Wednesday June 26 morning check-in!

I just found out that my “warm-up” show on Aug 3 is now a National Qualifier and now I want to puke. I’m feeling kinda nervous. I’m thinking this is going to attract more competitive athletes and this was supposed to be a show to help me warm-up for Muscle Beach the following weekend. I was just going to do it to get my stage jitters out but now I’m going to have jitters with this show! Oye! That’s all right, nothing will change. I’m still working on bringing the best I’ve got for these shows. The emotional roller coaster is probably going to be something I’ll be dealing with until these show are over. The process is definitely fun but maybe because I don’t know or see, or speak to one other person who does what I do, I’m always kind of feeling alone in the process. My body is so damn stubborn! I fight and work SO hard for every single ounce, every single pound. I’m not one of those people who skips a meal or doesn’t eat and drops weight. I have to WORK like an animal and earn it all. So it’s time to lean out more. My diet is about to change. Right now I rotate days of higher carbs, lower carbs, lower fats and higher fat days. This keeps my body guessing but maybe my body has caught on because I’m feeling I’m not changing much lately and the scale has been stuck for a while…. AGAIN! So the rotation will switch up and I’ll probably have fewer high carb days now that the show is approaching. I do love those days though. I eat oatmeal and sweet potatoes and they are my favorites! That’s ok. I’ll still be eating them every few days and then again regularly in no time! Right now I need to eat for my goals!
So today I did my morning cardio session while the twins napped (walked up hill on the treadmill then hit the Step-mill) and now that my nanny is here today, I’ll be heading to work and then off to the gym before my little guy gets home from camp at 4:45. Tonight after the kids are off to sleep, I’m getting a facial at a spa. My brother bought it for me for my birthday and I can’t wait!
Here’s a photo of me yesterday before morning cardio. I’m a sponsored athlete by Metabolic Nutrition. Their products are awesome! These are two products I use every single day. Glutamine and BCAA (Branch chain amino acids) These two supplements help my muscles recover and repair from all the training I’m doing now. The flavors are so good and I even add them to my water that I drink throughout the day. Their link is on my link page if you want to read more about them. I’ll also post more about what I use later.
Have a great day!!
DL
Tag and Tri-pep

11 weeks in…6 weeks out.

Today marks 11 weeks of training and diet prep for my summer figure show come back. This is such a mental game for me lately. The closer and closer I get to the shows the more freaked out I’m feeling. I’ve had a lot on my plate recently but the craziness of June is finally starting to calm down and I think I have a grip on things and I’m ready to finish out this prep strong! Yesterday was my son’s 4th birthday party and we had guests from out of town visiting so things got a little busy but today he started his first day of camp and he’ll be taking a bus every day for 8 weeks from 8am-4pm. My nanny is able to give me more days a week now that she is out of school for summer and after next weekend’s wedding, I’m officially done with planned summer events until my shows. I got this! The stars have aligned and the timing is perfect to focus on the end of this goal. July 2 will be the day that diet and training changes are made to REALLY get me ready for stage. A few things I need to remember…

1. Keep my cardio work intense. Soon I’ll be starting 2 a days but I can’t slack on the intensity even when I’m dragging ass and want to cry. (Yes, this WILL happen)
2. Keep lifting hard and heavy! I don’t want to risk losing muscle or fullness.
3. Keep my diet TIGHT!!! I’ll admit at times I sneak in a little katsup on my eggs… NO MORE of that! No extras!
4. REST. I need to take time to rest. I need to get to bed early and make sure my body can rest and recover and REPAIR.
5. Get massages. I have some wonder birthday gift cards for massages that I will be taking advantage of!
6. Keep calm with myself… and my kids. When my carbs are low, so is my patience. I need to relax and breathe.
7. Drink, drink, drink. I always drink a gallon of water a day… sometimes more
8. Stretch…. a lot. No time for stiff, tight muscles. Yoga maybe?
9. ENJOY the process and think POSITIVE! I’ve been tending to doubt myself. I need to stop. I CAN DO THIS!!!

This morning I did some sweaty cardio and later today I’ll be hitting the gym to lift. It’s hot a sunner here in Jersey today. A great day to let the babies play in some water outside!
Have a great day everyone!
Please feel free to leave a comment, say hello or ask any questions.
DL
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The going is getting TOUGH!

I’m not even going to sugar coat it. This week was rough. I knew June was going to kick my ass but seriously, this week I’m beyond exhausted and a bit overwhelmed at times. I also didn’t help the situation by over doing the caffeine two days in a row. In my defense, yesterday I was running on about 3 hours of sleep with SO much to do and about 5 cups of coffee later I thought my heart was going to explode. I’m NOT doing that anymore. It’s all fun and games until my son wakes up every hour until 3am crying with growing pains in his legs. Then I’m up at 6am with the twins and suddenly I’m so tired and seeing double. I thought I had quads instead of twins! Anyway, I’ve still stuck to my plan. Today is day 75 of prep and I’m down 15lbs. Finally broke yet another awful plateau I had been on and saw 128 lbs this morning. Yesterday I had to take my bridesmaid dress for my friend’s wedding that I’m in next week to be fitted to me. I had ordered an 8. OMG, now I’m in a 4 and the thing was literally falling off of me. Felt pretty awesome actually. When I tried on the 8, it was SNUG. So this weekend we have guests in from Atlanta, Sunday is my son’s 4th birthday party, next weekend is full of wedding festivities and then JULY IS GO TIME!! I will be 4 weeks out from SHOW #1 and it’s ON. I’m in total focus mode. Things tighten up BIG time. Diet changes get made, cardio goes up, posing practice all the time and my new suit should arrive soon! WOW WOW WOW. THis is getting REAL. This is HAPPENING!! I’m not going to lie and say I’m not nervous. I’m nervous that I’m going to be beyond exhausted, edgy, not have much patience but I’m going to do my best to keep my shit together. I’m a mother and a wife first and I made a promise to myself that this would NOT interfere with # 1…. My family!

My loves, my life!

My loves, my life!

Off and running today…

Good Morning! I just finished an awesome cardio/plyo workout, scarfing down some eggs and veggies and a 1/2 cup oatmeal, showering, grabbing my food and I’m out the door for a morning meeting at work. It’s going to be yet another busy day. The twins go to the doctor for their one year check up later and I still need to go to the gym tonight when the kids go to bed to train some back. I’m going to post a back workout I did from a few weeks ago. I think it was about 3 weeks ago actually. Its amazing how much I change each week as I get closer to my show. I’ll have to make some more training videos and post some progress pics. My body is changing but the weight on the scale is so damn stubborn. Good thing I know enough to not care too much about the weight. I’m being judged on how I LOOK, not how much I weigh but, I do need to continue to lean out. Last night I had a tough time sleeping. I start to think too much. I get nervous about the process but I know I have to trust it. Will I be lean enough? Will I have enough muscle? Am I doing enough? Am I doing too much? I’m putting a lot into this so I want it to be right. No matter how I place in my shows, I want to walk away saying, I did all I could do for this prep. One thing I SERIOUSLY need to do is practice posing more. I’m going to start putting on my daily schedule to make sure I get it done.
Have a wonderful day everyone!
DL

How bad do I want it? Fitting it in, getting it done…

No Excuses!One huge thing I have learned since becoming a mom of three, which is WAY crazier then being a mom of one, I must say, is time management and priorities. When I was prepping for my show in Los Angeles, I wasn’t a mom, I wasn’t working, I wasn’t married. I had a boyfriend and two little dogs and yet somehow prep seems EASIER this time around. Why? I think I had too much time on my hands back then. Now a days, I’m really good at knowing what needs to be done and getting it done! I don’t put things off for tomorrow. It’s really the only way to be when you are trying to accomplish a lot and you have a family depending on you. I know what my family needs and they are number one so therefore when I decided to compete again (or just get into great shape, you don’t have to be competing) I knew that it had to fit into my life where I had space for it. I try to keep to a pretty strict schedules. My twins are on a schedule. They wake at 6am, they take two naps a day and they go to bed at 6pm. My son is on a similar schedule but no more naps and goes to sleep at 7pm. Our life functions beautifully that way. My husband and I have time to spend with our children and then time to ourselves at night. Everyone is well rested and happy and again, we feel balanced. I do my training and cardio when my babies are napping during the day or when my children are sleeping at night. That is where it fits. If I have a nanny, BONUS! I get to actually go to the gym to train during the day rather then wait for 7pm. I prep my food for my diet and my family, twice a week. I find that if my fish and chicken are already prepared, then its easy to grab it, weigh it and eat it. Same goes for veggies. If the veggies are washed and prepped then they are ready to take on the go or throw into a pan with some egg whites. When you HAVE the food you want to eat and it’s prepared, you’ll be less likely to grab for the wrong things when you get hungry. Fail to plan, then plan to fail. It’s all about planning. I always have a plan. I know what I’m eating every day. I know what body part I’m training. I know how much cardio I’m doing and what vitamins I’m taking. In fact, I have my daily plan on my counter written out every single day and I make it my business to make sure it happens, even if my workout doesn’t fit into my daily schedule until 9pm. It’s getting done! I’ve become a great multi-tasker too. I constantly have laundry going, washing dishes and a billion baby bottles and I clean up my house constantly. I’m always trying to stay ahead of the game, getting things done, prepping, planning and working off of lists. So I think that’s why I’m able to add this competition prep to my life right now. I want it badly and I’m making it work. I’m making the time and the most of every single day so that I can find my balance.

So what the heck IS a Figure Competition?

Examples (not me) of Figure poses used on stage

Examples (not me) of Figure poses used on stage

I think its pretty safe to say that most people know what Bodybuilding is and have a certain idea in their heads about what a “bodybuilder” looks like. Some people like the look of muscles and some don’t. To each his own. Many people think of the word bodybuilding and immediately their mind picture ripped up, massive, muscle bound men wearing tiny posing suits and jacked up, deep voiced, veiny women busting out with a double bicep pose. Well… yes, there are competitions for those folks and that’s great BUT that’s NOT Figure. Now, don’t get me wrong, Figure IS bodybuilding but it’s a different segment. It allows women to still build and show off their hard earned muscles WITHOUT being overly muscular, shredded and BIG. Figure is kind of like a muscular beauty pageant! It combines all the things that I LOVE! I get to train hard and show off my muscles (which I happen to LOVE seeing muscles) while wearing 5 inch clear heels, amazing make-up, awesome hair, a stellar tan and the most OUTRAGEOUS sparkling posing suits! Muscles and Glam, you say? I’m totally in!

So in Figure we don’t stand there and do the traditional flexing and posing like a bodybuilding competition. However, there are a few poses called Quarter Turns (front pose, side pose and back pose) and we are judged on the following.
1. Muscularity
2. Symmetry
3. Stage Presence
4. Body Shape
5. Muscle Shape
6. Presentation: posing, poise, grace and confidence

Basically a Figure physique shouldn’t be as big, ripped or veiny as a bodybuilder however, their body fat must be low enough to show muscle separation without excessive leanness or striations. The idea is to bring a physically fit, athletic and well balanced body to the stage… while looking completely fabulous! haha! Trust me, that’s a huge challenge because holding those poses is about as much of a workout as the training itself. After a practice posing session, I am sore and exhausted. Posing is No Joke!

A competition has two parts. A Pre-judging thats in the morning (or night before) and a night show which is called “The Finals” and that is where the winners are awarded.

Right now I’m 7 weeks out from my “warm up” show here in Jersey. I know I’m crazy but I’m doing 3 shows this summer. I started about 18 weeks out to give myself time to come down slowly.
I’m doing cardiovascular workouts 6 days a week, weight training 4-5 days and my diet is strict and tight 7 days a week. Sometimes I can’t believe I’ve decided to compete again. It doesn’t seem real because I made the decision and it all happened so fast but I’m thrilled I’m doing it and excited to see my hard work on stage!

