Competing in a figure or bikini competition had been on my bucket list for some time now.
Several months ago, a couple of clients brought it up.
“Weren’t you thinking of competing?! You should do it!”
They reminded me that I inspire others, but this time they were inspiring me.
I did literally just a smidge of research and found one that was near my home. It was 16 weeks away–long enough for me to train for it and just soon enough to put a little panic in my heart ;).
I drew inspiration from my fitness icons like Nicole Wilkins, who does an amazing job balancing femininity and strength.
I entered with my primary motivation being to get my glutes and legs to a place I was really proud of.
I could think of nothing more motivating than donning that sparkly bikini in unflattering light. 😉
I had no intention of placing or winning, knowing full well that if I was brave enough to get on stage I would be already be a winner.
And I did it! I count bravery as a big ole win. 😉
Here I am in Bikini Open Class C:
That said, here are three things I would recommend to a newbie competitor and what I would have done differently:
1. Actually Gone to See a Show Before I Entered One 😉
I am laughing as I type this. It seems so obvious! I assumed that if I was in the shape of my life I’d be good to go!
Nope! Not at all!
So much is based on posing and stage presentation. I had no idea what to expect and it showed. As I stood onstage and they announced the winners, I clapped happily for them. Ha! No one else, just me.
Oh well. I was happy for them!
It seemed silly to just stand there, but that apparently was what I was supposed to do.
I’d also been advised to not put my hand on my hip and that it was an outdated pose. Well, every single girl posed with her hand on her hip. Not me! If I’d seen a show, I’d have known. I’d have also known to pop my foot out!
2. Not Assume I Wouldn’t Place
I gotta say, I don’t have world’s perfect body but I’m pretty darn fit. I don’t think I gave myself enough credit. I was as fit as others. I had a place. If I’d known then what I know now, I would have had the confidence to put my head in the game.
Here I am with some other bikini beauties and my own trainer.
3. Tracked My Macronutrients Sooner
This is a whole other blog post that should be titled “When Just Eating Real Food Isn’t Enough.”
Stay tuned for that one!!!!
As a super healthy eater and avid exerciser, I just assumed I’d not indulge to get ready for this thing.
I’m always happy to say a loving “see you soon” to wine, trail mix, and Quest bars.
I did that and well, it wasn’t working. When you’re already 90% clean eating and work out hard, there aren’t too many places to go.
You have to mix it up.
Inspired by other fitness icons I follow on social media like former football player Joe Donnelly and scientist/bodybuilder “BioLayne” Norton, I began tracking my macros.
Holy banjongas, what a difference. I basically doubled my carb consumption, increased my protein intake by 25% and watched the body fat melt from the 16% range to the 10% range.
Of course I ramped up my workouts.
But for fellow clean eaters, even in the paleo and primal realm, who would like to drop body fat, try counting your macros.
Plus, we’re humans and going to have the wine and trail mix sometimes. This shows you how those indulgences might fit in.
Tracking my macronutrients took the guessing out of everything.
I was (and am) eating like a horse.
Had I known about this I would have arrived at my goal way sooner.
My favorite part of competing:
Leaning to count macros! See above!
Having quads like the above!
Learning I can efficiently train my lower body more than once a week for optimal results.
No weird weight swings afterward. I’m still sparkly bikini ready ten days after.
The after party! A martini and my favorite chicken and veggies (and even a few waffle fries) from AZ88 and a little dancing to boot.
My amazing hair and makeup done by my adorable client Afton Cisco.
Having my girls cheer me on! A few special thanks to my mom for being there all day, my clients Jill and Steve for nudging me to sign up, and my fun trainer Scott Keppel. He makes the dreaded leg day pretty fun. 🙂
Here we are ready to celebrate! The cool thing about a competition tan is no need to whiten your teeth!!!! Ha! 😉
Will I do another?
That said, I felt a calling to the figure class. My body seems more figure-ish than bikini-ish.
So that might be a bone I need to pick.
Thanks for reading!
Until next time!