Yolanda Smith - Updated Interview

Updated Interview with Yolanda Smith, Npc Physique Competitor.
April 2014

1. Yolanda, how are you?

I am learning a lot about my body and what works now versus before. As I aim to grow more muscularity for the new division I am in, I’ve had to switch up my diet and lift heavier.

2. Please share your experiences, thoughts and feelings, during the 2014 NPC Phil Heath Classic event outline (March 15th, 2014):

* Athlete Check In: The athlete’s check in was on the Friday leading up to the show. I saw a lot of my competitor friends, Facebook friends who traveled to Houston, Tx to compete, and the Special Guest. The process took longer than normal because it was a huge show.

* Prejudging: I was not happy with the process of the pre-show. I personally felt like there were too many competitors for the number of judges. The reason I feel this way is because I can’t see how it is possible to get a good look at all of the competitors equally when there are 4 to 5 competitors on the stage at the same time which is supposedly the prejudge. We were only on the stage for 10 to 12 seconds doing individual mandatory poses with other competitors who were very distracting because everyone was doing something different and there was no way the judges can see everyone equally. Other competitors who came out to support and observe that sat in the audience were also confused with how the show was being facilitated.

* Finals: The finality show was pretty much the same experience. The show had too many competitors.

3. So, what brought you to the gym?

Based on my experiences the main thing that brings me to the gym is my health. My health is very valuable to me. Instead of wasting money on plastic surgery and taking short cuts it was my desire to learn the benefits of eating healthy as well as the proper exercises to keep my body lean. I have come to realize the eating healthy, exercising, resistance training and getting plenty of rest is the “Fountain of Youth!” I have seen the end result of Women who did not adopt the healthy lifestyle and how they measure up to those of us who have discovered something that is “Free & Valuable” which is good health. My stress level is very low to probably non-existence. I have never had to take medication due to high blood pressure, diabetes, or any illness directly related to poor health. I want to live a long healthy life, as I will have grandchildren one day and I want to enjoy them.

4. What do you consider to be your strong points as a competitor?

As a competitor, my strongest points are my arms, my back, legs, good symmetry, and my height. Opportunity area is my core.

5. What are the financial costs associated with competing? How do you cope with them?

It typically cost $500 to compete. (Competition suit, accessories, tanning, hair, makeup, nails, hair… Fees to compete). I identify shows that will benefit me and lead me in the direction I want to go in. Example. My ultimate goal is to get an invitation to Olympia next year. I must get my pro card, get invited to compete against other pros, and ultimately get an invitation to Olympia.

6. And the emotional bumps (if exist)?

Well, it can be an emotional roller coaster whenever you lose by not placing where you want to place after you work hard prepping. Living this lifestyle at times can get boring because your friends and family expects you to participate by eating whenever there are gathering.

7. How do you feel about being judged on your physique? Is this something you would recommend to anyone to try?

Well it depends, if I am on stage it's relevant when I am not competing people always tell me I need to eat that I am too small. I look bigger on pictures and computers.

8. Which body parts do you feel you need to focus the most on for the Nationals in Pittsburgh, PA July 19, 2014? How will you modify your diet and training for optimum muscle gain?

The areas I am focusing on are my quads, gluteus, shoulders and core. My quads, gluteus, and shoulders require a little more size which is accomplished by doing drop sets. My trainer and I were doing some creative diets to see how my body responds. As of now, it is responding well.

9. Bodybuilding is a war between mind and body weight, it is you versus the weights, and against your rivals. Seneca said once "Worse than war is fear of war". How true are Seneca's words?

It is true because everyone competing wants to win. Everyone competing typically is going the extra mile to get the results. So mentally, a competitor is always comparing him or herself to another competitor to see how well one compares if at all. I look at the Olympians who may have a similar body type as myself and compare and contrast her symmetry to mine. This gives me an idea of what I should look like. From that, my trainer and I build on the areas of opportunity all while keeping my diet clean.

10. What is a day in the life of Yolanda Smith like?

My day begins at 4 am. I hit the gym for fasted cardio 30-45 min, go to work, train at 6 with my competition team “ODF” Operation Dr. Frankenstein, and prep meals for the next day, sort out two sets of workout gear for the next day, and back in bed by 9:30 pm. I am on a 3:1 schedule now. (Train for 3 days straight with 1 day off) then continue the rotation. After this month, I will begin a 4:1 schedule, following month 5:1, following month 6:1. Ten day prep begins two weeks leading up to competition.

11. What are your interests outside of the bodybuilding world?

Outside of bodybuilding, I am a certified fitness trainer in a genre of fitness formats. (kickboxing, aerobics, boot camp instructor, R.I.P.P.E.D., BODYPUMP, and Aquatic instructor) So I enjoy inspiring and motivating other women and children to physically fit.

12. Do you have a message for your fans you would like to share?

Each time I compete and get closer to my dreams, I carry each one of them on my shoulders because their words of inspiration has kept me going! It may take longer than expected or it may not take as long as expected to stop on that Olympian stage, but be assured that I will make it to Olympia to compete.

Yolanda Smith
Follow Yolanda on Facebook: www.facebook.com/YolandaSmith1968

Competition Prep Guides

Yolanda Smith

Yolanda Smith

Yolanda Smith
Pics by James Allen-Photography

Previous Interview, March 2014