Gisselle Zapata - Bikini Competitor

I live in Columbus, Ohio for more than 8 years now but I am originally from Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. I have always workout but never did I see any results. I was always a skinny girl that went to the gym but ate unhealthy. I have always been a very active girl. Growing up I played many sports specially volleyball, basketball, taught cardio classes at a local gym and I was also a contemporary dancer, hip hop choreographer. I was also studying to become a TV Journalist / Host so I worked for a channel as a TV host in the Dominican Republic and later in Columbus Ohio for Telemundo.

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My brother Jose Zapata who lives in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic started competing and winning shows in the NPC/IFBB Elite as a man's physique. He came to visit me March 3, 2016 from the Dominican Republic to see the Arnolds Classic. I was introduced to dieting and meal prepping by him. I decided to compete because of him, I saw him as an inspiration. He was my coach initially helped me with the meal plans and after 3 months of meal prep I started noticing my body changing getting ripped. My brother recommended me to get a local coach in Columbus so I could get to the next level. I met Haley Townsend at my local LA fitness she was a women's figure competitor and coach she helped me prepare for my first competition which was the Ohio State Championship 2016. I trained very hard for that show bringing a top level physique which allowed me place 1st place and ended up winning the overall.

After winning the Ohio State Championship I became addicted to this Sport and now I am on a mission to get my IFBB Pro Status. I have competed so far at Kentucky Muscle, Pittsburg North American, Florida State Championships, Miami Nationals. I was 1st callout at North American, 2nd Place at Kentucky Muscle. I am now getting ready to compete at Chicago Jr Nationals for the Pro Status.

My carbs intake changes such as the amount of carbo hydrates that I consume daily, cardio increases, and the amount of cheat meals per week allowed. I recently got a new coach former IFBB Olympian Ryan Hinton. He is increasing my cardio daily but slowly because my metabolism is crazy and I lose weight very fast. I am two weeks out from a NPC Jr Nationals so my carb intake is very low at the moment.
Every coach has a different ways of giving diets to their athletes. My previous coach tried Keto Diet / Paleo and controlling carbs intake. All the diet plans have worked to me is all about how you commit yourself to the gym. I have no problem getting ripped and building muscle naturally I can say I have blessed genetics.

I have always love being in front of the camera and on stage. I use to work for MundoFox, Telemundo before becoming a competitor. One my many side job was to create dance choreographies for TV presentations / Weddings / Hotel Resorts in the Dominican Republic. I have never being a shy girl so it comes naturally for me.

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I love to train hard and lift heavy and also do a lot of cardio. My current training program consists of fast cardio in the morning. I wake up everyday at 4am in the morning do fast cardio.
Monday (Leg day)
Tuesday (Back, Chest)
Wednesday (Glutes, Hamstring)
Thursday (Shoulders, Triceps & Core, Abs)
Friday (Glutes, Hamstring)
Saturday (Back & Core)
Sunday (Glutes, Abs and Hamstrings)

The last show I did was Miami nationals ended up not placing at all. There were around 35 girls in my category H. My category is the tallest girl in Bikini division. You don't always win but the experience was incredible I met a lot of incredible people. I learn that the sport is not always about best physique many judges have different opinion of what a bikini competitors look like. I placed 7th at North Americans in Pittsburg before Miami. I respect the sport and will continue to pursue the pro status to compete with the best.

Being an athlete: It affects my life in that I can no longer go out with friends to drink and eat. I have to carefully plan when and how to eat and also have to constantly carry my meals whatever I go.

My current plans are to compete at Jr Nationals Chicago for a Pro Card. I will also be competing for the first time in the Dominican Republic at the DR Coas of Arms hosted at the Hard Rock Cafe in Punta Cana. I am looking forward to have my family in the island watching me compete.


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