"Who inspires you?"
For my training for next season is already starting I think of who inspires me, who do I think of when the cardio sucks & donuts are calling my name....
Three people inspire me.
First is Jennifer Chapman, she is now an IFBB Pro Athlete but she was the first person I met when I took my first posing class in 2010, she was super sweet to the lost girl in a bikini that I was at the time & always had something positive to say. Since then watching her grow & thrive in our industry has always served as a motivation. She had made me want to be that person for other new athletes.
Second is Kai Greene, I picked up one of Mitch's Flex magazines while day & found an article about a day in the life of Kai Greene... Suddenly I was fascinated by him & inspired. His struggles & triumphs remind me that life is full of them. To become the best you must be willing to take on the greatest struggles. It took him 16 years to become an IFBB Pro... But he never gave up on his dream.
Third, unlike the first two she is not a pro athlete she just finished her first show. One of my athletes, Andie Tackett. While preparing for her first show, she needed help with posing & was referred to me. After meeting with her for the first time... I saw myself only a few years ago in her, passionate to compete. Very much like myself she was on a very tight budget being a full time student, so remembering Arnold's rules to success " Remember to give back"... I wanted to help her the way so many people have helped me. I told her I would coach her in exchange she had to give 100% at the gym, her diet, her posing/prep & school. The next 6 weeks with me were not easy, meeting several times a week to work on posing, changing up her diet & cardio etc.... I was so proud of her that I even rescheduled a trip to Vegas not to miss her show. Sitting with her family, I felt my heart overflowing with pride & came out of my seat with excitement when she got first call out & at the finals, second place. She made me realize how much I love coaching as much as competing.
Who inspires you? Do you live to inspire others to make the world a better place?
Today 2 years ago today is when I saw an article in Fitness Rx Magazine about a new division of bodybuilding.... Bikini...
Trained for my first show ( Europa Aug 2010) & got bitten by the Competition bug... It's amazing what an important event that one show would turn out to be in my life... I didn't even place in it!
I learned I could do anything if I worked hard enough.
I learned while it may seem like we are being judged physically it's so much more... Our outward appearance is a billboard showing our dedication, will power & sheer determination from months of hardcore training that have led up to that 30 seconds on stage where we become a 1%er. We become the few & the elite to have made it to that point.
I learned people remember kindness more than trophies... I didn't win any trophies, yet as a result of sharing extra costume jewelry, giving words of encouragement to people who were my competition & saying Thank You to the people back stage who help stage prep us... I got remembered...
My original trainer from Metroflex Arlington, Rendy Delacruz, saw me on stage that day & told me he remembered my determination & work ethic in losing 100 +lbs. He had not seen me for 5 years at that point. His wife, Christine & him now own the gym that I train at & am on their competition team, Metroflex Ft Worth. His wife is my coach, and they have become like family.
I learned your family & friends cheering you on is the greatest feeling in the world... Tears were in my eyes when I saw the pride on my moms face when I walked off stage. These are the people who are there for you when it's not all glitter & glam.
Lastly, I caught someone's eye that day... Another competitor, .... 15 months after my first show he asked me out to dinner & he turned out to be the man of my dreams.
So... Now that you know the prequel to my fairy tale in progress... Use this blog as your turning point to say I want to change my life... Pick your first show date.... And start training!
Cinderella taught me as a little girl... One event can change your life... In 2 years will you be the athlete blogging about the event that changed your life or will you still be just dreaming!
Thank you to Brian Dobson of The Original Metroflex Arlington & Rendy & Christine ( my fairy god-coach) of Metroflex Ft Worth for all the motivation & inspiration!
Accountability in the fitness industry is almost a taboo word. The public image is that as athletes we eat perfectly measured meals 24/7, 365 days a year. We do the perfect amount of cardio 7 days a week in our perfectly matching outfits & weight train with our equally perfect coaches...
I am hear to shatter that "perfect fantasy".
Many readers may not know that I am a 911 paramedic in one of the busiest systems in the country. We work 12-16 hr shifts while "mobile" between calls, everything I eat comes out of my lunchbox & I don't often have access to things like a microwave.
So my perfectly timed meals sometimes get skipped or delayed because my patient that isn't breathing is my priority at that moment. Having said this... I embrace the times I get to eat on time & celebrate when I get access to a warm meal. We are not all perfect, life in itself prevents it. So embrace the times you do have perfect control over things like your diet & training to make up for our imperfections
Now where does accountability come into all of this you ask... After all I have admitted even as a competitive athlete I don't eat perfect all the time. Be accountable to yourself, your teammates & coaches when your not progressing that you have broken your diet because admitting imperfection is the first step to find alternatives to help you meet your goals. Remember, obstacles are simply opportunities to try something different.
With my recently changing work schedule I had been cheating on my diet & missing cardio sessions, when my coaches noticed I wasn't progressing as fast... They called me on it, why you ask?? Because they care & know my potential. Could I have made excuses like work, aliens & earthquakes? Sure.... But I choose to suck it up & admit that they are right, say I am sorry & that it won't happen again...and be thankful that I have people in my life that care enough about my success to help keep me accountable.
So today... Admit that you may have cheated on your diet or training... Swallow that lump in your throat of imperfection & come up with your game plan to keep you on track for your goals! Beat imperfection at its own game by having a plan B on standby for those obstacles in life, like a protein bar in your purse, extra gym outfit in your trunk. No more excuses.
