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Over 40 Bodybuilder of the Week: Melanie Lyons

Over 40 Bodybuilder of the Week: Melanie Lyons! - Pics and info and more!

How Did You Get Started?

I have always been very active and athletic since high school where I had a competitive cheerleading background. After high school I joined a gym, and kept in shape by teaching myself weight training from a Cory Everson weight training book. For many years I was content to work out even through 3 pregnancies in 4.5 years. There were many times people would ask me what I was training for, but I didn't think much of it. It felt good to me, and I liked how my body looked, so I did it.

Early in 2003 I visited a friend in Chicago, and saw Valeria Brown Stephens perform in a fitness competition. She brought to Fitness America something more than gymnastics; she brought energy with cheer and dance. I was so inspired that I wanted to take my training to a new level to see if I could do it too. To my surprise, in my first fitness competition later that year in October, I stood next to her in the line-up in a SNFB fitness competition in Atlanta.

She finished first, and I finished last, but I didn't care, I felt like a winner too. I had done what I had set out to do, and that was to be on stage at my very best. Valeria went on to win Fitness America in Las Vegas a month later, and I was hit by the competition bug. Now I train like I am going to compete whether I take it to the stage or not.

Melanie Lyons. Melanie Lyons.
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Melanie Lyons.

What Workout Plan Worked Best For You?

About cardio, I hate it, so I try to get my aerobic workouts with an activity. I cycle with my road bike once a week for 2-3 hours, roller skate or roller derby practice for 2-3 hour sessions two to three times a week. I also hoop dance for at least 2 hours a week in the evenings, and while it is not a cardio exercise it definitely burns calories.

Weight training, in a nut shell, I mix it up. I am constantly changing my routine to challenge my body. I do 3 to 4 exercises to each body part, and rotate through many machines and free weight style exercises. I work each body part at least once a week.

Day 1: Abs/Legs

Day 2: Chest/Triceps

Day 3: Abs

Day 4: Back/Biceps

Day 5: Shoulders

Day 6:

Day 7:

Melanie Lyons. Melanie Lyons.
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Melanie Lyons.

What Nutrition Plan Has Worked Best For You?

Whether I am preparing for a show or trying to maintain my weight I always have to watch my carbohydrate intake. When I have to have one of my favorites, like ice cream, I make sure I eat protein to offset the insulin rush. I feel better when I eat healthier. When I am planning my meals for a day, I think about how intense my workouts will be, and adjust accordingly. When I need carbohydrates to fuel my activities I make sure that they are nutritional ones like whole wheat pasta or brown rice. I drink a lot of water even on light workout days.

Meal 1:

Meal 2:


  • Myoplex Ready To Drink Protein Shake
  • 1 Serving Fruit On The Side
  • 20oz Water
  • Meal 3:

    Meal 4:

    Meal 5:

    Melanie Lyons. Melanie Lyons.
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    Melanie Lyons.

    What Supplements Have Given You The Greatest Gains?

    I like to add Prolab's Creatine Monohydrate. I think it softens my look as well as assisting with my training. I drink a lot of the Myoplex ready to drink protein shakes. I enjoy the taste and I get the protein I need without having to eat more chicken. I supplement with a multi-vitamin, cranberry tablets, vitamin C, and several products from TBR health: Omega 3 Supreme, Unique E, Complete Probiotic Formula, and CLA (conjugated Linoleic acid).

    I also make sure I take good care of my skin by exfoliating while showering, and applying moisturizes immediately after. I also re-apply lotion throughout the day and use a sport sunscreen when outdoors. I am never without a water bottle.

    Why do you love Bodybuilding?

    I like being able to play sports, and continue to pursue new interests where I don't have to stop and think that I am too old to do that. Staying in great shape has empowered me to embrace new opportunities in my late forties, even playing roller derby with Birmingham's Tragic City Rollers. Since playing roller derby I have discovered that roller skating is a way to get my aerobic workouts in and build endurance while having fun. I also love to be able to pick up a 75 to 100 mile ride with some of my cycling friends on a Saturday morning without having to train on my rode bike all the time.

    I have always made flexibility training a part of my workouts too. When I decided to pick hula hoop dance in 2006 I was able to learn the off body tricks with ease because my body was prepared for the challenge of moving quickly into a variety of movements.

    What Motivates You To Follow A Healthy Lifestyle?

    Living a healthy lifestyle gives me energy and keeps me looking youthful. Staying in shape helps me get the most out of every day. Exercising regularly and eating healthy affects every part of my life and every day I chose to make it part of my routine. I am less stressed, and more prepared mentally to meet the challenges of my career as a computer analyst and my responsibilities of raising three teenagers. It's like brushing my teeth, it is something I do.

    What Made You Want To Achieve Your Goals?

    I want to be able to join a cycling team, softball league, or race the kids at the local skating rink, etc, if the opportunity presents itself. Additionally, I believe you have to surround yourself with people who inspire you. I read books written by athletes, like Lance Armstrong, and Tori McClure. They are amazing people who accomplish amazing things. They get it done with a plan. They narrow their focus, ignore the odds of failure, and move forward. They look beyond what they are capable of doing, and visualize the result. They win because they see themselves winning, but at the same time, know that winning is not the only reward. They taught me to enjoy the journey.

    What Are Your Future Bodybuilding Plans?

    I am preparing for the 2010 Fitness America Pageant in November in Las Vegas in the fitness and figure competitions. I will also compete in several national and regional fitness and figure competitions in 2011. I love the gym bag from that I got when I competed in the Fitness Universe Pageant in 2007.

    Melanie Lyons.
    + Click To Enlarge.
    Melanie Lyons.

    What One Tip Would You Give Other Bodybuilders?

    Read a variety of articles about training and nutrition, and try it. If it works, do it again, if it doesn't, try something else. Do it for yourself. No one else will appreciate it as much as you do, and you shouldn't expect them too.

    Who Are Your Favorite Bodybuilders?

    My favorite figure competitors are Monica Brant and Jenny Lynn, and my favorite fitness competitor is Dawn Butterfield. Monica and Jenny have beautiful physiques. Dawn inspires me with her dedication and skill.

    What Features Do You Use On

    I love meeting people on BodySpace. I save money by purchasing things from the online Store. I search for competitions in my area and read tons of articles. I have been able to find answers to all my competition questions from the many articles written on competition prep, nutrition, and training.