A few random thoughts, since I’m not hugely coherent at this stage in my prep:
1) An explanation of the comps I’m doing. As you may be aware, there is natural bodybuilding, and assisted. I am natural. In this country, there are two associations/federations for natural competitions. One is the BNBF (British Natural Bodybuilding Federation) – it was their Welsh show which I did in July and their Finals which I’m doing next Sunday. The other is the NPA and I’m doing their South East qualifier tomorrow. I haven’t done an NPA show before, but my coach Kat Millar has – she won their Midland show last month and, last year, came second in their Finals.
2) I’m sitting here with one coat of tan (one of three, probably), my hair blow-dried and in rollers, and nail varnish on my fingers AND toes. Those of you who know me in real life know those are all pretty unusual for me. I’m not a girly-girl and can’t often be bothered to faff with nails and hair. So, it amuses me more than a bit to think that bodybuilding (“won’t you end up looking like a man?”) is the one thing which turns me into a well-groomed girly.
(My husband, it turns out, is a pretty damn good tanner-upper-er!)
3) When you’re deep in contest prep and most of your meals for the past week or so have involved lots of repetition, plain tastes and the same textures, it’s amazing how the little things can cause great joy! I prepped my food for tomorrow earlier on. Whilst I can’t go crazy after the comp and have cakes and sweets, etc, like a lot of competitors will do (because the BNBF Final is only a week away!), coach Kat has said I can have a treat or two as long as it’s not sugary or anything which will cause me any stomach upset (because I need to be back in the gym on Monday training hard). So, the things I prepped weren’t sugary treats, or junk food, or anything exciting at all. Except they were to me, because they weren’t spinach, or fish, or sweet potatoes. It’s amazing how a little bit of deprivation can make even boring things seem wildly exciting!
4) How am I feeling? I asked my husband what I should blog about and he said “how you’re feeling”. Trouble is, I’m not sure! I am eager and excited to get up on stage again: I think my posing has improved, I think I’ve put some size on, and I think my conditioning is as good if not better than last time. And I love to be on stage! I’m also really looking forward to seeing lots of my lovely new bodybuilding friends tomorrow. I’m nervous, yes, but it’s nervous excitement. I know I’ve worked hard and prepped well, and all I can do is pose as hard as I can, do my routine to the best of my ability and smile! My aim is to enjoy myself, to get some more experience and to do myself and my supporters proud. Talking of supporters, I’m perhaps most excited about the fact that lots of my family can come along tomorrow (the show is in my home county). Including this cute guy:
(He does a mean front-double baby-bicep, by the way.)
Well, with that, I think it’s time for a bit more fish and sweet potato… and another coat of tan…
Thanks for reading! Oh – to those of you who would normally expect texts, Facebook updates or Tweets from me, I won’t be able to do any of those. I chose tonight to swap my SIM (!) and so my phone is out of action for a day or so. Doh!
Nicola Joyce – the Fit Writer – is a freelance copywriter and journalist who writes for the sport and fitness industry. Her main website is here.