Friday, December 28, 2012

18 Weeks Out: Off Season Gone in a Flash

There was a time, a few weeks ago, where I wasn't even sure if I was going to prep. I tend to get a little hard on myself, and the guilty feeling can weigh on a person like no other. However, it IS coming. I do not wish to continue wasting any more time... I want to see the improvements I have made in my muscularity, and I KNOW they are there! My booty is SUPA round... Am I itching to see some good booty contest photos? HELLS YES!

18 Weeks Out... From What?
I am currently 18 weeks out tomorrow from the Emerald Cup in Bellevue, WA (Seattle for those across the country). I have a few other shows I am considering, but really want to experience a big show like the Emerald. I am also considering the Empire Classic, which is the following weekend here in Spokane. A gf of mine wants to do the Tanji Johnson at the end of March, but I'm certain I won't be ready by then.

I have really been wanting to do the Emerald Cup (I cancelled on this last year due to a tight budget), and as we found out at my first competition last year, my muscularity is a bit more than the local shows. :)  At the Empire Classic, they were looking for a “softer” look in Bikini… (Side Rant: This seriously pisses me off. It’s an effing Body Building competition and judges were looking for a soft look?!) But I’m an adult and will be gracious about my placing (HAHA). It just goes to show that my physique would probably do better in a bigger show.

I've got a couple tricks (and perhaps a few more shows) up my sleeve, but we'll talk about that when the time comes. :)

Oh, improvement season.
Yeah sure, I liked my off season alright. A little too much some days. I can still barely imagine having gone through prep last year like I did. My work life went crazy and I'm a bit nervous about juggling it all again, in addition to Bang’s Lawn Care again… Which I fully expect to be busier than last year. Holy prep gods, help me.

But to be really honest, I found the off season just to be confusing! I almost felt like I ended up with a skewed view of food and working out. It took me a LONG time to not feel conflicted about eating a whole wheat english muffin with almond butter. And it took all of my mental strength not to use working out as a "punishment" for eating bad.

On the other hand, it was really nice to not NEED to be concerned with EVERYTHING! I slept in, I drank sugary coffees when I felt like it, I did lifts with NO CARDIO. Bliss.

Other bonuses about off season? Lifting heavy, bigger boobs, not being all shakey & depleted all the time. Oh yeah, and HAVING time!!

My main offseason focuses were the BOOTAY and my abs. I have had no abs to this point, and can't wait to see them poke out like little hawaiian sweet rolls (yeah, prep time=food analogies). And that ass has been hurting all year. I tried a difficult rep scheme & weekly schedule geared towards gains to see what I could pull out. I get accused of over-training ALL. The. Time. from people in the gym, but I'm not a huge believer in overtraining. I think its a lot more difficult to overtrain than people think. With proper nutrition, your body can do amazing things you couldn't even fathom.

That all being said, I trained my glutes 3x a week in my off season (Monday - quads/glutes, Weds- hams/glutes, Fri-glutes), and my abs 3x a week. Spaced all appropriately for rest, it was difficult and my legs always hurt. It is important to have the proper nutrition, sleep, and stretching if going this route! I will admit that I struggled with stretching toward the end of this year, and therefore hurt my SI (again) but this is a feasible thing if you're looking to make big improvements! Really hoping to see some big improvements in the leg overall! Quads, glutes, hams... I want it all!

Prep Time.
Lets go. Starting off nice and easy with low low cardio. Just nice, steady and consistent! I have a hard enough time getting the will to do cardio, so starting slow is my best bet. I’m starting at a higher weight this year, since I didn’t do as great of a job at keeping lean year round… Happy marriage weight! I guess it's just another chance to learn that lesson.

I’ve been dragging my heels a bit on the morning cardio, but it will happen! Diet is in lockdown, and I’m gearing up for a hard 5 months of training.

Who Makes Goals During Prep?
I want to know... Who out there has goals to reach within prep? Do you have a weight goal? Or a body fat goal? Are you looking for improvement photos?? I just want to know.

My top goal this prep, is to see improvements on my physique. I've continued to lift and lift a lot and lift a lot of heavy things, so I NEED to see what's under here. :) And the real improvement I want to see, is AGAIN the booty lol... I want stage Glutes better than this! (Justine Munro glutes, anyone?)

Let’s go BIKINI BEAST!!!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Quick List of Reasons to be Alive: November 28th, 2012.

I am really grumpy today. I'm trying to blame it on the full moon but I know what it really is... My body hurts.

I hate to sound like a complainer - and I HATE to be the constant complainer. But sometimes, you genuinely do hurt and things go wrong. Living in my body has been extremely tiring lately. I'm in pain from the moment I get up in the morning, feel the pain radiating in my legs, hips, & back all day long, and until I lay down at night. It gets more exhausting and I feel more hopeless as the days progress.

Since I hate complainers, and am trying to push this practice away from myself, I'm resurrecting my Quick List of Reasons to be Alive. And I don't mean that the alternative is not being alive & breathing... We're talking ALIVE as in thriving, happy and alert. The purpose is to retrain your mind to focus on the positive.

Try it yourself whenever you're feeling anything but happy, it really helps!

Without further adieu ---

Quick List of Reasons to be ALIVE: November 28th, 2012.
1. Because I am NOT a quitter and I am not weak.
2. Because the moment I conquer the pain will be sweet!
3. I have dreams and can't deny them the attempt to see reality!
4. I have a husband and family that need me to continue pushing.
5. Because I hate this pain and will do anything to kill it.

Hope you all are having a wonderful Wednesday! Push hard, keep smiling, and know that you are loved!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Suits For Sale!

Hey ladies! 

I'm selling a couple of suits - Always looking ahead into what I want to do with my look this year! ;)

Both are Suits For You pieces, with padded rounded B-Cup that would fit an A-C cup. Scrunch Back Bottoms fit a 0-2 jean, made for a 25 inch waist/around 32" hips.
Coral Lycra Suit - with Thin Silver Connectors, never worn on stage, paid $120 for it - will take $50 OBO.
The Burgundy suit -  Burgundy Mist Hologram fabric w/large silver connectors and Custom Crystal Galaxy detail. Was only worn once and was cleaned immediately after stage use. I paid $380 for the suit, will take $200 OBO.

Email me if interested! - - Never too early to think about a new suit for the upcoming season! :)

Friday, November 16, 2012

Down But Not Out (& Wedding Photos!)

Seems like this happens to me about once a year, where my body likes to remind me that I am not all powerful and to be humble. The onset of cold weather often makes my SI, hamstrings, and back tighten up which brings some immense pain. So, while I'm flat on my back... I'm planning some workouts, finishing a competition schedule for the spring, and put together a slideshow finally!


