Ava Cowan matched one of the most successful fitness industry characters when she won the 2007 Ms. Figure America competition, and after that, she has accomplished quite a few wondrous efforts. Although she is a representation of strength now, Ava has never been like that way. Her first part of life was listed by restraint and low self-appreciation, and weightlifting equipped her to remove all the negativity for the rest of her life. Ava developed an astonishing body through hard work and devotion, and she has managed to work for diverse modeling agencies over several years. In accession to becoming a thriving physique competitor, she has also subdued her past difficulties and triumphed in various respectable presentations.
“This path I have chosen forces me to push myself beyond anything I have ever experienced in my life. And because I am forced to grow every single day, I am finally becoming the woman I was always meant to be. I’m not there yet, but I will be and I know it.”- Ava Cowan
For Ava Cowan, staying healthy involves several exercise routines. Our discussion will be focused on her healthy lifestyle. Additionally, our team compiled information on her exercise routine, diet supplements, and nutritional supplements. Additionally, she offers readers a few helpful tips and tricks in the article. You can find out for yourself!
Ava Cowan Statistics
- Birth Year: 1974
- Birth Date: Oct 21
- Height: 5’4″ (162.5cm)
- Weight: 125 – 135lbs (56.7 – 61.2kg)
- Bust: 34″
- Hips: 35″
- Waist: 26″
- Body Measurements: 34-26-35 inches
Ava Cowan Awards and Achievements
- 2013 IFBB Arnold Classic, 7th
- 2012 IFBB New York Pro, 3rd
- 2012 IFBB Arnold Classic, 4th
- 2011 IFBB St. Louis Pro, 3rd
- 2011 IFBB Arnold Classic, 3rd
- 2011 IFBB Mr. Olympia, 3rd
- 2011 IFBB Sheru Classic Asian Grand Prix Pro, 4th
- 2011 IFBB Europa Super Show, 1st
- 2011 IFBB 1st Phorm St. Louis Pro Bikini & Figure, 3rd
- 2011 IFBB Arnold Classic, Ms. International, Fitness International & Figure International, 3rd
- 2010 IFBB Fort Lauderdale Pro, 2nd
- 2010 IFBB Kentucky Muscle Pro Figure, 4th
- 2010 IFBB Border States Pro Figure, 3rd
- 2010 IFBB Europa Super Show, 8th
- 2010 IFBB Jacksonville Pro, 4th
- 2009 NPC National Bodybuilding, Bikini & Figure Championships, 4th
- 2009 NPC National Bodybuilding, Bikini & Figure Championships, 1st
- 2009 NPC Eastern USA Bodybuilding Fitness & Figure, 1st
- 2009 MuscleMania Universe Weekend & Expo, 1st
- 2007 FAME North American Championships, 1st
- 2007 MuscleMania Model America Championships, 1st
- 2006 NPC Junior National Championships, 8th
- 2005 IFBB North American Championships, 3rd
Ava Cowan Workout Routine
Physical activities have always been a passion for Ava, and at one point, she considered becoming a personal trainer. She then began looking for positions where she could work as a personal trainer, and soon found a place in Florida where she took a training course.
As a fitness coach, Ava learned everything she needed to know about diet and exercise during her 16 months of rigorous training.
During that time, Ava gained a lot of knowledge, and following coaching numerous clients she began to gain an interest in weightlifting. The professional said that, during the time she spent on stage, she would always look at magazines and admire fitness models on front covers. Despite her determination to emulate the fitness models that she saw in magazines, it wasn’t until Ava learned more about strength training and nutrition that she realized she could also do the same.
Ava said that she had issues with self-esteem at some points in her life. She said that she started going to the gym to gain confidence in herself. After several months, Ava was able to notice some changes in her body, and she quickly fell in love with weightlifting. At that moment, her motivation quickly changed from impressing others to seeing just how far she could push herself.
A Successful Competitor
Within a short period of time, Ava was interested in becoming a fitness competitor. After hiring a coach, she began to work on her diet and exercise program.
In 2005, she competed for the first time at the IFBB North American Championships, where she earned an impressive third-place finish. After this experience, Ava decided to compete more, and the following year she competed at the NPC Junior National Championships, placing 8th overall.
