Thursday, July 10, 2014

NPC Universe Weekend Recap

It's the week after NPC Universe (formerly Team Universe), and I'm feeling great! I'm still on a high from the weekend. As I'd suspected after pre-judging, I finished in the middle of both of my classes. I placed 8th out of 14 in Masters Figure A, and 12th out of 27 in Open Figure B.

Yes, we all compete to win, but honestly, I'm happy with my placings. I brought my absolute BEST look to the stage, and I'm so thrilled with how I looked on stage! I keep looking at the pictures, thinking, "Wow - is that really me??" I had a fun (albeit brief) time on stage, and know that all my hard work was worth it.

Time for Some Fun!
After the stress of the show was over, J and I finally got to relax. I had a photoshoot on Sunday with Chris Zimmerman (love the pics I've seen so far!), and then J and I went into NYC. We wandered around Times Square, went to Cake Boss Cafe (I got a Lobster Tail - my FAV), toured Ripley's Believe It Or Not, and then went to the top of the Empire State Building at 1 am. The view was spectacular!

We drove home on Monday, and I was back to work on Tuesday. I still have the dark color from the spray tan - it's slowly coming off in patches.

What's Next?
I'm still maintaining very close to my contest weight. I'm SO determined to stay around this weight. I'm up about 2 lbs so far, and the most I want to gain is 5 lbs. I know I need to be bigger and to add more muscle in order to successfully compete in Figure at the National level ... but honestly? I don't want to get any bigger. I LOVE how my body looks right now. I LOVE the size I am right now. I feel happy, beautiful, and confident. I want to feel like this ALL the time.

J and I are working on designing an approach for the rest of the year, in regards to training and diet. Right now, I'm back (mostly) to my pre-contest diet and training. I'm still doing AM and PM cardio, and my regular routine of weight training. There are only a few changes: we decreased cardio by a couple minutes, added back the options of running or incline treadmill for cardio, and removed the elliptical sprints in between weight exercise sets. We'll slowly cut back on intensity, and structure the workouts to the new goals we create.

THANK YOU SO MUCH for all your support and encouragement, and for following my journey to the stage! I appreciate it more than you know!

Here's a video recap of the Universe weekend and what's next for me.

Are there any topics you'd like to see me address? Do you have any questions you'd like me to answer? Let me know in the Comments below!

Saturday, July 5, 2014

I Feel Like a Winner

It's Team Universe weekend!! Yesterday was pre-judging and tonight is Finals. I didn't make first call-outs, but I'm not unhappy with how the show went. In fact, I'm thrilled with how I look and with what I brought to the stage. I couldn't be any happier!

Here's a video of my experiences so far this weekend.

Thank you for all your support and encouragement! It means so much to me!! I'm ready to have some fun on stage at Finals!

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Thoughts Before Team Universe

I'm sitting in the hotel room in Teaneck, NJ, relaxing before going to my tanning appointment. Team Universe pre-judging is TOMORROW!! Where did the time go?! Time seems to stand still and then fly by during prep. It feels like I've been in prep forever (or 6 months), but I still can't believe the show is tomorrow already!

Originally, we'd planned on driving up to NJ this morning (Thursday morning), but yesterday afternoon, I started thinking about driving up at night instead. We left the house at 11 pm last night and arrived at the hotel at 3 am. J drove the entire time, for which I'm extremely grateful! I caught a bit of sleep during the drive, but was still exhausted when we got to the hotel.

Today has been spent sleeping and just relaxing. This is my favorite part of prep.

Earlier this afternoon, I got checked in to the show and received a cool participation medal. I've never gotten one at a show before and think it's a cool gesture for competitors. I kinda feel like I've already won because I've got a medal. :)

I already feel like a winner!
I'm feeling alternately excited, nervous, and tired. I'm trying to stay focused on bringing the best ME possible, and not worrying about who else is here and what they look like (sometimes easier said than done). I'm also dealing with the crushing experience I had here in 2011. Trying not to let that affect my nerves, and resolving to just stay relaxed and enjoy the experience this year.

Tonight will be spent trying not to mess up my tan (also easier said than done) and just relaxing. Tomorrow at noon is the athletes' meeting, and then pre-judging starts at 2 pm ET. I'm guessing I'll be on stage around 3-4 pm.

Thank you for following my journey and I'll try to post some updates throughout the weekend!