Saturday, March 28, 2015

Whole30 Journey

Here we go....*

Today is Day 1

First shock to the system? Coffee this morning without cream or sugar. Lord have mercy! Ack! It's been sooooo....long since I've had black coffee. Hopefully, by the end of the 30 days, I'll learn to like it. However.....I've discovered the existence of coconut milk powder, and if I can get my hands on may well be my coffee savior!
I'm definitely a woman of extremes. I'm either all in or all out.
I've been wanting to reset some of my health habits, and bring Kent along too, so what better way than to start, all in, on an elimination diet! *sarcasm intended.
I promise myself to do my best to approach the whole process with a positive, inquisitive, and experiential attitude, and not be resentful or lament what I'm depriving myself of. It's only 30 days, for God's sake! I prepped for a fitness competition for 8 months! I can do this.
That said....breakfast was an epic fail. Grain/dairy/sugar free "pancakes" with a strawberry slurry syrup.  Let's just say coconut flour behaves like a sponge. Couple that with the lack of any sweetener, and it is akin to eating a sponge. Mmm.
I was all set to post a picture, but......nah.
Moving on...

*This will be a short post. Kent and I have decided to do the Whole30. I will be blogging and photo-documenting the process. (If you're unfamiliar with it, go to the website, as I won't be describing it in this blog).

Monday, October 6, 2014

Rising up...

Oh lord, look who hasn't blogged forever....good thing no one follows me. : >)
Since we last checked in with our heroine.....(time to eat some crow).....

It's been almost 1 year since my bodybuilding competition. Currently, I’m battling not just a few emotions surrounding my health. I feel like I,wait.... I HAVE declined so much this last year (not just weight gain, but injury and pain, and lack of motivation). Again, 1 year since competing. Whew...a lot can happen in a year and I am eating some humble pie. This is a tough post for me, but I'm doing it for motivation and to keep it real. It’s tough for me to not feel discouraged and ashamed and embarrassed right now, but the truth is, I rebounded..BIG TIME! Those that know me, know that health and fitness are extremely important to me, and I hate it when I fall off the wagon and don’t practice what I preach. It makes me feel like a poser and I disappoint myself with my lack of commitment and discipline. I hate that feeling of letting myself down! Grrr! I hate not living up to what is so important to me! The fact that I was in the best physical condition ever, just 1 year ago, doesn’t help. I feel so much different now! My MUCH. DIFFERENT!  I don’t have the same motivation and my body is in a very different place this time (too much and too boring to go into right now), but let's just call it "age-related". I had a BIG birthday this year.
BUT….all of that being said, I’m looking forward and working really hard, mentally, to shake it off and move ahead with new goals, and I'm making my best attempt at not dwelling in the past.

There is much I have learned about fitness/health/nutrition over the years as a nurse, personal trainer, and avid spectator/researcher of all things fitness, and specifically this past year as a Figure competitor.

So here's my current plan....
…I’ve constructed a diet based on experience with very specific caloric and macronutrient ratios (based on BMR, BMI, BF% etc) and my plan is to follow it, to the T, for two weeks. I will then track my progress and modify the diet/exercise plan as necessary every two weeks depending on progress, and to not get bored with the same food choices. I will have no cheat meals or alcohol during those two weeks. It will be similar to a prep diet. If progress suits my expectations, I may add a cheat meal and 1 glass of wine, but that is yet to be determined. I will also be going back to the gym, starting today! Last gym trip was May 1. I've been doing home workouts since then, but nothing like my old routine. I must also devote time for yoga/flexibility training, focusing on opening my hips and back rehab, and.....mediation. It takes a lot of time, preparation, dedication and discipline, and requires me to NOT be LAZY!
At this point, I have a weight loss goal. As I progress I’ll have more specific goals, but for now, I just want to drop pounds (fat) and fit comfortably back into my clothes that loom in my closet like little demons! I don't have a specific competition goal, as of yet, but the door is definitely open for the possibility.