Ava competed in 5 more shows while winning each one. After winning the first competition, she competed in 5 more shows for the following 3 years. Her success started with the MuscleMania Model America Championships in 2007, where she beat several top competitors.
A series of impressive achievements followed, including her win at NPC Eastern USA Bodybuilding Fitness & Figure, followed by her National Bodybuilding, Bikini & Figure Championships, where she won her Pro Card.
Life as a Pro
IFBB Jacksonville Pro. In 2010, Ava started her professional career by placing 4th and she continued competing in Pro competitions over the following 2 years. In the figure division of the 2011 IFBB Mr. Olympia, she managed to take home the 3rd place prize and won the 2011 IFBB Europa Super Show.
She also competed at the 2011 and 2013 IFBB Arnold Classic shows, placing 3rd and a respectable 7th. In addition to the Arnold Classic, she competed in the IFBB New York Pro in 2012, and placed 2nd, establishing herself as one of the best figures from 2011-13.
Popularity around the world
Her popularity skyrocketed after her accomplishments were recognized. Throughout her fitness industry career, she developed a following that was inspired by her transformation.
By 2007, Ava was already an inspiration to fitness enthusiasts, by winning the FAME North American Championships.
She was asked what makes a figure competitor successful, and this was her answer, “You have to have thick skin and a relentless desire to succeed. You must be extremely competitive, but you must also be willing and ready to place last. It happens, and you better be able to take it, and take it and gracefully. That is a real champion. It’s easy to win and be happy, but can you lose and feel the same way? You’d better because all eyes are on you.” – Ava Cowan
A compound training program
As Ava’s bodybuilding journey has progressed, she has always advocated compound movements. A bench press, squat, or deadlift, according to her, cannot be compared to isolation exercises.
Also, Ava credited these heavy compound exercises with a good deal of her success on stage. Additionally, she also taught that isolation movements should be incorporated into each of her workouts since he believes that they are an excellent way to finish the workout and increase blood flow to muscles.
She has continued to develop since she first began training with a “do or die” attitude, along with years of acting, dancing, and gymnastics classes. She has outstanding symmetry, muscular definition, and size, which make her one of the most shapely contestants in her division. The combination of her impressive physique and fierce competitive spirit made her one of the top-figure competitors of all time.
Although Ava Cowan does not have a specific schedule for her workout routine, here is a sample of his workout routine that she follows:
Ava’s Leg Workout
- Barbell squats, 4 x 10
- Leg extensions, 4 x 10
- Butt Blaster, 4 x 8-10
- Lying leg curls, 4 x 8-10
- Romanian deadlifts, 4 x 9-10
- Seated calf raises, 4 x 8
- Standing calf raises (drop sets), 4 x 8(10), 8(8), 8(8), 8(8)
Ava’s Training Split
If anyone is wondering what the training split of Ava Cowan during her leg day is like, here is what she does during her leg workout: Barbell squats 4×10, leg extensions 4×10, butt blaster 4×8, lying leg curls 4×8, Romanian deadlifts 4×9, seated calf raises 4×8, and standing calf raises 4×8.
In 2011, and 2013, the routine Ava Cowan followed during her physical competitions was: legs on Monday, shoulders, and abs on Tuesday, biceps, and back on Thursday, head, and triceps on Friday, legs on Saturday, and then rest on Sunday.
In addition to exercise, eating is also very important, and Ava recommends eating every three hours, and mixing foods frequently. Some items that you shouldn’t consume: sugar, fried food, dairy products, alcohol, and fruit juice. The menu could also include boneless chicken breasts, egg whites, sweet potatoes, cream of wheat, brown rice, garlic, onions, and olive oil.
