Thursday, October 26, 2006

In transit - migraine shocker

Got out the door OK this morning but developed a cracking migraine as we took off - cannot believe I paid 10.00 for 12 Nurofen on arrival at Brisbane Airport. Arrgh. I've been lying down in darkness most of the day and have not been able to face eating my regular fare. Talk about a spot of bad luck. Anyway, about to hop on plane to Melbourne - at least it isn't happening tomorrow and I'm not a post-migraine bloated Novice gal.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Time to fly!

Last post before the Nationals and another one of Jadey's gorgeous photos. I think this is another one of my favourites. Heck, they are all good.

I'm just glad to be going on holidays and looking forward to meeting everyone so much. This has been a really hard week mentally and lots going on. We are moving up the road further into Woop Woop (Moura) which is really small and not a Woop Woop Warehouse to even visit. So unless a gym falls out from thin air, it looks as if I probably won't compete next year. For us financially speaking it is the right thing to do and good for my poor DH who has had a two hour commute to work and back. The problem for me is that the gym is such a massive part of my life and I will be lost without it. It just means that I'm really going to have to go all out to enjoy myself this time and celebrate the fact that I'm doing Nationals at all.

Eating has been pretty good, except I have just succumbed to an extra large protein shake. I will look at it this way - at least I won't be hungry going to bed tonight. Must be all this talk of cookies, cream, chocolate and the like! I did some rowing and a chest workout today and will train lightly tomorrow am.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006


I just checked the competitor list and there are now 16 Novice Figure girls in the line up. I tell ya, the posedown should be interesting - maybe some jostling and argy-bargy - Deb and I will be flying the Queensland flag!

I did not get any training done today, but will get in a final training session tomorrow. My eating could be better - under a lot of stress right now with other goings-on, so I have had the massive urge to troll for all sorts of crap going on. I know that as soon as I get on that plane, things will improve for the better, I just have to stay the course here until Thursday, which cannot come fast enough.

One PT client today and two tomorrow - it's fun showing that a home workout can kick you in the patootie as much as a gym one. It inspires me to keep going and trying to improve as welll.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Cookies and Cream

I stuck this picture in today because I am just loving Ladybird Protein - Cookies and Cream (no they didn't ask me to promote them either!). I'm just amazed that somebody can actually come up with a flavour that really does taste like cookies and cream ...all rolled together!

Busy weekend - we took the girls to the beach on Sunday - only had a two hour drive to get there, but it was fun to paddle around, build sandcastles and go for a swim. Then we watched "The Bourne Supremacy" last night - I really enjoyed both movies.

This week is taken up getting ready to go to Melbourne. I am planning three more training sessions and then it is on the plane Thursday! I don't think my condition is as good as it was for the Qlds but I remind myself I am just getting up there to enjoy myself, so I am not going to stress it.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Is that really me?

Here is one of my favourite photos from my session with Jadey. I love black and white photos and the background and contrasts are just wonderful.

Today has been a low energy day, more due to psychological stress rather than physical, though I am having problems with a twingey left knee. I think that I'm trying to work things out too far ahead in regards to my competing future, which feels decidedly clouded after all of the goings on with DH and family. I know for sure that I am not going to compete next April - I feel like I need good rest, recovery and some different type of exercise. Plus I want to focus on my family - DH and the girls more. However I don't want to give away the idea of competing again entirely and know that this is not really the time to be thinking about this anyway.

I am having a tough time with not wanting to troll for food and realize that it is due to boredom, rather than being hungry. I have knocked over my tax return and I am getting ready to prep dinner. I just picked up the CSIRO book and some of the dishes look fantastic and very LL friendly. I just love trying out new recipes. My other blog is going to get quite the hammering.

I did a 30 min run, some chest work and went for an hour long walk this morning.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

I like a little more variety

Another day down. Went for an hour's walk with some bicep work thrown in. Saw a client. Worked on the "more dietary variety" scenario again. Boy, it is a great food troll deterrent and actually quite a bit of fun, this little mini challenge. I'm looking forward to putting in a tough workout tomorrow though!

