Why compete? Why put your body and mind through 12-24 weeks of strict dieting and rigorous workouts?
I get this question often. Why? To be honest, if you ask any girl looking to compete or a current competitor, they will have a different answer. Personally, I want to compete to push myself both mentally and physically. I want to test my strength. I want to prove to myself that I can accomplish this goal. This goal that takes dedication, determination, drive, will, and so much more.
Having attempted to compete once previously, I know this isn't easy. Actually stepping on stage is one of the hardest things out there. And whether you take a trophy home or not, you're a winner for going out there and giving it your best. So, every day I set out to give it my best, so that when it is all said in done I can be proud.
14 days down, 92 and counting *boy does that seem like a lonnnnnng time*
Q: How much progress have you made so far?
A: Although it has only been 2 weeks, I have lost 1 inch on my waist and 3lbs (Measurements taken on Monday, January 25, 2016 - 9 days into my cut).
Stage weight: Unknown
Q: What and how much do you eat?
A: Before prep, I was maintaining on about 2,150 calories. I currently eat around 1,805 calories. Since I have been progressing so well, my calories did not drop for the second week of prep. The goal is to be able to cut on as many calories as possible.
Since I follow a flexible dieting approach, no day is the same. Each day is different. If you'd like to see a full day of eating, add me on MyFitnessPal: lauraelizzzzabeth
One of my goals during this bikini prep is to enjoy my meals and continue to be creative. I don't want to get stuck eating bland foods. I enjoy eating creatively and it keeps prep fun! On Wednesdays, my boyfriend and I pick up fresh salmon from Sprouts Farmers Market and tonight, I made a homemade taco salad. It was fresh and extremely nutrient dense!
It has only been 2 weeks, but because I don't eat the same things over and over, I have yet to get sick and tired of dieting!
Q: Don't you get hungry?
A: Yes! Yes! Yes! I try to remind myself, it is okay to be hungry! I know I am properly fueling my body and hunger is only a minor obstacle in the whole scheme of things.
Q: What's the most challenging part?
A: New challenges arise daily. However, one challenge I am constantly facing is meal spacing. Since I prefer to workout early in the morning (5:00AM) I end up eating the majority of my calories before 1:00PM. This forces me to having extremely good will power later in the day. To curb my cravings in the afternoon and evening, I reach for tea, BCAAs, and lemon water.
When I really start to think about the whole picture, the most challenging aspect of competing, for me, is getting over my nerves and fear. Will I be ready? Will I look good enough to step on stage? Will I trip on stage? The list goes on and on. As someone with severe anxiety and stage freight, my thoughts are most consumed with stepping on stage. This is why posing is so important. Everyone says that great posing can out win great conditioning. Because of this, I stepped outside of my comfort zone early on and went to a free posing clinic hosted by Team Elite Physiques. This forced me to put on my sparkly high heel shoes with a group of girls and work on the basics of posing on stage. Did I feel uncomfortable? Of course! But, I went and had fun! Sure, I wasn't any good but that doesn't matter. What matters is that I went. Practice makes perfect they say and that is what I am going to continue doing.
Below are photos from Spring 2014 when I began my first bikini prep. I quit soon after this. No quitting this time!
Below are photos that are current. The picture on the far left is from 1 week into prep: Friday, January 22, 2016. Bottom Right is my first check in on Monday, January 25, 2016.
Q: What's your bikini look like?
A: I haven't picked one out yet. I will be having Angel Competition Bikinis design my bikini and currently they are some of my favorites:
The only color not on here that I am debating is navy blue. Here is a link a YouTube vlogger, a personal favorite of mine, Kara Corey, and her video on 'Choosing the Right Competition Suit.'
Q: Who is my coach?
A: I am being coached by Jessi of SoBoss. I found her via social media. What I love about her program is that is a flexible dieting approach. I knew from my previous experiences that I did not want a cookie cutter diet. I wanted to flexibility to be able to choose the foods I wanted to eat based on my calculated macro-nutrients. Finding a diet that works for you takes trial and error and time. The first method you attempt may not work for you and your lifestyle. Keep looking, eventually you'll determine what's best for you, your body and your lifestyle!
Q: How much cardio are you doing?
A: Currently I am doing 2- 20min HIIT sessions per week.
If there are any questions you have for me during my bikini prep journey, feel free to comment below or tweet at me: laurapetersonkc
You can also follow me on Instagram: lauraelizzzzabeth for more frequent updates on my journey to the stage!