Goals = Actions

Years ago I heard my Grandpa Ben say, ” The more you have to do, the more you get done.” For some reason that quote has stuck with me. I’m always saying it in my head and trying to think it out and make sense of it but I do “get it.” The more stuff I have on my plate, the more I’m accomplishing in my life. While I’m not thrilled about getting older and I would love to be a kid again (I’d even settle for college) I do love the wisdom and maturity that has come with age. I feel like I really know myself. I know my triggers. I know what drives me and what works for me. Being a mom of three (two being twins) really forced me to step up my organizational skills. I’m a sick multi tasker and I’m constantly working off of a calendar and lists with little check boxes next to each “to Do.” I wish I functioned like that as a kid and in school but it took years for things to really “click” for me. Being that busy is extremely fulfilling but I didn’t feel balanced yet. I strive for balance. Shortly after having the twins, when they got on a nice sleep schedule and I was getting more then 45 min of sleep a night, I started back at the gym determined to take the baby weight off. I gained 55lbs with my twins (70lbs with my oldest son because I was a total moron). I still trained and did cardio while pregnant with my twins until the last 10 weeks when my back couldn’t handle it anymore so I didn’t completely lose all of my muscle but I had my work cut out for me. I stayed consistent with training and started up some cardio again. I joined a running club. I hated running but I decided to start going outside of my comfort zone more. I figured maybe I hated running because its HARD so maybe its time to learn to at least LIKE it and see what happens. Anyway, I got the baby weight off and back to my pre-baby weight. Once I was there, it stayed there. It would not budge. Pre-baby weight is nice, if thats the weight and “look” you want to be but thats not what I wanted. I knew I could do soooo much better! I kept with my training, fumbled around with my diet and had lots of good days and made LOTS of excuses. It seems like every damn time I turned around there was some reason to eat crap and miss workouts. Between birthday parties, social gatherings, girls nights out, vacations, work lunches, birthdays at work, not to mention the 500 freakin holiday’s that always have to involve food and eating and drinking. Of course every time of one these events rolls around, its another reason to forget “healthy eating” and “start on Monday.” That might be OK if you are at your goal and your able to indulge now and then but I’m there and I felt like I was taking 1 step forward and 2 steps back. Finally one day it dawned on me that I need a GOAL. I need a SERIOUS GOAL date. I work well with goals and under pressure. I also realized that I didn’t have anything I was doing for ME anymore. What was MY hobby? So I thought, maybe I pick a photo shoot date. I could get really super fit and book a photo shoot. Then it hit me that if I’m getting super fit, why not compete in Figure again! Being a figure competitor involves a few things. You must be willing to work hard, make sacrifices, be structured, prep your meals, eat on a schedule, get your workouts in and be able to push through the hard times even when you want to say F#$K this! Well, all of those things ARE my life with kids now. There are no days off being a mom. My kids are on a tight schedule. We make lots of sacrifices being parents. Being a parent has actually taught me how to prep for competition! Go Figure! LOL! So here I am… I started my prep 9.5 weeks ago. My first show is in 7 weeks. So far, I’m feeling awesome! Diet is easy this time. No, I don’t have any cheat meals or re-feeds now but I’ve been OK with it because I LOVE what I’m doing. I make NO EXCUSES! I stick with my diet, I pack my food and take it with me if I have to and get my workouts done every. Damn. Day. (I do take one full day completely off) Yes, sometimes cardio and workout sessions are tough after an exhausting day but again, I’m blessed to be able to fit this back into my life and I’ve really committed myself to enjoying the process and journey this time! I’ve already come so far and I can’t wait to see how far I can go!
Here’s a little video from a Back workout a few weeks ago… These are some of my favorite back exercises!

If I'm on the go, my food goes with me!

If I’m on the go, my food goes with me!

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Guess Who’s BAAAACK!!!!

Yep! It’s ME just a few years older and wiser :) I always knew I’d be back so believe it or not, I’ve been paying to keep my site active all these years! So where the heck have I been?? Shortly after I did my competition, I moved home to New Jersey from Los Angeles (2006), met my husband (2007), got married (2008), had a honeymoon baby (2009), tore my ACL skiing and had surgery and rehab, got into a wicked motorcycle accident in Sturgis, SD, got pregnant with twins, had my twins (2012), had abdominal surgery to repair my torn ab muscles from carrying twins this past December… and THEN decided… ok… ITS TIME TO TAKE MY BODY BACK! So now I’m a wife, a mom of three cute little kids, I work for the family business and I’m now training to take the NPC Figure stage once again this summer doing 3 shows in August. I thought I would start up my blog again but this time talk about how I’m still striving to live the balanced life with a family and still doing what I LOVE. You might think it sounds crazy to think I could be balanced but I really am. Infact, I’ve never felt more balanced or satisfied in my life! So… I hope you’ll follow my journey while I give you a glimpse of what its like once again to train for the stage plus balance a busy life being a mom!