Yeah, I know – I’m the most inconsistent blogger you know. Doesn’t mean I’m inconsistent with my goals – they remain the same, and my efforts are always 100% and I never take my eye off what I want to achieve. This winter I have wondered if I would be able to pay my rent, momentarily ran out of hot water and gas and wondered if we were to become homeless, but still managed to keep my membership at the gym so I could keep going. I put everything on the line, not matter what it is; work, relationships or fitness – I always go all out, all or nothing, believing it will all be ok in the end. I was never a 9-5’er, playing it ‘safe’ so I could suffer through the day to be able to take that 2-week vacation somewhere to escape momentarily. I believe in something better, even though it is very risky and can be incredibly scary at times. I believe in ME, and that I can have fun 24/7 and make a living out of it at the same time. This belief is what kept me going, although I must admit – even that was tough at times. Things ARE becoming better; my husband got a kick-ass job in the city, and the jobs are lining up again for me, as a freelancer, after a dormant winter. We are not homeless and I’m still breathing. Of course, another setback happened last week (don’t they say these things always come in “threes”? well add 10 x that and you’re where I’m at) – when I injured my left knee while doing leg curls. I’ve always bragged about how strong my hamstrings are (I can compete with the biggest meat heads at the gym, which doesn’t say much, as they are all pretty wimpy down there, hehehe) – but this time I must have not warmed up enough and bang- something happened. To this day, I don’t know if it is my ACL, meniscus or just a dislocation or bruise of the patella that is causing the pain, but basically it hurts like hell while trying to squat/bend the knee with weight, while it’s not painful at all to stand on it or even run for a bit. So I’ve been doing light biking to get some motion /movement going and focusing on upper body this week. I got my diet back on track as I’m about 15 lbs above my ideal weight right now, and summer is coming… My body is still responding well to a strict diet, but lately I’ve become more aware of the metabolic damages one can do to the body while dieting for a show. There is no doubt, no matter what you do and who your coach is, that these practices are taxing on the body and the effects afterwards can be devastating. I’ve spoken to several of my fellow female competitors who have been telling me lately of extreme backlashes of dieting – blowing up 15-20 lbs in just a week, feeling week, emaciated, left with no energy. This can’t be healthy, or even safe. My body has always responded well to whatever I do, but I’m also a novice and I want to go forth with more awareness and knowledge about what extreme dieting does to my system to avoid future repercussions. I’m currently doing major research, aligning myself with people who are not so extreme, but still achieve great results in their clients. As you all know, I’m a big fan of Dana Linn Bailey – she is by no means modest in anything she does and very extreme when it comes to training, but I have to say she gave me a very sound diet and nothing silly the last week before the show. For my next show she will definitely be alongside me as my coach, and we’ve been in talks about a lengthier coach/client relationship, as I feel she is extremely motivating, supportive and inspirational – all the things I need in a mentor! On the diet side, I’ve really been attracted to Lean Bodies Consulting – a company that seem to have knowledge behind their theory. Something I dislike is when so called “experts” in the industry get defensive when I ask why they apply certain practices and regimens , claiming they have “x amount of years in the industry with x amount of wins to prove their success” and that should speak for itself. As a (relatively) intelligent person, this does not sit right with me. You live and you learn – you’ll meet tremendous amounts of personalities with a variety of theories, but you have to do your own research and decide what is, or seems right to you. Test out different programs, whether it be diet or training, and come up with the practice your body responds best to. There is never going to be an “absolute” in fitness. As we’ve seen – fat was once (and still is?) bad, carbs have been named the devil, and it has been proven you can even OD on protein.. When is the best time for what supplement, do they even work, and so on. If you were to spend your entire life reading up on all these theories, you still wouldn’t become wiser or graduate. The best way is TRIAL… and error (or hopefully success!)
My point with this article is: I’ve tried and ERRED in many ways over the past three years, but a big positive that has come out of my new journey is that I’m gaining muscle, getting stronger, fitter and even more motivated than I was when I started that fatal day three years ago at 35 pounds overweight and out of breath after 10 minutes on the treadmill… Things are different now, and although I’ve had my difficulties financially and work wise and life gets in the way, there is absolutely NO EXCUSE for me slacking, feeling ‘sorry’ for myself or jumping off the train… I’m right here, people – and gearing towards prepping for a new competition in late summer/early fall- stay tuned!!