Sunday, August 30, 2009

Who's In The Spotlight?

Girls, we will be!!!
Not only do I have to practice the mandatory poses but I also have to kind of choreograph my walk for the night show presentation. This is our moment on stage to shine and we can add bends, bows, waves and a little flare to show off some personality for the judges and audience.

Here is my plan, since I don't have much help with this part. I am watching You Tube figure walk videos, printing out pictures from the computer, looking in magazines and practicing what I like in the mirror. I'm planning on taking them to the gym since there is plenty of room to walk and use the pictures to experiment with what works best
with the way my body moves. This is where modeling experience would come in handy. I have no clue what I'll end up putting together but I want to make sure my movements are fluid and I'm smiling the whole way through.
The diet, the cardio, the supplements-I have all these figured out-the posing is causing me anxiety now. I have to remember I still have eight weeks to practice. Plenty of time right? I read that at six to eight weeks out posing practice should be done at least 4 to 6 times a week. I'd better get busy. Ha! When am I not?

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Coasting Along

Saturday weight went well...LOST ANOTHER 116 now. Since the diet and cardio are working I won't have to change anything for the upcoming week. Woohoo!! No extra cardio right now and I will continue to follow the same diet.

I decided to get a second pair of shoes. The company I originally ordered my shoes from has been very slow in processing my return/exchange for a different size. I ordered the shoes three weeks ago, sent them back the day after I received them and they still haven't sent me any shoes. There is no 800 number to call. You can only contact them through email and they don't respond for several days. I sent them an ugly email letting them know I was very unsatisfied and that they need to cancel my order and refund my money. I'm not one to complain but I am very unhappy with their way of doing business. I am excited about my new shoes. Bought them at a bridal shop today and practiced in them most of the evening. Even wore them while making dinner.
Have you ever done plyometrics? I just started incorporating them into my workouts. I need more development in my quads and hamstrings and a trainer suggested I do a plyo workout to increase muscle growth. I do squat jumps, knee lifts to the front and side, and exercises to work my thigh muscles. I hope to see improvement as I do these. Doing plyometrics is fun and is good cardio to because you don't rest very long in between each exercise. You can read more about the workout here:

I do five exercises for 10 reps and 3 sets. The first time I did these I got pretty tired and sweaty. It is high intensity and great for muscle growth.
A friend of mine asked me for a turkey meatloaf recipe I use. This is for you Whitney. Stay motivated and eat clean. You'll reach your goal!
1 pound lean ground turkey
2 egg whites
1/2 cup oatmeal
chopped onion and green pepper
no salt added tomato sauce
parsley, oregano, basil, garlic, black pepper-how ever much you like
Form into loaf and place in coated pan, topped with tomato sauce and bake at 425 degrees until fully cooked.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Almost Another Week Gone By!

My diet is going well. I'm still staying on track with the Keto diet with carb load meals on Monday and Thursday. By the end of the no carb cycle my energy begins to lag so I look forward to carbing up and restoring my energy level. My training is going really good. I continue to get stronger and always make it a goal in the gym to increase number of reps or increase my weight. Today I worked shoulders and back. Here is my workout:

  • Barbell shoulder presses 3x10x55lbs

  • Side lateral raises 3x15x15lb dumbbell

  • Front EZ bar raises 3x8x35lb

  • Bent cable lateral raises 3x 15x10lb

  • Straight arm pulldowns 3x15x70lb

  • Front lat pulldowns 3x15x80lb

  • Seated cable rows 3x15x90lb

I continue to practice posing in front of a mirror at home in those 5 inch heels. Gosh, I really don't like them. I'm not used to walking in heels so its very difficult for me. I cleaned the house in them today. I wore them for about an hour. I guess eventually my arch will get used to them. Every Saturday I meet with my consultant to discuss my progress and we make changes where necessary. We didn't have to do anything different this week but if I don't lose another pound I'll have to up my cardio. I don't mind cardio so much anymore. I'm used to getting up, having my cup of coffee, and hitting the stationary bike or elliptical for 30 minutes. We probably only have to increase the amount of time by about 10 minutes for a total of 40 mins, then see what changes happen.

I found this really cute warm-up suit I want to order to wear for the day of the show. My plan is to have my name and a logo embroidered on the front and back. Check out this suit, its CUTE!

I'm still trying to decide what kind of logo. I'm not very artistic or creative when it comes to design. I'm sure there is a graphic somewhere out there that represents me.

