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So, a few months ago I made this huge announcement. (to all those who would listen) I was going to train to compete in National Physique Committee (NPC) Figure Division “Bodybuilding” Competition. I still get a lot of, “Why do you want to do that?” and honestly, in short, I’ve always thought it was cool and I am an adult and one of the benefits of being an adult we can (within reason) do what we want. Me, I want to try to compete in a body building competition. I love the discipline, the results and the training. I chose figure over other division because for one I don’t want to do a routine in an eenie weenie teenie bikini, no thank you. Even though I did do gymnastics for 12 years. I feel like been there done that and want something new. I never even considered Bikini for a few reasons: I don’t want to do the glute pose (I know silly) I also want to look strong and not skinny. In my opinion (only mine) bikini is very lean competitors. I want to be strong and have more muscle definition. I believe the training and the food is just as hard but just didn’t appeal to me to pursue. So, when I announced this I was going to Hit the Stage in July 2017.
Welp, that was my naiveness and some misguided counseling. I believed that I could do it and I could have with real dedication and hard work. Unfortunately, this mom of three, student, entrepreneur, blogger, wife, and daughter has a lot of roles to fill. The workout regimen quickly became overwhelming which I tend to shut down when I am overwhelmed and do nothing at all which is what I did. It also was BORING! The online trainer that I had me doing a 9-week progression program of the SAME WORKOUTS EVERYDAY! I get bored easily and that lasted for about 3 weeks before I was like I need something different. I am a firm believer if you want to change you have to change the way you do things and that’s what I did. Godcidentally, I met another Mom (of four) who aspires to step on the stage one day and got the number of a great strength coach/personal trainer. During the assessment the first thing I said, “I don’t want to look strong; I want to BE strong and whatever is needed to get me there I will do.”
Whatever is Needed
Let me say two things before I explain the extravagant expense of this sport. First, it is a very expensive sport. Coaching, Training, Food, Bikini ($300+), Posing, Hair and Makeup and nope I won’t be tanning I was blessed with melanin and don’t need to go the Oompa Loompa route to stand out on stage. Thank God, saved my pockets and…… I am not one of those six figure bloggers so little campaigns here and there (and chasing down payments) weren’t going to finance this endeavor. So, when I said whatever it takes I meant it; spoke with my gym’s manager and landed a job Friday and Saturday overnights at my gym. Once I was able to finance my new hobby with my new part time gig. I hired my new Coach and have been training and seeing results ever since. When I started working with Damon McDonald of MuscleBabee.com I was 148 lbs. and had no clue about the world of bodybuilding I knew I just wanted to “get on stage.” I don’t even own a bikini so I still have a lot to do, I guess.
Trainers Need Trainers
I believe trainers need trainers. Well at least I do, I have expertise in large weightloss but I am not an expert in the world of bodybuilding. Couldn’t tell you about muscle symmetry and other hypertrophy or muscle gaining techniques like Damon. That is his strong skill, niche and why I went to him for training. You don’t go to you tennis coach to teach you Lacrosse. First, he killed me with tough workouts pushing me passed my limits each training. Now, I can Dumbbell Press 50lbs., seriously?! That is something that I would never attempt on my own. I travel an hour roundtrip to see him. Stick to his prescribed meal plan of measured food and try to train hard on my own. When I am not with him. I don’t chest press 50lbs on my own but I do push myself a little harder than I used to. The results guys I have lost 12 lbs. about gained muscle mass since working with him.
I was also told that I could train to compete with NO CARDIO! Yea, that was definitely misguided online training. You need to lose fat to show muscle and the best way to do that is low impact cardio. Every online trainer (which up until this point were the only trainers I had)has promoted no cardio and lots of resistance training which is great if you want to spend lots of time with them meaning month after month of investment but if you are trying to lose fat YOU NEED CARDIO to get results quickly; Personal Training 101. It also made me realize that yes, I work hard but there doesn’t need to be a set date in stone. This is my journey I call the shots so I extended my competition date to October and will see if I’m not ready then I’ll push it back some more.