So....some of my inspiration comes from....
There is a bodybuilder pro that I follow, whom I really admire. Her name is Ava Cowan. She had an accident that left her with a serious neck injury. During her recovery, she gained about 40 lbs., couldn’t lift or do anything, got depressed etc….Once she was cleared to start exercising again, she decided she wanted to get her lifestyle back, rebuild her body and compete again. She blogged about her journey throughout the year it took her to get back. She called it “Journey Back to Strength”. It’s inspiring and that’s what I’m going to use as my motivation and my personal statement……my own “Journey Back to Strength”. Thank you, Ava!

I will have to change a lot of bad habits I allowed myself to develop over the last year, and I have some real (not perceived) challenges such as..hormonal changes (impending menopause) that make fat loss very difficult, physical pain d/t old and new injuries, and going back to work…..trying to integrate my goals into a new job, volunteering, choir schedule, and family life.
Lots of changes coming… seems big and it’s just looming around the corner.

At this moment, I am dubious about my abilities, but I also know, intellectually, that these feelings are always what happen at the start of any new endeavor, so I know after a few weeks, those feelings will abate and things will be easier and easier as the new habits develop.

The first step is always the hardest!

Sunday, September 15, 2013

More contest-prep updates....

Aug 19
Eye yeye yeye.......(how the hell do you spell that?). More time passing, some (read:slow) progress being made. Still holding steady in limbo...but
I found a new coach! She's been recommended to me by a few people so I thought I'd give her a try. After out initial meeting, she said I was too small for physique! Can you believe that??? I've spent all this time convincing myself I should do Physique, thanks to my last coaches recommendation. Her (new coach) rationale: the Physique girls are way bigger framed than I am and I'd have to pack on a LOT more muscle and get extremely lean. Basically, one very small step down from the Bodybuilidng class. She said I should definitely do figure. Go figure (no pun intended)! It's ok. I don't really want to get bigger, per se...just leaner and more defined.
Incidentally, I did the BodPad body composition test last friday; 13.7% body fat, currently. I was pleasantly surprised. I didn't know I had dropped so low. Hopefully, I will achieve around 10% for show time. 
My current plan, with the new coach on board, is to bust my ass until Oct 19th and if I'm ready, I'm ready. If I'm not, no loss of progress and on to a later show. I just could not wrap my head around dangerous, and the thought of it was messing with my head. One of my biggest hurdles will be sustaining the intensity through pain and injury, and not letting that waylay me! Plus, I have a busier schedule now that rehearsals have started....(two performances in Sept) and busy days at work.
So.....I'm all in (again/still) for 9 weeks. Let's hope my next post is about measured progress!

Aug 27
Whew..back on track. I met with my new coach for my assessment yesterday. I'm way more stoked about the process now! She's so much more engaged and I think I'm really going to like her. Waiting for her to send me workout/diet instructions, hopefully by tomorrow. 
Also, had a suit fitting today. I LOVE my suit, it's gorgeous! Red and blingy and shiny! 
Big challenge now is to lean out more, esp. glutes and upper thigh/glute tie-in and hammies...yikes! Upper body is in good shape and abs are leaned out. I'm pretty sure at 13.7% body fat, it's all in my lower half! Damn gender/genetics!
Renewed sense of dedication: Sacrifice, purpose, determination.

Sept 11
Pause to remember the 9/11/01 tragedy and the lost lives, brave hero's and a nation united under duress. Bless the victims, survivors, and rescuers, as well as all the everyday American's who stood together in compassion and sympathy. What a great nation, despite all it's governmental flaws.