As part of her preparations between 2011 and 2013, Ava Cowan followed the following workout schedule:
- Monday: legs
- Tuesday: shoulders, abs;
- Wednesday: off;
- Thursday: biceps, back;
- Friday: chest, triceps
- Saturday: legs (light)
- Sunday: off
She has given many interviews in which she has explained how she prepared for a great start in the 2013 Olympics games. She has been in the fitness industry for quite a time and has been known for her role as an educator and a trainer whilst being a nutritionist too. She has naturally gained a lot of knowledge before which has helped her in being a pro-figure competitive. She explains, “I believe it may be the other way around. Because I am consistently in shape, I have a good reputation for being able to prepare for competitions successfully. I have always focused on educating myself and working with people that are much more knowledgeable than I am. For example, I studied under Dr. Anthony Abbott to learn about exercise science and Dr. Layne Norton to learn about the healthiest way to prepare for competition. I also have that “in-the-trenches” knowledge about the different ways of getting lean for shows.”
She says that being an athlete also has helped to establish her reputation. In her words, “Being a consistently hard-working athlete also adds value to my reputation. I think, by now, I have established myself as a person who goes the distance and continues to better herself. Focusing on strengths and overcoming my weaknesses makes me relatable.”
She has been asked on many occasions about the secret behind her personality and looks which has made her feature in many magazines. She has quite a story to tell for this:
I am persistent to a fault. I contacted the magazines myself, pushing to get noticed. In order to garner that attention, I contacted amazing photographers, arranged photo shoots, got the clothing, and paid for makeup artists and photo editing. Once the images were complete, I would go to newsstands and write down the names of the art directors or anyone who had an email address I could submit my images to. For Oxygen, I even paid for the actual prints so Robert Kennedy could see them. Most of the time it didn’t work, but I kept trying.
I finally got in to do “cover tries” for Oxygen. I did it five times, but never got a cover—even to this day! I finally let that one go. I figured that if there wasn’t a good photo in all five test shoots, there would never be.
On the flipside, the magazine covers I did get happened because I did the work for the magazine. I sent in fully-edited images that needed no further work. It was a win-win situation. I got the cover I wanted for exposure and their cost was minimal. Once my name got out a bit more, the larger magazines would shoot me with staff photographers.
That never would have happened unless I had the vision to make it happen initially. I made sure I had 100 percent of everything I needed to build a great reputation in the industry. I was extremely professional, on time, and in shape. I didn’t talk too much and I was easy to work with.
I thank God for bringing me through and to this path and way of life. Although the reasons have not been fully revealed to me, I know it is all to prepare me for what is to come. This path I have chosen forces me to push myself beyond anything I have ever experienced in my life. And because I am forced to grow every single day, I am finally becoming the woman I was always meant to be. I’m not there yet, but I will be and I know it.
I want to thank Dr. Layne Norton for believing in me from the beginning when I didn’t believe. He stood by all of my decisions, whether he agreed with them or not. He taught me a new way of looking at competition prep in terms of nutrition and has allowed me to fall flat on my face from choices I have made on my own. That is what a real teacher does. We move forward together.
I would like to thank Gaspari Nutrition for signing me almost four years ago. Thanks also go to J.M. and Jim Manion for allowing me to compete in the NPC and ultimately on the IFBB stage. Without that opportunity, I would have never been able to compete against the best athletes in the world. My journey as a competitor has helped me discover my life’s purpose and has enabled me to stretch beyond anything I could have imagined. I have grown so much, and for that, I am so grateful.
I also want to acknowledge myself, because I rarely do. I know I am hard on myself. If I were to give just 10 percent more acknowledgments to myself, I bet that would make some of the dark days a bit brighter. I know that’s something I should add to my belief system.
I want to thank my boyfriend Eugene for loving me unconditionally. I have never had that kind of support emotionally in my life. I’m grateful for him. I want to thank the people on the sidelines and who post on my Facebook fan page, scream my name when I walk on stage or send me emails about how I have inspired them, motivated them, or changed their life for the better in some way. That makes this journey rewarding.
Thank you to Ian L. Sitren for believing in me years before the world knew my name. His friendship means more to me than he will ever know.
Last, I want to thank the people who don’t believe in me. You make me train harder than you can imagine! For you doubters, I am grateful. I mean that sincerely. It’s hard to find an edge over and over, year after year. Anger can be a great motivator, so I’ll take it!
