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Amateur Fitness Competitor of the Week: Elizabeth Kish

Amateur Fitness Competitor of the Week: Elizabeth Kish! - Pics and info and more!

How Did You Get Started?

I have always been extremely athletic, playing softball, soccer, basketball, cheerleading, and dancing throughout my adolescent years. When I entered into my teens I was overcome with a need to control some aspect of my life and fell prey to anorexia. Starting at the age of 12 I suffered for 8 long years with a constant battle to be perfect, at least what I thought to be perfect at the time.

I began working out excessively as a means to remove every ounce of fat from my body, which I accomplished, however, was still not happy. As the years went by I continued to read every fitness magazine I could get my hands on and learn everything possible related to exercise, dieting, and nutrition.

When I turned 19 God took me into his care and helped me pull myself out of the self inflicted torcher I created. From that point on I continued to workout consistently, lifted extremely heavy, and consumed a vast amount of nutrients. Looking back, this was the best thing that could have happened to get me where I am today.

Now, at 26 years old I have finally found the confidence, inner peace, and self discipline to put everything life has taught me to work. Of course, I do not deserve all of the credit for overcoming my fears and stepping on stage. I owe a lot of gratitude to my fiancé, Robert, for providing me with constant love, motivation, and encouragement over the past 6 months.

Not only did he diet, train, and compete with me, but he helped me to realize the God given talent that I have, which I have been blind to see for so many years. He is truly my best friend and biggest fan!

What Workout Plan Worked Best For You?

I have always trained extremely heavy especially when it comes to back, shoulders, and arms. I love the look of broad, round shoulders and a wide, V-tapered back that ties into a small waist. Another reason for training with such intensity over the years has been to create symmetry and proportion between my upper and lower body.

I have always had very muscular legs and have not had to work them as hard to achieve overall development. Recently, while training for the NPC Western Regional, I significantly changed my leg routine from performing reps of 15 with a rest period to supersets of 30 to 50 reps per exercise.

This technique worked wonders for my legs causing them to slim down with an extreme amount of definition. I train my upper body to failure with reps ranging from 8-15 utilizing the drop set technique. During competition training I keep my lifts as heavy as possible and decrease the amount of rest between sets.

arrow Typical Week Pre-Contest

    Monday: (am) Chest/Abs/1 hour cardio - (pm) 45 min. cardio
    Tuesday: (am) Back/Abs/1 hour cardio - (pm) 45 min. cardio
    Wednesday: (am) Legs/Glutes/Calves/1 hour cardio - (pm) 45 min. cardio
    Thursday: (am) Shoulders/Traps/1 hour cardio - (pm) 45 min. cardio
    Friday: (am) Bis/Tris/Abs/1 hour cardio - (pm) 45 min. cardio
    Saturday: (am) Miscellaneous/45 min. cardio - No pm cardio
    Sunday: Rest

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What Nutrition Plan Has Worked Best For You?

Due to the fact that my most recent competition was my first I was a bit uncertain as to how my body was going to respond. To ensure I would attain the results that I wanted I started my diet and training program full force at 20 weeks out because of having a low thyroid condition, which makes losing weight much more difficult.

In the beginning I ate oatmeal and berries for my first two meals and a sweet potato at lunch and mid-afternoon. After 3 pm I cut my complex carbs and ate only green vegetables and protein. As the competition neared I gradually eliminated the afternoon sweet potato and mid-morning oats.

Unfortunately, I am quite carb sensitive, thus cutting back on bread, pasta, potatoes, and refined sugar works very well for me even though these are the foods I crave. I also drink a ton of water anywhere from 2-3 gallons per day. I would have to say this was the hardest part for me come the last week of the show. Not having food is bad enough, but taking away water is definitely the most difficult!

During the off-season I try to keep my diet clean during the week and treat myself on the weekend. My favorite cheat foods are pizza, ice-cream, and Reeses peanut butter bites.

