Nicole Rockey - Figure Competitor

Nicole: I did my first figure competition in March of 2016. I have always been into the fitness lifestyle ever since I was little and playing sports. In high school I really starting getting into lifting and loved nothing more than being in the gym. It was and is my happy place. I decided that because I put in so much time, passion, and hard work into eating healthy and being in the gym, I had to do something to show off my hard work to everyone. And that is where competing became an idea. I started looking into it on so many different websites and I just become more and more enthused with it. So in the fall I found a coach, and competed in my first show 20 weeks later.

My diet from off-season to pre-contest is completely different. During pre-season my diet mostly consisted of oatmeal in the morning, lean meats (chicken was my go to), egg whites, vegetables, sweet potatoes, and protein shakes throughout the day; 5 small meals, eating around 1,200 calories. Eating this amount of calories it was very hard to maintain muscle mass as I was losing fat, which is why off-season is even more important than the cutting phase. I now eat around 2,000-2,200 calories a day, eating clean, eating when I’m hungry, limiting my “cheat meals” but still enjoying good food with friends and family. Eating healthy calorically dense foods gives me the energy to lift heavy and build a ton of muscle mass before it’s time to cut again.

A photo posted by Nicole Rockey (@nicole_rockey) on

My body is very carb sensitive. As soon as I start to eat more carbs than I should, I will put on weight QUICK. My coach and I had to change my diet around a few times because at first I wasn’t losing weight at the rate that I should have been. We cut out some grams of carbs, and added grams of protein (more chicken) (more egg whites), just to keep my calories up and ensure that I wasn’t starving when it came to meal 4 or 5. This seemed to work, and I began to see the changes I was hoping for, especially on the scale.

I’ve always trained focusing specific days on certain muscle groups (legs, shoulders, back and biceps, etc.) adding some cardio in after my lifts. So during my pre-contest season my training changed drastically. I had a good amount of muscle mass and needed to maintain it, although needed to burn a lot of fat in the meantime, which is a very challenging thing to do. So my workouts changed from fewer reps with more sets, to more reps with less sets. A lot of my training consisted of circuits as well, to get in the reps, but keep my fat burning. And then I would do cardio after, along with fasted cardio in the morning. I would prep my food for the week but weigh it out as I went, day to day. Something about my chicken mixed with veggies mixed with sweet potatoes sitting in one container in my fridge for a whole week doesn’t sit well with me, although works for many.

I was always told that being 5’10’’ I should get into modeling, although I could never picture myself doing that. But then you add in some weight lifting and muscle building and getting into a bikini to show that off, “modeling” now seemed right up my ally. Being in top physique it shouldn’t be hard for most girls to have the self-confidence to show it off. Especially when taking into consideration all of the weeks and months of sweat and tears it took to get there. Being on stage was nerve-wracking but definitely the best part of the entire experience.

My favorite part of the entire contest was the night show. At this point, all my hard work was done and it was time to let loose and have some fun and show off all that I have worked for. I had a burger in my belly and was one happy camper. Nothing beats the smile that I had on my face during my time on stage.

I plan to continue Personal Training, and going to school for my Exercise Science degree, hoping to one day have my own Personal Training gym where I can train individuals who are just as passionate as myself, or hoping to find that passion within and change their lifestyles for the better. Figure competitions are my thing and I will continue to do them when the timing is right (spring or fall shows.)

A photo posted by Nicole Rockey (@nicole_rockey) on

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