Next Two Weeks Diet

I went and did some grocery shopping a bit ago and decided to post a picture of the type of food I am delighted to be eating in the next 12 days…before I turn the reigns back to my coach.  I’m 16 weeks away from Nationals and I plan on getting started back up with Shelby August 1st.

You’ll see in there some greek yogurt, granola, lots of fruits, veggies and frozen veggies like cauliflower and peas. I love to make cauliflower mash – just nuke a bag of cauliflower, spray some I can’t believe it’s not butter on there and put it all in the “magic bullet” and voila…a very delicious side dish I can’t have during prep.  Peas are also too high in carbs when in prep – it’s one of the few green veggies I can’t have.  I really like having tilapia with peas.

I also can’t wait to put some feta cheese, spinach and tomatoes in an omelet.  The sweet potatoes go well with really any protein like chicken or red meat. It’s going to be a treat to put half a banana into my protein shake again and back off from the protein pudding for a little while.

I still need to go get my proteins which will consist of beef, chicken, tilapia and perhaps even some salmon.

Having all this yummy, yet very healthy, balance and good for me food is going to boost my metabolism, keep my taste buds satisfied and eliminate the need to have cheat meals. The fruits will prevent sugar cravings and the balance of complex carbs and the protein will keep me feeling well satiated.  Although I’m sure I’ll be having some sushi once or twice in the next two weeks. Point being though, that I will not be depriving myself of the foods I love.  Of course it really doesn’t hurt that the foods I love are fruits and veggies!

Eating this way will also improve my mood and increase my productivity.  I don’t foresee gaining much weight…but we’ll see.

Mission Qualification: In Full Effect

Sitting on a plane from Hartford to Tampa, making my way back to New Orleans from a week in Massachusetts where I enjoyed some quality time with my family and did some work for my older brother.  I can’t believe a week has already gone by since the Camellia Championship and that I’m only 20 days away from the Greater Gulf Championship.

Like I mentioned in my other post, my debut was a blast, a learning experience and a fabulous time.  I’ve received awards in the past, and I’ve won a few things here and there but winning my first competition and becoming Louisiana’s first ever Women’s Physique winner was like nothing I had ever experienced before. All of the pain, hardship, struggles, difficulties, disappointment etc. I’ve experienced in the past made it all that much more valuable to me.  The support and congratulations that came pouring in made me feel so special, loved and cared about. I definitely got a winners welcome from my family at home and that was very awesome!!

Lessons Learned from Debut

I made sure I was well prepared from my debut but at the end of the day; until you’ve actually done something – there’s only so much preparing you can do.  With that being said, I can say I learned a lot from my first competition.

Less Running Around: I did way too much running around on Thursday and Friday.  I did not get to relax much at all.  They were both pretty non-stop days. Now that I know everything I need to do – this time around, I won’t be running around so much and I will definitely make sure I already have all I need the week before.

Posing: Many people told me how different posing on stage would be compared to posing in the mirror and man…were they ever right! Standing there on stage, whether there’s a competitor next to you or not – you feel very alone and obviously exposed. The lights are bright; you really can’t see much of anything at all and all you hear is a little voice giving you directions.  By the time you’ve run the check list in your head of what you need to do for the pose called – the next pose is being called so you can’t be certain you struck the pose the best you could.  There’s of course no time to think about that because you’re going through the checklist for the next pose.

I was not as prepared as I needed to be for the 45 seconds posing at pre-judging.  I also chose to have my hair down and had not practiced moving my hair to properly expose my back.  For the evening show, by the time it was time for me to do my routine I was starting to fade…too hungry and too thirsty.  I had wobbly legs during my routine and was cramping as I was leaving the stage.

There was also the whole changing my music to my routine last minute.  I need to nail down my routine and music right away this time.

On Saturday, I had everything I needed.  I ran into some traffic at 4:30am but still managed to stay on schedule. I was relaxed, ready and excited by the time we were at the athletes meeting before pre-judging.

Head Judge Feedback:  I did not see my score sheet but I did get much needed feedback from the head judge, Luke Tesvich. He said I was hard enough and dry enough, however, I was too lean.  For the next competition, I need to come in with fuller muscles – I could afford to put on a few pounds.  (Something I never thought I would hear). Some additional feedback from his lovely wife Robin was to work on my side chest pose and she recommended pulling my hair back from my face. Both also said I needed to do something about my top…it needs a little stuffing 😉

Mission Qualification Prep

So…based on the feedback from the judges, my coach allowed me to have my sushi and bagel on Sunday after the competition.  He also added the carbs back into my diet.  On Sunday I was already back in the gym hitting some shoulders.  I returned to training heavy – my rep range 8-12; working on continuing to build up my muscles.  The addition of the carbs filled me back out nicely.  I was even allowed a cheat meal yesterday (Friday night) so I chose to go to the Olive Garden.  The extra carbs and fat from my cheat meal made for one heck of a leg training session earlier this morning.

Since there’s only 20 days to the Greater Gulf, no major changes are implemented in my training, supplements or diet.  My final week will obviously be different this time since I won’t have to go so long without carbs and I will get more carbs the day before the show to make sure I do have fuller muscles.

I’m going to keep training hard and I plan on brining an even better physique to the stage on June 22nd.  I know I’ll be going up against some of the same competition and hopefully many others as well and my plan is to keep on winning!!

Diet Overview: The Last 20 Months

Sample of what I was eating - March 2011

Got a message after my post on my training “Please stop telling me it’s mostly diet and tell me about the diet!” – Ergo this post. Weight this morning was 116.4 – I have almost lost 50 pounds but it’s taken me 20 months, that’s almost 2 years. It’s takes time to do it right.

Few Caveats Before I Get Into It:

1. There is almost no way for me to talk about diet without sounding preachy. So if you don’t want to be preached to…don’t read this post.
2. Unless you train like I do or are also a competitor; there is no reason for you to be on as strict a diet as what I am currently on.
3. My initial diet was done by a coach and my current diet is done by a coach.  I am clueless about what I need to be eating to get to where I want to be – I follow the weekly plan provided to me by my coach.
4. My diet works for ME.  For my body type, my level/type of exercise, my daily life, current goals etc.
5. I eat the exact same things day, after day, after day.  I do not care much about taste.  I don’t look for recipes to make what I eat more tolerable.
6. I’m providing an overview because my diet changed too often to really give you a full picture of what it’s been like.
7. You really want to get serious about your diet and competing or getting into the best shape of your life: HIRE SOMEONE TO DO YOUR DIET.

October 2010

At the heaviest I had ever been in my life, it was time for a serious change in my eating habits. I was not confused about how I had gotten so heavy – way too much food and too little exercise.  I know exactly what all the circumstances were that got me to where I was.  My initial goal was to lose about 25 pounds. Get back to 140, which I felt was a good weight for me and it met the Marine Corps weight standards.

Overview of My Initial Diet:

I had six meals as part of my initial diet. I used to think lean cuisines were okay to eat and would help me lose weight – I was wrong and all of those went away…so did being able to have a nice tall glass of orange juice in the morning. I was allowed 2 cheat meals a week.

1 scoop protein, ½ banana, almonds

4 eggs white, 1 yolk, strawberries, 1/4 cup oatmeal

Chicken, Greens, Sweet Potatoes

Zone Bar

Red Meat, Brown Rice, greens

1 scoop protein, almonds

First week on my initial diet and I lost 4 pounds. I was pleased and excited. I stayed on my initial diet for a few months. I would stray here and there for 1-2 days but whenever I got back on it – I would have another significant weight loss.

June 2011

I had lost the 25 pounds I had aimed to lose and may be a little more than that.  I was feeling great and my body was looking good.  I kept wrestling with the thoughts of competing and once I attended the Greater Gulf Championship, I made up my mind to compete the following year.

July 2011

First Diet Overhaul

Being naïve about dieting, when I decided to start competing and had a talk with the person doing my diet – I didn’t expect any major changes.  Well, I was wrong.  The zone bars went away, quantities were in some cases drastically reduced…particularly with carbs and fruits almost completely disappeared. I lost more weight and my body tighten up more.  Cheat meals remain but only one could be “dirty”.

October 2011

Second Diet Overhaul

After reading about carb cycling – I decided I wanted to try it out so I had my coach do a carb cycling diet for me. The foods remain pretty much the same but the quantities changed depending on what day of the cycle I was on.  Carb cycling made me hungrier than ANY of my previous diets. The crazy thing was that I was the hungriest on my high carbs days. Cheat meals remain here too, but again, only one “dirty”

January 2012

Third Diet Overhaul

This diet overhaul was tough, one of my daily meals was dropped and so was one of my cheat meals.  I went from 6 meals eating every 2-2.5 hours, to 5 meals eating every 3 hours.  Red meat was also taken out. It was time to suck it up and eat tilapia. I was losing weight again.  I was starting to be surprised I kept losing weight.  Once I reached 125 – I was sure that’s as light as I would get.

March 2012

Fourth Diet Overhaul

I got a new coach.  Nothing against my former coach the decision to get a new coach was not professional but personal. At this point, I was weighting 119 and my former coach had been a tremendous help getting me there.  Although 119 pounds, my problem areas were still a big problem.

Coaches all have their different approaches and getting a new coach added some new foods to my diet and took some away.  It was “Bye, bye sweet potatoes” and “hello” once more to brown rice. He added a lot more good fats to my diet – meal 2 and 4 are whey protein and 1.5 tbsp of fresh grinded peanut butter. Red meat or salmon became an option as part of my last meal with a small green salad.  Was very happy by this change – although, three weeks into it now, I’m not sure I like eating red meat everyday and I am clueless on how to properly prepare salmon (plus the good stuff is really expensive).  Great news is more good fat to my diet has resulted in less fat on my glutes and hams.

I’m 4 weeks and some change (days) away from my first competitions so over the next few weeks I will be going through some-major diet overhauls to get me to the stage in the best shape and condition I can be in.  It’s going to be back to back competitions after that, so the next couple of months are going to be interesting. I’m ready though.  It’s been quite a journey and this is where it all starts paying off!!

And that is the low down on my diet for the last 20 months.  I will not post my specific diets because 1) some people will start following them although they weren’t plan for them and might do them more harm than good and 2) I paid for those diet and it is how some people make a living, therefore, to openly share them is not right. However, hopefully you did get an idea of how monotonous, strict and boring the foods I consume are, how it’s a step-by-step process and NOT an overnight miracle. There was no quick way to getting to where I am now.