Name: Michelle Bishop
Weight Before: 170 Lbs.
Weight After: 135 Lbs.
Size Before: 13/14
Size After: 5
Why I Decided To Change My Body
My struggles with weight go back as far as I can remember. I was never thin and can remember kids calling me "bubble butt" in junior high school. When I went off to college in 1996 is when I really started to pack the weight on. Like a typical college student, I went out drinking most nights of the week followed by the late night diner splurge.
I ate what I wanted, when I wanted and it showed! My weight topped out at 170 pounds. I am only 5-foot-4. Throughout college I tried every fad diet that there was with failure. I worked out occasionally, but it certainly didn't make up for my eating habits. So, I spent the next few years just being unhappy with my body.
Fast forward to 2004. Although I had dropped a little weight, I still weighed around 160 pounds. I had started working out on a regular basis, but still ate pretty much whatever I wanted. It was noticing some other girls at my gym who competed in figure that sparked my interest in the sport.
I had long ago given up on being "skinny," and had just decided that I was "big boned" and destined to stay that way. But when I looked at these girls, I saw that they weren't skinny. They had muscle, shape, and curves. I thought to myself that I would love to look like that.
What Got Me Started
There was a girl who is now a good friend of mine who went through her own transformation that inspired me to give it a try. I asked her how she had done it and she referred me to Mike Davies. I contacted him in late January 2005 and asked for his guidance in workouts and nutrition. My goal was to one day compete in figure. This was the decision that began to change my life.
|WHAT'S YOUR GOAL?|
As he lives in Columbus, Ohio and myself in Northern, NJ, we worked via the internet. He would send my diets and workouts and I would follow whatever it was he told me to do.
My attitude in the gym completely changed. Now I had a specific goal each and every day. It took all of the guesswork out. Working out was easy for me, however the diet required a lot of lifestyle changes and breaking bad habits. At first the progress was slow. I could feel my clothes loosen but couldn't see it unless I took my progress pictures and held them side by side.
Physically I was feeling better than I ever had! After a few months, I really began to see my body change. People started noticing and it just pushed me further along! It was awesome to see how the body responds to clean eating, hard training, and lots of sleep!
It was on June 25, 2005, that my dreams became a reality. I competed in my first show, and took 3rd place at the NPC Tracey Greenwood Figure Classic! Just to put on those little suits and be confident enough to step out there was the greatest feeling in the world! Since then I took 1st and overall at the NPC Garden State Figure Classic and 3rd in Class C Figure at Bodyrock.
This experience has changed my life for the better in so many ways. My future goals are to compete on a National level next year and to pursue fitness modeling and other work within the fitness industry.
- 8:00am: 1/2 cup oatmeal with flaxseed, protein shake
- 10:30am: 4 oz. tuna with broccoli
- 12:00pm: 5 oz turkey
- 2:00pm: 7 egg whites
- 4:00pm: 6 oz fish with broccoli
- 6:30pm: 5 oz chicken, 1/2 cup yams, green beans
- 9:00pm: protein shake
- Monday: Legs, 30 min cardio
- Tuesday: Shoulders, kickboxing class
- Wednesday: Back, step class
- Thursday: Arms, 40 min cardio
- Friday: Chest 40 min cardio
- Saturday: Bleachers/Plyometrics
- Sunday: Off
Each time I train a specific body part, my routine changes from week to week. I alternate exercises as well as low weight/high reps and high weigh/lower rep sets. This is to ensure that my body never adjusts to the same routine. My cardio includes kickboxing and step classes, jumping rope, elliptical, treadmill and the gauntlet.
My theory is that the best cardio is the cardio I do! That's why I switch it up depending on how I'm feeling that particular day. When I am preparing for a show, my cardio will increase up to twice daily.
My Advice To Others
First know that anyone is capable of transforming their body. There is always a better you underneath waiting to get out. That to me is what is so great about fitness. There is no end in sight. One can always make improvements and look forward to something new.
Be patient! It is a long and sometimes seemingly painful journey. Unfortunately we don't get to see the results of our efforts right away. But in the end, that is what makes it so awesome. You stand in front of the mirror looking at the new you and all those days that you struggled are suddenly so worth every single little bit!
Realize that changing yourself isn't just about going on a diet and exercising for awhile. It is a lifestyle that you adapt to. I used to be the worst for going on crazy diets, only to gain it back in no time because I went back to my old ways. That is why it is important to find a program that you can live with and even enjoy. As long as you continue to work out and eat clean most of the time, you can still have a few indulgences here and there along the way.