Overall, this has been a pretty good week. It has flown by and that just means more work ahead for contest prep. This week I haven't felt ready but I'm getting used to this mental game of ups and downs. Trust me, one day you'll feel in tip top shape, ready to hit the stage and then the next day you feel like OMG! I won't be ready! You'll get past those feelings and remember as long as you are giving 100% and your best effort everyday to achieve an awesome physique...You'll come out a winner because you've pushed the limits! Good luck!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Nine Weeks Out

Peek at the bottom of this post for pictures of my progress so far.
I am really starting to lean out nicely. I'd hoped results would come quickly since I have been training so hard beginning the first of this year. I decided in March to compete in the October Bluegrass show and have been dieting for about 20 weeks now. The diet wasn't so bad at first. I could cheat just a little but now at nine weeks out. No Way! Not gonna chance it. I have worked too hard to get this far.

I was definitely tested today with birthday cake. Yum!! It looked really good and tasty. I love cake and icing and ice cream. It was tempting and hard to take my eyes off of but I sat like a good girl and ate my packed meal of chicken breast and green beans. Wow! I conquered the enemy!

I weighed in today at 117lbs. A total loss of about five pounds since starting my lean out phase.

Here are some new pics:

My focus for this week forward is to practice, practice, practice posing. It's not as easy as it looks and remember, gals. We are expected to hold our poses on stage with poise and confidence. No shaking allowed in front of the judges. I am still having trouble hitting the poses from time to time. Some days I can go right into them and some days I fidget alot. When you begin it feels awkward but the more you do the more natural feeling it becomes. I promise! I still need to remember to relax my face and smile. My plan is to practice three times a week for 15 minutes holding each of the four poses for at least 20 seconds.

The four mandatory poses are the front, side, back, and side. In the first picture I am in the back pose. The most important thing is spreading the lats and getting them stretched as far out as you can. The key is leaning forward and getting a deep breath, inhale, lift your chest up and really focus on pulling your lats out.
  • Lean Forward
  • Take a deep breath
  • Inhale and suck stomach in
  • Lift your chest up
  • Spread your lats as wide as possible

For your legs, flex everything as much as possible.

  • Push through to your toes
  • Squeeze your glutes in tight
  • Flex your calves by pushing up on toes

In the second picture, I am in the front pose. Use the same techniques for the back pose they are very much the same. And also:

  • Heels are together
  • Knees can be turned slightly out to pop the quad
  • Knees can be turned slightly in
  • Legs are long and tight, squeeze everything
  • Push through to the toes
  • Hands are relaxed but I find pointing my index finger and pushing back my thumb help tighten the arms

Remember, I am just an amateur and my poses aren't perfect. Yet! But hopefully by reading this, it will help you discover what works best for your physique, as well. So now posing will be an important part of my preparation from here forward.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Ten Weeks Out!

What have I been thinking alot about this week? HMMM? I keep wondering if I'll bring my weight and body fat percent down to the level I'm expecting. My goal is 9% or lower. I am also worried about losing muscle mass and size. I am using plenty of amino acids for recovery, strength and growth. I take three tablets before and after my workout. I drink a powder during my workout that has aminos and they are in my protein powder, too. Plus I am eating tons of meats packed with protein. My muscles shouldn't suffer too much loss. I continue to lift as heavy as possible.

My new diet, which I started this week leaves me with very little energy to get a good pump during my weight training and my reps are slower. My diet is basically a very low carb diet rich in protein sources and vegetables very low on the glycemic level. It is called a Ketogenic Diet because when your body runs out of glycogen stores your body begins to burn fat at a quicker pace as it uses it for energy, rather than carbohydrates, which causes the production of ketones. This can result in a possible 2 to 3 pound weight loss per week without losing muscle. You can read more about the diet here:

I will have carb load meals on Monday and Thursday to refuel my body. My muscles feel soft and my brain seems to be functioning slow, as I am having trouble wording these sentences. I feel like my brain is in a fog. So here is what I ate today! Breakfast included 1/2 grapefruit, 1/3 cup oatmeal and 6 egg whites, boiled. Mid-morning snack I had a can of tuna, 3 egg whites poached in microwave and a chopped tomato. Lunch was 5 oz of chicken breast and 2 cups of collards. Mid-day meal was a protein shake with one scoop of protein powder and dinner was 5 oz. of chicken fajita meat with a cup of broccoli. I will have 4 egg whites and 1 cup of veggies an hour before bed. Thursday I will replace this last meal with 1 cup of oatmeal, 4 oz banana, 6 oz sweet potato, 1 cup veggies and butter. I can't wait!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Stocked Up and Worked Up!

