Up and Running

So I switched to my tried, tested, and true trainer. I’m really happy I did that. I’m in the gym 9 x per week and the program is amazing, so far. I’ve been able to complete the workouts, but they are very challenging. My diet has improved dramatically (with the exception of a bender at a staff party on Monday and the hangover breakfast of brownies that happened on Tuesday).

My supplement regime has been tweaked to include magnesium, zinc, DHAAs (in serious quantities), and still includes BCAAs, whey powder, and a multi-vitamin.

I was pinched and weighed on Monday–14.7% body fat (goal is 10% – 12%); 142lbs.

The Program:

Sunday – Off
Monday – chest/back + muay thai
Tuesday – plyo/core
Wednesday – arms/shoulders + muay thai
Thursday – intervals + additional cardio
Friday – legs
Saturday – intervals + additional cardio

I am feeling really good. Really, really good.

What’s a Gal to Wear?

I have some ideas about what I’ll be donning for my competition; thankfully, the bikini category has a little more play than others in the competition. I have a few hard and fast rules though, based on my own preferences:

1. Shoes have to be secured to my feet, but can’t be Mary Jane styles (makes the leg too short); I’ll go with with clear plastic kind, since that seems to be the norm, but I found some sling-backs that I think will work beautifully.

2. As far as a suit goes, I want something with a bit of a retro vibe, but that isn’t too kitschy. It needs to reflect my own sense of style, but it has to show off my best assets. I’m thinking I’d like to do a take on Wonder Woman that isn’t too obvious (i.e., no lasso), but provides a healthy homage to the superhero.

Fear > Drive?

This week brought me a little disappointment; on Monday, my new trainer and I had our first session. It was good–I felt that he was confident and his game plan was in alignment with my expectations. However, I was bummed out that there wasn’t a formal follow-up email to our session and even more disheartened when he cancelled our session for today.

It’s tough–I want to be forgiving and understanding–life happens! But, at the same time, I’ve been so used to working with a trainer that is crazy about follow-up and documentation and has NEVER missed a session that I’m thinking this relationship has started out on the wrong-foot. And part of me wants to be flexible, as mentioned, but the other part of me sees the clock ticking and the first-place going to the person who had a trainer that showed up without fail.

That is not to say that my success is based solely on his performance; I know I am the one who will ultimately do the work and reap the benefits, but having a trainer that is highly invested in my success is obviously important–this week has made me doubt his commitment. I’m literally breaking the bank to be able to afford his services–my

When I asked my partner what I should do, he said I should treat it like a relationship:

“If you expect to be treated differently, you have to speak up. He isn’t able to read your mind and he can’t make things right if you don’t tell him what is wrong. Once you’ve had that conversation, it’s on him to deliver or it’s the time when you both agree that perhaps the commitment isn’t there or the expectations are too high–if that’s the case, break up with him.”

Are my fears of confrontation and being disliked bigger than my drive for success? I suppose that’s a question that I’ll have to answer on Friday, when I meet with my trainer again.

Motivation and Moral Support

Okay, so this blog is usually not very personal, but let’s do something a little unorthodox today; I’m going to talk about my everyday life.

Since deciding to do the OPA event on October 20th, friends and family have shown me their true colours: I’m surrounded by people who want me to do well and people who want me to succeed. So far, I have not come across a single nay-sayer. Even co-workers and regulars are pumped for me to compete!

It can be especially difficult to work toward a goal and to achieve that goal when you surround yourself with people who have “I can’t…” as a staple in their vocabulary. Not only do they think that they can’t, but they will tell you that you can’t, either; I’m not sure, but I think that sometimes people will poo-poo the goals of their loved ones because they want to spare them disappointment, or maybe to spare themselves some work (if your partner is improving their life, maybe they’ll ask you to do the same). I think sometimes people are worried that if their partner has goals, their own goals will go by the wayside.

I’m seeing someone now who is an incredible motivator; when I’m too tired or too sore to bounce out of bed in the morning, he’s there with coffee and an inspirational speech, video, or song to get me pumped; the last 500 metres of our morning run, he gives me a literal push to keep me going; when I was debating the cost of a trainer and a coach, he was the one who told me to invest the money in my own success and the pursuit of my own goals. Even something as simple as grocery shopping–if I’m not eating it, he’s not buying it. It helps that I’m seeing someone who understands and appreciates competition and hardwork in sport, as well. He has his own goals of competing in and winning jiu jitsu and mma tournements…so his assistance and support with and for my training, will also benefit his training. Having goals that so closely align with my partner has never been so important and so rewarding.

HIs support has also made me aware that I must reciprocate and ensure it’s not the Rachel Show 24/7; he has made himself available to me in a very important way–I need him to know that I am equally as excited, supportive, and confident about his pursuits. It’s more of a team effort than an individual endeavour; there is a degree of accountability when someone makes personal sacrifices to contribute to your success. When you have someone who is equally invested in your pursuits, there is no need to be selfish because the importance of your endeavour is apparent to them–so there’s no need to elbow your way to the front of the line.

My family has also given me the green light to pursue the competition to the nth degree; normally, they can be very uptight about my finances and the way in which I choose to spend my time and money. However, when I revealed the cost of training and coaching for the next 10 weeks, they were full of ideas to help me make the financial end of this endeavour work; they asked me to start an on-going grocery list so they can provide assistance and support via nutrition and keeping a clean, well-stocked arsenalt of foods for me; they are also lovingly ignoring the fact that there is always a light sprinkling of whey powder coating their kitchen counter, the stink of gym clothes and shoes in the hallways, and tolerating my impromptu power naps that tend to take place in the middle of the day–in the middle of the living room.

I am so grateful for the opportunity and for the support; I’m going to remember this journey and the outcome forever, so we’re doing it right. Nothing worth having was ever easy to come by–I’m just glad my friends and family understand this and are on the bandwagon. Here we go!

Friday Inspiration: Nathalia Melo

Nathalia Melo’s Video Blog #9

Today I’m feeling pumped: next Monday marks the beginning of the 10-week process of getting me into first-place bikini shape. To commemmorate this occasion, I’ve chosen Nathalia Melo as this post’s inspiration…she’s got some serious on-stage swagger and pretty much the hottest bod out there. You can read an interview with her, from Bodybuilding.com, HERE.