Tuesday, May 17, 2011
Dana Arcuri Interview
Although she has only been on stage twice so far, Dana Arcuri has, as she says, been competing all her life. Whether with ballet or martial arts or other things. Originally she got into the gym at a young age to help with her ballet training, and progressed to martial arts as well. "Life got in the way" of her competing but she finally recently took the stage and looked amazing. I expect much more in the future for Dana
Q: First, Dana, I want to thank you for taking the time to do this.
Q: Can you start out by telling a little about yourself.
A: I'm originally from central NY near Syracuse and have just moved here to NC about a year and 1/2 ago.
Q: Before the gym were you an especially athletic person? Play any sports or anything?
A: I have always been very athletic. Started ballet classes at 3 or so, as well as some gymnastics and school sports. I continued to dance throughout high school and college and then became interested in the martial arts when i was 19yrs old. I started training traditional martial for self-defense purposes and then fell in love with it, and have been doing it ever since. I have always lifted weights since my brother introduced them to me at around 13yrs old or so.
Q: What initially led you into the gym?
A: To compliment my ballet training.
Q: Was training something you picked up fairly easy? How long before you started to see results?
A: I did pick it fairly easily, and I did see results right away. My body responds very quickly to a new introduction of something, so I was excited to see the muscle developing.
Q: What made you decide to compete for the first time?
A: It has been something that was on my mind from the time I first started lifting, but life got in the way with college and starting a martial arts school. so it was 23 years later that I did my first show.
Q: Is competing something your family and friends supported?
A: Yes, my family is very supportive and my boyfriend also competes, so it is something that we do together. I don't think I could get through the training with out them.
Q: Was competing what you expected or did anything surprise you about it?
A: I was surprised about how well my body responded to all the 'advice' that my coaches gave me. I suppose I didn't really believe them until it happened.
Q: Can you share your contest history.
A: So far only one competition at the North Carolina State Championships. I placed 3rd in the 40+ figure division.
Q: As far as body parts, what do you feel is your best one?
A: My back. For my size I am able to move a great deal of weight, and that allows me to build a nice defined thicker back.
Q: Do you have a part you most like to train or favorite exercise?
A: Not really. My arms respond fairly quickly and get big too. So if I had to pick one, bicep curls.
Q: What is your normal training routine and diet like and how do you alter it for contest prep?
A: I lift 6 days a week, and cardio too. I do alter what types of lifting I do every couple of weeks. I might do very heavy for a while and then do drop sets for a while. My diet is about 6 or 7 meals a day, low fat, high protein, medium carbs. About 2 weeks out I will drop my calories, and then do the standard week prep with water and carb loading.
Q: When someone sees your physique or hears you compete for the first time, what is the most common reaction? More positive or negative?
A: Positive mostly. Occasional I'll hear "why would you want to do that!?"
Q: When they see it that first time, what is the one question or comment you are most sick of hearing?
A: "Aren't you hungry?" I'm not because I pay very close to fueling my body correctly to be healthy and not hungry or starving. It will eventually break down if you do that to yourself.
Q: What is the biggest misconception about women who train and compete or the one thing you wish people understood?
A: That we are vain. I suppose we have some of that in us to be able to do the posing and the 'show' aspect of the competition, but it doesn't override my personality. I do because of the challenge of building and sculpting my body.
Q: What is the best and worst part of training for you?
A: Morning runs are the worse part for me, but I've grown accustom to them. The best part is taking pics and seeing my transformation happening.
Q: Do you have any favorite competitors or any you admire?
A: Not at this time, they all impress me!
Q: Do you have a favorite cheat food?
A: I hate to admit it....but alcohol. Get a taste for it near contest time.
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: Get one trainer and listen to what he or she tells you. Don't bounce between multiple opinions.
Q: Do you think its becoming more common to see women using the weights in the gym as opposed to just doing cardio and things?
A: Absolutely. When I started lifting 30 years ago, I don't even believe that High Schools offered any weight training to girls and when I was in the gym, it was all men, just like my martial arts classes
Q: Outside of training, any other hobbies or activities you enjoy?
A: The martial arts and Ballet have always been there. I study MMA now and still box and kickbox for fitness, no more competing in those areas any longer.
Q: Can you describe a typical day in the life of Dana Arcuri.
A: Up at 6:30am or so, straight into running clothes, run for at least 30minutes, show, eat breakfast, prepare my food for the day,open my kickboxing/boxing gym for business, train people all day until 8pm, do my own training from 1:30pm-3:30pm, go home, either clean, cook for the next day or laundry, bed by 11pm or 12am.
Q: Describe Dana Arcuri in five words.
A: Confident, considerate, energetic, entrepreneurial, focused
Q: What is one thing people would be surprised to know about you?
A: I am very open, so probably nothing to exciting, except that I can probably eat them under the table,lol.
Q: Any set plans for the near future as far as competing or anything else.
I will be competing this weekend May 14th at Victory in the Valley in Hickory NC, (NOTE: Dana has since done this show and looked incredible taking 2nd place in her class) then again in the new Muscle Heat on august 20th and then will round the year off with Elite Muscle Classic.
Q: Anything you want to take this opportunity to plug or promote?
A: My business, 9Round. Its a boxing/kickboxing gym with the same equipment that a professional boxer would use, but you don't need any experience to do it. Its a 30 minute workout, high intensity all over workout, and is a great way to get the last little bit of fat off before a show.
Q: Are you looking for sponsors? If so what are they getting in Dana Arcuri the athlete and competitor?
A: I am looking for sponsors. I have been competing my entire life, either in ballet, martial arts. and of now, in fitness. I know what it takes to be successful in competition. I have modeled in the past, have done public speaking and have performed on stage for over 30 years. I am very adaptable and easy going, so I'm easy to 'work' with;-)
Q: Dana, again, I thank you for taking the time to do this. Any last words before you go?
A: Thank you for the opportunity to talk with you. Women need the support and exposure to do well in all sports, so it was my pleasure to interview with you and appreciate your effort to keep us in the spotlight.