IFBB Figure Pro
Born October 30th (the day before Halloween)
Gaspari Nutrition Representative: www.gasparinutrition.com
Buffwater Athlete: www.buffproducts.com
Team Monsta Clothing Athlete: monstaclothing.com
November 2009 NPC Western Regional Championship - Bikini Division - 1st Place Jr. Masters and 2nd Place Open
March 2010 NPC Natural Western USA Championship - Bikini Division - 1st Place Open and Overall Bikini Title
November 2010 NPC Western Regional Championship - Figure Division - 1st Place Open and Overall Figure Title
April 2012 NPC Gold Coast Championship - Figure Division - 1st Place Open and Overall Figure Title
August 2012 NPC North American Championship - Figure Division - 2nd Place Jr. Masters, 1st Place Open and Overall Figure Title
The 2013 NPC Western Regional Championship and IFBB Felicia Romero Figure Classic are just a few short weeks away. It will be held at the Mesa Arts Center on November 15-16th. I am more excited about this show; I am psyched about it for a couple of reasons. Each year the Western Regional Championship holds a special place in my heart and brings back fond memories because in 2009 it's where I got my start in bodybuilding as a bikini competitor. The following year in 2010 it's where I made my figure debut winning my class and the overall figure title. That was the last time that I competed on the local stage because I went on to complete nationally and earned my professional bodybuilding card last year. So you can imagine how excited I am that this year the NPC Western Regional Championship is being held in conjunction with the IFBB Felicia Romero Figure Classic. I will get the opportunity to compete locally in a professional league show with my entire family, friends and local fan base there too. How exciting is that?!?!
Let's start from the beginning so you understand how significant and special this show is to me. My name is Dawn Fernandez; I never played sports nor was I a cheerleader. I was always the spectator admiring the athletes. The nice thing is I don't have any old sports injuries that could interfere with my lifting or working out. I met my husband in high school and we have three boys. The boys were always playing sports and my husband coached every season and every sport they ever played. It was my husband that introduced me to weight lifting and working out. His father was a power lifter and his uncle owned a gym, was a show promoter and owned nutrition store in the valley years ago. I'd always eaten fairly good and controlled my weight by eating small portions and in moderation. The gym gave me a way to sculpt my physique and it was interesting to watch it change. The desert rat soon became a desert gym rat! We worked out consistently for about three years. When we bought a business in 2002 it took a lot of our time and energy. I had wanted to start competing in those early years, but our family and business were priority. The year 2004 wasn't good. We sold our business, I had surgery on my foot and I was in a car accident that took years to recover from. Working out was not on my radar, but I continued to eat moderately and only gained 10-12 pounds. Finally in December of 2008 all my doctors that were caring for me during my car accident recovery had released me from their care. I was thrilled to be able to get back in the gym for something other than physical therapy!
By now our boys were older and our lives had settled down a bit. I decided after all these years that I was going to enter my first bodybuilding contest and I began training. I trained consistently for an entire year in preparation of stepping on stage as a bikini competitor in November of 2009. I went on to compete in the NPC circuit as a bikini competitor and did very well. My goal however was to be a figure athlete and competitor. In November of 2010 I made my figure debut and won the Western Regional overall figure title. My hubby and I decided to take my competing to the next level. I continued training and working out while raising a family, leading both a full time and a part time job and somehow I was able to fit competing into my busy schedule. It wasn't easy or cheap because all the national level shows were out of state. I'm glad we made it work though because last year at the 2012 NPC North American Championships in Pittsburgh I won my height class in the open division and earned my IFBB pro card. As if that wasn't enough, I also won the overall figure title. It was a night and event I will never forget. Since then I made my pro debut and am continuing to compete on the IFBB pro circuit. This has been my rookie year and I am very pleased and proud of how well I've done placing in the top ten consistently. My husband and family haven't seen me compete on stage as a professional athlete yet. Which is why I am thrilled they will get that chance finally next month at the November show!
These past four years have been full of accomplishments, challenges and opportunities. Lots of blood, tears and sweat have been shed. I've learned a lot about myself and the sport. I've met lots of people across the nation in the industry. It is surreal at times knowing that I am stepping on stage with many of the women in the sport that I have admired and been inspired by. I've competed in over twenty-five plus competitions between bikini and figure. I believe in hard work, patience and being true to yourself and those around you. I intend to share my journey as I continue competing in hopes of inspiring others, whether they want to compete or get healthy and fit. I am a fitness consultant and my husband is a posing coach. I am also a public speaker, workshop facilitator and fitness model. You can connect with me on Facebook at www.facebook.com/dawnfernandezpro or on Twitter at www.twitter.com/dawnfernandezaz I look forward to meeting you!
Special Appreciation to the following:
I am forever grateful to my hubby for being the coach, training partner, friend and partner that he is. I honestly couldn't have done it without his assistance, understanding or support. I am grateful for my boys.. they are my biggest fans and are always there, cheering me on and encouraging me to my best.
I want to thank PT By Joe, Ernie's Elite and Az Pro Physiques for their support. I've had the pleasure of working with each of these teams at some point during my competition career.
I appreciate all the support, expertise and guidance that my current competition coach and mentor provide me from Team Bombshell - Bombshell Fitness Inc. They are so supportive, easy to work with and provide superior service.
I am thankful to be a part of and represent Gaspari Nutrition, Buffwater Inc. and Monta Clothing Inc. They have each supported me as an athlete and their top of the line products have helped me perform better in the gym and when prepping for my competitions.
The National Physique Committee - NPC and the International Federation of Body Building - IFBB have supported and provided bodybuilding athletes a forum for the sport. I am fortunate to be where I am today and feel blessed to be a professional athlete within this organization and industry. Thank you Miles, Kimmy and Felicia for all you've done and for collaborating to put this show on together!
A word about NPC Miles Productions:
Over the last four years and twenty something shows, I've had the pleasure of competing in a variety of different venues for a number of different promoters. I can honestly say Miles Nuessle and his staff put on one of the most efficient and top quality amateur shows in the business. He believes the competitors are the heart of the show and he truly carries out his motto "where the athletes always come first". The website is user friendly, the entry forms contain anything you need to know about the contest itself or who to contact for tanning, hotel etc., the athlete's check in is run smoothly by the staff and a team of volunteers and the promoters are there to answer any questions and help make sure everyone gets checked in right up to the last minute. The shows never start late, the scheduled agenda is posted back stage, the awards ceremony is themed and decorated and the trophies are beautiful. The venues are gorgeous, there are separate rooms for the men and women to get ready in and another room just for pumping up and getting oiled. On top of all that; water, candy, carbs and fruit are available at no additional cost on a banquet table backstage for the athletes. If you're thinking about competing, I definitely recommend NPC Miles Productions. It's where I got my start and I am extremely psyched to be able to compete in the upcoming Pro Am show. I know it's going to be stellar!