M1: 40g oats + Vanilla protein powder
M2: choc orange surprise - grilled orange segments on cottage cheese blended with Ladybird Chocolate Whey protein powder
M3: kangaroo and salad
M4: Turkey Cranberry Salad with raspberry glaze - turkey breast shredded with a reduction of vinegar/splenda on baby spinach, spanish onion, shredded carrot, grape tomatoes, peppers and a little cheese
M5: Grilled chicken breast with red pepper tapenade crust, smashed potatoes and steamed greens
M6: 1 teaspoon probiotic icecream

Yummo, those Nationals will be here before I know it! I'm looking forward to picking up all sorts of gourmet treats to cook with in Melbourne. I only wish that I could bring the local fish market home with me...sigh. I am just potty about fish!

Monday, October 16, 2006

Viva la Difference

What a difference a few days makes and some perspective. Here's another sample of Jadey's wonderful work, the first time in my life where I actually look good in a bikini..Hooray!

Today I worked on my commitment to live a Leanness Lifestyle despite being 12 days out from the Nationals. Balance and enjoyment is key to good nutrition, it's about taste, mouth satisfaction as well as the calories. Today I tried a new type of omelette, baked an apple and had kangaroo and salad for dinner.
M1 - 2/3 cup oats + Ladybird White Chocolate Whey, 1/2cup skim milk
M2- baked apple stuffed with cottage cheese, cinnamon, dash Splenda
M3- the "Green Thang" omelette - 1 egg, 5 whites loaded with asparagus, spinach, shallots (hence the green tag) and mushrooms - as much as I could fit in and two slices of Seven cheese ontop
M4 - steamed asparagus (I am loving asparagus right now) and a Frozen "Protein Pudding" - Nestle Diet Yoghurt in apple/cinnamon with NHS Caramel Flavouring and 1/2 scoop Vanilla Figure Tone
M5 - lemon and wattleseed kangaroo steak cooked rare, sliced over baby spinach and veggie salad with balsamic dressing....mmm :) , one teaspoon Probiotic icecream.

Training wise - went for a walk, then did 30 minutes heart thumping running intervals, trained back, triceps, legs in the WWW.

Taming the Black Dog - for Jodi

I wanted to put this post out there, especially for Jodi, who I know has been suffering from the effects of depression and anxiety.

I, too, have suffered from clinical depression and anxiety over the years, and whilst I do a darn good job of managing it now, I am still wary of it lurking over my shoulder for a number of reasons.

A few facts about depression:
- clinical depression (where you exhibit "symptoms" of depression as measured by an index) occurs to 85% of women at least once in their life. If you are one of the 15% who have yet to experience a depressive episode, lucky you!
- clinical depression involves an imbalance of brain neurotransmitters, serotonin being the main transmitter affected. The imbalance can be precipitated by many things - for example, a stressful life event - such as having a baby, moving house, death/divorce, starting a new job etc, in other words, whilst the root cause is usually psychological stress of some sorts, it manifests itself as physical symptoms with a chemical cause.
-the worse the imbalance, the worse the distress and it turns into a perpetual never ending cycle - which is why the use of antidepressant medication can be very useful.
-the best results seem to be use of medicines with other therapy such as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and the fun stuff, like getting some exercise in the fresh air! Used alone, the effect is limited.
-depression can run in families and is linked to eating disorders. In my own case, family members have had eating disorders and I expressed my malcontent in a big weight gain post children.

-people who are depressed can suffer from a number of irrational beliefs. These were coined by Ellis in the 60s. An example of a few of these are:

1) I must be perfect/act perfectly or else
2) People must love and approve of me or else I am worthless
3) I must be adequate and achieving in every respect
4) When I do something badly, I'm a bad person, I'm a failure, I'm an idiot
5) Human unhappiness is caused by life circumstances and it is impossible to be happy when things aren't going well for me
6) It is awful if I cannot find the correct solution to a problem.

There are many "rational responses" to these situations. I will borrow your post if that is OK Jodi.

"I must not blog or read anyone elses blog about the things I'm interested in because my partner thinks it's crap, vain etc etc. " (subjectively this could mean - if I blog/read, it is crap because he says so and if I disagree with him, he will not approve of me, and if he doesn't approve of me, then I will feel worthless".

