To Enlarge.

What Nutrition Plan Has Worked Best For You?

My body loves carbs. So, low to moderate carbs, high protein, low fat works best. Off season, my carb intake is rotated every couple of weeks, to maintain. But, come pre-contest, carbs get lower, protein increases and fat intake is also lowered. All depends on how I look weeks out.

My proteins are mostly chicken or turkey breasts, fish (tuna, orange roughy, tilapia, cod), whey, egg whites. My carbs would come from oatmeal or cream of rice, yams, asparagus, snow peas, spinach, string beans. Some fruit like grapefruit, pears, strawberries and blueberries are included, mostly in the off season. Fats would come from the foods and flaxseed.

What Supplements Have Given You The Greatest Gains?

Animal Pak is a great vitamin-mineral combination and I feel energetic when I take it. Glutamine (Prolab) are a must, as well as Labrada Lean Body for Her and Designer Whey are great. There are a lot of great tasting whey products on the market, so I recommend trying different ones until you find your favorite. For fat burners, Lipo-6 and Ventilean have also helped me a lot during pre-contest.

Why do you love Bodybuilding?

I love how I can change and improve my physique every year. Training is a part of my life and I always feel great after an intense session. I love competing and I feel like a winner every time because I focused on my goals and achieved what I set out to do. Also, I have met a lot of great girls and have created great friendships with many of them.

What Are Your Future Bodybuilding Plans?

I'm training really hard this off season and I'm planning on competing more out of my state. I did the Masters last year and had such a great experience; I plan to do that one again. Other than that, I just want to improve my weak parts and bring in a balanced physique each time I step on stage.

Placing in a national qualifier is my goal for 2006 and to compete in at least two national level shows. After that, we'll see.

magnifying glass Click Image To Enlarge.

What One Tip Would You Give Other Bodybuilders?

When it feels like its getting too tough and you can't seem to stay focused and motivated, just remember that whatever you are not doing, your competition is. When you miss your cardio, the other girls didn't. When you cheated on your diet, the other girls didn't. When you went out clubbing and only slept 4 hours, the other girls didn't.

You made the choice to compete and it's not easy, but if you want to be the best you can be, you have to stick to the plan and train when you have to, eat when and what you're supposed to eat and sleep to grow and recover. Your body will love you for it and you'll look great come show time.

Who Are Your Favorite Bodybuilders?

I've always loved Monica Brant's and Adela Friedmansky's physique. But, with so many new comers on the pro stage, Latisha Wilder's is my favorite with that perfectly balanced physique, beautiful shape and skin tone and beauty.