Friday, July 9, 2010
Megan Melone INBF Northern States, St. Louis Natural, And Madison Natural Interview
Why do I do what I do? People like Megan Melone. Megan is what is great about this sport. Hard work, dedication, and a love for competing. Megan recently competed in three INBF shows, the Northern States, the St. Louis Natural, and the Madison Natural. Megan looked incredible taking two 3rd place and one 4th place finish. And quite honestly, look at the pictures, she should have been higher. I am biased because Megan has become a really good friend, but I am still able to be objective, and she should have placed better. That being said, 3rd and 4th are very very good. But Megan the competitor as amazing as that Megan is, is nothing compared to Megan the woman. An incredible combination of beauty, smarts, caring, support, encouragement, and many other things, Megan is just a very special person, and a very special friend.
Q: Megan, thanks for taking the time out to do a second interview.
A: It's always my pleasure Jason!
Q: For those who may have missed your first interviews, can you tell a little about yourself.
A: Sure thing. I am an elementary music teacher by career. I am almost 32 and compete as an INBF Figure athlete. I have a sister who also competes and is my confidant! I am very lucky to have someone so close to me who understands what it takes to compete, because not everyone "gets it".
Q: Since the first interview you have been on stage a couple times. What shows have you done and how did you do?
A: I competed in the INBF Northern States in Buffalo, New York: 3rd Figure Open Tall, and the INBF St. Louis Natural: 4th Open Tall, and INBF Madison natural: 3rd Open Tall.
W: Was one show more satisfying than the other or really no difference?
A: I wouldn't say one was more satisfying per se.. However, it was amazing in St. Louis. The level of competition was unbelievable, my coach was there and it was promoted by a very good friend of mine. That show was very special to me...I was hoping to do better, placement wise, at that show, but the competition was just unbelievable.
Q: When you compete, do you ever have a feeling after pre-judging about how you are doing with the judges?
A: I usually have a pretty good idea. However, there have been times where I flat out disagree with the placements. I am pretty good at objectively looking at the line-up and seeing where I fall, but sometimes it's just tough because I do not see what the judges see.
Q: You looked amazing each time. How did you feel about the overall package you brought to the stage?
A: I definitely brought my best this season, however, there is a lot of improvement I need to make to achieve my goals. I need denser muscle (especially on my lower body) and need to shave off a pound or two to really be dangerous.
Q: What part of your physique would you say you made the biggest improvements on in the last year?
A: Wow, great question. You know what, so many improvements were made due to solid training and a great nutritional plan, but I guess I would have to say my back and delts have improved the most.
Q: Was there one aspect of your physique you thought could have been better or you want to improve on?
A: Definitely!! I don't know any competitor who is ever completely satisfied! I really need to bring up my lower body, more quad sweep and hamstrings especially!
Q: Did your prep go as smoothly as hoped for?
A: Not at all! This prep was really difficult, due to some personal things which caused stress. Having said that, this time around, I had less cravings and hunger compared to my '09 season. It was my first time dieting for a show with my coach, Dr. Joe Klemczewski, so it was really nice to give up that control and just let him steer me towards the stage.
Q: Is there a point in the prep process where you say "OK, I am ready"?
A: I don't think anyone ever feels "ready". We constantly question our level of conditioning, muscularity and every single aspect to competing. There were a few times that I thought I was "getting there" but most of the time, I was too critical to think I was ready.
Q: Anything about the prep process you can say you want to do different next time?
A: I guess my goal is to stay a bit leaner this off season. This year, I plan on staying a few pounds leaner and not having to diet as long. Otherwise, I think everything went basically as planned and I will just need to shave off a few pounds to be where I need to be.
Q: After shows like this, is it a mental let down at all, now that the process is over?
