I left the following post on my coach's Facebook page:
One of the things that is interesting about being an LBC client, or even a follower, is that you begin to look at many of the fitness posts in your feed in a different light. At one point, I would read about "doing cardio for 90 minutes", "eating low or no carbs" or "being in the gym everyday" as "hardcore". "I must not want it as badly as they do", I thought. Erik showed me a different way to train and eat--more efficiently. Not only am I only in the gym four times per week (with energy to be my own brand of "hardcore" and for other things); I FEEL really healthy. And, those same posts that used to make me wonder if I was working hard enough, now, sadden and trouble me. Because, in quite a few cases those same physiques that I admired are showing signs of wear and posts are revealing having to be even MORE "hardcore" and "extreme". Continue to share Erik's work and this page in the hopes that someone will either get the help they need or recognize unhealthy practices and stop. We only get these bodies once. [Stepping off soapbox to eat my post-workout french toast.]
This is something that has concerned me for sometime. As I learned more about proper nutrition and training, it conflicted with what I was seeing and reading. The reality is, you just cannot an "amazing" body with safe practices. And, by "amazing" I mean, whatever your ideal is--a softer frame, the curvy bikini body, the slightly more muscular fitness model, figure competitor, figure competitor (circa 2007), women's physique, or bodybuilding. Depending on your starting point and your goals, you are going to have to put in work to get it and to keep it. Kudos to those who are working their way there and who have gotten there. But, I think something that needs to be remembered when we are looking at those inspirational photos.
First, remember your own journey and why you are doing it. It does not have to be all deep. Shoot, looking and feeling great are great reasons. Second, listen to your body. Rest and recover when you need it. Respect any injuries that you have. Finally,avoid extreme practices. Now, some would say that preparing for a show is "extreme". However, if done under knowledgeable and responsible coach; the process can be quiet enjoyable and safe. The "by any means necessary" approach has consequences. As a matter of fact, I am chatting with a former competitor on Facebook, who just read the post. And, all she wants is the body that she used to have; the one that responded to simple good food, exercise, consistency, and time.