Saturday, October 27, 2012

Digging Deep

When one rarely posts anymore, one also has no clue how to start this thing! As you may or may not have noticed, I've barely been on here.. Blogging is a luxury I simply haven't had time for. With juggling such a crazy schedule, I feel bad for taking that time to sit and write. :( And blogger has been blocked at work (where I used to do my blogging... whuuups). Its so sad to me how busy I am, but there is no end to that in sight. Working approximately a 60 hour work week at the hospital, and another 5-10 to Bang's Lawn Care.

I found myself crying in a bath the other night just from feeling so weary and bummed that I barely see my new husband, and something in me made my heart realize that we work so hard to create a better future. The lessons I learned in prep, have also become useful in life lately.

Such a hard lesson to learn, but happiness is the best choice. Whatever situation you're in, choosing to go with the flow and still be happy with your life will make it seem so much more beautiful and fulfilling. 

Mrs. Bang.
Being Mrs. Bang is the shit though! So much fun to be had calling myself and being called Mrs. Bang... BWAHAHAHA! I don't even need a back up stripper name! LOL! ;) Teasing, teasing... I don't get the chance to say things like that working at a Catholic hospital.
My dear friend Madeleine married us, and we got married in front of this mantle that is now in our house!

hehe! Our guests rated our first kiss!

And! My husband is THE best. We are going through a transition with Bang's Lawn Care, into the end of the season so he is looking for Winter alternatives. Even with how busy I am, he takes the time to come have breakfast with me some days and has picked up the slack in chores. And nesting into our home has been so much fun.

Not sure who is interested in a Wedding post... If I get enough requests I'll put up some slide shows. ;)

OOH! You haven't met Anderson!
Such a cutie!

SUPER big puppy

Just a big baby, like all Danes :)

We got this pup a few weeks ago to keep Zeke company during the long days while we're both away. And they're pretty good buddies so far! :)

He is SO dang cute! He has the happiest, sunny personality... He wags his tail with his whole body, his paws are so big and heavy that he's really cute & clumsy, and he gives kisses like no body's business!

He's about 4 months old and I think a little over 50 lbs now. Might be a BIG boy! 

Like I always say, we have a little habit of getting in over our heads really quickly... Haha!

Digging Deep.
Now, while I am insanely busy... I am digging deep for my goals. Although I gained a little more fat than I wanted in my off-season, I have successfully added a couple pounds of muscle and I'm pretty sure its mostly in my legs & abs... Only time will tell as I am dropping fat. But my lil booty is tightening up in a big way! And I really just want to impress myself in the improvements I've made from last prep.

So, I'm thinking prep is going to start at the beginning of the year. I've got a few shows in mind but dates aren't tied down on all of them yet, and I want to be sure I'm ready! And knowing that I have a bit more fat to lose, I'm in the middle of a few weeks stint of "prep". Tightening up the diet and still pulling out 2-a-days.

It stinks! It means I get up at 4am and don't get home until after 6pm. But everyday I wake up and remind myself that I am working so hard to make a better future. I don't want to be in the same place I am right now in 5 years.

So I bust ass, try to juggle it all, try not to disappoint those I love, while not getting down on myself when I do... And sometimes... That's all you can do!

And I know you are all digging deep every day! What shows are you all planning on this year?? If you're not competing, what are your goals??

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Hello Again, Hello

Not gonna lie, my mother has really rubbed Neil Diamond off onto my heart lately. Anyway, HIEEEE! I can't believe how long its been since I've blogged! In my (clearly delusional) head, I thought it had probably been about a month since I've blogged, and it has actually been TWO! Oh my, so much to catch up on!

Headless Chickens.
Figuratively. I'm going crazy up in over here! Where have I been? I've been everywhere, man. I don't even know where to start!

So, I have... OMG 16 days until I wed the love of my life.  I'm beyond thrilled, and haven't EVEN been stressed out about planning this shindig. 

But first!
Ah life. Its fun, isn't it? I am still working overtime at my hospital job. And our department is completely undergoing a whole restructurization... And the unexpected wonderful part about it... The employees have complete control.  I absolutely love working for an organization (although I don't always love the job itself) that will let their workers create what works! Because who knows better than the professionals that have their hand in it every day, versus management who only looks at it.

And also still working overtime at my un-paid, working-for-my-future job of Bang's Lawn Care. Over time, I have been able to create somewhat of a schedule for myself and develop processes that make it more efficient. Its been kind of crazy to create these things out of thin air and make it work! I've been able to get my work with BLC down to one day a week, which is always a weekend day to get all of these things done. And I've never done books/invoicing/scheduling/customer communications for a business before, so this is pulling from a very different place in my heart to do all of this. 

All of this to say, my weeks are JAM PACKED. Between PSHMC & BLC, am working about a 50-60 hour week, trying to plan a wedding, working out, meal prepping, and dealing with a naughty dog lately. Pure craziness.

The Dane.
Since you probably caught the naughty dog bit, yeah Zeke. This guy really needs a buddy. :( It makes me sad to think that he had a friend from the moment we brought him home, until Molly went to puppy heaven in May he has been all alone.  He's been acting out here and there.  I love the benefits to having one dog (especially when they're more like livestock), but poor Zekey is so lonely. We may be looking to stud him soon and get a pup. That boy is so handsome, he NEEDS to have puppies. :)

Wanna hear what he did on Monday night?  I woke up Tuesday morning to: A box of kleenex completely shredded apart, a lamp knocked almost into the toilet, AND....

He ate a whole batch. ONE DOZEN. vanilla, gluten-free cupcakes off the counter (which were covered!)  wrappers and all. Cripes. Pretty thankful they weren't chocolate. I really need to get a camera and get this shit documented. Can you imagine what that would have looked like?! NOM NOM NOM!! HAHAHAHA!

I'm sure some of you know, but I was married before. This blog actually blossomed out of finding myself after my 10 month marriage ended (my ex wasn't ready to be faithful/married to someone), and I'm SO glad I have had the opportunity to find the right person for me. The beautiful thing?  This experience in being engaged has been completely different, not stressful, completely loving and understanding and FUN...
It has made being engaged... seem like the first time. :)

I love everything that is coming together right now. Like I mentioned last time, we chose to go with a very "country chic" wedding. I love the shabby chic feel to things, and reusing old materials. Nothing matches, and I don't even have colors! LOL! Pinks, browns, creme, champagne, copper, bronze... Its going to be lovely.

With all of the "country chic" thing going on, we have had a TON of projects with this. We made ALL of our reception tables together, made lanterns, made our guestbook, made our party favors, made fun games for our guests, made signs, etc... But mostly, we have done them together. :) Awwww, sigh, swoon! Haha!
Hey BLOGGER, not sure if you knew or not but this STILL doesn't work!
Btw, these are our favors... Send us off with a BANG! HAHA!