Another way of looking at it.
" I really enjoy reading everyone's blogs.
Gather some evidence about vanity, crap etc...
"I don't think being healthy and fit is crap, neither do several thousand other bloggers - I am not interested in (insert partner's interests here) one bit"
To partner "I don't knock your interests, why are you criticizing beliefs are different. it is OK to be different"
"What you think/say or do is none of my business" (meaning you cannot control what comes out of someone else's mouth, so let it go...
"I know what I want. I know what I love. I am worthwhile because I exist, because God chose to create me" (can't get much better than that)

Jodi, you are not pathetic, you are not weak, you have been sidelined with a physical problem. You have been given a gift - that your barometer is just a bit more finely tuned than most others which gives you the greatest ability to show empathy and to love. You have an amazing spirit and every tool in the box to shine - and that you share your spirit so generously with everyone and are so supportive tells me that you are an exceptional person - worthwhile indeed!

Some of the most famous people have suffered from depression. You are not alone. I walk with you in your fight. Here's a great link.

So please keep blogging and say what you feel like - it is your life and your choice.

Liz N

one year ago today....

This photo was taken almost a year ago about 2/3 of the way through my transformation. The power of a focused training program is amazing!

For Miss Coni

This is a special post for Miss Coni, one of my very near and dear real life clients - yes honey, there was a "before" - you can achieve anything you want to if you set your mind to it! I just have to add my second comp shot to it - at 117 pounds - added a kilo of muscle..yahooey!

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Feeling better

Woke up feeling much better this morning after having a really levelling chat with hubs about all sorts of things. I've eaten much better today as well. I will post my entry form tomorrow.

Here's what I ate today (also considering I had a rest day and I'm not very hungry (surprise,surprise) today).
2 eggs poached, small slice wholemeal toast, 2 grilled tomatoes, 1 cup grilled mushrooms
1 egg, 5 white omelette with eschallots, vidalia/spanish onion, mushrooms, Seven cheese and fresh spinach
Slim Secrets Choc Caramel bar and an apple
Grilled snapper with Teresa Cutter's guacamole bean salad

I was wondering if anyone had done the Myers-Briggs Personality Type Indicator test? Several years ago, I went to see an organizational psychologist (because I had career choice troubles) and I did this test, which looks at the "tendency towards" of your personality.

I am an INFJ
(Introverted - gain more energy from being by self
Intuitive - works on "gut instinct" and assesses things globally rather than using concrete facts
Feeling - making decisions based on emotion
Judging - tendency towards planning and organization and having things settled.

She mentioned that if you are out of balance/stressed then you can take these traits to the extreme - I know I have been feeling withdrawn, overtly emotional, looking at things in terms of the "whole of my life" and getting very frustrated about not being able to execute my plans.

Suddenly remembering this chat of about 10 years ago has really helped me to see that I need to step back, work on the stress levels and chill out a bring things back into balance again.

I prioritized sleep over exercise this morning, but tomorrow I'm looking forward to giving it a good shake and having some fun.

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Not feeling so flash....

I've been deliberating whether to post now or not, wondering what the reaction I get to this may be.

I've had a shocker of a week, especially emotionally. After the high of the competition, I got a phone call from my Mum telling me that I had rocks in my head even thinking I could be competitive in the competition due to my belly skin, that my fourth place finish was trying to tell me something and that I had taken things too far and that my whole family thought that I was selfish and bordering on anorexic. I have been feeling pretty fragile as until now, my mother has been one of my staunchest supporters. I stayed with my parents up until two weeks before the comp and I can certainly understand if they thought I was being super particular as I was weighing out portions, practicing posing and routine etc, but anorexic was totally left field as far as I am concerned. So I have had thoughts such as "should I bother doing Nationals?" running around my head as I don't want to get up there if I don't look the part and wondering if I really am deluding myself thinking I can compete in Figure. It has been a weird feeling telling various others I came 4th as I think they all expected me to win or place and I have been feeling like I've been pitied, even though as I said to them all before, I was just happy to get up there on stage.

Then I copped a similar lecture from hubs and after a lot of discussion, I think he understood where I was coming from, what my motivation has been in competing etc.

