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Wow, so I only have 5 weeks to go until my competition and about 4 weeks until my photo shoot. At this point, I’m a little stressed! I’m still trying to get some last minute things sorted. When I stop to think about it, it’s crazy how much work and time I am putting into this. Apart from sticking to a religious training and nutrition schedule, which isn’t too much of a hassle since I do that regardless of prep, all of the time looking for makeup artists, suit designers, competition heels, tanning services, hair stylists really adds up. Many people have asked me why I am even doing this show and it has really got me thinking, why the heck do I do any of this?!
It’s such a lifestyle for me now that it seems like the norm. I look at other people’s habits and I’m like, why the heck are they doing that? In reality though, my lifestyle isn’t normal to most people. Most people don’t prep, measure and eat 5 times a day, most people don’t train every single day and lift weights until their eyes pop out of their head, most people don’t spend their free time reading articles on training, nutrition and business tactics and most people (my age) don’t handle three jobs while being a full time student. It’s tiring, mentally tiring.
But, why do I keep going back to it? Why do I keep doing it? I wish I had a cool, sophisticated or inspirational answer, but the truth is, I just love it. I really love it. I love the confidence I have because of my fit body and because I am proud of what I have achieved and am continuing to achieve. I have gained so much on the inside and out because of my fit and healthy lifestyle. Thinking right now, I can list so many things that are different becauase of my change in lifestyle:
1. I used to hate my body. Every single day was a struggle to look at myself.
Now, I love it.
2. I used to cringe at the thought of shopping and trying on new clothes.
Now, I can put on a pair of tight fitting pants and think “Damn, girl! That ASS!”
Content and/or other value provided by our partner, Target.
3. I used to feel intimidated walking into a gym.
Now, I am always at the gym (training myself or clients) and I look forward to it every, single day.
4. I used to be that girl on the elliptical for 30-60 minutes and calling it my daily workout.
Now, I just laugh.
These are only a few, and boy, there are MANY more, but if any of you are living the ‘fit’ lifestyle or about to embark on it, ask yourself why? What is it doing for you?
So, I am about 6 weeks out from my first NPC Bikini Competition! How am I feeling? Excited, scared, nervous, but most importantly READY to rock it! I have been up and down the past few weeks worrying about the show, but luckily I have an incredibly supportive boyfriend who has been by my side the whole time. Competing can be a bit of an emotional roller coaster, so having a support system is key.
I have a photo shoot set up with Kem West about a little less than a week before the show, so I am stoked about that too. As of now, I am putting together all of the last tidbits (hair appointments, makeup appointments, outfits for the shoot etc…) I am extremely fortunate to have Kira Jones from Vandella Costumes as my suit sponsor for the show. She is working hard on my bikini, so I am excited to see it when it comes!
If there is one thing I underestimated about competing, it is the cost. Wow, when you add up all of the little things you need to get done, it definitely stings the wallet! In terms of diet and training I am feeling great. My coach, Layne Norton has been great. I really love his approach to both diet and training. I am sticking to strict macros, but it makes it easy to fit in little treats like a chocolate square, a cookie etc… Counting macros was never something I kept to strictly, but ever since I have been doing it and have gotten into the groove of it all, it is definitely something I will stick to for the future regardless of competing. It is difficult and tedious, so I would only recommend it to advanced individuals, or those who are truly dedicated to attaining a specific physique goal.
This past week, I had the opportunity to dig into some peanut butter. However, this was not your normal peanut butter, it was Pacific Beach Peanut Butter and let me tell you, there is a difference!
With flavors ranging from butterscotch, to caramel peanut, to toffee, white chocolate and more, there is a lot of nutty deliciousness going on in these jars
I had the pleasure of trying out the Butterscotch, Salted and Unsalted flavors…
The butterscotch as you can imagine was delicious! I had to double check to make sure I had gotten into the right jar- it tasted like frosting! The salted and unsalted were great too- I prefer salted to unsalted, so that takes the lead, but both were different to most peanut butters I have tried. The best aspect of these peanut butters is the texture. There is a smooth, yet slightly rough texture that I honestly cannot get my head around. It’s like a mix between crunchy and creamy, but something still on a whole new level! This peanut butter genuinely melted in my mouth- it tasted so fresh and clean. I could really taste the raw nuttiness of the peanuts, which is usually masked by other peanut butters that have been through a lot of processing.