Growing through the Process
Now, this is tough it takes a lot of discipline, planning, and attention. When I was a teen I used to watch “True Life” on MTV. The body builder ones were my favorite I also used to watch competitions on television with my Mom. I always saw it as cool but never put the forethought of the effort it took. I don’t think I would have pursued it if I really did get a second opinion I just saw the end results which are phenomenal. (At least in my opinion) But leaning your body, building muscle it takes years to become a professional to the people we see on television and that is another reason why I have extended my date. Not because I want to be a professional but I at least want to compete competitively. I only intend on doing one MAYBE two competitions. This is a bucket list kind of thing which is basically a list of things that you are curious to discover. I just want to see what you have to do and how it is to step on stage and compete. Cross that off the list and I am moving on to……American Ninja Warrior? I don’t know there are so many things to do when it comes to fitness, lots to try and discover and so far it’s been a love-hate journey.
Doing what I want
I think the best thing that has come out of this is my self-confidence in who I am and what I like to do. Previously, changing the date that I announced would have been a big ego blow. I would have cared what people think but as I become stronger physically I find emotionally stronger too. I know longer care what people think (as much). I’ve had opposition from women in the Church (caring way too much about what I do) judge me because I want to step on stage. At first, it hurt people that I thought was my “friends” or “church family” passing their own judgments on me. I also had stopped posting progress pictures because of caring what people think of what I am doing. But then I realized why do I care what they think? Why am I living my life for other people? So, once I got over myself and got over other’s ignorance I have been smashing goals. That alone is worth the journey.
How do you train to compete as a body builder?
Well, that’s a good question and if you’re looking for a specific workout plan I’m not there yet. Not sure if I will ever be because it’s not something I am passionate about learning how to program, (that’s why I hired Damon) but I can tell you what I have been doing so far. I lift super heavy with MuscleBabee aka Damon twice a week. I do cardio which has been 35 minute treadmill walking at 3.0 with an incline of 13.0; 2-3 times a week. I am supposed to do more but I’ve come along way. I think now that it’s sunny and I can do things outside I will increase that but I am supposed to be doing 6 days a week. I program my own workouts 3 days a week. Right now, I am doing my Bibles and Bootcamps Home Workouts with my Warrior Sisters.’
Prior to May Workout Schedule were all hypertrophy workouts:
Sunday’s Chest, Shoulders and Triceps with 10 minute sprints at the end. Jogging at 5.0 on the treadmill and sprinting uphill at 8.0 speed and 3.5 incline for 6-8 intervals with a 3.5 incline depending on my energy.
Monday’s Legs, Cardio
Tuesday Back and Biceps with 10 minute sprints at the end. Jogging at 5.0 on the treadmill and sprinting uphill at 8.0 speed and 3.5 incline for 6-8 intervals with a 3.5 incline depending on my energy.
Wednesday Train with Damon
Thursday Rest; Cardio
Friday Train with Damon
Saturday Rest, Cardio
What do you eat when you’re training to be a body builder?
It’s obviously specific to me and my goals. Right now, my goal is to achieve lean muscle, which According to livestrong.com, “Lean muscle is less of a scientific term and more a term of art that refers to muscle that is independent of, and not obscured by, fat.” My goal is lose fat without losing muscle. So, I eat 6 meals a day that consist of protein, fats and carbs but is very specific in measurement. I drink water, lots of water, broccoli, asparagus, Kale, spinach, Brussels sprouts and sweet potatoes is typically a veggie I would eat on a regular basis; My three many meals is usually probiotic yogurt, nuts, protein shakes (Use coupon code “FaithFueled” for 15% off) and I eat pretty much all lean meats that I can for variety: salmon, chicken, turkey, and other fish. Once is a while I have grass fed beef but I have never been a real beef person. I do try and struggle to stay away from salt so I do eat at home often (which is typical of people prepping). I also take Fish Oil, Vitamin C and a Multi-Vitamin for women. I have been using Collagen Peptides since the summer as well as BCAAs and I continue to use that daily. <These are both affiliate link I get a commission from the purchase: Use Coupon Code “SENDIT” for Free Shipping on the BCAAS)
What’s the new date?
So, I am a little more than 6 months from my new competition date, prayerfully, October 14, 2017. I have achieved a significant difference from my training and will continue to work towards my goal. In the meantime, I will be running my first Tough Mudder this May. In June, my husband and I are running my first 5k together which I am excited about he finally got tired of sitting on the sidelines and I love it we have another thing to do together. In July, I am going to IdeaWorld Blogfest so I have some really fun things to do until I get to the competition. It’s crazy how a weight loss journey turned into so much more but I am enjoying (most days) the new adventures. Thanks for checking in on my progress!
Do you have a goal (fitness or other) that you have set for this year? How is it going?