Another layer of stress has been the blow up with the Woop Woop Warehouse. I wasn't going to go back there and train at all, but I enjoy my strength training and I feel sad at the thought of going backwards, even though I can do much of my training at home. I feel wretched at the thought of having to live here a minute longer and feel myself sinking into a depression as I try and accept where we are living. I have been here for six months and have yet to make many friends, and not for lack of trying either.

I am also finding it hard to keep everyone entertained as there is not a lot to do here. So silly me cooks up patty cakes and Viennese Kisses with the girls and I end up trolling and having a massive binge on fat and sugar. Not like me at all - I know after last comp, I had some moments like this but what upsets me is that I failed to see all the upset preceeding it, chose my trigger foods (baking, baked goods) and stuffed my face and not in a good way either - that furtive 'shovel it down as fast as you can and hope nobody sees' style behaviour. Not good.

Another pattern I notice is a desire in me to have things planned and settled. Not knowing what my goals are for next year or even after next month is driving me nuts. Not knowing where I will be living doesn't help either. Having a plan or a WHY as Coach says is the most important step of all - so it is time for a WHY revision, me thinks.
However, it is over and I just have to focus on moving away from it one meal at a time. I am not going to be too restrictive, but rather focus on cleaning it up a bit at a time. And focus on eating a variety of foods, rather than the same recipes - I know I got dependent on using the same recipes before the comp as I was away and chose foods I knew worked for me, so I am going to work in some small changes whether it is the flavour of the protein powder or different salad green or veggie. I am going to be more mindful of Lifestyle rather than "diet". As for the Nationals, I think I should do them. I have 14 days to really focus and that is exactly what I am going to do.

I also need to focus on some of the positives - where I've come from, that I've had some terrific clients since being here and learned how I make the best improvements :)

Friday, October 13, 2006

She takes a great photo!

I've replaced my abs with a photo that Jadey took (she's the gorgeous girl on the left who made me up to be a princess on Sunday!)

Not much doing today - went for a walk and trained my shoulders at home. Better than nothing!

Where to from here

Whew, back in Woop Woop and don't know where to begin.

Back to the competition - I had a great day and lots of fun catching up with everyone. As I mentioned in my previous post, I came 4th out of the 4 participants in my class. I think it was pretty tight as the judge said after our muscularity and symmetry rounds that he felt sorry for whoever was going to come fourth, it was that close. I think I probably lost points for my routine, but won't know for sure until the score breakdown gets sent out. I achieved my main goal of really improving my back and shoulders from the last comp, so I am happy. The head judge even came up to me afterwards and told me that I had made huge improvements since April and not to give up competing which was very nice of him.

The ladies in my class were really terrific. It turned out that we were all mothers and it was fun trading stretch mark and "Mum" stories backstage - the atmosphere between the four of us couldn't be better and we all had a big laugh when I said "you all got these nice trophies and I got this lousy muffin and a bottle of water!".

It was great to see Deb, Alicia and Maraina compete. Everyone looked really terrific and did anyone tell you Maraina can dance up a storm without her routine music. I also got to meet Hilary (who is as lovely in real life as she is in her blog) and Andj (who I know well from Fitness First). I was the one yelling for you all!

The next day I met Jadey who took some wonderful photos of me in my Lorna Jane gear. Jadey is an absolute stunner and we hit it off from the moment we met. Jadey has a really relaxed way about her and I felt like I had known her for years. I was a bit nervous about having photos taken, but Jadey put me at ease. The above photo was taken with my very basic digital camera, so I cannot wait to see the photos from Jadey's camera.

Then it was back home to Woop Woop, which has been very flat to say the least. I've done a couple of workouts at home, but am worried that the intensity will not be high enough to produce a great result in Melbourne, to the point where I have been considering pulling out as my eating hasn't been exactly stellar either. I am probably going to have to go back to the gym to workout (and pay membership dues for a month) but seriously doubt I will be able to formalize an agreement that we will both be happy with. I also have the option of working with the local physio (who is lovely) and taking Workcover clients - she wants me to rehab two ACL people already.

I've decided that I'm going to give Melbourne my best shot, but given all of the drama with where we are living etc, may not compete at all next year and just focus on living a leanness lifestyle.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

My line up

Thanks to Andj for the photos - Here I am second from the right!

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Figure girl!

Here I am just before I went on stage. I came 4th out of 4 competitors, but think I looked and felt better than last time, so I am happy! More details to come!