Here is a little shot of the salted peanut butter…
I am seriously in love with Pacific Beach Peanut Butter! I have tried my fair share of nut butters and have truly tasted nothing like it! What is even better is that Pacific Beach Peanut Butter is offering all of you guys a ***FREE*** jar with any purchase from their site!
If you are deciding between flavors, there is no need! Simply pick two jars to put in your online cart and enter this discount code once you checkout: Blogger03 ***(–>that is a zero, not the letter ‘o)***
The offer is only valid until 4/15/13, so take advantage now! And, if you are looking for a creative way to use it, try out these protein peanut butter cups- You will not regret it
TFC EATS and MORE:
I was recently given the opportunity to sample Driven Sport’s pre-workout supplement, CRAZE.
I was sent three samples to try: Candy Grape, Berry Lemonade and Apple Pie.
First of all, APPLE PIE? I have never come across a dessert flavored pre-workout, so I was stoked to try the flavor out!
I loved the taste of this! I mean, who doesn’t love apple pie? Such a nice apple flavor with a hint of cinnamon. More importantly, however was the pump it gave me! I am definitely ‘immune’ to most pre-workouts as I have taken them for years, so my tolerance is quite high, but I have to say this got me going. I had a great pump in the gym, more than I have gotten from most pre-workouts lately.
This one was my favorite. I love grape flavor and this one had a really deep, sweet flavor. It tasted like a grape Jolly Rancher! Again, the pump was great- the best I have had in a while!
I love berry and lemon flavor as well, so this did not disappoint! Really tasty and again, I had a fantastic pump!
Overall, I would highly recommend Craze for those of you who had built up a tolerance to most pre-workout supplements. It has a great texture with no grit, it dissolves well in water and the flavors are delicious!
Quite frequently I am asked by my clients at the gym what I think about supplements. What do I think about them? Well, I think some of them are a waste of money, while I think others definitely have their place in one’s nutrition regime.
I change up my supplementation routine a few times a year as the body adapts and I always want to keep it guessing- that’s what makes physique changes happen!
Here are the supplements I am currently taking:
I just finished up my Cellucor C4 and have been trying out new brands. I got a lot of free samples from the LA Fitexpo last weekend, so I have definitely made a dent in those. I was also sent some Craze from Driven Sports to review, so stay tuned for that post!
I have a pretty high tolerance to pre-workouts since I have been using them for a while now, so 2-3 scoops is usually what does it for me. I take pre-workout 5-6x a week.
Glutamine and creatine monohydrate are my post workout staples. I take 5g of glutamine, 2.5g of creatine and crystal lite and shake it all up to chug post workout. Glutamine has done my body wonders in regards to muscle recovery and reducing soreness, so it is by far my favorite supplement at the moment.
Before bed I take 5g of glutamine with crystal lite everyday, even rest days. This allows my muscles to stay in an anabolic state overnight so that my muscles are constantly repairing and rebuilding.
Pre and Post Cheat Meal
I recently started taking Cal Trim 1000 as a cheat meal ally. Two caps before and two caps after my weekly cheat meal does the trick. I wake up without much water retention nor bloating!
I also take omega-3 fish oil pills and a multivitamin everyday
So, that is it! I don’t take any fancy protein powders, fat burners or anything of the sort. I keep it simple and only take what my body really needs!
“What should I eat before and after my workouts?!”
I get asked this question a lot from my clients, so I figured it would be a good idea to write a post on it since I am sure there are more of you out there wondering what to eat before and after your workouts.
Quite simply, this is the protocol I follow regarding pre and post workout nutrition. This is the same protocol that I give to my nutrition clients.
If you are doing anaerobic and/or aerobic exercise…
- Pre workout: consume a complex carb source and protein source
- Examples: (serving of fruit + serving of egg whites), (serving of oats + serving of protein powder) (serving of sweet potato + serving of chicken)
- Post workout: consume a carb source and protein source
- Examples: (serving of fruit + serving of ground turkey), (serving of white rice + serving of lean steak) (serving of rice cakes + serving of protein powder ‘frosting’)
Supplements are a whole different story. I will be writing a post on my current regime in the near future, so look out for that!
I don’t recommend consuming a fat source pre or post workout as fats are the slowest macronutrient to digest and can slow the absorption of the sugars and proteins which need to be used by the body during and after your workout.
I also do not recommend consuming carbohydrate sources (apart from vegetables) at any other time during the day. Your body needs them the most around your workouts, not when you are just sitting at your desk or laying in bed the rest of the day. Instead, consume fat, protein and vegetables for the remainder of your meals. While others may have different ways of putting together their meals, this is how I did it, gained muscle, lost 4% body fat and significantly changed my physique.