Signs directing to our Wedding.

Homemade bouts!

I can't wait to show you all pictures! And it will be here soon enough!! :)

Wedd Shred.
Yeah, so I've been back into the full swing of workouts. Sometimes I try to make it to morning cardio, but never beat myself up if I don't. And really, shouldn't even try until after the wedding. This bride needs SLEEP! It took me quite a while to get to this place, mentally and emotionally.

Prep was a serious mind-fuck. Excuse my language, but it is! Finishing prep was a mental battle I wasn't prepared to deal with. I thought I was, but I wasn't. It took me a long time to where I was ready to say no to things again, feel good about moderation, look forward to my planned workouts again! My weight has been steady, and I'm fine with where I'm at right now. Regardless of goals, sometimes one just needs to rest in the love of working out.

And so speaking of goals, the one thing that brought me back to this place... Was finally watching my competition video. It took a couple of months post-comp to get it, but then I had it for months... And didn't watch it. I kept saying that I wasn't ready, didn't want to feel critical of myself on stage... Mostly I was just insecure...

And then I watched it.    And my mind was blown.   The person that I knew I was at that moment, came out and projected perfectly on stage and on camera. I was actually impressed with myself! I'll admit, that I had some feelings regarding my placing after watching it... However, it definitely brought a renewed zeal into my workouts. It isn't that I want to lose all of this weight I have gained, but more that I am perfectly capable of being whatever I want. And loving who I am as an athlete, and challenging myself because I like to... regardless of my weight or fat content. Or running because I enjoy the challenge, regardless of what it might do to my muscle mass. :)

Although I don't have an exact schedule down yet, I will tell you that I have a string of competitions planned for next year. Spring actually! It may only be September, but Christmas will be here before I know it and it will be time to prep again. Its actually hard NOT to prep right now, watching so many competitors get ready for a local competition occurring the same night as our wedding and watching pros on their journeys to the Olympia. 

Speaking of the Olympia, we may (or may not) be going! The Olympia takes place the week of our honeymoon and we may be popping through to watch a couple of nights of competitions and perhaps hit up the Expo! We'll see... Still trying to talk P into it. ;)

Can't promise I'll be able to blog again before the wedding... All of the big stuff is coming now! Rehearsal, rehearsal dinner, bachelor/bachelorette parties, and the wedding itself!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Some Blues & Some Bliss

Oh there you are, Blues. I wasn't sure we'd ever meet.

In retrospect, I should have known it would happen eventually. Its just nature. Cause and effect. Chew and swallow. Blues goes with competing.

After finally coming to a point to where I could talk about Molly again without bawling my eyes out, I finally became not-depressed enough to admit to myself that I was ready to change my body again. Work hard again, work for something. But what?!

Patrick suggested that I focus on the wedding and fitting into my dress. Now, even though I have gained weight, I haven't gone up any sizes.... So, although that's a good suggestion... It really isn't applicable. I have no worries about fitting into a dress. Plus, even if my goal was to shape up for the wedding... I wouldn't even know where to go from there! Is my goal to lose 5 lbs? 10 lbs? NO IDEA

Here's the thing about weight loss and sorry if I offend anyone (not)...

You have to actually want it. 

"Gasp! What's this you say? I have to actually desire eating fish and vegetables and eggs? I could never do such a thing!" or "I just can't handle SO much chicken and brussel sprouts.

Since I experienced the euphoria of competition, I have received many a email asking for weight loss advice. Asking how they could improve on what they are doing. Or more commonly, how do they do it... at all?!

I'm the first one to admit, that I have food addictions. Just like anyone else, I have my own vices. And we do all have them. I think some have it worse than others, but almost EVERYONE I know has something... They just can't resist cheesecake when they see it. Or the cinnamon rolls call to them in the morning (guilty). Most everyone has the confidence at some point to say no to those things. Adversely, most everyone experiences the loss of control to their feelings.

I think in fantasy land, women do exist that hold no food-related vices. I mean, I'm sure they do but if I met someone that claimed they genuinely did not, I would be a gigantic skeptic lol. Anyway, I'll give that there are medical conditions that result in weight gain. But don't tell me that most of the overweight population did not give into whatever they desire at any time.

When it comes to losing weight, it has to become about the simple fact that you want to lose weight. You just have to be willing to do what it takes. Whether you decide to go about it in an unhealthy or healthy way is your decision, but I'm about doing it the healthy way.

Not that I have really been eating very healthy. Haha... Oh... Yeah. Like I said, my first few weeks off... There were cinnamon rolls. And there was ice cream. Alright! I'm a fat girl at heart. But just imagine for being on a diet for two and a half YEARS. Sure, I had a week or two off here & there... but essentially, I was concerned, monitoring, evaluating my eating habits, keeping track of my diet cheats, and monitoring my cravings for 28 MONTHS. I needed a break, people. And I craved cheese, and capers, and lemon creme sauce, and tart cheesecake, and tastes that I had long forgotten.

By the end of my tryst with all the foods that had obviously still been somewhere in my heart, I remember why I had forsaken them. My body hurts. My stomach hurts, it pulls down on my muscles, I feel heavy when I workout, my muscles cramp often, and my back hurts again.

And then there was my goal. Working out simply to feel good again, what a beautiful thing.

That was a nice 5 minute chat, Blues. Thanks. :)

Here's some more engagement pics... For fun...

So this last week has been really fun. Also stressful at my job and my life job, but all around fun. Working on projects at home, mucho gardening, taking Zeke for runs, and doing wedding stuff... But have finally found that when I'm working out, I eat better naturally. Soooo nice to be back to THAT again!

I would be lying if I said that resisting sugar isn't hard sometimes, but right now, my desire to feel good again and feel great about myself again is greater than my desire for a maple scone. Now that I have gotten over the sugar slump, the idea is to find time to eat in my crazy work day. Just need to remind myself that my coworkers will be happier people when I'm not hangry.

Sooo... Bang's Lawn Care is going crazy. We've instantly become overwhelmed blessed with work. I have been spending hours at night doing Invoicing, Bidding, and reading about becoming an employer.. Because we need employees! But small business tax law is hard! And learning to save for the company long term... I can't even explain how much there is to do or think about. But I'll tell you one thing, it has made Patrick and I incredibly strong... Our communication skills demanded change almost overnight. And our ability to pick up slack from the other, its amazing.

And hey! Wedding is coming!! We set the date for September 22nd, which is very sadly the date of the local fall show! What freaking luck! Hopefully all my bikini, body builder & figure friends will come have a beer with me later. :) And I hear that people are gushing for details..

