Last year was a very difficult year for me. I moved states. I competed 4 times, changed coaches and tried to acclimate to Louisiana. I started the year at about 145 pounds and ended at 106! Huge changes.
This year I did two shows also. back to back, one week apart. I got used to seeing myself extremely lean and show ready. I moved back to Utah as well which was a huge stressor.
Right photos are from Goveners Cup in March 2019 and left are photos from Bayou Muscle April 2019.
I kept myself in positive spirits and kept training and continued on my meal plan as predicted. I never missed a training session, not one session of cardio. Eventually, the lack of sleep (From not having a bed) and the missed meals (From sharing kitchens) all added up and I wasn’t seeing the results I needed to be show ready to compete. I had two shows on my radar that I ended up pulling out of.
First of all, I need to be 100% with the entire plan to compete. You cant not sleep and you cant miss meals. So much goes into competing. Training, nutrition, cardio, sleep, supplements etc. You have to have them all balanced to be successful.
When I left Louisiana we left with literally the clothes on our backs and so the stress from this situation also added to higher cortisone levels which also works against you when your in show prep.
A week ago I decided to back out of this next show. Focus on me and my girls and try to get my life balanced once again.
I still have a coach, I still train every day, I’m still meal prepping. I’m still doing what I love I/m just allowing my body to recover and grow while staying lean. But I’d be lying if I said the weight gain, however small, didn’t bother me a bit. I’m used to seeing myself a certain way and I worked damn hard to look like that. But I can also train heavier now, see fuller muscle bodies and I feel full. Its nice too.
I can see my reflections in the mirrors at the gym and love the full muscle bodies. So I know its all in my head. But we all know bodybuilding is 100% mental. Well show prep or not its still mentally difficult.
After moving to Utah my friends common complaint was, “You look good but add 15-20 pounds and you’d be perfect!” It kind of bothered me a bit. Like they didn’t appreciate all the hard work I put in.
I can appreciate that what they were saying likely came from a good place but to me it devastated me. I felt like I wasn’t appreciated for who I was or whom I became.
Even my doctor told my daughter today he’s not sure if he likes my new look. I’m like wow! I’m healthy and fit. What’s not to like?
Since my last show in March I am up 8 pounds. Which is HUGE for me. I stayed tiny for months and months. But it’s interesting people now when they see me say I look way healthier and actually look leaner. Which is odd. I think the fact that my face isn’t sunk in is huge. Haha
But it’s still a huge adjustment for me. I’m not used to my reflection. I don’t always recognize the girl in the mirror. But I feel good and am happy so that should say something.
I know after my injury I embraced bodybuilding as an identity. I felt like I had to compensate for being forced into early retirement. I felt like I failed myself.
Bodybuilding gave me a purpose and an identity. It allowed me to stay competitive and push myself to limits I didn’t know I could.
I treat my body with respect and push it to the limits I didn’t know were possible. I am proud of who I am and who I became.