When it comes to body image and my emotional state I’m pretty much like a roller coaster. Before the holidays I was going strong and feeling good about where I was physically. We took an extended 12 day vacation to Florida where I still exercised (mostly cardio and body weight stuff) but I allowed myself a break in my diet. Unfortunately because my body is not used to drinking alcohol continuous days in a row or skipping weight training workouts, all those extra calories immediately went to my back and waist. Nothing puts you in a bad mood like back fat hanging over you Lulu tights! Thank God for high waisted tights to hold in my pouch. So here I am 10 days after returning from vacation and I woke up feeling f*cking awesome finally! Because I noticed the weight gain while I was on vacation I immediately decided I would give up alcohol New Year’s Day and I did. New Year’s eve was the last time I had a glass of wine. I cleaned up my diet for the most part but still indulged in a few sweet treats here and there. When I returned home from Florida I came down with a horrible cold which kept me out of the gym for a few days and made getting back into my routine a bitch. My cold has lifted for the most part, I stayed within my macros the past 4 days and I trained with weights consistently. Guess what happened?!?! My belly fat has decreased and I’m slowly reducing the amount of hangover on my tight ass pants! Do I look amazing? No. Does the fact that I see progress in the right direction make me feel amazing? Hell yes! Sometimes you just need to celebrate small progress recognizing that small progress is still progress. Never quit because of small progress. Keep pushing and the results will come slow and steady. It will be worth it!!
All right, I am five weeks out from my competition and the scale finally started moving. Last time I blogged I was frustrated because I just wasn’t seeing results and the fat was not leaving my body. I’m not saying things are going great but I did finally drop some weight and I’m seeing much more definition. The weight I am at now is still much higher than my previous competitions but that could have to do with the change in my body composition and all of the weightlifting I’ve done in the off-season.
The struggles I’ve had the past week have been pretty real. We lowered my complex carbs to only 75 g per day with one refeed and one lower carb day when I rest. I feel great in the morning and have tons of energy and my mood is positive. At about 4 PM I lose my shit. This is no joke, I literally lose it on anyone that walks near me. If you don’t want to bitchy response don’t call or text me after 4 PM. I’ve been rude to my father-in-law, my kids and husband (daily), and even my husband’s friend who was being nice and offering us a treadmill for sale. Hopefully they read my blog because I was too bitchy to even apologize. Carbs are in essential nutrient that provide your body with fuel and affect your brain function. When you deplete them you don’t just have low-energy it affects your mood, your focus and much much more. I do not recommend low-carb diet for any of my clients unless they’re looking to compete in we are in the final stretch and in need to really tap into fat storage. Your body can burn fat while you eat carbs, I’m just in a very tight timeline.
My overall calorie consumption is on average less than 1300 cal a day. I’m lifting daily with weights and then doing about 45 minutes of a steady state cardio. I don’t have much energy to do high-intensity training and I burn out quickly. Some days I have fun at the gym other days it feels like a total chore and I hate every minute. I found that it’s best if I work out before 1 PM otherwise I have zero energy and my mood sucks.
Although my mood isn’t very enjoyable my kids fully support me and watch every damn thing I put my mouth. I took a bite of an apple the other day and Bryson asked “um, are you allowed to eat fruit?” My oldest came home from college and even went to the gym with me to train back. I think he got a little irritated with all of my instructions I was giving on the proper way to lift so I will try to bite my tongue next time. (Heaven forbid his mom who is a personal trainer gives instruction on proper form).
My goal this week is to order my new suit and lose another 1 to 2 pounds. I’ve consistently lost at least a pound over the last three weeks and want to keep that going in the right direction. When you’re trying to maintain muscle while losing fat it’s healthy to lose 1 to 3 pounds a week but nothing more. I’m consistently losing 1 to 1 1/2 pounds a week. For my suit I am switching colors this year and debating between a deep emerald green or a black with colored crystals. It takes about 3 1/2 weeks to get your custom suit so I need to order it this week. I’ve also started tanning so that my butt isn’t super pale. Even with the spray tan if you have white butt cheeks it shows through.
I am not a competitor that stays show lean all year and I still have a lot of work to do over the next 5 weeks.
So it’s official, I am six weeks out from my NPC Bikini competition. This prep hasn’t exactly been as easy as some of the other ones. I switched trainers and my diet is much more restrictive with less flexibility. I eat 5 to 6 meals per day depending on how early I wake up. For the first five weeks each meal consisted of 25 g of carbs, 25 g of protein and very low fat. Approved carbs are such things as oatmeal, sweet potatoes, plain rice cakes and brown rice. My protein sources are lean and I pretty much eat mostly chicken and egg whites. I eat green vegetables with almost every meal and my go to veggies are broccoli or spinach. When I’m craving chips or a snack I eat cut up bell peppers dipped in salsa. I eat an insane amount of raw veggies when we are at parties or potlucks just to keep me satisfied. This has caused an uncomfortable amount of bloating and gas. My kids don’t even want to be in the same room as me after I eat. Last night on our walk home I looked six months pregnant and it was all gas. I’ve tried beano, Gas ex, digestive enzymes and probiotics. I can either go hungry because I’m out of food or eat some more veggies and deal with my pregnant belly. Because I’m not supposed to snack between meals I have an abundant supply of chewing gum in my purse and drink an excessive amount of coffee. I need to replace every 8 ounces of coffee with an additional 8 ounces of water on top of the gallon I’m already drinking each day so I pee every 20 minutes. This makes traveling in a car with me difficult or even going to the grocery store. So not only am I bloated like I’m pregnant, I also pee constantly like a pregnant lady. I get hangry after about 7 PM and everyone in the house just stays away from me. I’m either yelling or farting.