Since we live in the country we're going to do something kinda country. To set the record straight, I'm not a big country music fan... But I love other sweet country things. I just want our wedding to be sweet, romantic, and a freaking blast! I'm not doing specific colors, but doing a palette of blush colors... Pinks, champagne, copper, and even a little peach. Glowy. Check out what we made...

They say "Picture Booth" "Goin' to the Chapel" "GRUB" and "Drinks & Merriment"
Wanna guess which one is Patrick's?
It isn't done, but I'm stoked! We're gonna add some paper flowers and stuff to them. The signs themselves are from an old reclaimed picket fence. Patrick, his sister Sarah and myself hung out one night and stenciled our little full hearts out! :) Swoon! We have tons of reclaimed wood & doors and windows we are going to use, and I've been given and inherited a TON of mason jars I turned into lanterns:
And these suckers will be all over the place! Hanging from trees, on tables, and along the aisle. :)

Lastly, *sigh!* I am going dress shopping saturday!!! The crazy thing about being young but old enough to own your house and cars... You're financially responsible for your own stuff! So I haven't been able to afford a dress until now, and am banking on 'Saying Yes to the Dress' of my dreams on that day and it being off the rack. I somewhat have an idea of what I'll be looking for, and I'm sure that I will find THE dress on Saturday.

More updates next time, we have a bunch a wedding crafty projects coming... My home office has more or less turned into Wedding Central. And hey! If anyone wants to come help with a project, lemme know! It has been really fun getting random groups of friends and family together just for those things.

Talk soon! Love you all! :)

Monday, June 11, 2012

Life Beyond Contest

I realize I've been gone a while, and I'm sorry. :( It has really taken me quite a while to even get to a point of where I could verbalize my feelings.

To Start...

So, I took three weeks off from the gym. Yeah... On purpose. It was really to take time where I felt like I didn't have it. To get my house to where I needed it to be, run errands, do our new business acounting (I've been 2 months behind), everything else business related, etc. Catch up. Although I had only planned on one week, life demanded another week… And then I lost control.

Week One:

By Tuesday, I hated not being at the gym.

By Wednesday, the weight coming on was noticeable by how my body felt.

By Thursday, my back hurt badly from not exercising.

By Friday, the weight coming on was noticeable to everyone (or at least, it felt like it..)

Although I don't have post-comp blues, I certainly had a post-comp binge. Or two. And god bless my fiance for saying "Oh you can get that off easy." Yeah. Except it wasn't easy getting it off in the first place. And honestly, I'm really effing tired of dieting. I don't want to diet.

Now, that doesn't give me permission to just put food in my mouth all day long (like I will...). It also doesn't give me permission to eat a cinnamon roll every day (yeah, that happened... But... Can I just share first of all, that I am NOT a cinnamon roll person. I am not the woman who a Cinnabon has EVER sounded good to. Second, did I mention that these were made from BISCUIT dough?! Don't judge me, I'm a foodie.).

Weeks Two & Three:

At the beginning of week one, our sweet, sweet dog Molly was getting pretty sick… She was eating less, drinking less… She had been limping previously, which we attributed it to Zeke (our 180lb male great dane) playing with her too hard, so we left her inside a few days to keep her activity down a bit. At the time, she would spend whole days inside and not touch her food. We attributed it to her lack of activity. It seemed that all the weight she was losing, I was finding.

I made my way to Seattle for Memorial Day weekend specifically to spend time with my family… One of my big sisters had the lead female part in Oliver!, and we had a small family party for my Grandma's 80th birthday. All the while, Patrick stayed home to work & take care of our animal babies. And if you're just tuning in to this blog, my dogs & kitty are like my kids.

When Patrick and I spoke over the weekend I was gone, I knew the Molly situation was getting serious by his tone of voice. Now, Molly has always been HIS baby and he always seemed to be over-worried about her… So when *this* tone of voice came in, it had me worried. I took the overnight bus (yeah, we're small business owners and barely making it..) from Seattle to Spokane and unfortunately it was too late.

Our sweet Molly was laid to rest a few hours after I got home. I am so thankful I was able to make it home in time to tell her how much I love her. Molly was only 2 1/2 years old. :( And watching her suffer, spending ALL of our money to take care of her, putting her down, losing her, burying her... absolutely crippled me.

I know most people think the relationship to an animal is different than what we have with people, but not this one. And not for me. This was an incredibly deep loss for me. Me & Patrick and our animals… We are a family.

In the last few weeks, I haven't had any positives to my life of note. Until we received our engagement photos back, and realized we had the most beautiful treasure. Many photos of our little family, including a very happy & healthy Molly.
Sweet baby. Now we have all of these lovely memories with her.

How HUGE does Agent Humongo (Zeke) look in this?!

Happy little family :)

In looking back, what did I get at the end of my weeks off from the gym? 10 extra pounds (up 18 lbs from stage weight… ugh, admitting this is hard!), a sore back, and eyes that are tired from crying. Not staying true to what you want for yourself, is simply humiliating. And yet, like I said. I'm really effing tired of dieting. My mind has needed a break, and so did my body. And I guess, that's exactly what it got.

What I learned during this time, is that I overeat and crave bad foods ONLY when I feel insecure or out of control. I eat well and healthy when I feel in control. While I am not in a depressed state over having gained weight, I am in a bit in the midst of an internal war…. And this goes back to dieting, while I'm irritated with the extra weight, I'm also irritated with having to diet. So I'm not gonna. I'm just gonna deal with having the extra weight for a little while, workout and not diet yet. Although, I think we all know I'll probably change my mind as my wedding date gets closer. :)

The next few weeks will be dedicated to growing our business (Have I mentioned how difficult it is being in business for yourself??) and finding my own version of staying healthy. And for this period of time, my version of staying healthy is going to mean workouts only and not judging MYSELF for not being perfect. And sometimes I think we have to allow grace for ourselves to not be perfect.

I'll keep you updated on my progress & wedding stuff next time! :) I've missed you guys!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Make Yer Own Protein Bars

I'll be the first to admit, I'm very much a foodie. Although my body doesn't really like gluten or dairy, I LOVE to bake and cook. And I'll also be the first to admit, that when I'm flipping through channels at home, I ALWAYS am making a stop on the Cooking Channel or Food Network. :) And I freaking LOVE LOVE Alton Brown's Good Eats, specifically because I like the science of baking & cooking and figuring out what I can do to make a particular food how I want it without having to FIND that *perfect* recipe.

Can anyone relate to that? I never seem like I can just find what I want. If I want a cheesecake that is a bit more sour over creamy, how do I do that? Or, if I want a very cakey cookie versus a flat crunchy cookie, Alton Brown taught me how to do that!

As I was flipping through channels last night, and happened upon on the Food Network as well as happening upon Good Eats to find he was featuring Making Your Own Protein Bars! If you love learning the science behind cooking your own protein bars (instead of buying expensive protein candy bars), then you'll probably love the following videos!

The 1st video is mostly informational:

Who is Captain Power anyway?

BUT! The 2nd video completely goes into the process of making the commerical Protein Candy Bars. And how to make your own high protein bars:

There are some great recipes out there and it just takes a bit of looking to find ones you might like on or other sites. But I like knowing how to make something so I can be creative with it!

Now, I'm off to make my own! :)

Monday, May 7, 2012

Post-Contest Blues?

Alright, I mean I had heard and read of the post-contest blues before. And I fully prepared myself that it would probably happen with me.

I started into my first week fully on plan. Fully expecting the blues to come.

But they didn't come. More like post-contest bliss.

Day after contest, Patrick and I took the dogs for a hike. :) Zeke was in like 7th heaven! Check out that long tongue! (He only does that when he's really really happy)

The belly bloat came and stayed, and I recognized when I should stop and didn't. Its easy to tell yourself that you're going to have a clean eating day, doing it yourself is much harder when you don't HAVE TO! But seriously, the belly bloat... I'm sure many of you have experienced holding water... but hopefully not like I did. Within 6 days of post-contest, I had gained 10lbs of WATER. Literally, and it looked like I was holding that much water (to me it looked like 30lbs). And unfortunately on a little person like me, with a history of high blood pressure, holding that much water makes my blood pressure go up and is really bad for my heart. Luckily with prescription diuretics, I've been able to drop about 6lbs of the water, and still have 2 more days on this script. Bliss back on!

And in my post-contest bliss, I'm already phasing into some good food choices... Check out my new finds!

Calorie Free jam by Walden Farms. Picked these up on in both Blueberry & Raspberry (they're sweetened with Splenda) for $3.79 a jar.

Zevia soda! This diet soda is made with Stevia, also from, and I bought it in Mountain Zevia (like Mountain Dew sort of? It tastes more like Sprite to me), Creme Soda, Cola, & Cherry Cola.. Although it comes in different flavors! They're about $5 for a 6-pack, but if you don't drink much soda anyway, its worth it to me.

If you're not sure what would make Zevia different than any diet soda, it is lower on the Glycemic Index as far as how much it would raise your blood sugar levels after drinking it, and therefore less likely to gain fat while drinking it.

Arrowroot. This shit rocks! I purchased this to replace Cornstarch in my diet, and actually just trying to reduce the amount of corn in my diet. We come from the northwest where gravy should be its own food group. But I'm trying to reduce the amount of total sugars and this crap works just like any flour or thickener! Also picked up on for only $5.59 for 20oz.

Coconut Milk French Vanilla Creamer. OMG... this may have just saved my life! Being close to dairy free is going to be MUCH easier with options like this! The coconut milk creamer is much thicker than any other dairy free creamer. :) Only $2.49

And so I'm out to prove that I'm better even that I think I am. We all know about post-show blues and bloat. And while I am still somewhat bloated, I'm out to prove that I can recover post-show and ease into normal living. I can do this. Okay, and seriously... I had so much fun on stage that I'm really itching to plan my next shows. My 10K training starts today, and my total cardio is starting to decline today.. WOOT! I genuinely missed heavy and challenging lifting. Challenging, meaning: having enough carbs in my muscles to push my strength to the max, prep is a whole other type of challenging. LOL!

I've got some posts comin round the bend, but if there is anything anyone is interested in reading about... Let me know! :) Have a great week everyone!

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Improvement Season Begins

I caught that darn bug. But I'm pretty sure we all knew I would :) *SIGH* It was an amazing experience. I feel like I can never really explain it quite right, but the end feeling... the completion... the result of stepping on stage perfectly proud of what you have done... One can only experience it for themselves to truly empathize with what I'm talking about.

From what I understand, its like giving birth. And being born. Women go through months and months of discomfort to come to the end which is hours upon hours of pain... To be presented with a beautiful child coming straight from their own body. And competing is similar: we work for months constantly tired and uncomfortable. And come peak week, it can be painful lol. Except in the end we present something so much more amazing than we could ever predict or imagine. When I was imagining the package I would bring to the stage, it wasn't this...

I'm being serious! I definitely didn't expect it. Because at one point, I was this....

Going from the longest week of my life down to the shortest minutes of my life, it really was such an incredible experience. I was so glad that I took the last couple of days off before the show, really just to get all my stuff done... errands and appointments.

Ugh errands, they wear me the eff out. Wednesday night after work, I headed straight to Huckleberry's. For those that don't live in this area, they're really the only "health food"/"yuppy" place in the city. We only recently got a Trader Joe's, there is no Whole Foods around. Lame. And the reason I needed to go there specifically was because they're the only place that sells my favorite beer.

After my workout, I headed to Wal-mart for some things. On Thursday, I met with my prep coach in the morning and then headed straight to get waxed. Oh man. That poor girl saw more of me than she probably ever wanted to. Full legs, underarms, Brazilian, and eyebrows. If errands didn't wear me out, that did. Results are totally worth it. ;)

Waxing almost everywhere lol, nails did, toes did and tan... All the running around wore me out! And driving with the spray tan... UGH! But let me tell you a little lesson I learned... No one can tell your tan smudges from the stage. Just sayin... I worried way too much about nothing.

And I have to admit, I wasn't even remotely nervous. It was fun being back stage seeing people snack on gummi bears and jelly beans, watching the Physique guys gorge on Krispy Kremes after they were done with the stage. I learned all about that unspoken rule of helping other competitors... I taped no less than 3 bikinis to boobs & bootys. It was also fun meeting the other girls my coach trains! I love that backstage, no one appears super competitive. Because we all know at that point, there is nothing we can do to get better. When it came time to take the stage, I knew in that moment that I could not have done anything differently. 

The reality is that at this very moment in time, I could not have done any better. We go through long periods of time controlling ourselves and holding onto our self-discipline and working intensely on our character to obtain something we want. But we aren't perfect, and we can't expect to be perfect. We can only expect to do our best. And if this is where my body is its best at this very moment, then that was ME doing my best.

And I think this took away the nerves and anxiety, because I knew. And I am on cloud 9.
Hmmm, maybe it isn't taught how to pose for the money shot.. :)

 I took second in Bikini Class A. I was told that the judges were looking for a softer and rounder look with the shift in all divisions. However! 2nd place for my first competition?! I'll take that!  

My first meal ended up being a beer and a Subway BLT... in bed. No joke, I took a shower and got in bed with my food... Bliss. Later we decided to go out for a nice Seafood dinner at the Coeur d' Alene Resort.