Now on to business.....Less than 6 weeks to go! I'm continuing the hard work of LEANING out. Geez!! I'd like to thank the powers that be that granted me such an efficient metabolism. I'm pretty sure I could live on 20 kcals/day and not lean out, nor die for months. I will be the last one standing after the Zombie Apocalypse! My coach took away my egg yolk, 1/4 cup of black beans, and 1/3 cup quinoa salad in an effort to bump fat loss. Seems like such a tiny amount to make a difference, but the careful diet/exercise manipulations have an amazing way of affecting the physique with precision. It's crazy. We'll see how it goes this week; if I lose anything...Again, I am surrendering to and trusting the process. 
Had a great experience last weekend, first during a private posing session with my coach, then during a group posing session the next day with the "team". My coach has created a group of competitors that she encourages communication and support amongst the members. We have our own private FB page wherein we can chat and share common concerns, obstacles, and cheer each other on. I already feel a part of a community of women who understand this whole process and that I can connect with, commiserate with, workout with, etc....It is such a night-and-day experience from my last coach's approach!
I'm getting excited and can visualize what the stage is going to feel like, what I will look like and how I want to present myself. 
As I continue on this journey, I am becoming stronger mentally, more convicted and committed to the lifestyle and more confident, not just about competing, but there is an improvement in my overall confidence level in everyday life. 
Here's the scary thing: I feel really good today. I mean, REALLY good: in fact, somewhat manic...I have a shit-ton of energy (no drugs involved)! This happens to me from time to time and when it does, I feel invincible. I, of course, know that this feeling is fleeting and I will soon be tired, or discouraged, or depressed, but until then I am unstoppable! Get out of my way (and by that I mean keep your negative shit to yourself) because I will crush you (and by that I mean, you will hit a brick wall of stoic strength that is impenetrable)!

Monday, August 12, 2013

Updates...and on to Limbo.....

June 2:
I feel very sheepish, slightly embarrassed and regretful as I write this. Since my last post, not a lot of progress has been made, sadly. It's my own fault. I took some time off after deciding to do a later show. That's not really a good idea, my coach told me not to, happened and now I have some ground to make up! Last week was especially difficult. I had a very busy work week; busier than usual and I was trying to spend my free time with my son before he left for 6 weeks on study-abroad. Therefore, I worked out exactly 1 time. I continued to eat clean up until "cheat" meal, which I planned to be the night of his going away party...but.....cheat meal continued into cheat saturday (whoops!). 
Now, I'm 11 weeks out (I mistakenly thought I was 12!) and I'm hoping to have a renewed sense of dedication and focus. I'm hoping with Miles gone I'll feel less inclined to be home/homemaking/doing chores etc.., and have less guilt about the hours I spend in the gym. It's a mental game with me, the guilt. Crazy! I may need some outside help (i.e. a trainer). That's really all I have to say at this point. Unless... you want to hear about the struggles? OK! Well, I'm really plagued with shoulder pain in both shoulders. They ache all the time! My medial deltoids are the culprit and I don't really know why. Sleeping is a real challenge because of the pain. "Cheating" is a double-edged sword. I am allowed one cheat meal per week and I'm always looking forward to it, then have major regrets after. When you eat extremely clean, the "bad" food really, really makes you feel crappy. I may have to give up cheats very soon or be very, very choosey about what I "cheat" with. Frozen yogurt seems to be ok, as do apples, steak, fatty foods and a few other things, but too much sugar and too many starchy carbs leaves me feeling sick and hungover the next day. Unbelievable. Lastly, motivation is a continuing nemesis for me. So many invasive thoughts that feed it: too tired, the gym is too crowded, gotta go do this, that and the other...blah blah blah, work was too hard/long day etc..etc...When is the "I'm doing this not matter what" attitude going to take hold and not succumb to the excuses? Fitness training requires a lot more than I've been giving it the last few weeks and time is of the essence now! I'm pissed off at myself, can you tell?

June 16
UGH! Cheat meal KILLED me last night! Went to Layla (one of my favorite places) with friends, and had a fantastic meal. All was going well until we came home. We had some desserts I got at Normandie (also a favorite!) and I indulged in a second glass of wine. BIG MISTAKE. I was ill the rest of the in...tossing and turning in pain, and I almost THREW  UP! Eating clean feels sooooo much better. I'm seriously considering giving up the cheats or only having a minimal treat; one that doesn't make me feel horrible! My body has become so sensitive to "toxins" such as sugar and alcohol, it's almost not worth the discomfort. To be honest, my biggest problem with cheat is that I have a really hard time not overdoing it. If I could be better at controlling it and not approaching it with a free-for-all attitude, I'd probably fare much better, pleasure center takes over and so does the "I deserve this" thinking. SO WRONG!
I'm 9 weeks out and feeling very nervous about my readiness. I still struggle with injuries but figure out ways to work around them somehow. 
The best part is the last 2 weeks I've had a much greater sense of devotion than I've ever had during this whole process. I'm hoping as the time ekes away, that will continue to intensify.