Thank you to my coaches at Metroflex Fort Worth, Christine & Rendy for believing in me.
While at the Arnold Expo 2012, our friend Mike was complaining that his IPhone was running slow, Mitchell told him to do a hard reset on it and that apple recommended it from time to time, this is an action that causes the disconnect of the device and the battery by forcing it off despite its struggling attempt to be ON.
Are we as athletes built the same way? Do we struggle against our own bodies attempt to tell us to slow down to keep going even if its at a slower sluggish pace? Do we need to simply accept that from time to time its recommended that we allow ourselves to completely disconnect from the world and allow our batteries to catch up?
I woke up today with a migraine, for anyone who has never had one picture your worst hangover times 5. The last time I got migraines like this was during my divorce when the stress of being a paramedic, full time student and athlete while surviving the emotional stress of a divorce was causing me to "malfunction". How did I fix this? I did a hard reset on my life, I took a season off from competeing (still went to the gym), graduated and changed jobs to an agency that made me happier.... the result in 2012 is a very productive me.
Was my migraine today a sign that I was going into overload again? Perhaps, it was enough to make me stop and go to my dear wise parents for not only TLC but advice. They helped me see ways to make my life more effective in achieveing my goals without giving up time with my family and loved ones. With a new game plan my migraine went away tonight.... on that game plan was to start writing in my bb.com blog again.... something I use to love to do including covering different shows for bb.com.
So look for the effects of the hard reset on my bb.com account and many great changes as the 2012 season is underway.
Do you wanna eat healthy but not sure where to start.... Here are some great ideas for your pantry so you can have a good assortment of foods on hand for dinner!
One big misconception about eating clean is that it is boring and bland.... SO NOT TRUE! I am a true foodie which means I love food and good food at that!
Some pantry basics:
Tuna packets - there are a main stay in my lunchbox and my work locker, no draining needed! Be sure to get the ones packed in water
Canned chicken- for when the idea of eating another can of tuna makes you violent
Egg Whites- I get the egg whites international ones becuase honestly @ 4am I don't want to crack eggs, I order a couple at a time since they freeze well.
Frozen Tilapia or Orange Roughy Fillets, most grocery stores carry these now in 10-20 individually frozen fillets in a case. Perfect for the george foreman grill! In less than 5 min you have a perfectly grilled fish fillet!
Ground turkey rolls, Do you remember how ground beef came in the plastic rolls? Now jennie O makes a turkey version and it gives you an option to get the all white meat one. ( the green and white roll) I have used these for turkey meatloaf, turkey spaghetti and turkey burgers, yum!! Plus last week I price compared $1.47lbs vs the ground beef was $3.89lb. Go Turkey!
Turkey Bacon- For the comfort food moment with your scrambled egg whites ( new way to cook it.... george foreman! Makes it yummy and fat slides off into the little dish!
Peanut Butter, good rule of thumb, the only ingredient should be peanuts!
Last but not least, chicken breast! the yummy boneless skinless kind. For those of us on a budget, try the frozen bags of chicken breast at all grocery stores, can help keep the price per lb under $2.50 and thrown on the grill cooks up in no time.
Rice- Brown & Jasmine, when not cutting i love to mix these two and cook them together, that way I am gets the yummy taste of jasmine with all the nutrients from its brown cousin.
Whole wheat pancake mix, I am a breakfast girl and cook for 3 boys so I have to be creative, mix in some of your favorite protein powder ( I like the BSN Lean Dessert Banana Creme) for some flavor and top with sugar free maple syrup, smuckers makes a great one.
Beans- I love black beans in my eggs whites, on salads etc, great source of fiber & protein.
High Fiber Pasta- I have been finding a much larger selection of low carb high fiber pastas in the grocery store!
Oats- A given, I am a quaker girl, love the old fashion ones. Although recently I have been finding the whole foods/ central market style stores carry steel cut oats in bulk, great way to save money and cut down the processing.
Sweet Potatoes another given.
Flax Seed Bread, yum-o!
Whole Wheat Tortillas- throw these in the fridge to get a longer shelf life.
Try the ziploc steamer bags.... I love them... totally love them, fresh steamed veggies in under 5 min!
Bell Peppers of all colors!
Tomatoes - if you want a recipe for fresh salsa let me know!
Onions - total super food
romaine Lettuce- If you tight on a schedule I buy it in 32oz pre cut/washed bags, last about 2-3 days.
lemons and limes whatever is on sale, helps jazz up fish on the grill
Garlic - I am Italian and cook tons with garlic!
Squash, amazing in the steamer bags!
Spinach, add a little EVOO and some garlic- heaven!
Dairy- Happy Cows time.
Low Fat Cottage Cheese- backbone of my snacks
No Sugar Added Yogurt- Actually really good mixed in with your morning oats.
Sugar Free Ketcup, this is actually amazing tasting
No Sugar Added Jams, with a slice of the flax seed bread and cure a carb craving in no time. Plus everyone needs a good PB&J every now and then.
Fat Free Sugar Free Puddings - can get through any sugar craving.
Spices, you can make the blandest foods amazing with good spices, try to stick to low-no sodium ones like Mrs Dash.
Sugar free chocolate syrup - okay another crazy crissy recipe, mix it with the egg whites for a quickie protein shake! trust me taste amazing!
Add depending on your taste and style! Eating Clean can still be Eating Amazing!