Friday, July 6, 2012

Miss Maryland Figure 2012

Do you ever think of time in terms of "at this time next week" or "at this time two years ago"? I do it all the time, especially when thinking of big events or important milestones in my life.

At This Time Last Week
At this time last week, J and I were on our way to Towson, MD to check into the host hotel for the Maryland show. The morning started off busy for me. It felt weird NOT to do cardio immediately after waking up, and I headed to the gym to do a final shave before getting tanned later in the day. I met up with Jenny, one of my friends on the Bio-Built team (Jerry's training company), and we headed to Georgetown Cupcake to pick up some post-show treats.

Cupcakes anyone?
I also picked up another (super cute!) sports bra from Lululemon for a potential photoshoot following the show. Then I headed home to finish packing.

Ed helped me pack
After making our way through heavy traffic, J and I checked into the hotel and settled down for a nap. We were both nervous and irritable. The Bio-Built team met for a brief meeting before we headed down for the Check In/Weigh In at 5 pm.

J likes to hang out in the Weigh In room and visit with people he knows. I'd rather check in and get out of there. I get nervous seeing other competitors, because I always think everyone else looks FAR better than me and I psych myself out. While J chatted with friends, I headed into the spray tan area.

This was the first time I'd ever used Liquid Sun Rayz products and I was nervous about it (I'm a Jan Tana girl). But I have a new favorite tanning company now! LSR products and staff are awesome! They thought of small details, were friendly and professional, and the color turned out beautiful! The best thing? The tan dried in under 5 hours! VICTORY!!!

Up All Night
We were up most of the night. We were both exhausted, but barely managed to get any sleep due to several reasons:
  • Jerry needed to eat every 2 hours thoughout most of the night.
  • A ginormous storm/tornado ripped through the East Coast and knocked out power to most of the surrounding states. Luckily, the Sheraton didn't lose power; we think it switched to a generator for a day or so, though.
  • A group of high school Lacrosse players in the room next door decided it was appropriate and polite to blast loud music at 1 am and run around the hallways, yelling at the top of their lungs. Jerry called the front desk THREE times to complain and finally put on his Adult Panties and went next door to yell at them. Note to the Sheraton: Next time you host bodybuilders at your hotel, do NOT put rowdy kids in the room next door. The two groups do not mix well together.
Show Day!
Despite being up for most of the night, when 6 am rolled around, we were both bright-eyed and bushy tailed. It was finally FINALLY show day!! I put my on Competition Face (stage makeup), clipped in my new hair extensions, and was ready to rock and roll!

Competition Face and Hair
Like most shows I've been to, there was a lot of sitting around and waiting. Because of the widespread power outtages, there were some unexpected last-minute issues and the show started late. We chilled backstage most of the time, visited with friends, and occasionally snuck into the auditorium to watch parts of the show.

Team Bio-Built
One of the coolest aspects of this show was having friends backstage. Team Bio-Built consisted of Jenny, Beka, Mary, me, and Jerry. Jerry trained all of us Figure girls for the show, and we were all ready to present our best! This was the very first show for the other girls, so I'd worked with them on posing, presentation, and other girly information, while Jerry did their training and nutrition plans.

Jerry and His Team Bio-Built Girls
Bio-Built Girls: Me, Beka, Mary, Jenny
I also had several other friends backstage, including Debi and Kelly. I met a few online friends in person, which was very cool also!

Debi and me

Shelly "The Birthday Girl" and me
Mary and me
Beka and me
Jenny and me
Jerry and me with Kevin Levrone

Stepping on Stage
One of my favorite aspects of competing is stepping on stage. And owning it. Knowing that I look my absolute best and the 20-week journey to get to this point has all been worth it. My smile is brighter. My shoulders go back, my chest goes out, my chin goes up ... and I shine!

My Moment
It was so great to see so many familiar faces in the crowd! I could hear people cheering for me and yelling my name. I tried to acknowledge people to let them know I heard them; it means SO much that they were there.

As I said in my last blog, I WON!! I placed 1st in the Maryland State show and 1st in the East Coast Classic. The Maryland show was only open to Maryland residents, while the East Coast Classic was open to all U.S. residents.

1st Place, East Coast Classic!
I also won the Overall in both shows! I think I'm still in shock and awe! After I won the East Coast Classic Overall, I walked off-stage straight into Jerry's arms. I started crying and saying, "Baby, we did it!!" That was my favorite moment of the whole night.

It was truly a team effort. Jerry and I both had moments of struggle, random breakdowns, and periodic episodes of intense self-doubt. But we both stuck through it and helped the other stay strong. I can't thank him enough for his support and encouragement. Not only is he the best coach, he's the best boyfriend!

We did it!!
After all was said and done, Team Bio-Built walked away with 5 swords and 2 Overall trophies! Jerry placed 4th and 5th in his classes, and Jenny placed 5th in her class.

Our hardware. Swords are in the boxes!
Team Bio-Built after a long, fun day!
Everyone brought their absolute BEST to the stage, and I'm SO proud of my whole team!!!

Thank you SO VERY much to all of you who supported me, encouraged me, and believed in me. You helped me take two steps forward when I thought I couldn't take another step. Thank you to Jerry, Mom and Dad, Jaimee, Jeffrey and James, Team Bio-Built, Angela, Donloree, the Bobettes, Debi, Jessie, my bloggy friends, my Facebook friends, my co-workers, my gym friends, and so many others.

Jerry and his swords
It's time to enjoy the summer!


  1. I am just so happy for you that there are tears streaming down my face. You worked so hard, went after it and got it. Blessings!!

  2. So awesome! I love it. I can't even believe it has already been a week. Where are you guys going to put those swords?! :D

  3. I love your post! Congrats again :) You look AMAZING. You are definitely providing motivation for me in this last week of prep!

  4. oh wow!!!! ive said this a bazillion times before,but you are really inspiring and amazing! i have truly enjoyed following along on your journey and am simply amazed at how you transformed so much between shows!!!!!

    you have me thinking about doing the east coast classic next year...i live about 45 min from DC and maryland isnt that far from me,just about 3 hours.....

    you got my wheels turning chica!!!!
    once again,congrats on you and J to a prep well done!!!

  5. Literally brought tears to my eyes. SO very happy for and proud of you Kari!!! xoxox

  6. I love your story! Thank you for truely are an inspiration!
    I can't wait to get to the gym tonite!
    Thanks for the extra motivation!
    Nicky Molski(from WI)

  7. You rock! Love all the pics! Take care.

  8. Hi Kari,
    Awesome pictures and definitely consistency in workout is behind your success. We must exercise regularly to stay healthy and active and to prevent from major health disease like depression, cardio problems, certain types of cancer and diabetes.

  9. Wow I definitely want to be a fitness trainer and look at all those(uhm..figures). ;) I really enjoyed hanging around your blog. Its very inspiring and the pics are great. Keep it up!