Some of my tools:
PowerFull (supplement for sleep)....OMG! This was my best discovery!
SalonPas. Patches you put on your body for pain relief. It's like BioFreeze in a patch. Kinda helps.
SMFR foam roller. Could. Not. Survive. Without. It!
Gel Ice pad. Ice is THE BEST pain reliever.
Sleep. Nuff said.
Gum. I was not much of a gum chewer, but boy am I now!
Homemade coconut oil/sugar scrub. I LOVE how it exfoliates, moisturizes, makes my skin glow and smells so good all at the same time. Plus, I can eat it in the shower! Hahahahah!
PB2. Powdered peanut butter. 

June 21
Tomorrow will mark the 8 week countdown! I'm feeling pretty pumped (mentally) about things now. I have more motivation and positive thinking than ever before. 
I still have a lot of work to do and lots of physical changes yet to come, but at this point things start really changing on a daily basis. 
My coach eliminated the peanut butter from my diet (soooo sad!), as well as the carbs from meal #5. For the first time in this whole process I'm starting to feel hungry at times. Yikes!
He also told me....."MORE cardio!". When you get lean, cardio is usually less. Apparently I have a lot of fat! I blame my age. I'm a little sick of cardio, I'm not going to lie!
My co-coach told me to order my show shoes: 5" clear platforms! Pretty much stripper shoes. SWEET! I meet with her next tues for suit selection and begin the posing process within the next week or so. I can't wait for that!!
There are definite benefits to living this lifestyle, besides the obvious. The last couple of years, I have experienced a great amount of stress from work, school, and other things. Long story short, it took a huge toll on me both physically and mentally and I struggled for quite a while trying to find ways to cope. Fast forward to last night when, after yoga class I really had the sense that I'm back. I have my mojo back! It's me, the real me, back from the walking dead. Ok, I'm being dramatic, but I spent a long time in an unhappy place and I'm so much happier now. Happy that the weight is lifted (how ironic). I'm loving all the comments I'm getting from strangers, as well as friends and family. In fact, I was "hit on" at yoga (Bikram) last night! Hahaha. Anyone who wants to pick up a 48 year old, super-sweaty person with mascara streaming down her face is OK in my book!! LOL!
I just hope, as I always have as a trainer, to be an inspiration to someone. I love it when someone asks what I'm doing or wants advice. 
One of my life-long fantasies has been to be a trainer full time and own a gym! I've been thinking about it a lot, lately, and really wish I could make it happen so I can help women get fit! I let my certification lapse several years ago, but am toying with the idea of re-certifying and trying to find a place to train clients. I think I've always wanted to teach people in some capacity. Here's a tangent: I've always had a desire to teach non-literate adults to read. Maybe someday.
One thing I've learned about myself, over the years, is that I always have to have a goal. I'm very goal oriented and if I'm not working toward something, I get a little lost and confused. I like the structure of a plan, doesn't really matter what it is, but I gotta have a plan!
One thing at a time, Renel. : >)

July 7
I think I've bitten off more than I can chew. Hit a serious wall. I don't think I can do this anymore. More specifically, I don't think I have what it takes. I'm in over my head. Total poser. I'm so depressed, sad and disappointed right now. 

