Ember Mertzig - Figue Competitor

Ember: Let me start by saying that I’ve always had a competitive mindset when it comes to fitness. I enjoy challenging myself and seeing where I can improve within my own fitness journey. After I had my son in 2013 I decided to try out Crossfit, and being a former gymnast I found that the sport was a great choice for me. As I started to excel in the sport, I decided to start competing. I joined a competition Crossfit class, had great programming with a great coach and it took off. As changes went on with my life and I moved to another state, Crossfit wasn’t as convenient anymore so I decided to try something new. I have always wanted to step on stage in a Figure/Physique contest, but I never went through with it (Crossfit was my main focus for a while). After the move I started attending a global gym, was around some people who competed, and I decided that my “competitive nature” had to seek it out…so here we are, preparing for my first competition. Went from a high level Crossfit athlete to a Figure Competitor.

Diet and Training
I keep a fairly clean diet year round, but during off season it is a little more lenient. Off season I give myself a little more freedom with my macros then I do pre contest, when I keep track of everything (even writing everything I eat down). I pretty much always eat 6-7 meals a day regardless if I am off season or pre contest.

I have tried so many diet plans, especially when I was in college. I actually gained about 40 pounds my Freshman year, so I looked into several diets...they all failed. I always found myself hungry, or overeating. It became a vicious cycle. It wasn’t until I started a Paleo diet that things started to click for me in 2013. I bought some cook books, I started to notice changes in my body, and I was happy. With that said, it ended up not being a long term diet for me. As my workout routines started to get more intense, I started to learn that my body needed more carbs. I then steered away from the “strict” Paleo diet and started adding some carbs into my diet, but kept the Paleo diet foundation to my life. That’s how it all began to work into a lifestyle for me.

Off season this is easy, I train 5-6 days a week for about an hour and a half each session. Each day I work a different body part. It’s easy to balance out my training with my diet because I meal prep on Sundays. If I didn’t meal prep, I would probably be lost and have negative temptations. I make sure I get an adequate amount of macros in each day through those meal preps, and I make sure to hit each body part at least once a week.

On Stage
I didn’t always have that confidence. After gaining weight in college, I lost a lot of self-confidence and it took a while to find it again. It wasn’t until I started seeing changes in my body (eating right and training 3-5 days a week), that my confidence level started going up. As a personal trainer, I have to think back at this mindset I had before and encourage my clients that the confidence they are looking for is right around the corner. They just need to want it bad enough and they will find it again.

Of course any contest there are feelings of excitement, nervousness, stress, and that amazing feeling of being very proud of yourself for all the hard work and dedication.

I plan on seeing where the Figure and Physique competitions take me in my fitness journey. I truly just enjoy the sport, so if it takes off then I will let that happen and if it doesn’t then I will continue to live a healthy lifestyle and enjoy lifting and eating clean. My main focus will always be my son, so I have to work around that. These next couple years will be interesting in regards to where He plans on directing me.

Email: embermarie09@gmail.com

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Ember Mertzig

Ember Mertzig