Besides this, Ava Cowan has a really consistent and healthy diet plan which he shares with her fans and followers who want to tread on the same path. She really believes in quality over quantity and we will discuss more of her little tricks in the next section below. So read ahead!
Ava Cowan Diet Plan
Even though Ava Cowan does not have a specific diet plan, she makes sure that she is not missing out on any kind of macros and hence would eat everything. She does however has certain ways to eat which make her stick to her diet quite easily and makes her consistent too. Here is all about what Ava Cowan takes in the day.
It is very important to Ava Cowan to eat a variety of foods every day. A woman who cycles carbohydrates says she doesn’t eat the same thing the next day. During competition prep, Ava makes sure she doesn’t dehydrate or lose sodium to stay energized and strong during her workouts.
However, on show days she avoids salting her food, which maintains her “dry” appearance. As a result, whenever Ava needs additional fullness on competition day, she will usually consume plenty of water and eat lots of chips. Eva suggests eating every 2.5-3 hours between meals, and she believes this is the best interval between each meal.
Ava’s Advice on Getting Lean Fast
This is Ava’s list of dos and don’ts when it comes to dieting.
Ava’s “NO” List;
- No Added Salt
- No Sugar
- No Fried Foods
- No Cheese
- No Dairy Products
- No Pork
- No Alcohol
- No Butter
- No Margarine
- No Regular Or Diet Dressings
- No Fruit Juices
- All Junk Food
Ava’s “To Eat” List;
- Boneless Chicken Breast
- Extra Lean Ground Turkey (Not From The Deli)
- Egg Whites
- London Broil
- Low Sodium Tuna Fish
- Fresh Tilapia
- Sweet Potatoes
- Quaker Oats
- Cream Of Wheat
- Brown Rice
- Whole Wheat Bread
- Favorite Fresh Green Vegetables
- Balsamic Vinegar
- 100% Cold Pressed Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- No Salt Salsa
- Sugar-Free Maple Syrup
- Unsalted Rice Cakes
- I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter Spray (Use Sparingly)
- Any Sugar-Free And Salt-Free Seasonings
- Fresh Strawberries, Pineapple And Kiwis
- Olive Oil Cooking Spray
- Food Scale
This is a plan that Ava Cowan usually adheres to when preparing for competition;
- Meal 1 – 5 egg whites, low-fat cheese, 2 slices of whole wheat bread
- Meal 2 – 3oz chicken breast, 3/4 cup brown rice, green vegetables
- Meal 3 – 4oz extra lean ground turkey, 1 small whole wheat bun, low-fat cheese, ketchup
- Meal 4 – 3oz chicken breast, 3/4 cup brown rice, green vegetables
- Meal 5 – 6oz top sirloin beef, broccoli
- Meal 6 – Casein protein shake for bedtime
There are also some cheat meals that Ava Cowan really likes to include in her diet. She says, “I love sushi, dark chocolate, Mexican food, and pizza, although I rarely eat any of them. As for healthful foods, I enjoy the basics, such as London broil and brown rice. If I’m eating a quality muscle-building protein along with a low-glycemic-index carbohydrate, I’m very happy.”–Ava Cowan
But besides this, she also has a favorite meal which she likes to eat when she feels in a little celebratory mood. According to her, this recipe is quite simple and yet not too unhealthy. She explains, “I also have a favorite healthy breakfast that I substitute into my menu depending on my mood. It really helps a sweet tooth and those hunger pangs at 8:00 AM.” Here is a recipe that Ava Cowan shares:
- 1/2 cup uncooked oatmeal
- 6 egg whites
- 1/2 cup blueberries
- 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1 tbs. Splenda
- 1/4 cup sugar-free maple syrup
- Fat-free spray butter
- Mix the ingredients above and cook just like a regular pancake until golden brown.
- Top with fat-free butter spray and sugar-free syrup.
- This definitely gives you something to look forward to in the morning.
Simple carbohydrates contain low insulin levels when your body does not have a glycogen deficit. You should avoid foods containing sugar or simple carbohydrates when you do not have diabetes. In the case of not having enough energy from carbohydrates, the carbohydrates are stored as fat. Sugar makes a hormone called insulin released by the body when you consume it. It promotes fat storage in the body when insulin is present. In other words, if she eats a fatty meal that is bound together with simple carbohydrates, she is likely to store it as fat in her body.
