Milena Battista - Figure Competitor

Milena: I participated in my first fitness competition this year, on March 27th in Montreal, Quebec. I had been reading about fitness competition for about five years and found the sport so intriguing, but was not ready to commit fully. After going through a bad breakup and reaching an all times low at the beginning of 2015, I decided that the time had come to give myself a challenge that would put me back on the right track. And so I started training for my very first competition.

Since this year was my first one, I donít have on and off season habits yet. I did however train with three different coaches in the last year. They all had different knowledge and approaches to contest prep and I found that eating more whole foods, as opposed to shakes for instance, and eating more calories has helped me put on the mass I needed to compete in the figure category.

With my first coach, my meal plan had a lot of shakes and too few calories, which left me hungry and with insane cravings. It was very difficult to stick to the plan being hungry all the time, also because I was doing very intense cardio. This approach led me to plateau quickly without having built any significant muscle mass. The second and third coaches had a very similar approach to the meal plan with the difference that coach #2 had me eating not enough protein, which led me to shed a lot of fat but didnít help me put on enough muscle.

When it comes to going on stage, I have to say that I am a very shy person that does not like to be in front of people. This was another reason why I wanted to compete: to face my fear of standing on a stage with all eyes on me. I was very nervous the days leading up to competition day, thinking of my stage appearance, but strangely, when D day came, all the anxiety went away and I walked on that stage like I had done it all my life. I guess I knew how much work I had put into being there and felt confident with my shape.

My program for this prep consisted of a lot of leg training because my lower body does not develop easily. I would workout my lower body every other day, doing shoulders and back in between. I would lift six times a week and do cardio six times a week as well. At the end of the prep, I would have two cardio sessions on upper body days. I am a flight attendant, so my lifestyle isnít very regular. I would therefore arrange my meals and workouts around my work schedule, depending on where I was and at what time I was working. Some days were tricky, but in the end, as long as I was prepared and organized, it would all work out just fine.

My first experience at a contest was amazing. I loved everything about it: the chaos, the noise, the crammed backstage area, meeting all the other athletes. It was all new to me and very exciting. I had been to fitness competitions before so I had an idea of what to expect as for the prejudging and finals. The feeling of being on that stage though was completely new to me. The rush of adrenaline is inexplicable!

I enjoyed my experience so much that I definitely want to compete again. Because I am new at all this, my coach and I decided to take a year off to build more muscle mass and participate in the provincial contest here in Quebec in 2017. Iím already excited to sit down and discuss our plan of action for the year to come!

Follow Milena:
Instagram: @m_batts

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Milena Battista

Milena Battista

Milena Battista