Monday, June 14, 2010

Look Ma! It's a Bodybuilder in its Natural Habitat!

Among the many challenges of contest prep is life balance. Because so much of the day revolves around training, cardio, meals, and food prep, it's really easy to get completely consumed by prep. I'll be the first to admit that I've been completely guilty of it. Because I usually don't feel well, I usually don't feel like doing anything that requires any extra or non-essential movement. Sometimes even getting up to heat up my food feels like a herculean effort, not to mention the multiple restroom trips necessitated by the gallon of water I drink a day!

But I feel it's really important to remember that there's more to life than just prep. There are relationships, activities, and work that all need attention too. I'm not idealistic enough to think that everything needs to be perfectly balanced - if that were the case, I wouldn't do well at the shows, because I wouldn't be devoting enough time to prep. However, there should be some sort of balance involved.

With that in mind, Jerry and I decided to attempt some "normal people" activities this weekend. On Saturday evening, we went to see The A-Team. (Actually, we went to see the Karate Kid, but since we failed to properly plan, it was sold out. So we went to the next best thing.) Granted, we didn't have the same movie theatre experience as most of the others there did, but we still had a fun time. We didn't get popcorn (which we both adore! With butter, of course.), but we did get a Diet Coke. And I brought my food in with me. I have this super cute cooler that looks like a purse, so I just put my tupperware in there with a small ice pack, and I'm set!

Similar but mine's cuter

Yesterday we decided to hit the beach. Hooray for living close to a beach for the first time in my life!! We packed up our beach stuff and our coolers (can't miss a meal!), and hit the road. An hour later, we were burning our feet on the hot (orange?) sand. We quickly discovered that apparently the other people at the beach clearly had none of the body dysmorphia we have. We saw all shapes and sizes of people, all having a fun time. While it was nice to get appreciate stares from others, it was also a good reminder for us that being lean, having a 6-pack, and competing aren't the truly important things in life. Being able to spend quality time with family and friends - hanging out on the beach, having a cook-out, playing in the waves - is food for the soul. We're looking forward to going back when we're not dieting and spending the whole day soaking up sun, eating concession stand food, and not worrying about getting home to do evening cardio.

Tryin' to get rid of the pasty white skin color we're both currently sporting

I'm glad we made the effort to get out of the house, away from our everyday routine, and see something different. Although neither of us felt 100% great with tons of energy, we found we did have enough energy to go somewhere and enjoy ourselves.

We're both looking forward to even more life balance after Team U. While we try to do Normal things every once in awhile just to feel sane, it's not the same as being able to spontaneously go somewhere without having to worry about packing enough food and getting our workouts in. Oh, I'm sure we'll still pack some food during the off-season, since we're both committed to staying in decent shape, but it won't be like the pressure of weighing, measuring, and packing food during prep.

A funny story to wrap things up ...

Since Sunday is Safeway Day for us, we stopped by the store to pick up our food for the week. Within 5 minutes of entering the store, we were again stared at. I started to wonder if I had sand in my hair or if my suit top was still tied, because a young woman continued to blatantly stare at us. She then walked right up to us and said in an amazed voice, "Are you guys, like REAL bodybuilders?" I just smiled and nodded, while Jerry pointed to me (like anyone would doubt he's a bodybuilder :P). She then continued with, "Wow! I've never seen one in person before!" I immediately pictured the Crocodile Hunter (rest his soul) exclaiming, "Wow! Look at these bodybuilder specimens in their natural habitat!" I kinda felt like some sort of odd animal species after that comment. But then again, I guess we WERE in our natural habitat: the grocery store!


  1. Great post! I couldn't agree more with you about learning balance!

  2. I loved your blog! So true, life is about balance and being able to spend time with family and friends doing "normal" fun stuff, that's totally the reason why I want to be I can spend valuable time with those that I care about.

    lol...loved the bodybuilder comment... :)

  3. Sounds like a great weekend! It's got to be nice and refreshing to get some perspective. It also can't hurt to be such a sexified couple ;) It is amazing that in the summer, people of all shapes and sizes come together at the pool or beach and seem to forget their self-concious tendencies.

  4. Im trying to find balance...i find it so hard to be able to do anything social without going mental about what im supposed to eat, makes me crazy! I have such an all or nothing when i mess up..i feel like F it, i already did something i shouldn't lets do more damage...i do try and do movies and such...the shore is hard though....

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