I start my a new diet Sunday and I am well prepared. I try to be prepared and have my fridge stocked with everything I need before I start and my food list is on the fridge. It helps keep my anxiety level low if food is on hand and prepared. Speaking of anxiety, this week was my worst for lack of sleep. I feel fine. My energy level isn't suffering yet but eventually it may catch up with me. I just cannot rest when I lie down for my mind takes over and I'm thinking about all the things I need to do tomorrow, the next day, then the next. I told my self to take it one day at a time. I have ten weeks of this to go and if I don't calm down I'll sabotage my success and progress I've make so far. Reciting the Serenity Prayer helped, then I got out of bed and spent some time on the net.

My foods you see here include frozen veggies, bags of broccoli, green beans, asparagus, stir-fry veggies, cauliflower. There are sweet potatoes, bananas, grapefruit, blueberries and of course oatmeal. There is turkey breast, ground turkey, lean ground beef, beef jerky, salad greens, green tea Crystal Light, sweetener, Mrs. Dash seasonings, eggs and my new diet scale. I'm not big on measuring food but I'll give it a try. I want to make sure I'm eating correct portions but I probably won't measure everything. I'm all set and ready to go for the upcoming week and I'll be meeting my consultant to see what changes in my workout need to be made.

I tried a new recipe last night because I was craving something sweet after dinner. I alternate protein powder flavors when I order to switch things up. Second to Beverly International's UMP I like Lean Protein Dessert Shake by BSN. I have tried chocolate fudge pudding flavor, yum and cinnamon roll which I'm using now. Here's a cinnamon roll recipe:
  • 2 scoops Lean Dessert Cinnamon Roll flavor
  • 1/4 cup egg whites
  • 1/4 cup water
  • Dash of salt

Mix into a brownie-like batter, put in microwave safe container and microwave for 1 to 1 1/2 minutes. I used small individual dessert dishes and microwaved each for 1 minute. Optional: top with a tablespoon of whipped heavy cream. You won't believe how good it tastes and you can use this recipe for any protein powder flavor when you crave something sweet.

I recommend subscribing to Beverly International Newsletter. They have awesome recipes for bodybuilders and figure competitors.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Before and After

So I realized that I didn't have any photos of my transformation. I thought "Hey, I'll build an album and put them up on the page. But do I really want to display myself in a bikini all over the net? "Ha!" I thought. "You'll only have hundreds of people looking at you, all alone up on a stage. Better get used to it." I have included a slideshow at the left of my page for you to see. Remember. Busy moms, soccer moms, couch potatoes, those who just can't seem to find the time to get in the gym, if I can do it being a busy student and waitress, anyone can!

It's a good idea to take pictures as you go along to really see your progress. One day you'll look in the mirror and start flexing muscles you never thought you had and probably won't dread photos anymore. You'll look and feel great!

My focus for today:
  • Eat breakfast
  • Go to gym work triceps and back-I'll mix up my exercises. I almost never do the same routine.
  • Go to grocery store. My new diet starts next week so I have to stock up. I'll be eating 70 eggs per week, 14 pounds of veggies and tons of chicken breast and turkey.
  • Return shoes that are too small
  • Remember to take my supplements
  • Drink lots of water to hydrate my muscles and reduce soreness
  • Do some school work

My best advice,

Make it a habit!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Love Them Shoes!

Got my 5" heels today! I can't wait to start practicing walking and posing in them. I had them on for about an hour today and they killed my feet. After an hour they were swollen and red. I got them a size smaller than what I normally wear so that I don't have excess shoe in the back. I read in an article that it doesn't look good on stage. But I'm wondering if they are a little too tight and my toes hang off the end. I may have to return them for a larger size. HHMMM? Yeap, my husband and I came to the conclusion that a bigger size probably would look better, wouldn't cramp my toes as badly and there probably wouldn't be much heel slack either. Gotta send them back. Here's the link I ordered them from:

Strict dieting is really hard and eating the same things gets really old. Eating is no longer for satisfaction as we are fueling our muscles while trying to lean down. I spend lots of time on the internet looking for new recipes and ways to season food. All dry spices, spray butter, vinegar (red wine, apple cider, white), and spicy mustard help add flavor to those veggies. I love roasting veggies in the oven with a light coat of evoo. Just keep surfing and you'll find tons of new ideas.

