Me as of Today!
Me before I found fitness and clean eating
Me at my first NPC competition 2 years later.
Its been just over 3 months since my very first NPC Bikini Competition. When I look back at how I looked of course I miss it! I miss the ripped stomach, and the tight
legs… however as this journey progresses I am growing in so many different ways. I am learning to love my body the way it is right now! Sure I don’t have a 6 pack, but I understand now that the style I live does not simply yield a 6 pack and I am okay with that. I used to think that once you got a 6 pack, you would just hang on to it… for some that is true, but for me … no! If I want to sporting a 6 pack, I have to be doing the amount of fitness and eating it took to get one all the time! I would have to work to maintain that. My days are packed with toddler toting, business running, and I love to lift weights! Intense HIIT and cardio training is fun, and affective for a while, but I personally do not enjoy going gang busters with cardio 5 days a week! I love challenging myself with weight training. I love to see how much stronger I can get week by week. I know that my daily life does not allow for me to spend more than an hour in the gym, and during my competition prep it was more like 2 hours 6 days a week! I enjoy training like that, but I can’t live like that all year round! I seek balance. I also require a lot of energy to keep up with my daughter and my business. So eating the way I was to lean out for a competition… not something I can sport all year and be energized enough to show up to life with the energy I require. So I have decided, I am not the girl who just has a 6 pack on accident, its not in my genetics, and I am the girl that has to work super hard for one, and I am not willing to do that all year.
Fitness is a part of my life, it is not my life. My goal when I got started in fitness was to just tighten up and to be energized for my daughter, and I have reached that goal, anything beyond that… there is a time and a place! Right now I am still eating clean, I am still following a set of Macro Nutrients given to me by my coach… but I am going out for Frozen yogurt weekly with my daughter, I have a “date night” with my husband once a week. We typically go out for pizza and wine. Other than those things I eat what my coach tells me to on my meal plan. The point I am trying to make is… I am living a balanced life. I am enjoying delicious foods with my family a few times a week, and I am enjoying fitness as a way to challenge myself and to feel better in my skin. I want to gain muscle and love working out. I am no longer doing this for weight loss.
Competing is a sport that I have fallen in love with. I think its flippin’ fun!! I love the whole process. I love the gym atmosphere. I love the stage. I love the incredibly dedicated Women I have met through my journey, and I intend on being a competitor for the remainder of my life, but I cannot be competition ready all year. It is difficult physically, mentally, and spiritually. It has its major challenges prepping for a competition. I want to be able to travel and eat amazing food. I want to be able to go out to dinner with my husband and enjoy the freedom of eating what I want to. I want to be able to enjoy Frozen Yogurt with my kiddo. I want my kiddo to see her Mama living a balanced life and enjoying fitness. Before getting into competing I used to drink one glass of wine a day, I would snack on that couch at night, and I would have two cheat meals a week! Im definitely not living like that either! I am still sporting the discipline in my eating that I gained from my competition prep, but I am allowing myself a few treats a week, not a day!
So for 8 months out of the year, I will not have a 6 pack, but I refuse to gain a ton of my weight back. Here is the thing… I came from 200 Lbs 2 years ago! I had very bad habits. I had a serious emotional attachment to food (I would dream about the next meal right when I finished my current one. I was eating Arby’s, Mcdonalds and Taco Bells DAILY) and I know Fitness and healthy living for daily life is a priority to me. So no, I am not eating pizza and donuts all day every day because I am not competing right now. I am eating clean because I want to feel good and look cute in my clothes. In fact for 90% of my food it is squeeky clean eating! With the exception of the things that I shared with you, I am eating nearly the same foods as I had during my competition preparation, but in more volume. The goal is to be full, energized, build muscle, but not gain a ton of fat back. I made that a huge priority with my Coach. I told her that yes I want to gain muscle, but I want my year to be balanced. She totally agreed with me! I do not want to yo yo and go from one extreme to the other. I don’t believe that is healthy for your body or your mind! To watch yourself go from 6 pack to 30 pounds over weight in a matter of 4 months is not a healthy for your health or your mind.
I had a conversation with my challengers from my Fit and Fab challenge group a few days ago. They were telling me that they felt like food is an addiction. That is like you’re breaking free from a bad addiction, and I have learned through my journey that they are absolutely right! I was addicted to certain foods before. And I can say that I still have lingering addictions to food. Everyone gets that way with sugar, carbs, fat! Its normal! We are programmed to enjoy foods emotionally! I still struggle with that. I cannot name one person I know (even women who compete) that do not struggle with that emotional attachment to food. As you progress in your fitness you just get better at saying no, and choosing something to serve your body. But it never gets easier. You learn over time that feeling better trumps that 10 minutes of enjoyment with your nachos and cake! The feeling of it going down is amazing, but the feeling that you have after you eat like that is worse.
So I have to constantly remind myself of that. So many people look at me and say “it comes easy to you. You just get it. You just don’t like that stuff. Its not as easy for me.” Please understand that this is always hard for me, and always will be. The act of saying no to a donut while my daughter eats one is hard. The act of going out to dinner on a Tuesday night and choosing fish, rice, and veggies is hard, while people eat ribs, burgers and fries in front of me. OF COURSE OF WHAT THAT STUFF GUYS. OF COURSE IN THE BACK OF MY MIND I AM AN YEARNING FOR IT. But I also know that there is a time and a place for that food, and it is a treat, not part of my daily living. I do know that that food causes me to be exhausted, bloated, stomach cramps, and I get acid reflux! I know that food does not support the way I want to fit into my cute clothes, or the way I want to rock my workout the next day. I have grown stronger and stronger in my will power to say NO! But it is still hard and I still flubber a bit and eat things I shouldn’t, but I force myself to get back on track and I remind myself why I live this way. I live this way because I know the difference I have been on both sides and this side rocks! This is the side where I feel clear headed, energized, sexy, no stomach issues, no gas, not bloat! This is the side where I feel confident and comfortable in my skin. This is the side where I walk into a room and I feel like I can conquer the world because I am in control of my urges.