We told you about NPC Figure competitor Swann Cardot last year as she was making her presence known on the competitive stage. She competed in four shows and won every one of them, the last coming with an overall victory at the NPC Easterns. Since that time, Swann has appeared in FLEX magazine and featured in Muscle & Fitness HERS. Now she’s embarking on a new journey, the road to the Arnold Amateur in Columbus, Ohio. We caught up with Swann as she prepares for her toughest challenge yet.
Isaac Hinds interviews Swann as she begins her road to the Arnold. Swann will be checking in over the next few weeks to provide an update on her Arnold Amateur prep.
Some how I’ve managed to come up with a number of nicknames for you ranging from Chick Norris, Tiny Dancer, Frenchy to Ninja. Which is your preferred nickname or just Swann?
Where are you living these days?
In New York
Do you bike to the gym in the snow?
So far so good! I’m handling the cold and still ride my bike to the gym everyday. Let’s see if I’m tough enough to ride it in the snow when the days come.
You recently hit the slopes. Do ski or snowboard?
I skied and did some intense walking up and down the slopes, music blasting in my headphones. This was the best one all. My glutes were on fire!
Did you do a dance on the top of the mtn?
I actually did lol, I have a picture to prove it.
Are you still dancing or not so much?
Not right now but may start again soon.
You work with IFBB Pro Bodybuilder Fakhri Mubarak. How has working with Fahkri helped you improve?
Fakhri Mubarak has been helping me with my diet and contest prep. He has figured out exactly how my body works and was able to bring me learner, fuller and harder on my last two shows. Fakhri is unbelievable at what he does! Not only he has improved my look, but also my health and my mind. Since a very young age, I was always scared of food which always took a tool on me physically and mentally. Through Fakhri I was able to learn a lot about myself, understand the mechanic of the body and become better in this sport. I trully owe a lot to my coach!
You recently received your acceptance letter to compete in Columbus. What made you decide to do the Arnold Amateur?
The Arnold Amateur IFBB International is a very big show, and also the only chance* for me to get my Pro card. After doing my last show The Eastern USA, I wanted to compete again as soon as possible. If you know me, you know how much I love stepping on stage. I feel very lucky to have got the opportunity to participate in the Arnold’s this year and I am ready to bring my best to the stage.
*Swann is not a US Citizen and unable to enter national NPC shows where IFBB pro cards are awarded.
How do you think you compare now to your previous shows – any changes in the physique?
I am currently training, focusing a lot my back and shoulders. I have put on a little more mass since my previous show so hopefully I will accomplish the goals I’ve set for myself by then.
Do you plan to come in any differently?
I would love to come in leaner and a bit harder but this is also where I have to be very careful and make sure I still bring in the look the judges are looking for in a figure competitor.
What’s your training schedule look like?
Monday – Chest
Tuesday – Back
Wednesday – Shoulders
Thursday – Arms
Friday – Legs
Saturday – Back & Shoulders
Sunday – Off
Do you train with TRX?
I rarely train with TRX, I usually stick to weights. But I like to keep my workouts fun so I’ll throw in different techniques here and there.
How much cardio do you do a day?
I do an hour of cardio every morning after my workout but do two cardio sessions a day during a contest prep.
How much weight do you change from “offseason” to show time?
I make sure not to put on more then 5-7lbs
I saw you’re a a fan of Muscle Eggs, how did you find out about Muscle Eggs?
I discovered Muscle Egg through my sponsor NATURAL BODY Sport Supplements, Nutrition & Vitamins. It really makes life so much easier! Check em out on www.ifbbsupplements.com
What’s your favorite way to eat them?
I am French and love crepes. Here’s the way I make them. Cook a very thin layer of muscle egg liquid in a pan and use butter spray as topping. For thicker crepes, you can also blend it with protein powder & oat meal. Very yummy, you should try!
I will Try the “Frenchy Muscle Egg Crepe” today. Something tells me I may need some tips on cooking a good crepe though. HA!
Any secret for making chicken taste better?
I cook my chicken with pepper, oregano & fat free spicy brown mustard from Gulden’s.
Ok, I don’t do mustard but for everyone else that might work.
How many meals a day do you eat?
Who will be making your suit?
Saleyla.com Silvia has made all my suits, she is very talented and quick.
You were featured in FLEX and Muscle & Fitness HERS – how was it shooting for a magazine?
It was a unique experience. Shooting for a fitness spread is physically very intense, a lots of reps over and over, it is also hard to stay pump and full for hours. My recommendation is make sure you bring enough food with you!!! I absolutely enjoyed it and looking forward to shoot again this year. Fingers crossed…
How does a ninja relax on the weekends?
On my day off I love to spend time at home, do all my cleaning, watch movies, hang out with friends, go shopping.
What’s something you want to accomplish in the fitness industry that you haven’t yet?
I would love to become a spoke model. I think I need to improve my English, the way I express myself and be more relaxed in front for the camera. I am actually considering taking improv classes for that purpose. Overall lots of work my way!
A Frenchy’s work is never done. Thanks for doing the interview and keep training hard. If people have questions for you as you prep for the Arnold Amateur where can they reach ya?
I’m on twitter @swannCardot and Facebook.