Danelle Dison - IFBB Physique Pro
I have always been an athletic person whether it being playing softball or volleyball or just being active. In 2009, my husband was preparing for his first bodybuilding show and I was helping him with meals and doing cardio. He kept asking why I donít just compete with him. I thought there is no way I could do that. The more I thought about it the more I was curious if I could actually do it. I have never been one to turn down a challenge. So I decided to do it, I did bodybuilding my first competition because my husband and his best friend didnít know figure poses and since I was helping him with bodybuilding poses I already knew them so I went with it. Once I stepped on that stage I knew I was hooked and it was something I wanted to continue to pursue.
After that I changed up my training and my husband started training me and getting me ready for my next competition. Transforming my body and seeing me push through boundaries that I thought were impossible are my drive and passion to continue to do better. In 2012, I was diagnosed with breast cancer and that put my training on hold for a year while I went through surgeries and treatment. The diagnosis of breast cancer made me realize that you never know what could happen to you in a blink of an eye and you need to live life to the fullest. Through hard work and dedication I accomplished my goal of turning IFBB pro in June 2015.
I have tried many variations of contest diets and off-season diets to try and make gains without adding a bunch of extra body weight. Itís still a learning process but with my medical issues its better for me to keep both contest and off-season diets pretty close. A type of carb cycling works better for me, I have more energy and feel my training benefits from more fats and protein than carbs. I still have a small amount of carbs everyday but on large muscle group days I add a little more just to help me get through those tough workouts during my off-season.
I have tried many variations of diets for competitions; my first competition coach was old-school so my diet was basically fish, egg whites, and broccoli and I definitely would not recommend it. I have tried Keto and high carb and realized that my body does not metabolize carbs so higher fats and protein and minimal carbs work best for me.
I do cardio pretty much year round, just because my body requires it and it helps me stay in routine of getting up early before work to get it done. My training changes up during my offseason and contest prep. During my offseason I focus on areas I need to improve on and usually have one week of heavy movements and the next is more compound movements with higher reps. I tend to include a lot of drop sets and super-sets in both offseason and contest prep. This type of training seems to work best for me. I also add in plyometric in between sets during contest prep to help keep my heart rate up during my entire workout.
I still get nervous each time I get on stage, but I have found that as I went from local shows, then to National level shows, and finally Pro stage shows the kind of nervousness changed. I make sure to practice my posing and routines even in the off-season to make sure Iím confident in my posing and ensure seamless transitions from one pose to another. When I first started I would have my husbandís friends or strangers at the gym come in while I was posing and watch to get used to people staring at you. I also donít pose in front of mirrors but record my posing so that way I can go back and critic myself on things I need to change. You definitely want to make sure that your posing and presentation is second nature so that way when youíre on stage even if your nervous you know what to do and donít have to try and think about your posing.
My last competition of 2016 was the San Antonio Pro in San Antonio, Texas. It was so nice how they did the check-ins and meet the pros for those NPC competitors who wanted to come and meet us and have pictures taken. The check-ins went very smooth and quick so that way we could get back to our rooms to lay down. The show was very well run and went very fast, and of course the dessert bar afterwards was phenomenal. It was another great experience and was able to meet more of the girls in Womenís Physique Division (WPD). One of the many fantastic things about competing is meeting the ladies and getting to know them. Everyone has a story and it's interesting to get to know other ladies who share your passion of training and competing. I have had the honor of meeting and sharing the stage with so many wonderful ladies. I hope to be able to do this for a few more years.
Currently, discussing with my coaches on which shows I will be targeting this year. I hope to be able to do more shows this year, but it will depend on approval from my doctors since contest prep puts so much stress on your body.
I have just launched my own clothing line called Pink Muscle Apparel, to help bring awareness to breast cancer awareness and how important preventative check-ups are so important. A portion of every article sold goes towards paying for mammograms for those who canít afford it or their insurance does not cover the cost. Prevention is key and by spreading the word hopefully it will encourage people to get checked without the worry about paying for it. Reaching towards a goal of early detection to eliminate breast cancer permanently.
You can check out my clothing line at www.shopcip.com, Pink Muscle
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