Muscle Is Discipline

Ankle and valley of fire

“We all choose to sacrifice many things in order to be a top competitor. There is simply no other way and I have no regrets.”

Tycie Coppett

Activities: IFBB Physique Pro, Weight training, Track and Field

Q: You are an IFBB Physique Pro, please explain what that is for those who don’t know.

The Women’s Physique division is a division for women who wish to display an athletic physique without compromising femininity. The degree of muscle required is greater than a figure competitor but less than a bodybuilder.

Q: What is the difference between Physique and Female Bodybuilding?

The biggest noticeable difference to the untrained eye between Physique and Female Bodybuilding is muscle size and maturity.

Houston Pro 2012

Q: How did you start weight training? How old were you when you started?

I started weight training as a freshman on the track team at the University of Georgia. That was over twenty years ago.

Q: What is your athletic background?

I was a four-year varsity athlete in high school track and field and basketball. From there, I transitioned to Division I Track and Field to focus on the long and triple jump at the University of Georgia.

Q: What do you do for a living and how hard is it to find time to train and get ready for your shows?

I am a full time college administrator, a part time college professor, and a third year doctoral student at the University of Georgia. As busy as I am, finding time to train and prepare for shows is not that difficult in terms of time management. Even if I were not prepping for a show, I would still work out at least four or five times a week. This is truly my lifestyle. The major difference when preparing for a show is shifting my mental focus to contest prep mode as opposed to “leisure” weight lifting.

Q: What is the biggest difference in your diet off season and when you’re competing ?

No cupcakes and pizza!!! Seriously, I am not ashamed to say I have a liberal diet in the off-season, but I still eat fairly well. However, when I want pizza, I give myself the freedom to enjoy pizza. When I want cheesecake, I eat cheesecake. The biggest difference between my off-season and competition diet is I remove the casual frequencies of fun food. I use the same seasonings off-season as well as when I am competing. During contest season however, I am faithful to a strict high protein diet but allow myself one cheat meal per week.

Q: What do you love about competing?

I love the fact that competing gives me a platform to inspire and motivate others. Equally, I love the friends and fellow competitors I have met from all over the world who celebrate and support our sport.

Olympia 2013 side tricep

Q: How many shows do you do a year?

It varies. Last year I competed in three shows in order to qualify for the inaugural Women’s Physique Olympia. The Olympia was the fourth and final show I did last year. This year however, I will only complete in the Olympia.

Q: What are your thoughts on the IFBB dropping Female Bodybuilding from a lot of the big shows? Why do you think it happened?

I think it is unfortunate. It has taken women many years of hard training to obtain the musculature needed to successfully compete in female bodybuilding. They have found a way to create a home for themselves in the industry and now many will potentially become displaced. I do believe there is still a niche and audience for female bodybuilding if the division is adjusted appropriately.

Q: As a muscular female, do you find people in general see you as masculine?

No. The vast majority of people I meet associate me as a former track and field athlete. Those who follow bodybuilding are able to quickly identify me as a women’s physique competitor. I love my look of athleticism yet I can still successfully compete in the women’s physique division.

Q: Best thing about lifting weights?

Beating my personal best in a lift is the best thing about lifting weights. No, bodybuilding is not powerlifting, but it sure feels good when I add a plate to the bar. It is a feeling of accomplishment and gratification.

Q: Hardest thing about lifting weights?

The hardest thing about lifting weights is re-racking the heavy weights once you have maxed out on a set.

Q: What do you do to relax?

I love to go home to my mother’s house to relax. There’s just something about home that’s so soothing.

Q: What does having muscle mean to you?

Having muscles to me demonstrates a lifestyle of discipline and dedication to my craft.

Profile on the Rock

Q: Do you feel you have sacrificed anything to be a top competitor?

Yes. I have sacrificed quite a lot. However, I am no different from every other elite athlete. We all choose to sacrifice many things in order to be a top competitor. There is simply no other way and I have no regrets.

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