Monday, May 10, 2010

Melissa Stevens Interview

Beautiful, success story, dedicated, hard working, great competitor, great physique, all things that could be said in describing Melissa Stevens. All those things are equally true. As she puts it "I was once fat." Hard to believe by looking at her. Another word that belongs in that description is inspiring. Going from "fat" to having the amazing physique she has shows it can be done, and should be used as inspiration for those trying to get in shape. I know I use it as inspiration. But it took hard work and dedication to get to where she is, and it is that same hard work and dedication that is going to allow her to keep improving and get even better. Which is something we can all look foreword to.

Q: First, Melissa, I want to thank you for taking the time to do this.

Q: Can you start out by telling a little about yourself. Family, where you are from, things like that.
A: I grew up in Buffalo, MN. I am the youngest of four. My mom raised us all on her own, as my parents were divorced before I was born.

Q: Before the gym were you an especially athletic person? Play any sports or anything?
A: I was not very athletic. I was a cheerleader in high school and college, but not much for any other sports.

Q: What initially led you into the gym?
A: I was a fat kid. When I went to college I didn't want to gain anymore weight - I decided to give working out a try.

Q: Was training something you picked up fairly easy? How long before you started to see results?
A: I had plenty of weight to lose so I did notice results quickly.

Q: How long were you training when you decided to compete and what made you decide to compete?
A: A few years. I started to teach aerobics. When I was around the gym that much and saw others that were fit - I became curious!!

Q: Was competing something your family and friends supported at the time, and how about now?
A: When I first started - yes. I have had a lot of mixed reviews throughout the years. Lots of people think I am crazy!! But I try to spend my time with people that support me!

Q: Was the first competition what you expected? Did anything surprise you?
A: I really didn't know what to expect. But it was a great experience!

Q: Can you share your contest history.
A: I started competing in Fitness America in 2000. I did 3 local and 2 national competitions. Then I switched to NPC. I did the Gopher State, Iron Maiden, Jr. Nationals, Monica Brant BodyRock and Team Universe. Then I stopped competing. Now - 7 years later I started again. I did an NANBF, and NPC show last November.

Q: As far as body parts, what do you feel is your best one?

Q: Do you have a part you most like to train?
A: I like training back the most

Q: What is your normal training routine and diet like, and how do you alter it for contest prep?
A: I typically train 6-7 days a week. So the only think that changes with that is increased cardio. I try to maintain a healthy diet 90 % of the time while off season. That way I don't have to diet so hard for shows.

Q: When someone sees or hears you compete for the first time, what is the most common reaction? More positive or negative?
A: Typically the reaction is positive - at least initially. They find it intriguing - but think I am mildly crazy!

Q: When they see or hear it that first time, what is the one question or comment you are most sick of hearing?
A: "Will you flex for me?"

Q: What is the biggest misconception about women you train and compete or the one thing you wish people understood?
A: The amount of hard work this takes! We aren't all naturally skinny!! This is a lifestyle!!

Q: What is the best and worst part of competing?
A: The worst thing is dieting! The best thing is the sense of accomplishment onstage - and meeting fabulous people!

Q: Do you have any favorite competitors or any you admire?
A: Monica Brant! But I really admire all of the people in this industry. It takes a great deal of dedication - and everyone involved is admirable!

Q: Do you have a favorite cheat food?
A: Mexican food! ICE CREAM!!!

Q: If another woman told you she wanted to start training, what is the one piece of advice you would most want to give her?
A: Make fitness a lifestyle! It isn't something you do just to lose weight - it needs to be a way of life!

Q: You are obviously a very beautiful woman. Is fitness modelling something of big interest to you? If so, how can someone contact you for opportunities?
A: It is a huge interest!! Email me:

Q: Outside of training, any other hobbies or activities you enjoy?
A: I love to cook, and read - I just don't have much time for either one!

Q: Can you describe a typical day in the life of Melissa Stevens.
A: I get up at 3:30 to go to the gym. Go home to shower and get ready for work. I try to get on the computer before the kids get up. I get them up and get breakfast for them, then off to work! I work about 10.50 hour days. Go home for dinner, homework and any of the kids activities. Then I go to bed!!

Q: What is one thing people would be surprised to know about you?
A: I was fat once!

Q: Describe Melissa Stevens in five words.
A: Stubborn, Outgoing, Feisty, Determined, Honest

Q: Any set plans for the near future as far as competing or anything else?
A: I am hoping to compete in the Fitness America Nationals in Vegas in November

Q: Anything you want to take this opportunity to plug or promote?
A: I am co-promoting my first show. Fitness America Great North in Plymouth, MN May 15th!!!!

Q: Are you looking for sponsors. If so how can they reach you?
A: I would LOVE, love, love a sponsor!! email me -

Q: Melissa, again, I thank you for taking the time to do this. Any last words before you go?
A: Thanks for asking me!! I hope that I can be an inspiration for someone!!

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