July 18
Wow. What a process this is. I have been through an emotional ringer. Let it be known that when you are prepping for a physique contest, Every. Thing. That. Goes. In. Your. Mouth. Matters. EVERYTHING. The leaner you get, the more it shows up. UGH! I had a few meltdowns in the last few weeks and have almost given up. And by meltdowns, that usually means eating everything in sight, feeling really discouraged because of a perceived (or real) lack of progress, and taking a "day off". Guess what? That is NOT a good idea. I set myself back, probably a good two weeks or more. Consulting with my coaches has led me to understand the harsh reality: that I am not ready for the August show. Let me clarify. I'm still going for it, I just won't look great. I'm not lean enough, especially in my quads and glutes. Meanwhile, I've been learning to pose and have already paid $350 toward my suit. It's been cut and fitted, now it will get bejeweled and we'll have a final fitting about 2 weeks out from the show, to (hopefully) make it smaller! Praying my body will respond to my new-found dedication as I give it the final push to the end. 5 weeks. 100% clean eating is absolutely mandatory. Pushing hard in my workouts and doing as much HIIT as possible is mandatory!
Wanna hear something crazy? I'm going backpacking next week and taking all my contest food with me. That has been a whole new level of food prep. Can you say freeze dried everything?? Mmmmm! Not only that, but I'll be working out at camp every night with resistance bands strung around a tree and doing core/ab work on the dirt ground!
My posing coach said that she thinks I have huge potential. She said I have great muscle density and a great physique. If I lean out all the way, she said I could compete with anyone and crush it. Awesome compliment. I just have a really, really hard time seeing that level of leanness on me. The glutes and quads, F. A. T!
And, p.s., posing is HARD. So much harder than it looks. You have to think about 50 things while your holding a pose: Stomach in, lats flared, lean forward, engage glutes, head up, shoulders down, smile, don't shake, don't over breath from the stomach, etc...etc...and you have to make it look effortless. 
I'm such an amateur.

July 29
Super, super, super frustrated and disappointed with myself today. My coach and I have agreed that I will NOT be ready for the Aug show in 3 weeks. Therefore, if I still want to reach my goal, I'd have to set my sights on the Oct. show. That's another 13 weeks from now. 
Bottom line is I did not work as hard as I should have. That, coupled with a week-long vacation (although I was working my tail off backpacking, it's not the same type or intensity of training needed for bodybuilding) have set me back and my physique is just not ready. I am not lean enough and can't lean out enough in 3 weeks. This would be a whole lot easier if I were male and 20 years younger! What was I thinking becoming a fitness competitor at my age?? Honestly, if I don't pick impossible goals then apparently I don't know what to do with myself. 
I definitely have reached a stage where burnout is starting to set in. Bodybuilding, and therefore prepping for a contest, is a total lifestyle, just like any other sport that any other athlete is devoted to. It must become ingrained in the athlete with no room for compromise. That is especially difficult when you don't have something on the line like a career or olympic medal or sponsorships etc...When it's just for self-satisfaction, it's a little tougher to stay committed. But for me, the alternative is a fate worse than death. I cannot bear the thought of quitting. I don't quit, damn it!
So, I will press on, but I had a total mental break down yesterday after talking with my coach. Now I have to wrap my head around this and come at it from a different angle. I have to apply what I've instinctively known, heard and read about for months: I have to train like a champion.

Aug 12
Limbo. That's where I am. In a holding pattern. One thing my coach told me, unbelievably to my own surprise, is that some competitors take up to a year to get ready for their first competition. In retrospect and considering all variables, I shouldn't be surprised, but at the time he said it, I felt duped! Mind you, I know I sabotaged myself and have no one else to blame for my lack of progress.....but what a bomb!
After talking with him, I determined that I'm not getting what I need from him in terms of motivation and support so I decided to take a different approach. I still don't know if I made a huge mistake, but I left him in search of another coach (incidentally, that's not as easy as it sounds). Then I spent some time regrouping. I'm still regrouping and so here I am in limbo. It's a dangerous place. I have no accountability at the moment, but if I don't want to lose the progress I've made, I have to stick as closely as possible to the plan. It's definitely the safest thing to do, but for what? I'm too late to compete in Oct. and the next show after that isn't until next March! So, there's my "it takes some people a year", year!
Meanwhile, I've discovered I have some real food issues. I never, ever thought I did, but I DO! Was I starved as a child? Hardly. Was I concerned about where my next meal was coming from? NO. Did I have to share with lots of other mouths? NO. I don't hoard food, or eat in secret, or any of the other typical food addict behaviors, but since I started this process, I've had several crazy, out-of-body, periodic binges? I'm really not sure what that is about, other than just feeling deprived of savory/fatty/sugary food. My husband pointed out the fact that I have severe reluctance to throw out food. Even if it's spoiling in the fridge. It's true. I absolutely abhor wasting food. Why? I believe it is because it represents money; money spent and down the drain (or garbage, as it were). So is my issue money and not food? Does the fear of wasting money make me binge on some deep, psychological level? I don't know, and I don't really care, but it's just an interesting self-discovery. 
Ugh...what to do from here? I suppose I go into maintenance mode until I either, A- find a new coach, or, B- set a time frame to start prepping for March (or June). 
Another concept I have to wrap my head around in this very long and challenging process.
There is good, though. Lots of it! And I'll write about THAT next time, lest you think this is all just a hellacious, insane, self-inflicted undertaking. *wink*