Optimum Whey Protein

arrow Sample Meal Plan Pre-Contest

    Meal 1 (5 am)
    1 scoop Optimum Whey Protein + Glutamine and BCAA's
    *(AM) workout + cardio

    Meal 2 (7:30 am)
    6 egg whites
    1/4 cup oats w/cinnamon and Splenda

    Meal 3 (10:00 am)
    6 egg whites
    1/4 cup oats w/cinnamon and Splenda

    Meal 4 (12:30 pm)
    4 oz chicken + Glutamine and BCAA's
    2 cups broccoli, green beans, or asparagus

    Meal 5 (3:00 pm)
    4 oz chicken
    2 cups broccoli, green beans, or asparagus

    Meal 6 (5:00 pm)
    3 egg whites + Glutamine and BCAA's
    *(PM) cardio

    Meal 7 (7:30 pm)
    4 oz chicken
    2 cups broccoli, green beans, or asparagus

    *I have to make mention of my best friend throughout my 20 long weeks of competition dieting, Sugar Free Popsicles! I could never have made it through without them.

What Supplements Have Given You The Greatest Gains?

My supplement of choice is most definitely FOOD. I always have people, especially women asking me how they can get as muscular as I am and what do they need to "take." I tell them "You need to Eat to Grow!" So many women complain about not being able to put on muscle, yet when they tell me what they eat I shake my head and say that is your problem.

Looking back over the years after overcoming anorexia at 85 pounds I gained 55 pounds in a year, which at 140 and having a lot of muscle mass is not heavy, but seemed outrageous to me from being so small for such a long time. Up until this year I struggled with food in an attempt to become thin once again, however, I love to eat.

I realize now that my failure to stop eating was a God send because I would not have achieved the muscular gains that I did had I not provided my muscles with a substantial amount of protein, carbs, and fats to grow.

Lean Body

I started taking Prolab BCAA's and Lean Body L-Glutamine when I began my contest diet and training program. I also supplement my meals with Optimum Whey Protein when I don't have time to eat chicken or egg whites.

The most important supplement in my diet is digestive enzymes. Due to the large amount of protein consumed during contest prep in such a short amount of time (2-3 hours) my body could not digest as fast as I ate. Digestive enzymes help speed up the digestive process and transport nutrients where they need to go.

Why do you love Bodybuilding?

Some say it is a passion, but sometimes I think it is also an obsession. I absolutely love to workout. It is an essential part of my day just as important as brushing my teeth. The gym is my playground, I am comfortable when I am there and enjoy being in an environment that allows me to utilize all of the knowledge I have gained over the years.

Surrounding myself with people that know more than I do and have reached the level of fitness I aspire to attain is extremely motivating. I love the feeling of walking tall, having good posture, and holding myself with a strong sense of confidence all which results from consistent training in the gym.

What Are Your Future Bodybuilding Plans?

I recently broke my wrist while snowboarding over Christmas vacation so my competition plans for the upcoming months have been sidelined. Nonetheless, I will be back in the gym full force by the end of February with full intentions on competing in California and possibly Las Vegas in July 2006. My ultimate goal is to attain sponsorship, model fitness apparel, and earn a Pro card.

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What One Tip Would You Give Other Bodybuilders?

Follow your passion and do what comes natural to you. God gives everyone talents for a specific purpose. Deep down I have always known God's gift to me, but I did not have the confidence to see it. Now, after 20 weeks of growing not only physically, but mentally and emotionally as well, I can finally see the talent I possess and would not have realized it had I not taken a chance and stepped into the unknown.

To everyone that has a passion for this sport and a desire to compete, my advice to you is believe in yourself and be open to new opportunities. You will never know what God has in store for you unless YOU make the first step and after you do, he will walk with you throughout your journey!

Who Are Your Favorite Bodybuilders?

I have always admired Adela Garcia-Friedmansky. She has tremendous muscle development, symmetry, and proportion. Valentina Chepiga is also amazing, with extreme muscle separation, definition, and over all development.