Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The Bodybuilding World

As you may know, both my boyfriend, J, and I compete (he in Bodybuilding, me in Figure). Prior to moving in together, I'd never lived with (much less dated) another competitor. At first, we were both thrilled at the prospect of having someone who completely understood contest prep and everything it entails. And then I started prepping for the 2009 Arnold, with J as my trainer. After we faced those challenges, I discovered what it feels like to be on the other side of the relationship with a competitor.

J & me at the 2010 LeHigh, the 1st show we did together.

As 2011 prep looms in the near future (4 weeks for me! EEK!), I find myself thinking about prep and the things we go through as competitors. When I read my friend Donloree's blog about what it's like to live with a Figure competitor, I got to thinking about what it's like to be a Figure competitor living with a Bodybuilder. There are some similarities, but also some very interesting differences.
  • When I tell J that he's "looking huge!" and he's a "beast," he grins and says "thank you!" When someone tells me I'm "looking huge," I cry.
  • We can't travel for more than an hour without stopping for a potty break for one of us (usually both of us).
  • Neither of us ever leave the house without our coolers; however, his is twice the size of mine. And is not pink.
  • I routinely tell him to check out pictures of half-naked women. He then critiques them and determines whether or not they'll be successful at a show. Yes, we both think this is normal.
  • He routinely tells me to check out pictures of guys in their underwear. I then critique them and determine whether or not they'll be successful at a show. Again, we both think this is normal.
  • It's not uncommon for J to drop his pants in the middle of the gym and go through his mandatory poses while he's in prep.
  • It's also not uncommon for either of us to strike a pose in the middle of a department store.
  • When we travel, I bring my pink cooler, filled with all my food for the duration of the visit. Since his food can't fit in a cooler, he brings packets of protein powder and oatmeal. We then make a beeline to the closest supplement store and buy a jug of protein that he'll use for the remainder of the visit.
  • He considers slow, meandering sight-seeing and museum visits "cardio" because they involve more movement than just lying on the couch.
  • While at the beach, we both pick out people who have the genetic potential to do well on stage. We then seriously discuss their shoulder to hip ratios and delt development. Yes, we both think this is normal, and usually don't even realize we're doing it.
  • The only non-diet food we have in the house are Girl Scout cookies. And they live in the freezer. We don't even have a bottle of ketchup or a stick of butter in the refrigerator.
  • When we're shopping, we go out to the car to eat at our scheduled meal times (coolers in the trunk), then go back into the mall to continue shopping.
When I watched some hilarious videos about a guy who wants to be a bodybuilder, I was forced to acknowledge that things that seem normal in the bodybuilding world may sound very strange to others. I know this won't be my world forever, but it is for the next few years. So if I bring my own food to a restaurant, randomly discuss someone's shoulder to hip ratio, or spontaneously strike a pose in the middle of a department store, rest assured I haven't gone completely off my rocker; I'm just living the bodybuilding lifestyle.

Off-season! October 2010


  1. WOW you 2 look amazing all bronzed up and ready in that first pic!

  2. You guys are looking awesome!! Woot! 4 weeks and then you're on prep for your Pro card which you WILL BE getting! So excited!

    My husband isn't even a bodybuilder and we totally think it's normal to look at pictures of half naked people and critique them. One of the oddest things is that he takes pictures of me in a bikini so that I can send them to other men (my trainer and nutritionist). Hilarious!!

    Keep up the good work, you're rocking!

  3. That is so awesome though! I get excited that at least my man is cool with giving him the same diet (only bigger portions) as myself. At least you're not tempted by someone who gorges on pizza when you're eating your chicken breast! :)

  4. I had to laugh a little when you said you didn't have ketchup or butter - that sounds pretty similar to my fridge that I share with my boyfriend. We keep it clean and anything "not clean" is in the freezer and must be thawed before being eaten! Unless it's alcohol. But that has it's own cupboard :-p

  5. Hahah I love it! Keep supporting each others' dreams!!

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