Monday, May 6, 2013

Change of direction.....sort of...

May 6:
So..change of plan. I was extremely nervous and unsure about my readiness for the show June 15th. I met with my coach today to discuss some options. Although he told me I could be ready, it would take stepping up the process for the next 6 weeks, and possible risking burning out to get there. I opted NOT to do that for a couple of reasons. One, I'm not sure I have the stamina/energy "step it up", not to mention the added time it would mean to my workouts and cardio splits! Ugh! Second, I have been fighting off some minor injuries/tears, especially in my shoulders, that I don't want to risk further injury. Also, he is of the opinion that I could "kill it" in the physique category! plan is to bag the June 15 show and shoot for the Aug. 17th show, in the PHYSIQUE class! At first I was intimidated by the thought of physique, but now I'm psyched! I have about 15 weeks until that show, and now that I've had an 11 week head start, I can make steady progress. One of the best parts of physique is being able to do a posing routine. That was going to be a slight disappointment for me in the figure class. But now, I can do it! Front double-bicep, side chest, side tri etc....the best news of the day! Oh, and I get to add a few things back into my diet! Praise Jesus, Allah and whomever else!

Wednesday, May 1, 2013


So, 7 weeks ago, I began a journey to finally accomplish a bucket list item, namely; to compete in a fitness competition! I've wanted to do it for more than 25 years! I came close about 12-13 years ago, but fell short with an injury (story of my life!).
Now, I'm doing it, barring any unforseen injury or life-changing event!
I signed up with a coach who specializes in contest prep training and he started me on a diet and workout plan on Feb 18, 2013. The contest is June 15, 2013 (16 weeks).
As I stated before, I'm almost through week 7 of training, so I thought I'd chronicle my journey, now that I have a good foothold on the diet and training regimen.

My diet looks like this:

1/3 cup oats
1 cup egg beaters
1 cup spinach
I usually blend it all together and make green pancakes (thanks for that idea, Megs!)

Snacks (if you can call it that):
Syntha 6 protein shake (1 1/2 scoops), twice a day in between meals.

5 oz either tilapia or chicken breast
4 oz sweet potato OR 1/2 cup brown rice
generous helping of one of 6 approved veggies (broccoli, asparagus, green beans, spinach, cauliflower, celery). I pretty much never eat the celery, because.....ew.

That's it. Same thing, every day. Once a week I get a cheat meal that consists of 600 extra calories in the form of a protein, carb and dessert.
I usually choose steak, a salad and cookie or ice cream.

I'm craving peanut badly!!
Also popcorn, apples, strawberries, things to crunch and frozen yogurt.

I chew a lot of gum and I mean A LOT!
Also, I have sugar free jello every now and then but it doesn't help much.

I lift, heavy, 5 days a week and do 45-50 min. of interval cardio 5-6 days a week. Every day includes abs/core and back extensions to failure.

I'm living and breathing this lifestyle. Mostly, I'm compliant. I would say I'm giving it 95%, most days.
Very soon I will have no choice but to give 100% every single day if I want to successfully get on stage by June 15.