And thus begins the off-season! :) I was sore ALL weekend from the show. Flexing & posing so long made me incredibly sore in my quads, abs & back! But I spent Monday right back on track with the diet so I can ease carbs back in, was all over the water even though it made me realize how bloated I truly was haha! And was right back on cardio & weights to put these calories to use. I'm itching to plan my next shows, but excited for time to improve and work on wedding & business stuff.  I'll update with my professional photos & video when I get it!

Thanks for all your support everyone! :) You guys kept me going!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Peak Week!

This post originally started out as a timeline journal... And then it turned into a rant. And it is kind of a rant, but its really just me being carb depleted/hungry/sore/exhausted, bitchy AND sick. ;)  Also kind of a hodgepodge of what's going on and questions I have for any and all that want to answer!

I'm getting really damn clumsy about now. Carb depleted + zoning out at work = papercut on my eye, knocking over coffees, etc.
I got really sick on Tuesday. At first I thought maybe I was breaking a threshold... I threw up all over my office. In front of my boss who already loves the fact that I do this, no less (note sarcasm), and during a teleconference I started vomiting fish & asparagus. Lovely. Consequently, I bloated big time. Throwing up apparently made my body hold absolutely every molecule of water and my mind freak the hell out. A few days of consistent nutrition and water and I'm back to normal. :)
However, Friday night I was feeling kinda sinusy... So I took EXTRA care of myself... Did the nedi med, took Mucinex and Afrin (which is what my doc has said to do when I feel that way. I get a lot of sinus infections.). Early Saturday morning I woke up... sick. 

Most of the time when I think about food lately, its having to do with just wanting more... Just more rice. Or more sweet potato. More oatmeal with protein powder. By the way, oatmeal and cinnamon is sucking right now. I usually spend almost my whole workday saying one of two things (in my head, of course):
"Can I just go now?"
"Shit! I took so damn long to eat my last meal that its time to eat again."

I have only 3 days left of lifts... OMG I can't believe this is here! I have to admit that I have a little anxiety about my body. Not much, but I think this has to do with a couple of things... Firstly, I've never done a competition before. I don't know what judges are looking for at a local competition or if my physique will be anything like what they're looking for. I know I shouldn't be concerned with my placing, but you know what?! I'm someone who likes to do well at what I commit myself to, and I'm not ashamed of that. Second, I'm currently sick and a lot has to happen in the next week for the bloating to come off.

Abs seem like they take EVERYTHING I have to work them well, and since abs have been a focus during my offseason and prep, its important that I get it in until the very end! I'm so excited to do a few full body workouts next week just for something different. Cardio has been awesome. Running when I can and elliptical or bike when I can't run. However, I almost never have energy to run... I just set the treadmill at running speed and GO.

I had to have a conversation with Patrick about how life in our home will be this week... Especially since I'm sick...
Look, for the next 6 days...
-I will barely be doin laundry. I already don't separate whites from dark's and already use my washing machine as a laundry basket... But I will probably not be putting it away... Only taking what I need out of the dryer.
-I can't promise that I'll stop for every stop sign. Or do the speed limit, clearly.
-I also can't promise that I'll smell good. Or care.
-Bathroom breaks take precedence over any important conversation. Unless you want to clean up THAT mess.

I keep being told how awesome I look. And you know, for how shitty I feel right now... I had frickin better look awesome! ;)

Yeah so... we know that I'll be planning a wedding and stuff, but I'm also the kind of person that needs another goal. I don't want the blues, which I know will happen anyway, but I like goals and want one. I think I want to try to run a 10K.. And my question is, has anyone reading ever successfully gone from a contest diet to a runners diet? I'm sure my mind partially has to do with this anxiety about switching diets, but honestly the change will be semi-extreme if I was to go RIGHT into the runner's diet. So, I probably won't make the switch drastic or immediate... Because that would mean going from a very low carb, high protein diet straight into high carb. Anyway, like I said I'm sure its partially my mind playing with me... But I think we ALL know that going straight into high carb never works out well post-contest.

Special shout out to my amazing Momma! She took time out of her saturday to help me wax my back for me! Not like she's never seen all I got, but I still appreciate the kind of loyalty she gives! Love you Momma! You are the best mom for me. :)

Anyway, I'm on a mission to finish this one. I've only got 6 days. 6 workouts. And only have a 3 day work week... I can do anything for that amount of time. Its amazing that I've found the one and only time that my mind is genuinely stronger than my body. Boo! But at the same time, that is kind of encouraging. To know I am truly stronger on the inside, will give me power to make my body stronger as a whole.

Have a great week everyone! I promise to update as the week progresses! :) Peak Week is HERE!!!! HOLLA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

11 Days Out

2 weeks. Actually, 11 days. That's it. Every single day my body is changing and its absolutely unbelievable. I've always read girls' blogs, but never really knew for myself that this is true… But the biggest changes really do happen in the last few weeks. I've started taking progress pictures every other day, because that is really how much I notice it changing.

I've been without a cheat now for 4 weeks, which has been interesting. The more that time passes, the more I forget that I've been without. I only look forward… To pancakes, that is. :) I'm mostly on fish & egg whites, by choice sort of. The fish I've been told to. The egg whites really are because chicken has been giving me indigestion! I'm completely off of whey protein now, and was completely off casein at night on Saturday. Wahhh!!! ;( I started phasing off of it last week. Some part of me desperately is holding onto the "dessert before bed" thing, in which a chocolate casein shake is awesome! However, its time to let that go for a couple weeks. Last night, however, I have to admit that hot egg whites with hot sauce in bed... Was pretty awesome. That's probably because I'm fricking starving.

But let's talk about these pancakes a second...
I will be having, on contest day, gluten free pancakes with blueberries and a little sugar-free syrup. Along with some black coffee. Yes. 11 days to pancakes.

Cardio has been hard. I mean HARD hard. Doing the same amount I have been for a while, and only 60 mins a day, but it takes so much more energy to do it than it has in the past. New music, apps, & twitter keep me nice and distracted... But sometimes, even the best music can't gear you up for even the most minimal cardio session when you have absolutely no energy left. Calf cramps are completely gone now that I have incorporated Essential Electrolytes regularly into my supplement regimen.

If you have any kind of a cramp issue, and have never tried the EE's… they're AMAZING! EE's have changed my life. They really do help balance your electrolytes, and have no sugar so they can be taken throughout prep! No calf cramps, no middle of the night cramps, no side stitch.

Weights have been even harder. I mean, and I'm pretty little so my strength is just nuthin! I'm pushing and getting through it, but I'm also allowing myself the grace to be okay with 5 lb weights. Just as long as I'm getting it in! Luckily, a good friend Maggie has been working out with me on my hamstring/glute day which has been SO helpful. This is about the period of time where I genuinely don't mind when people want to talk, because the distraction helps me get through it without having to think about it. And the encouragement helps in a major way.