Friday, October 06, 2006

Mini Update

Here I am tapping away at the computer with my new fake nails - the last comp I just used stick on ones, but this time I splurged on a French Polished Gel Set, which I say make my hands look rather elegant! I am guzzling lots of water, 4 litres down, another couple to go and moderating my sodium intake. I started potassium mid morning (wished I had started later as I am not on stage until early afternoon) and I am starting to dry out quite nicely. I have four coats of Contest Colour on and I've just picked up another tip from Lia about glad wrapping the toilet seat in her blog.

We had the Competitor's Meeting this morning and I rather enjoyed meeting up with similarly tanned competitors - I think I felt rather at home there as I have been getting a few stares in the local shopping centre..hee, hee. Met up with Josh and Deb, who are both looking in formidable condition. Josh is holding great condition and Deb, well, Deb just has the total package as far as I am concerned - she is on fire! As far as Deb and I know, we have pretty big line ups - the Novice Category reportedly has 17 entrants and the count for Figure Intermediate was "at least 7 or 8" so tomorrow will be pretty interesting.

Looking forward to extra potatoes tonight and another coat of Contest Colour! Then a final quick "de-dorking" and off to bed.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Not long now!

I cannot believe it is only 3 days out now, but I'm really beginning to look forward to things. I've done all I can do and apart from trying to "de-dork" myself in the routine - that is my greatest problem, I look "wooden" doing the routine sometimes- I am really very happy with my preparation.

Weight has dropped a smidge and I am really enjoying not carb depleting - had extra again today and taught RPM - gave them a thorough pasting which was great fun. Got my distilled water today and planning my low sodium day for Friday - cannot believe how much sodium is in everything so I will have to be careful. At least it is only for 24 hours :)

I picked up all of my gear from Lorna Jane this afternoon. I could not believe the girl grinning back at me in the "XS" size with a six pack to boot. I stood there feeling so lucky and amazed at where this journey has taken me! When I think of the day I laid in bed at 85kg (187 pounds) and decided to get up and get going, rather than stay down, I must admit I feel pretty emotional.

Sometimes I compare myself to others and worry about my stretch marks and loose skin, that I'm not "good enough" to be up on stage, I'm "too old", not attractive enough and that it's all not real! I guess I still have those mental hurdles to overcome, but I'd say that most of the time I am happy now in my own skin and really hope that I reflect that happiness within when Saturday rolls around.

Monday, October 02, 2006

The most important splurge meal

The most important splurge meal I reckon you are ever going to take is in the days leading up to competition. To me this splurge meal symbolises that you are truly living a leanness lifestyle and I enjoyed every lick of my butterscotch brickle ice cream this afternoon after posing and routine with Jo. Good thing I had those extra carbs as I taught RPM tonight and looks like I may have a 6.10am one so extra fuel in the tank is great at this point.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Peak Week!

Ah, the final countdown - the final week!

Where am I - a little bloated as lucky me has come down with a head cold, but plenty of water and fine tuning the eating should do the trick in the next few days. I have decided not to carb deplete in any way this time ( I dropped the carbs to about 30-35% last time) and have decided that in my current condition, it is not necessary.

My plan of attack is to do my final three training sessions through to Wednesday and assess from there. There will also be two RPM classes to teach and maybe a Bodystep. I have my last session with Jo tomorrow and still have work to do on my posing and routine although I have been practising. This is where having Jo around helps me so much. Final bikini adjustments and tanning arrangements. I am wondering whether getting a dark spray tan and then applying Dream Tan over the top will get a good result. Or just to stick with contest colour and then Dream Tan? Decisions, decisions!

I am heading to Lorna Jane on Wednesday to pick up clothes for my photo shoot with Jadey on Sunday. I was so blown away by how Jadey photographed Rae that I have asked her to take some pictures of me. And Lorna Jane have been wonderful and are supplying all the clothing I need for the shoot as well as a hefty discount for future purchases. To say that I'm thrilled about this is the understatement of the year.

Doing all my hair removal on Thursday - usually I use a mixture of waxing, depilatory cream and shaving depending on the area.

Friday starting my distilled water and reducing sodium and taking some potassium - worked beautifully for me last time.

That's about it :)