Cowin goes pro

A local natural bodybuilder did really well in winning a recent international show in New York.

Joe Anne Cowin competed in the WNBF/INBF Amateur Figure Competition in Manhattan last month and took home two trophies.

‘I competed against 30 women from around the world hoping to get the top prize of a Pro card. The competition was put into two groups, short class and tall class.

‘I was in the tall and won my class which then meant the other winner and I went head to head. I felt very blessed to get overall winner.

‘This now means I have my Pro card to compete next year in the Mr/Ms Universe in Barbados in June as a professional. All my hard work has finally paid off.’

Cowin was training for up to four hours a day. Her average day started at 4.30am. She intends to have a break for a while but still train but not so intense.

‘March next year will be when things start to heat up a bit. Also being a pro I now have to step it up again as the pros are tougher.’

She works out twice a day, cardio in the morning for an hour and maybe some abs, then after work she leaves here hairdressing job to go back to the gym again for another two hours.

‘I do this six days a week and rest on Saturdays. My diet is always very clean even off season – but I do have a very sweet tooth so weekends I do indulge for one meal.’

In competition season, Cowin’s diet starts pretty much two to three months before. Lots of white fish, chicken, turkey, sweet potatoes, brown rice, rice cakes, oatmeal and lots of green veg.

‘I eat small meals every two hours. Fruits are cut out six weeks before the show as even natural sugar can cause water retention. My food is very low in salt so my food always tastes bland.

‘Spring water is allowed but not regular because it’s too high in sodium. As the show gets closer I drop my carbs slightly as I still need energy to train. This is the really tough part.

‘My life when I am dieting for the show is work and gym, no socialising so I cut myself off to a lot of things…no alcohol, no partying. My friends understand but it can be hard on friendships and relationships as three months is a long time.

‘I had a week off training and lots of tasty food and cocktails…but I’m already back to the gym.’