That was all about the meal plan that Ava Cowan has in her day. Her meals are quite full and sufficient in macros and essential nutrients and she makes sure that she is not missing out on vitamins and minerals. Besides this, she also gives out some diet tips that help her stick to her healthy eating habits better.
Ava Cowan Diet Tips
Besides following a great diet plan there are also some things that Ava Cowan does additionally to make her stick to the meal plan even better. She says that she would use some simple tips and tricks to be added to her diet plan which makes it quite easy to stick to. There are the following tips that she adds:
Adding species add a different flavor to the food by not making it healthy. Thus it is one of the best tips that Ava Cowan shares with her fans. It also helps to add the advantages associated with the spices. She explains,
Additionally, I love to add flavor to my recipes by adding spices. When my meals consist of a lean protein such as chicken breast and green vegetables, I often sauté sliced tomatoes, onions, garlic, cayenne pepper, Italian mixed seasoning, and blend in a couple tablespoons of 100-percent extra-virgin cold-pressed olive oil.
Adding extra vegetables to the food also helps to fill in the food with extra nutrients and vitamins. Vegetables are also low in calories and make the dish super filling. Thus it is a great idea; she says, “You may choose to add in additional vegetables. The rich spices coupled with the necessary saturated fat make a perfectly seasoned meal. I have found it much easier to stick to a meal plan that just tastes good.”
Eating every 2 to 3 hours
You must eat every few hours so that your metabolic rate does not decrease. Thus Ava Cowan too keeps on eating something in the form of snacks every few hours. It also helps her stay active and energetic. In her words, “Now this is just a basic outline of how I eat to stay lean. The goal is to regulate the amount of energy (calories) you take in. I eat every 2.5 hours because, to keep my metabolism up, I must constantly fuel my body. If I need the last meal, I eat a lean protein source with a complex carbohydrate.”
Always be creative with food choices
She says that she has to stay creative with her food choices so that she could stay consistent with her diet. Most people are not able to stick to their diet because of the monotony they have with their diet. However, the goal is to complete the daily nutritional goals. In the words of Ava Cowan, “If the thought of eating another egg white makes you want to choke, possibly implement a slow-releasing protein shake. If I am really having a difficult time and am craving something sweet, I eat two rice cakes with fat-free spray butter, and sprinkle Splenda on top.”
Carry water with you
Besides eating healthy foods for the nutrients and vitamins, it is super important to stay hydrated. Water enhances a lot of body functions like processing food and converting it into energy and relaxing the muscles. A properly hydrated body is less fatigued than the body which is not hydrated. She explains further by saying, “I carry water with me everywhere I go and I try to drink a gallon a day. Often people feel hungry when they are actually dehydrated. So be very aware of your hydration throughout the day.”
That was all the wellness and fitness tips that Ava Cowan gives out to her family and friends. She thinks that all the nutrients are possible to get through foods however, since she is an athlete and her bodily requirements are different, she needs to add some supplements to complete her body requirements. In the next section, we will discuss what kind of supplements does Ava Cowan takes.
Ava Cowan Nutrition and Supplements
Ava is a big believer in supplements. According to her, it’s very important to have good supplementation along with a great diet. “It’s something that everyone who trains seriously should include”, advises Ava. Here is a list of all the supplements that Ava Cowan takes in the whole day along with her diet plan:
- Mitochondrial Energy Optimizer
- Digestive Enzymes
- Energy Formula
- Creatine Capsules
- D-Ribose Caps
- SizeOn (one scoop during workout)
- SuperPump250 (two to three scoops, 40 minutes before weight training)
- BCAAs (Four times a day — morning, pre-workout and post-workout, and evening(
- Beta-alanine (2 to 3 grams per day — 1 gram with breakfast, 1 gram pre-workout, and 1 gram post-workout)
- Fish oil caps (two in the morning and two in the evening)
- PlasmaJet (Four times per week, 90 minutes before weight training)