However, the changes make it all worth it. They keep me going! Quad separation is something I only day dreamed about before… And now its coming in. The abs, oh man, the abs. My abs come out more all the time, its amazing. Every day I get more and more excited. And not to sit here and pick myself apart, but I'm praying to the prep gods that my calves come down. Right now my calves are about as big as my thighs (or so it seems). Its literally the last place my body is holding fat. I genuinely don't think my calves are large, I think that's where my body wants to hold fat on top of well defined calf muscles. And when I pinch, the pinches are thick. Anyway, this is what keeps me on this diet. If I felt like I looked perfect, I might be tempted to cheat. However, I continue to work so hard just to ensure they come down… even if its down to the last day!

By the way, you know how I promised I wouldn't weigh until about 2 weeks out? Well, I didn't… Until about 2 weeks out… And I'm down to 105.0 lbs. So crazy! I've dropped 2.5 lbs in just the last 2 weeks, definitely the leanest I've EVER been at about 9% bf. I do love, also, that the fat has come off less in my face as it has in the past. I think keeping some fat in my face looks better, I don't want to look gaunt & skinny! I want to look healthy!

Contest Prep Realities.
More as the days go on, I have to remind myself that now isn't the time to pull out my baking stuff I've had in storage for the last 15 weeks. But I desperately want to bake. I miss baking. Baking was a therapy for me (so was eating the baked goods, but we won't go there). However, also more as the days go on, the less baked goods sound good to me. Butter & flour right now genuinely sounds like it will just make me ill. You know what I want right now?? A banana. Anything that I know would truly give me good burnable energy.
Also as the days go on, the less I am concerned with smelling or looking good. My make up is generally half-assed. My hair pretty much always looks slept on. I'm very fuzzy right now so I'm always working out in long shirts, which make me not smell so good when I sweat. Whatever. I bet I just wreak of fish & eggs when I'm on cardio.

Also also as the days go on, the more interesting life gets. I feel like I'm simply witnessing all these things happening while I only sit here and observe my own life. lol! Here... Let me give you an example...

I shit myself. Yeah, you read that right. And here are the realities of contest prep ladies, I eat so much protein for my small stature (250g+ per day) that I got so backed up, that one too many cups of coffee made it so I couldn't QUITE make it to the bathroom. In my defense, the closest restroom to my office is about a football field away. It wasn't noticeable to anyone else but myself, but still enough to have me want to change my pants. I decide to take my lunch to go home. I have 30 minutes to take exactly a 30 minute trip.

So I go home, change my pants, start a wash, kiss my dogs and get on my way.

Going just a tiny bit fast in order to get back to work on time, I pass a cop knowing that I'm going 5 over.. And figure he won't pull me over because its only 5 over. WRONG! I full-on (I'm not sure what a "Full-on" ticket is, but I got one) get a ticket for going only 5 over. I don't even try to fight him also in order to get back to work close to on time.

By the way, the whole time I'm over my meal timing requirements. I get back to work feeling like "I had better eat before I DIE."

In hindsight, I now wonder what the cop would have did if I had said to him when asked why I was going so fast:
"I was going so fast because I shit my pants, had to run home on my 30 minute lunch, and am going a tad fast in order to get back to work on time."
Patrick thinks I should have fought him some. Que Sera.

Another reality is how effing difficult it is to get about of bed about now... In order to make sure I do, this has been done:

Yeah, that happens every morning. Just to make sure.

In regards to stage stuff… wow, I have a whole lot coming. This weekend I got my hair done and am so excited! I haven't had my hair colored in MONTHS. I've also been tanning regularly just as a form of therapy to myself… So as to not reward myself with food. I hate to say that I'm not shaving anymore (UGH! I hate being fuzzy), as I'm getting my body waxing done this weekend and the bikini wax next week. My suit fits awesome, and I can't wait to show it to you guys! I've got my nail appointment set for the weds before my show… And I have nothing more to say other than I'm so excited! Excited, exhausted, depleted, short on patience, very short on energy and so so happy.

In other news..
Bang's Lawn Care is up and running! Patrick is going full force into this and is doing awesome! He has been able to help me do so much around the house since I've been way way too tired/busy to do much. I love that I have a partner that will willingly pick up the slack when needed. All women should have that.

Wedding plans are slow going, but I'm alright with that for now… I've got ALL summer to plan the wedding. However, we have scheduled our engagement photos for May 12th and am SO excited for that. The slow moving of the planning is kind of giving me time to decide more, think more, and just day dream. :) I'm sure you guys all know that since we live in the country, although we don't listen to country, we love country/rustic/romantic weddings. And that's exactly what I want… Relaxed, rustic, and romantic. And do it all with a BANG (pun intended. Hehe!) (In case people aren't getting that, my married last name truly will be Bang. Lacey Bang. LOL! It makes me laugh every time I read it.)!

Love you guys! Can't wait to share contest photos with you all! :)

Saturday, March 31, 2012


In all reality, the only true thing for every competitor is that contest prep is a rollercoaster. One minute you find yourself so low that you barely know how to handle anything, the next you find yourself so amped about the progress you're making and just want more. And then the next hour, you feel like life is going soooo fast. And then later that night, life feels perfect. 

The ego and super-ego always seem to be at war. Because sometimes you'd be willing to slay a dragon for a cookie-dough ProMax bar and a cup of blueberries. Dragons don't exist. Delusional? Yes. Whatever.

The Lows.
What is that quote from the movie Dogma? Something like.. "I think its better to have ideas. You can change an idea. Changing a belief is trickier.."

And I guess a plan is just that, a plan. You can change it as time goes on. Then why do I feel like such a jerk when I cancel plans?

Well, so it turns out I'm not doing the Emerald Cup in Seattle on April 21st. Things have gone nutso in my personal life. Aside from getting engaged, it turns out Patrick is heading full force into his landscaping business. - "Bang's Lawn Care" -Which means we have no idea what our finances are going to look like this year. And in order to be sure that we can afford our wedding this year (which we are paying for ourselves), we both had to make sacrifices. And in my case, that means giving up one comp. I mean, we're gonna be saving on gas money, hotel expenses, hair expenses, tanning, etc. It can add up to a lot. 

BUT! I'm still going forward with the Empire Classic on April 28th. And that is extremely exciting for me…

The Highs.
because! Duh-da-da-DUHHHH (got that?)!!!! I hit my weight goal from the end of last prep, actually, I BEAT it! And on my birthday, no less! I hit 107.5lbs on Thursday the 22nd when I ended last prep at 108lbs, which puts me around 10.5% body fat. I haven't weighed myself since then and probably won't for 2 more weeks... I want to give myself the drive to make that scale move. AND I have 4 more weeks!! WHAT?!

