An Interview With Track Athlete & Figure Competitor Ali Metkovich!

Track & Field standout turned NPC figure competitor, Ali Metkovich, gives us the lowdown on her past and goals for the future.
Track & Field standout turned NPC figure competitor, Ali Metkovich, gives us the lowdown on her past and goals for the future.

I had the unique opportunity to get the inside scoop on Ali's background. She's competed against Jackie-Joyner-Kersee (and won), been on the Olympic Bobsled team and now has her sights set on the Ms. Figure Olympia stage. Ali has a few steps to go through before she gets there, but given her past accomplishments - she'll get there.

On August 6-7, she'll be taking the next step necessary, when she competes at Figure Nationals in New York. IFBB Pro cards will be given out and if Ali has anything to say about it, her name will be on one of them.

[ Q ] Name:

    Ali Metkovich (formerly McKnight)

[ Q ] Birthday:

    4-27-1972

[ Q ] Currently residing in:

    Reno, NV

[ Q ] Born in:

    Bakersfield, CA

[ Q ] Your first track competition was in 4th grade? How did ya place?

    I did great for no training! Ha ha! I got second to a girl that was a member of a track club and I was so burned that I wanted to challenge her to a re-match on the grass after the meet was over. My dad told me that wouldn't have been good sportsmanship. So I took my second place and went home mad.

[ Q ] How was it growing up with a father who was your coach?

    Truthfully, very difficult. My dad was an amazing role model with a work ethic second to none. But, instead of giving me breaks because I was his daughter, it was the other way around and going home at the end of the day to be father/daughter became more difficult to separate from coach/daughter.

[ Q ] Many people may not know but you have an extensive background in athletics. Could you share some of your career highlights before taking to the NPC Figure stage?

    Gladly! I received a track scholarship to the University of Nevada-Reno as a sprinter and was then developed into a heptathlete. The heptathlon is the equivalent of the men's decathlon, but with 7 events over two days instead of 10 events. It includes the 100-meter hurdles, high jump, shot put, 200 meters, long jump, javelin and the 800 meters.

    I really matured my strength, explosiveness and speed and ended up finishing my collegiate career as a two-time NCAA Div. I All-American as well as setting a new collegiate record in the heptathlon 200 meters. I was Big West Female Athlete of the Year twice and went on to compete for Nike.

    I competed at both the 1996 and 2000 U.S. Olympic Trials, 1996 in the heptathlon and also in the open 200 meters and then in 2000 in the heptathlon.

    From there I competed on the 2000 U.S. Women's Bobsled team for a season. That was fun and exciting, but I didn't have the passion for it like I did Track and Field.

    Plus, I have had six knee surgeries on the same knee and I had to come to the realization that I needed to take care of myself and Bobsled is a very physical sport. What an opportunity, though!

[ Q ] How does one go about becoming part of the U.S. women's World Cup Bobsled Team?

    The coaches look specifically for individuals that possess both speed as well as strength, so the Olympic Trials is the prime location to do that sort of recruiting. Take a sprinter, yes, they have phenomenal speed, but when placed behind a 600 lb. sled, they're not able to maximize it.

    A shot-putter on the other hand has phenomenal strength, but probably not the flat out speed it would take to run the sled. A multi-eventer such as a heptathlete or a decathlete is the ideal candidate, possessing both speed and strength.

[ Q ] Is it true you're the #2 woman in the US for all time fastest heptathlon behind Jackie Joyner-Kersee?

    That is true! I've maintained that ranking as well as my #6 in the world. In fact, the race that I ran that time (23.13) I actually ran against Jackie and won! She had run her fastest time in Seoul, 88'.

[ Q ] What do you do in your free time when you're not training your booty off?

    Free time? Well, I work full-time in pharmaceutical sales and when placed with the training demands, I don't have a lot of free time. But, when I find it I do enjoy relaxing with my husband and two cats. I enjoy cooking as well as traveling.

[ Q ] Favorite supplements:

[ Q ] Person you look up to the most:

    Anyone who has real values and can make you a better person through their honesty and commitment. That is my husband, Mike.

[ Q ] Ever been in a catfight and had to kick some serious ass?

    No, I've never been in a fight. And that's a GOOD thing!

[ Q ] Compete in any other organizations before NPC?

    In 2003, I competed in the Tri-fit and won the Western Regionals. It's a great organization.

[ Q ] What made you start competing in NPC Figure?

    The level of competition. I knew I wasn't finished competing after the 2000 U.S. Olympic Trials, but I was finished with Track and Field for various reasons, including my knee surgery history as well as my coach having moved far away.

    I took a couple of years off to pursue a career and then decided to compete at the Tri-fit. I won it and it was exciting, but there was still something missing. I then attended the Olympia Expo in 03' and knew what I was missing. Competing in Figure.

    With the popularity curve being so steep, it was something that I knew I just had to be a part of. I went home and did my homework and found Mike Davies, who has changed my body so much in such a short time, it's almost unbelievable.

[ Q ] How long have you been working with Mike?

    Since January, 2004

[ Q ] NPC Competition history:

  • 1st in Tall class and Overall, 2004 NPC Orange County Classic
  • 1st in Tall class, 2004 NPC BodyRock

[ Q ] How is training for a figure competition been different from you training for other sports?

    I thought it would be more different than it actually is. The way Mike trains is very similar to how I am accustomed to training as far as training athletically. We do plyometrics, speed training and a lot of the stuff that I did while competing as a heptathlete. The one difference though, is the DIET!

    That was definitely the hardest part for me, just because I was used to being able to eat anything I wanted and as much of it as I wanted while competing in track. I've learned an invaluable amount of information from Mike in such a short period of time.

[ Q ] Who does your competition suits?

[ Q ] How many times have you cheated on your diet leading into Team Universe/Figure Nationals?

    I only do what Mike tells me I can do and that's a secret!

[ Q ] First thing you're going to eat in New York after the show:

    New York PIZZA, baby!

[ Q ] Coolest person you've met:

    Jackie Joyner-Kersee. She was a competitor as well as a friend and although, she's probably the most talented person I've met athletically, you would never know she's a World Record holder. She epitomizes being an ambassador to the sport.

[ Q ] What's the stupidest thing a guy has said to you as his pick up line?

    I was once purchasing some flank steak from a butcher and he told me that he thought I had a nice flank?!

[ Q ] Goals for the next year?

    More than anything? To be on that Olympia stage. But in the meantime, develop my physique to be the best it can be to get there and to do well.

[ Q ] Sponsored by:

    No one - yet!

[ Q ] Web site:

    I'm in the process of re-designing it. But, in the meantime, I can be reached at: heptawoman@yahoo.com

Thanks Ali! You have an amazing background and thanks for sharing it with everyone. Good luck in New York!

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