So how did I do it?
Simple. Diet, exercise, supplements, focus. Intense focus. But I still learned some good tips along the way. So, lets get started.
Diet – there are numerous websites you can go to find the right competition prep diet for you. I hired a trainer and don’t want to go into too much detail about HIS methods. If you are in AZ, contact me and I will give you his details. It is all very highly individualized so you may have to try a few to find what works for you. Here is a summary.
- Watch your portion sizes, 1/4 cup of carbs or 6oz of meat isn’t all that much.
- Always mix protein with your carbs – never ear carbs alone.
- Eat breakfast within 30mins of waking up, mainly protein.
- Eat every three hours like clock-work. Do not let your body go into starvation mode – just make sure its wise choices!
- Try to eat your body weight (in Lbs) in protein (grams) per day. So if you weight 120lbs then eat 120g of protein per day.
- You need protein and amino-acids and BCAAs to build and maintain the new muscle.
- Did you know that protein makes you feel fuller for longer! I didn’t.
- Eat protein packed carbs like quinoa, sorghum, brwon rice and oatmeal. the rest is rubbish.
- I significantly decreased the booze then cut it out completely 6weeks out.
- Some fats are good, just make them the good fats such as fish oil supplements, avocados, almonds and other nuts
- Drink a minimum of 2l of water a day. A full gallon (3L) is recommended, but 2L (8 cups of water) should be the minimum.
- Track what you eat, I use an app called myfitnesspal. EVERYTHING. The act of tracking your food naturally leads to a change in what you eat.
Exercise – this is where my trainer was most useful. He pushed me really hard to make me get stronger since our focus was on gaining muscle more than on losing fat. Here are the gems I learned
- Real change comes from lifting weights and building muscle
- Too much cardio can “eat” your muscle, using a heart rate monitor to keep the heart rate under 145 during cardio is key.
- I lifted weight 4-6 days a week, and did cardio 3-4 a week. Including one long trail run (6-9miles) per week.
- I learned how to eat for and take supplements (BCAAs) to provide energy for my growing muscles pre and post workout.
- You cannot exercise away a bad diet. Even though I gained muscle, it wasn’t until I really tightened the diet that I noticed drastic changes in my pockets of fat – mainly hips and stomach.
- Enjoy the process, weights are fun. Watching my muscles ripple in the mirrors at the gym made me feel sexy.
The day of the show I did my own makeup- I decided, since this is the only show I am entering, to pay the $100 towards getting good pics instead. I think I made the right choice. I also didn’t put on the fake tan but just oiled up real good. There was lots of pressure to tan from the promoters, but I’m glad I didn’t – the light skinned black girls may have felt they needed it but this cocoa goodness (me) was just fine. If i was to do it again though I think I would add a bit of shimmer to my oil.
I know you guys are wondering so here are my stats and my progress.
- May 2015 – body weight – 132lbs – decision is made to lose weight so I up my cardio and limit carbs.
- November 2015 – body weight 128lbs – unofficial body fat analysis at 25%- decision is made to high a trainer and get serious. This is also the time I started seriously lifting weights
- January 2016 – body weight 123lbs – first body fat analysis came in at 22%
- April 2016 – body weight 120lbs – body fat dips to 19% – our estimate is that I also gained roughly 2lbs of muscle
- May 2016 – 2 weeks out from competition – weight 119lbs and body fat dips to 15% (this is also when the diet became extremely limited and restricted to no carbs, chicken/white fish, veggies and a whole lot of egg whites.
- Final stats – body weight morning of show 114- estimated body fat was 10-13%. Most of the dramatic weight loss was within the last 2 weeks – 6lbs.
3 weeks post-show – I have gained roughly 4-5lbs and fluctuate at 118-119 which is exactly where I wanted to land. I’m glad to have variety in my diet again, and a little bit of alcohol back in my life. I need to go back to monitoring my carb/sugar intake but all in all I am happy with the whole process.
Thank you. This year has been a true adventure so far.