Yummm!! Are you missing those sweets? What if I told you you could have your cake and eat it too? I have discovered an awesome protein powder that you can use to make chocolate waffles, pudding, cookies, and protein pops. OMG!! Believe it and they taste really good too. Beverly International Ultimate Muscle Protein Powder is the best tasting and smoothest I have tried and all these recipes are easy to make.

Protein Pudding
1-2 scoops UMP
Heavy cream

In a bowl use 1 to 2 scoops UMP and slowly stir in enough water to make it pudding consistency them top with heavy whipped cream sweetened with splenda or stevia. It can also be frozen for about three hours if you want "ice cream."

Protein Waffles

2 scoops UMP chocolate
1/2 cup cooked oatmeal
4 egg whites
Enough water to make batter consistency

Mix all ingredients and cook in waffle iron or maker for 1 to 2 minutes and serve with sugar free syrup.

There are recipes for protein cookies, protein cakes and shakes at and another one I like is

Next week I start another new diet plan. I'll post it soon!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Chest/Triceps Workout

Today I worked chest and triceps and did 30 minutes of moderate intensity cardio to get my heart rate up to just above 120bpm. The diet is going okay I have been tempted to grab a cookie or snack but have resisted. Now I know what they mean by food withdrawal. Eventually I guess I"ll forget what flavorful food tastes like, but right now the smell is tantalizing. I have a pretty good hold on things to eat right now. I don't think I'll cheat because I'll trick myself into thinking I can get by with doing it more often. I'd rather sacrifice now then have to do a lot more cardio near the end of my training. Depending on my weight loss I may have to end up doing cardio twice in one day. Yuck!

So this fat burner I am taking is also taking my sleep. One of its ingredients is caffeine which I am pretty sensitive to because I don't drink alot of soda or coffee. I love an herbal tea called Sleepytime. It has all natural ingredients and works really quick to help put me to sleep without making me feel drunk or hungover in the morning.

I found a new website for supplement ordering the prices are lower than many others and shipping costs less too.

Tonight's dinner was sirloin, salad with balsamic vinegar and oil, and broccoli. Tomorrow I'll make turkey meatloaf. Yum!

Here's today's workout:

Tricep Dips 3x8x10lb
Pushdowns 3x10x90lb
Curl bar Overhead Extensions 3x12x10lb
Cable Flyes 3x10x40lb
Flat Bench DB Press 3x8x30lb
Pec Dec 3x10x60lb

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

12 Weeks Out

Back from vacation! It was awesome but it definitely went by too fast. Doesn't it always. So my return means I begin a pretty strict diet and up my supplement intake. I am following the diet previously posted with no snacking in between which I find to be very hard. Just sticking to eating scheduled meals and protein shakes will be a struggle but I am prepared. I went grocery shopping and stocked up on my major food items: chicken, turkey, steak, tons of vegetables, diet drinks, lots of water and sugar free jello. I've been really nervous all week about starting this strict diet and worrying about how my mood will be as time moves on. I am going to miss cereal, ice cream, granola bars, Mexican food, and hamburgers the most. I can smell them right now.

Tonight's dinner is cod, stir-fry veggies and a small salad. No dessert or sweets which I tend to look forward to after dinner. This week I have been imagining if all this is really possible. I am too far in the game to think otherwise. Ha! Can't turn back now. Apart from limited carbohydrates and fewer calories I am taking a fat metabolizer and fat reducer to speed up weight loss for the competition. I am at 121 lbs. today and plan to lose up to ten pounds to meet my body fat percent rate of about 10%. Skin and muscle is all I'll be by the end of this 12 week prep period.

So, what keeps me motivated. All the support and encouragement I get from friends, family, and gym goers. And most importantly, the support and help I get from my husband who has to put up with my whining. I could not do this without him and I know he'll be there by my side when the going gets tough. Also, I have pictures hanging on the refrigerator and keep my Oxygen magazines close by. I love Oxygen Mag. Its always filled with good advice, diet tips, recipes, new workout moves and the latest trends in fitness. I google and search the net for videos and articles. You Tube has alot of videos on fitness and figure competitors share their experiences as they prepare for shows. Made Fit TV and Jennifer Nicole Lee with BSN are ones I like to watch. I also read Beverly Int. Newsletters and have a binder with articles of stories of women who have competed before. They are a huge help in keeping me on track and set me straight, mentally too. I visit websites of Pro Figure Competitors and save them as favs and I read about different supplements and whats new to the market. There is alot to keep up with and I have been preparing for months but nothing describes how anxious I feel right now. I can only continue on this same path and feel inspired to keep on going when I look ahead and think about what I will have accomplished when this story as come to an end. I leave you with that.

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