This past week has been extremely difficult because I am now carb cycling and I’m having a hard time keeping track of how many meals I get carbs in, etc. My weight hasn’t really moved in two weeks and that is getting frustrating. I was consistently losing 2 pounds a week and this past two weeks I’ve lost only 1 pound. Competition prep is really a mental mindfuck. If you’re not strong mentally this is not the thing for you. Food becomes an obsession and skipping the workout is not an option.
Although everything I’m saying sounds kind of negative, the overall experience is pretty wonderful. You push yourself to extremes you never knew you could. I also feel amazing physically. I don’t have any junk in my body besides the bloating and I wake up with tons of energy. My skin is great, my nails are growing, my hair is growing and I just feel amazing. Looking in the mirror and seeing a six pack after having three kids and being 35 feels pretty damn good too. My boys all know what a glute is and complement me on how big mine are getting. This mamas got back!
So with all of that said, below are some of my progress photos and food pictures. I’m overall happy with the changes I’m seeing but would like to be a little bit leaner in the lower body. Cardio absolutely sucks and I swear while I do it every single time.
It’s official, I am preparing for my third bikini competition. Monday was the official start day and I’m not going lie, I was kind of dreading it. We had a great 4th of July weekend on our new boat and I enjoyed the freedom of snacking and having a cocktail. I laid awake Sunday night thinking about all the things I had to give up. No more eating out with the family, no more red wine with dinner, no more cocktails on the river, no more snacks in between meals, no more variety, and the list goes on. I’m working with a new trainer for this show and the nutrition plan is a lot less flexible. I made this decision because I wanted to take my body to the next level and see how far I can go on stage. I was very excited to get started initially but as Monday got closer I kind of started feeling a heavy weight on my chest. I only focused on all the things I couldn’t have.
Well, Monday came and Monday went. I successfully killed my workout and stuck to my nutrition plan. Tuesday came and went. I exceeded my calorie intake by about 200 but my macros weren’t too far off so overall I’ll call it a win. I also killed a double workout. Wednesday morning came and I jumped up out of bed at 3:53 AM before my 4:10 AM alarm. I had energy and I was excited it to start my day with a 5 AM workout. At the gym I killed legs with a friend and they did an hour of spin. I was filled with energy and powered through the whole class dripping in sweat.
It only took three days for me to remember why I do this over and over. Removing all the crap from my diet and structuring the timing of my food around my workouts does wonderful things to me both physically and mentally. I have already noticed changes in my body on the outside but more importantly on the inside. My arms are more defined, my stomach is flatter, I have more energy, I am sleeping much better and not waking during the night, my digestion is more regular, and the list goes on.
My perspective has done 180 degree switch since Sunday. Instead of focusing on everything I have to give up I am start looking at all the things I have to gain. I’ve gained more energy, better sleep, leaner body, and more confidence. I am finishing date three of my 12 week plan and I am so excited to see what is to come. I close my eyes at night feeling strong and accomplished and I do not lay in bed worrying about things I have to lose. I look forward to each day in the new things I have to gain. I set a goal and I have every intention of completing it.
Last weekend I competed in my second NPC Bikini Competition. I went into it with much more confidence and determination. I turned 35 since my first competition so I was excited to compete in the Master’s division (35 and up). The goal I set for myself was to take first in Masters and top 3 in Open. Well, I concurred that goal! I placed 1st in Master’s and 3rd in Open.
Because I had competed before the fear of being on stage and being judged was completely gone. At my first competition I spend a lot of time looking around and comparing myself to others. I counted how many girls were in my height class and let their appearance bring my confidence down. After the show I looked at the pictures and videos and realized that I had nothing to feel insecure about and that the only person on stage I should have been focused on was myself. This show was completely different. I didn’t even look at the line up or know how many girls I was competing against. When my friends arrived and asked how many girls were in my class I simple said “I don’t know, I didn’t even look. Who cares, I am going to go out there and rock the stage.” I was competing against the girl I was last time around and no one else.
It has been a week since the competition and I kind of feel a little lost without that goal. I didn’t go crazy with food after the competition but I can say that I have overindulged on red wine. Tomorrow I am starting the 22 Minute Hard Corp challenge with my husband and a challenge group I am leading. The program is 8 weeks log, comes with a balanced nutrition plan and 22 minute workouts. This will allow me to focus on my fitness and nutrition again without completely consuming my time and energy. I will be blogging about this challenge so others can see what it is like.
Here are some photos from my competition: