Friday, April 15, 2011

Ellensburg woman heads to bodybuilding competition - Daily Record: Top Story

Ellensburg woman heads to bodybuilding competition - Daily Record: Top Story

By COLTER NUANEZ sports editor The Daily Record |


ELLENSBURG — Most times, the hunger is the most excruciating part. Cravings for lasagna or chicken pot pie eat at Kristy Scott as the day of judgment draws near. Sometimes, the 28-year-old wonders if she has the discipline to keep going. She wonders why on Earth someone would want to do this to herself. But it’s the hunger for competition that drives Scott the most.

On Friday and Saturday, the Ellensburg resident will compete in her second Emerald Cup at Snoqualmie Casion. The Emerald Cup, held annually each April since 1983, is among the most prestigious amateur bodybuilding competitions in the country. The winner of each division automatically qualifies for nationals and a chance to earn his or her professional bodybuilding card from the International Federation of Bodybuilding.

Scott missed grabbing gold at the Emerald Cup last year by the slimmest of margins. She was one point away from climbing to the top of the podium in her first-ever bodybuilding competition. The strong showing in her debut has motivated her since she started her intense training regime for this year’s Emerald Cup in early September of last year.

“I was happy last year because it went well and I looked pretty decent for my first show, but of course I was disappointed not to win because I want to win no matter what I’m doing,” Scott said. “This year, I’ve put on a little more size and my abdominal pose is much better. I’ve just tried to get as lean as possible, so the two weeks leading up to the competition won’t be fun.”

Diet and muscle

Scott began training for this year’s Emerald Cup a week after last year’s competition. For four months, she concentrated on bulking and trying to add as much pure size and lean muscle mass as possible. At one point Scott, who competed at 156 pounds last year and hopes to weigh in at 160 pounds for the heavyweight division this weekend, weighed as much as 195 pounds.

In September, she began a stringent diet that peaks during the final 12 weeks before the competition. For the past four weeks, Scott has been consuming a 1,500-calorie-a-day diet completely devoid of carbohydrates. The only carb she eats is steamed broccoli.

Her daily diet consists of egg whites, two eggs, chicken breast, turkey breast, fish, almonds, peanut butter and avocados. She eats every three hours with her first meal coming directly after her 70-minute cardiovascular training session that begins at 5 a.m. each morning.

“It’s the worst,” Scott said of the final three months of the diet. “There’s no cheating. Basically, for three or four months, you have to stay strictly to the program. I haven’t had a cheat day in three or four weeks.”

“I’m getting really excited to eat some normal food after (this weekend). I would just like to have a spinach salad with walnuts, but I can’t even eat that. One of my top meals whenever I get done, I don’t know why, I want chicken pot pie. That and Italian food. I really wanted lasagna last year.”

Discipline

The disciplined regimen required for an athlete to be in top condition consumes Scott’s life. Although she lives in Ellensburg, she works as a physical therapist at Northwest Orthopedic in Yakima. She hits the gym, gets on Interstate 82, works in a whirlwind environment in which she sees what she estimates to be a patient ever half hour, then hits the highway again. Once back in Ellensburg, Scott heads back the gym, spending between 45 and 120 minutes lifting weights. Following her lift, she does another 35 minutes of intense cardio.

“I love lifting,” she said. “But sometimes you get tired of it because I have to be (in the gym) twice a day. Whether I want to or not, I have to be here. If I want to go out of town, I have to find a gym. I have to take all my food, with like two coolers full of prepared meals. It’s complicated at times and it wears on you.”

Getting started

Scott has been an athlete since her high school days growing up in Michigan, but the world of bodybuilding is relatively new to her. She was introduced to the discipline less than three years ago and trained for 18 months before entering the Emerald Cup. Before transitioning to bodybuilding, Scott was a world-class power lifter.

She began power lifting in 2002 while attending Husson University in Bangor, Maine. Mike Scott, a former power lifter who would become her husband, saw Kristy with what she calls a “decent amount of weight” working out on the leg press at the gym one afternoon. He asked her if she knew how to perform a squat. Two years later, Mike and Kristy were married and her power-lifting career took off.

Kristy quickly became one of the top dead-lifters in the world. She still holds the World Association of Benchers and Dead Lifters junior (ages 20-23) world record in the female deadlift with a jerk of 435 pounds.

But modern-day power lifting quickly shifted with technological advancements, and Scott quickly grew tired of the sport.

“With power lifting, I got tired of the equipment,” Scott said. “You have the bench suits and the squat suits. It became more who has the best equipment and who knew how to use it. You had to train with that stuff on, you couldn’t just throw it on during the competition.”

Good fit

Scott has been lifting consistently with no more than a weeklong break for the past 11 years. Bodybuilding had always been intriguing to her, and many fellow weightlifters told her that her 5-foot-9 frame would be a perfect medium to sculpt. Scott always loved lifting weights, so a new discipline to feed her competitive nature seemed a good fit.

The six months leading up to the Emerald Cup are solely dedicated to chiseling her physique. The cardio and the weight training are accompanied by hours honing her posing, the aspect she says is the most difficult part, other than the diet. She has a posing coach in Portland, but her stringent schedule allows her to go south only so often. She said she hopes she has improved heading into the Emerald Cup, as that’s what most likely will be the difference between gold and silver.

“You have to make it look effortless and you have to have everything engaged,” Scott said.

In Scotland

Even after the bronzed pose-off is complete, Scott’s hunger for competition remains.

To fill the void, the last two years she has participated in the Scottish Highland Games, a strength competition she has excelled at quickly.

The games include the caber toss, the Scottish hammer throw reminiscent of the Olympics, tossing weight for distance (a mix of hammer and discus), the stone put, the weight over bar where a 56-pound weight is thrown over a progressively increasing height, and the sheaf toss where a 20-pound bundle of straw is thrown vertically with a pitchfork.

She competed in two Highland Games last year, climbing as high as No. 20 in the nation. She said this year her goals are to break the top 10 and to qualify for nationals.

With the Highland Games and power lifting, definitive numbers and records help Scott gauge what’s needed to achieve victory. In bodybuilding, everything is a mystery until the day of competition. Everything that is, except the reflection in the mirror.

“You have no idea who is going to show up for a competition,” Scott said. “There could be five people or 25 people in my class. Last year, I was worried about it. This year, I’m just worried about being the best and most prepared I can be.”

Ellensburg woman heads to bodybuilding competition - Daily Record: Top Story

Ellensburg woman heads to bodybuilding competition - Daily Record: Top Story

Local News | Ellensburg body builder says dieting hardest part | Seattle Times Newspaper

Local News | Ellensburg body builder says dieting hardest part | Seattle Times Newspaper

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