If you want more detailed nutrition advice and if you are serious about changing your physique, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org . I offer custom made nutrition packages that are guaranteed to change your body shape forever.
TFC EATS and MORE:
I am a huge fan of fitness products and especially love finding new gear and supplements, so I thought I would share my newest finds with you all!
1. Lifting Gloves
I bought the Harbinger brand about a month ago at the Vitamin Shoppe because they were on sale. I had never used gloves up until then and I have to say I really like them! I don’t use them every time I lift, but when I do I really do find them effective in protecting my palms and helping me get a better grip.
I bought some powdered glutamine a couple of months ago and WOW this stuff is incredibly effective. Never in my life have I found a more effective supplement than this. I take it post workout and before bed on workout days and before bed on non-workout days. Muscle soreness has been reduced significantly and I am recovering much faster from my workouts. Currently I have Muscle Pharm’s brand.
3. Armband Case
I used to use the iPod shuffle for workouts, but now I’ve been using this armband for my phone because of a new app, which I will talk about next! I thought it would bounce up and down and bug me during my runs and lifts, but it doesn’t move or bother me at all. I honestly don’t notice its even there!
4. Labrada Lean Body For Her Range
I was chosen to do a 30 day review of Labrada Nutrition’s Lean Body for her fat burner on Bodybuilding.com and so far I am loving the product! I’m not looking to lose fat, so I’m still eating at maintenance, however the product is definitely giving me great energy in the gym and has suppressed my appetite significantly. Labrada has some great products, including great tasting protein shakes, so I’d definitely recommend them to all my fitness fans!
TFC EATS and MORE:
“I recently was given the opportunity to complete Carrie’s Slim and Sculpt program. I had been lifting weights for almost a year, but at the time I wasn’t sure which direction to go in. I knew I liked lifting heavy and wanted to make more progress with my strength and abilities. When I learned about the program, I jumped at the opportunity.
Throughout the 12 weeks, I noticed huge increases in my strength and differences in my physique. I gained an inch on each bicep, and an overall 3 pounds of solid muscle. As someone who does not gain easily, I was ecstatic! Before beginning the program, I could not do a single unassisted chin-up. 12 weeks later, I’m incredibly proud to say that I can now do 3 in a row – such a huge improvement!
Carrie herself is incredibly helpful throughout the process. She sends motivational quotes and information each week to keep the participants pumped up for their workouts. If you have a question or a concern, she responds to emails quickly and thoroughly. This made the process easier and smoother for me. The program also comes with a nutritional guideline that is easily adaptable to all sorts of dietary needs and restrictions, which was a huge help in determining how to properly fuel for my workouts.
Even as a busy graduate student, Carrie’s programs were quick and affective enough that I was able to fit the workouts into my busy schedule. Even in a hotel, I was able to complete the workouts with only a few minor adjustments. The workouts are fun and change up often, ensuring that you’re never bored in the gym. They are enough to ensure that you’re getting the best workout possible without leading to burnout, and allowing for enough rest so that your muscles are able to grow. I would recommend this program to anyone looking to gain muscle and shape their physique, whether teenager, adult, or a parent to young children. If you want a program that is affordable, affective AND enjoyable, Carrie is the right person to speak to.”
TFC EATS and MORE:
“I had the opportunity to complete Carrie’s Slim and Sculpt program. I used to be scared of heavy weights, but now I LOVE THEM! I now know that heavy weights are what make the big changes in your physical appearance.
After completing the 12 weeks, I feel stronger, my arms are rock-solid now, my core is hard, and my legs are more powerful. (i.e. PR: Chest press. S:8lbs each arm. P:25lb each arm.) I can get through the day with more confidence in my appearance and simply feel amazing.
Carrie was always there or me to answer any questions I had — at the beginning where she helped explain the different exercises. She helped keep me motivated throughout the week with inspirational messages to keep focused. I loved how the workouts were all planned out. Usually I’m scrambling trying to figure out what I want to do in the first place and wondering how that will fit into my week, but these plans do all of that for me and I start my workout the moment I arrive.
I would absolutely recommend This Fit Chick’s workout programs to teens, young adults, and parents with kids. The workouts are fun, but at the same time don’t take a lot of time to do. You’re in the gym to make change and that’s what these workout programs focus on. They don’t waste away with trivial exercises — they give you a workout you feel tomorrow.”- Kathleen Billings
TFC EATS and MORE: