Let’s go back in time. Back in 2012 when I started training for my very first NPC Bikini Competition. I really had no clue about the industry. All I knew was to look lean but feminine for the Bikini Division. I didn’t know about the sword. When I first stepped on stage and didn’t place I was soo Happy. Yes, Happy!! I was sooo happy how I looked and all the hard work I put into. I learned soo much through out the journey. I didn’t have a coach to guide me because I wanted to save money and decided to do research and ask my friends that competed in body building. I learned the basic aspect, but again I wasn’t competing bodybuilding, so had self doubts. I also didn’t want to bounce back after the competition. That was my biggest fear. The most difficult part of training was not just the overall look, but the mental aspect.
For those that competed can relate and for those who never competed here is what you need to know. You will have have self doubts. Especially if you are doing this alone. I highly recommend getting a coach, but not any trainer. Someone that has experience and has done this and knows the ins and out. As much as I am satisfied with my own progress, It’s stress free (well less stress) when you have someone to guide you and critique you. We are our worst critics.
Like I said do your research first before you join a team or hire a coach. Before you research, what do you want to accomplish? If you are looking too look good and possibly win then you want someone that has a good history. So if I ask you would you listen to a successful person for advice or a poor man off the streets? Why would you choose the successful person? it’s because you want to be successful. Same thing with a team. I chose Team Edge before I knew the history of our win, and that’s because we look good and work hard. I loved Ingrid Romero story and that’s what got me inspired 😉
Now, Back to my mental tip about self doubts. You will question yourself if you should be doing this, eating this, should you cut carbs, should you not, and etc. Then you will have co-workers talking behind your back or you just think people are talking about you. I was so paranoid of what people thought about me, especially if I didn’t win, or didn’t lean out in time and etc. Later you will have friends telling you, you look great, you can cheat, and etc. Don’t listen to them they don’t understand the overall look. I didn’t know either, but knew I was not there yet. When they tell you, it’s because you just look better then them, so they just compare how they look currently. Yes you may look great, which is awesome for an everyday but competition is different. So once you pass all the bumps on the road with the mental game,it feels amazing.
So going back to why I was happy, it’s because I was happy to learn how to optimize my results by doing it the healthy way versus purposely starving my way to my competition goals. Achieving the results you want takes time, dedication, and lots of HARD WORK. I achieved my competition goal I set for myself by losing 13 lbs without the benefit of a nutritionist or other current social dieting fad. I did so by customizing my own training and nutrition plan and by eliminating cravings. I feel I learned a lot about the benefits of proper nutrition and as if I won in my own mind by making smart, consistently healthy choices. After the show my biggest fear was hearing the horror stories of other competitors bouncing back too quickly and not being able to maintain the results I achieved through my hard work and dedication. I didn’t want to achieve my goals just for the show, but wanted to continue to look and feel good after the show and avoid starting all over or feel the need to overtrain. The key to success is learning and training your mind to maintain quality choices with both exercise and nutritional needs.
SO IS THE OVERALL SWORD IMPORTANT? NO. It’s a great accomplishment to have but then what? I have met IFBB Pros that never won a sword or even came in first. After doing couple local shows, I realized I lost the true value why I did the show in the beginning. We get soo caught up of winning and forget the feeling of hard work and dedication. Everyone has worked hard to get to where they are. Everyone has a drive, but there is one sword. Remember IT’S ABOUT YOUR SELF IMPROVEMENT. Better yourself every time. There is always room for improvement. JUST sharing the stage with all the women that worked hard is amazing!!! We all faced the mental battle and all won by stepping on stage. BE HUMBLE:) and SMILE!