April 8:
Beginning of week 8! By sunday, I will be half way (I hope).
One of the toughest challenges of this process is telling people what I'm doing. Most people respond with a look of dismay, confusion or disinterest. That's fine, I don't really care what anyone thinks, but it is a challenge trying to describe the diet, lifestyle and restrictions involved. I get responses like, "why would you want to do that"?, or "I could never do something like that" etc....People are very fearful of change (myself included) even when the change is happening to someone else. We (humans) are so protective of our habits and ways, but fear is crippling! 
Almost no one understands the process of Bodybuilding and what it takes. I have always viewed Bodybuilding as an art form melded with sport or athleticism. Sculpting the human body resembles an artist's process of sculpting a likeness of the human body. By that I mean it's time-consuming, requires accuracy and precision and skill to mold the medium in precisely the way intended. Yet there is no room for artistic license or interpretation; no degree of the typical 'creative process'. Instead it is regimented, strict, difficult, relentless, painful and sacrificial! The end result is a sculpted body of work that is living and breathing. This is where bodybuilding is a true sport. No not in the team sense, or run-to-a-finish-line sense, but bodybuilders are athletes. They possess every element that an athlete must have to be successful. Yes, the competition is a stage performance and "show" of their bodies, but the real competition is in their own heads! The daily conquering of one's own will. To be completely consumed by living a specific lifestyle and to overcome the daily noise in your head meant to deter you, not to mention overcoming the pain and fatigue, hunger and cravings, begets true athletes. Here's the thing though, it can be a very lonely endeavor. I eat my own way, different from anyone else. I work out alone and I have very few like-minded people around me. I have to say no to many social situations. It's tough and lonely work, but to become the master of myself.....that is the epic victory!
Plus, I'm strong! : >) 
This week I'm going for 100%.

April 30:
Today, (short side of week 11) I received a surprise from my coach. He said he was thinking I could compete (well, choose to) in the Physique category (as opposed to Figure) on account of my muscle mass. YIKES!...was my first thought, as in, what do I have to change up in my daily regimen in order to be successful in that category???? I'm already busting my arse! One thing about my coach, he isn't the most verbose individual. We correspond mostly via text message, with an occasional email. He's usually very brief and never answers all of my questions until I repeat myself a few times. He didn't really answer the question, which was, "which category do you think I"m best suited for"?. He just told me, "Either, it's up to you". Up to me? My goal was to just see this process through and get on stage. Now I have to decide what bodies I want to go up against? Help!! Yesterday, his wife (co-coach) told me to start choosing a competition suit. Another YIKES! in, this is getting more real and closer than ever. Plus, dang....are they expensive! I am 10 weeks down/6 to go and I am freaking out! I have yet to be 100% convinced that I'll be "stage ready" by June 15, let alone in Physique! Holy......!! Does he know how old I am??? 
Deep breath....
On the bright side, I'm getting a lot of positive feedback from people who are noticing the physical changes. They also notice that I eat on a fairly strict routine and take food with me everywhere I go! I'm starting to get questions and comments like "You look so good, what are you doing?", and, "How much time do you spend in the gym?" "Are you a bodybuilder?" definitely boosts my ego and helps motivate me. I'm here to tell you, motivation is a DAILY struggle for me; always has been. Some days I'm brimming with it. Other days, I don't want to get off the bed! Not to mention the daily, yes DAILY, assortment of aches, pains and outright injuries I'm battling. I spend a good deal of time stretching, icing, downing the ibuprofen, getting deep tissue and structural massages, and sleeping for recovery. Good thing I have an enormous amount of stubborn determination and pride (as in, I can't quit anything until the last dog is hung and the rope is cut!).

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Fitbod embodied....

Once again, too long since my last post to even dare call myself a blogger. "Blogging" (let's face it: it's glorified journaling!), seems to come to me at every crossroads I encounter be it emotional, physical or otherwise. Today is no different.
I have had a personal encounter with a friend that has ended poorly and weighs heavily on my mind.
However, more pertinent to today's post is the news that I am embarking on yet another physical journey. As in the past, I will diet and exercise like crazy, but this time I'm playing for big stakes! I am finally pursuing something I've been fantasizing about for nearly 30 years; a bucket-list item, if you will  I've signed up for a fitness competition and tomorrow is D-day!
D+16 weeks till showtime. Lord have mercy on my soul (but mostly my body!).