Bikini Prep – 4 Weeks Out – Do as I say NOT as I do.

“Mom can you hold these. Daddy will eat them.” My daughter said to me as she handed me her bucket of fries at the County fair this afternoon. Even she knows that fries aren’t part of my plan at the moment.

Lately, I feel like a walking advertisement for what NOT to do in order to live a healthy lifestyle. Restrict your diet and limit yourself to only certain foods. Do excessive cardio each day. Eat much less than your body needs in order to perform efficiently. I hung my head when I entered the gym before 6am this week. Some people are proud that they hit the stair stepper before another cardio session, I tried to get there and get out and hoped that no one saw that I did close to 90 minutes of cardio most mornings. At 4 weeks out, we go from throttle to full throttle, so prep gets very intense. Do as I say NOT as I do.

It’s why I have struggled with this sport this season. What I am doing is not sustainable, recommended, normal or healthy. I was thinking about that as I wrapped up my 60 minutes on the stepper today before heading to the treadmill for 30 minutes of incline walking. It takes a certain kind of crazy person to put themselves through this type of a training to prepare for their sport. I’ve always known I wasn’t totally normal, but this is a little much.

I tell my clients all of the time that the goal when it comes to their fitness is to eat as much as possible while doing as little cardio as possible (even though many of my clients enjoy their weekly spin classes, as do I). If you can find that balance of food and training and still maintain a healthy physique, then you’ve won the jackpot. That’s always my goal in the off season (especially with the food). I’ve already Pinned a number of recipes that I’ll be diving into one prep is over this fall. Sheet pan chicken with figs and bread salad, 4-ingredient apple turnovers with an all-cheddar crust, a butternut squash and pecorino tart with crispy shallots. Can you tell I miss bread? Do as I say not as I do.

27 days out from show 1. I’ll head to Cleveland, Ohio on October 11th to see my best friend and college roommate and compete at the NPC Natural Northern on the 13th. Last year over 75 girls competed in this show (divided into different height classes comprised of 10-15 girls each). This is my warm up show to get the kinks out and to see an old friend. I’d love to get top 5 in my class. Last time I competed in the NPC (National Physique Committee) I got 6th in my class, and 2nd in Masters. I’d love to beat some more 20-year olds this time around.

14 days from that show, I’ll compete in the prestigious OCB Yorton Cup where I placed 2nd last year only two weeks after turning pro in the OCB. I am a pro in that league and an amateur in the NPC. The Yorton Cup is the big show, the one I care most about, and the competition is going to be killer. Many of the women to beat are also mothers in their late thirties, and one looks more amazing than the next. I have become friendly with these women over the past year, and I can’t wait to celebrate with them (and a cupcake) after the show. Amanda, pictured, is not competing this year. She owns an amazing dance studio in Monroe, NC with her husband and they are focused on other goals in 2018.

I do still meal prep like a beast and am extremely efficient with my time, balancing this prep with so many other responsibilities. I guess those are qualities still worthy of emulation. I ate cold shrimp in my car during halftime of the Navy game this weekend and last as I watched the other fans enjoy burgers and chips with a game of corn hole. I cannot remember the last time I attended a normal tailgate, as this is my 3rd fall competing.

I just finished my dinner, a dry green salad with some chicken. Fats and carbs are scarce at this stage of the game. Off to take a bath to distract me from my half empty stomach. Do as I say and not as I do for the next 6 weeks. I don’t want you to emulate my eating or cardio schedule right now. You should not be doing this much cardio.  To get stage lean you have to do what I’m doing now, which is why it lasts for a short time. Then bring on the bread.