So everything has been a bit hectic and crazy recently so apologies for having not written for some time. I had been busy prepping for competition and it has finally sunk in that I won the Muscletalk Championships in Bedford last week. I am still buzzing with excitement at the result however, getting there proved difficult…
All those close to me know that I wasn’t happy with my condition on stage. I had originally begun dieting in preparation for the English Grand Prix which is 2 weeks away now and made a late decision to try and bag my invite for the British Championships at the closest qualifier which happened to be Bedford at only 3 weeks earlier. This meant instead of doing a normal 15 week prep, I would only have 10 weeks to get into the same condition and while normally I wouldn’t have put pressure on myself like this, I thought it would be OK as I always come in lean enough a few weeks early and coast into competition. Well, I was wrong. I know Eddie was not totally happy with the arrangement but we thought we’d give it a shot. The final 2 weeks of prep was VERY hard – I was literally trying to keep myself moving as much as possible just to keep burning calories. Food was the lowest it’s been and cardio was high – certainly NOT how I would recommend others to prep. I knew that with a brilliant coach and all the support I have, I would be OK – I would never put myself at risk or compromise my health but it was very very difficult.
The point of this blog is to encourage those prepping for stage to take enough time to complete the prep, especially if you are a first timer as you just don’t know how it’ll go. Don’t run yourself into the ground and please make sure you have the support of a good coach. I felt that I missed out on the enjoyment of prep this time around because I was constantly panicking about bringing my best and matching previous performances. The stress probably didn’t help my physique either. Not only did I not look my best, but it affected my posing and presentation as I couldn’t nail the poses as I normally would and I just wasn’t ‘comfortable’.
Despite this, all the hard work paid off as I was announced the winner but if I had given myself the extra time, I could have brought a better package and actually enjoyed prep like I usually do. I am overjoyed that the judges saw something in me and in return, I will prove to them that I can improve. I will be bringing a much tighter physique and performance to both the Invitational and the Championships. How I look now is how I wish I had looked last week BUT this is all part of the learning curve and learning from experience. While you can get to understand your body better, no prep is exactly the same and you should be ready for any problems or mishaps that might arise. I will never try and prep for a show in less than 15 weeks again – slow and steady is definitely better, both mentally and physically.
I sought feedback from the judges (again, something I would highly recommend) and now have lots of things to focus on to come back better. Just like you can never stop improving your physique, you can never stop learning, and the decisions you make might be right or wrong but the important thing is that you LEARN from them. Every single experience is invaluable when it comes to competition preparation – use them to improve and progress.