I wonder what having ab definition and quad separation is going to feel like? :) Probably awesome!

I got in my new suit! :) I won't be posting a pic on here, gotta leave myself some kind of an edge over my competition. You never know who is lurking haha.

The Real. 
Still at 60 minutes a day! So excited that isn't 80 or 90 like last prep. But doing HIIT is getting difficult. Its taking quite a bit more focus to perform effectively. But also I have to admit that not focusing on my weight whatsoever, has helped me focus on getting enough water during cardio. I know its kinda silly, but my brain would subconsciously not have me drink water when I knew I was going to weigh myself soon.
I have the strength of a wee girl. Seriously now, 10lb lateral raises for 15? Ugh. Bicep curls 10lbs for 15? Double ugh. However, the looks I get during Romanian Deadlifts from every woman in the gym is getting kinda funny with my booty and legs getting more shapely.
I wish I had something more to say on this other than I'm hungry. Hungry, irritable, exhausted and indescribably happy. :) I've run out of SuperPump this week, which means I'm done with that for the rest of prep. I've also run out of whey as of today, which means I'm on whole foods. Mostly egg whites and fish right now. Casein gets phased out for food in 2 weeks. And I'm done with cheats! This is making me so excited to see what my body has in store! (I guess I had a lot more to say than I thought lol).

The simple fact that I feel like I have 4 weeks to NOT pay attention to my weight, gives me 4 weeks of straight progress. I'm liking what is going on with my abs, and I'm really liking what my legs are doing. I feel like my body is taking a shape that I like.
By the way, I'm still not putting out the idea of doing Figure someday. :)  

In Other News. 
My wedding planning checklist is telling me that now is a good time to start getting in shape. Good to know! ;)
Its true, this blog will probably have some wedding updates and such as time goes on. This off-season is going to be fun, but also its definitely going to be interesting in figuring out what real life looks like again. I've completely stopped tracking my food. This happened really because my iPhone broke (long story) and I had to be without my Food-Log App for a few days. And all of a sudden, I felt such freedom in just eating the right things! Last fall, I was completely freaked out about how I would handle adjusting into off-season. This time, I'm not even remotely nervous for it. 

But let's not get ahead of ourselves, there are many maple scones to be eaten. And many MANY a beer to be had!
Wedding Plans?
I am so excited to get married to Patrick. I mean, not to get all mushy and shit, but he genuinely wants me to have the kind of wedding I want… And he never minds discussing ideas and plans. I'm not stressed out, and I'm just enjoying this time. However, when I'm tired and hungry and its taking all of me to focus and just make it prepared to the next day... Its easy to be affected by people. Everyone has an opinion about what you SHOULD do, and honestly its making me not even want to think about planning. So, I'm pretty much putting off everything until after my competition. Sometimes you just have to focus on one thing at a time. 
Have a lovely week friends! I'm still stalking blogs even though I'm not always posting. I've got 28 days until this ride ends. Happy, very healthy, in love, and surrounded by people (even virtually) that support me! What else could I ask for? :)

Sunday, March 18, 2012

How did I get here?

Man, I'm in like the most surreal life at the moment. Last time we talked I was 8 weeks out, ready to murder my FG, and struggling to hang on to the whirlwind of busy life. So much has happened since then.

First of All.
I don't like being busy all the time. By nature, I'm somewhat of an introvert and very much of a homebody. I crave time at home and really try to leave Sundays for just that. I feel that by being super busy, I pull in more than I can actually handle... Meaning, once I start saying yes to anything, I start saying yes to everything. I've started and not posted at least 3 blogs describing how overwhelmed I felt.

So to deal with my crazy life, and not reward myself with food, I started booking all my shizz for my shows to keep myself distracted and looking forward to things. I made sure my tans were in order for both shows. I've confirmed my hair and waxing appointments. I have been tracking the shipping on my suit, and buying things for my show.

This is a stage bracelet I picked out :)
I bought myself a silk robe, because I read that it doesn't take off the tan as much as cotton or velour.
I also bought new shoes. As you can see above that my old shoes on the left were just trashed. Although I had never worn them on stage, I practiced A-LOT! I also chose to go with the ankle straps this time, I never quite felt secure in the style of my old ones.

My suit should be here any day... :)

My prep coaches have been showering me with swagger lately! I told them that is how you keep your clients loyal, give them swagger! LOL!
We got this a few weeks ago. Pretty awesome loose tank!

My prep coaches wife made this, a bag for my shoes, but I'm gonna use it for my suit.
Awesome hoodie! Its so warm I just love it.
And my tanning appointment vendor sent me this in the mail for the Emerald Cup! WORD! :D
Still hanging out doing about 60 minutes a day. I've been taking it down a notch on the elliptical just to make sure I'm not getting sick. SOMEHOW I have managed not to get sick even though I took care of sick Patrick for a whole week.

Strength is decreasing but overall I'm having really good workouts. Getting to that point where working out is getting exciting because its so close to the show.

NBD. Just kind of hanging in there. This week I finally felt like I found my stride, and the diet got easier. Really not tempted around the house (finally). I started to incorporate more fish this week, just to get myself used to it for what is coming. And it IS coming lol.

5 Week Check-In.
Doing well, my body is starting to shrink in quite a bit.  Weighing in at 109.5lbs which is putting me at 11% body fat. Right on track to hit my weight/body fat goal for stage day.

Not much is changing this week, and the extra fish will help adjust me naturally to the next steps in my diet plan. Protein powders will be phased out very soon, I am sure. In which I am prepared with TONS of extra fish and chicken. Joy!

In Other News.
I'm an engaged woman! I got caught completely by surprise on Friday night when out to dinner at a cheat meal where I THOUGHT we were going to look at rings! I had no idea it was coming. Come to find out he had actually planned on doing it next month after my competition, but couldn't wait. :) He had the cutest planned speech, and I'm so glad that he somehow was sneaky enough to get it all on video because now I can barely remember what he said. The whole time he was going through his speech I was going, "Is this it?! Is this happening right now?! Is this IT?!" He did it at my favorite restaurant, which is right by our house and kind of a homey little romantic place that I adore.
This is so much prettier than anything I had in mind! And Sparkley-er!
I have to get it sized, its huge on my finger but I don't want to part with it! I'm just enjoying being engaged and hopefully it won't become a big stressor... I think we're going to take steps to make sure we're not stressed much by the planning as well as the finances as we'll be paying for it ourselves... AND we're probably getting married in August. So soon!

If nothing else, I can plan wedding stuff to give my mind something to focus on aside from prep!

Have a great week everyone! :)