Setting a goal and achieving it is an amazing experience. When it’s related to your health, it’s even better. Competing in a physique competition is one of those goals. For me it’s a killer reason to get in great shape with a non-negotiable deadline.
The day of the show is so much fun – getting glammed up and ready to shine on the stage in your awesome suit, crazy-dark tan, and sky-high stilettos, all the while strutting your stuff in your best body ever. You meet so many amazing people who know what you’ve been through to get there. You get to eat some treats and share competition secrets backstage. It is what you make it.
Part of the fun is also the process: the challenging workouts; testament of willpower; watching your body change and clothes fit differently; suit selection; costume preparation; practicing your walk; photoshoots. All of those things are an experience in this personal journey.
When I started competing in 2007, I always said I was doing it for fun and the moment it wasn’t fun anymore I’d stop doing it. My first five shows I loved. I was excited for the prep, nothing could get me down. I loved my grueling workouts, my strict diet, my routine, and the excitement of getting onstage. Win or not, I just loved showtime.
My last show in June of 2009 was different; it was pretty tough for me. I’d been through a few devastating events, including the death of three people close to me (all within months apart), and my boyfriend at the time broke up with me unexpectedly. I wasn’t mentally into my preparations and I was sick of dieting. The day of my show I wasn’t getting along well with my coach, my suit wasn’t quite right, and my tan was off. My friends who were coming to watch the show were in a small car accident and weren’t able to make it (luckily they weren’t hurt too badly!). I wasn’t having fun. After that show I decided to take a break; I needed to recoup and be with my friends and family and focus on life. I ended up taking more time off than I’d intended, but I feel it was the right thing for me. Now I’m excited to get on that SAF Elite Pro stage in October and I’m ready for the challenge!
So often we spend our competition prep focused on the end result, almost wishing the days and weeks away so we can get to that show date, and we forget about the whole process. The day of your show will go by so quickly so my advice is: enjoy the moment. Enjoy each and every moment of your preparation. I know I am.