Samantha Tate - Figure Competitor

* Figure Overall Champion, 2017 NPC Natural Ohio

I have always had a competitive background starting at an early age because I was a gymnast, then in high school a track star. Iíve lifted weights and worked out almost my whole life. In 2014 I started working out in a new gym and the trainer/manager there asked if Iíve ever done any shows. My answer was no but I have always wanted to. So I started training with Dave Gardner at that time and we decided my first show should be the Mid-Michigan in Flint April 2015. I actually did really good for a first timer and took home first in my class and in masters. From there I kept training and decided to do Central States in October 2015 and took first in my class again and in Masters. My third show was The Michigan in June 2016 and I placed second in my class and first in Masters. I took time to build some muscle for a year and decided in January to get a hold of French Phillip. He thought I should do the Natural Ohio on April 1st 2017. I started training with French in January 2017 and I took overall Figure at The NPC Natural Ohio this year!.

This was backstage after I won overall, I still can't believe it I'm overwhelmed with all the messages and follow requests!! I'm definitely looking forward to continuing my improvements and doing more shows! I love the fitness world!! #npcnaturalohio #npcfigure #overallchamp #npcfigurecompetitor #fitness #fitnessmotivation #fitgirls #fitnessmodels #fitnessnutrition

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Contest Prep

Diet off-season vs. pre-contest: Off season is a little more relaxed for me. I still eat a lot of protein but my carbs and fat are higher too. I am a mom of three and they all play sports including travel baseball so we are on the road a lot in the summer. So I usually take summers off from prep but make sure my protein is still high. Pre-contest for me is low carbs and fat but really high protein and a lot of greens. My trainer had me eating chicken and fish around the clock for every meal. I feel the cleaner the fuel you put in your body the faster your body will burn fat and build muscle. Even carbs and fat should stay clean for the majority of the year. Some days you need to indulge but as long as you can get back on track after that your body will burn it.
When I didnít stick to an actual meal plan pre-contest and decided to count my macros instead, I found I didnít get as lean. Why weren't they effective? For me it wasnít as effective because I might have been a little more lax with my food choices counting macros. I have found that completely eliminating simple carbs works best for me no matter what the macros are.

I lift 6 days a week pre-contest and do cardio 6 days a week. Towards the end of prep I up my cardio to twice a day. I always do two leg days all year round. I like to do the stair mill and stair stepper for cardio. Off season I lift heavy five days a week and do cardio five days a week for thirty minutes a day. I like to train first thing in the morning right after breakfast. I am usually in the gym 2-3 hours depending on how much cardio I do after lifting, and then I eat my second meal right after I leave the gym. On leg days I like to up my carb intake, but I try to stay on a schedule everyday for training and eating.

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On Stage

Self confidence to compete: I think that comes with competitive nature but knowing the work you put in and how hard you dieted really helps too. My last show I just did I know it was the endless practice me and my coach put into posing. I had my posing routine down perfectly and that put my mind at ease.

My last show I just did in April was really fun and a great experience. My whole team The savage Squad came and our coach French. We got there the day before for check in, the show was 4 hours a way from where I live so I was quite tired during check in. I got to carb up that night after only eating protein all week so that made me happy. We got up the next day at 4 am for tan, hair and makeup. There was a lot of competitors in this show which made me a little nervous plus the stage was bigger than I had been used to. Prejudging was hard for me because I hate just sitting there waiting to get on stage, I get very impatient and anxious. When I got up on stage I felt like I nailed it. I was placed in center both times I was up there and then asked to drug test, so I knew I placed at least top two since they only ask top two to test in each class. Finals was fun because the nerves subsided and I knew I placed, but when they called my number for overall winner I just about cried! Best shoe experience so far.

Life as an athlete: It's kind of fun because everyone in my little town knows me and knows me mainly for bodybuilding and training. My kids think it's pretty cool too. Plus just being healthy and fit gives you an advantage to handle everyday tasks and being able to share my knowledge of fitness and nutrition is the best feeling.

I plan to compete next March in the Arnold Amateur and maybe a UFE show. Regardless I am going to continue to push myself and be the best version of myself I can be.

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