A: You know, this is an interesting topic... I know a lot of competitors who experience major rebound, depression, etc... While I did experience that my first season, this time was just much easier. I had come to terms with taking a break, I needed it physically and definitely mentally as well. I never got depressed this time around... Thankfully, my transition to the off season was pretty smooth. It also helped that I had a few friends who I was helping with prep, so I was able to live vicariously through them :-)
Q: The week before a show, what are you thinking about? Nervous, or excited or what?
A: I literally can't think of anything else! It's the most thrilling thing... I do not get very nervous. I am the type that lives for the spotlight (I have my classical music background to thank for that). I love peak week, it's the best week all year, watching your body change due to varied carb levels is nothing short of amazing.
Q: What about those last five minutes before you hit the stage, what are you thinking about?
A: I am trying NOT to look at the other girls! LOL... I am trying to just focus on my posing, stay pumped, relax and enjoy the moment. i try not to talk to anyone, just focus and get ready to do my thing.
Q: When you are on stage do you try and read the judges reactions at all or just focus on what you are doing?
A: Absolutely! I try to capture their attention with my eyes. I can tell if they are looking at me a lot that they like me. If I can't get them to look at me and keep their attention, I know it's not good.
Q: Whats the first thing you are once the shows were over?
A: In Buffalo. I was not even interested in food... Just didn't care. I knew there was another show in two week, so I didn't want to mess anything up, but I did eat a HUGE gyro platter. In St. Louis, again, didn't care about food... But I did have a nice BIG DIET PEPSI! After Madison (my final show of the season), I ate everything in my cooler! Pizza, 2 muffins, peanut butter, a protein bar, and rice cakes. The next day, all I wanted was CHEESECAKE!! It was the best cheesecake ever! LOL
Q: Were there any other competitors you noticed who impressed you?
A: Of course, pretty much the entire line-up in St. Louis was PRO material. In fact I know of 1 other girl who got her Fit Body and Figure pro cards in the next 3 weeks.
Q: Anyone you got to meet or see for the first time that you were excited about?
A: Yes, my coach, Dr. Joe! I met him in St. Louis.... It was amazing to be able to be there and talk to him in person! All the Team K'ers who were at that show were amazing.... Everyone is so helpful and kind. I made some GREAT friends in St. Louis. It was a wonderful experience.
Q: How important is support from family and friends at a show like this?
A: It is PARAMOUNT! I literally could not have been successful without my sister, parents and good friend, Graig, especially, but EVERYONE is important! People do not realize how difficult this sport is. Surrounding yourself with supportive people and eliminating people who refuse to support you is something I have taken very seriously.
Q: Where would you rank these shows in your achievements?
A: Competing in Figure is the most emotionally and physically taxing thing I have ever done. The hard work, anxiety, stress, etc., makes it the HARDEST thing I have ever done. I am really proud of how I looked at my shows, but I plan to ONLY get better from here on.
Q: Have you decided when you will be on stage next?
A: The plan is to give it a go again in Spring 2011. I am excited about improving and taking my physique to the next level! I have already seen changes. This off season I am employing some intense training techniques which are doing wonders for my physique.
Q: Anyone you want to thank for helping you in the process?
A: Definitely!! My family (mom, dad, and sister Amy), Graig, Dr. Joe, and ALL of my friends from Team K!
Q: Anything you want to take this time to plug or promote?
A: Sure, Team Klemczewski!!!!!!
Q: Looking for any sponsors? If so, what are they getting in Megan Melone the athlete and competitor?
A: Yea, of course I am looking for sponsorship...LOL.... They would get extreme hard work and passion!
Q: Megan, you have become a friend, and someone I really admire. I was so happy when I saw how great you looked, and I know you will keep getting better. Any last words before you go?
A: Actually, I would like to take the time to thank YOU! You have been such a wonderful advocate for this sport and the women who often get overlooked in the bodybuilding/fitness/figure world. I am sure I speak for all of us competitors when I say thank you from the bottom of my heart for promoting the wonderful aspects of this sport and it's amazing athletes!