Last Sunday, I competed in the NPA (Natural Physique Association) South East Championships, a qualifier for the NPA’s British Final. I did this show last year (the report of the NPA South East 2011 is here) and have very happy memories of that day: I won, and loads of my family came along to support, and it was a great day all in all!
My goal for this year was to qualify, whether or not that meant winning (usually the judges will put 1st and 2nd place in each class through to the Final). Obviously (and not so secretly!) I really wanted to win, but – as ever in this sport – I simply couldn’t predict what would happen. For one thing, I had no idea who else was in my class. I didn’t even know if anyone else was in my class at all! In fact, I had a horrible feeling I was going to be the only one… ! And for another thing, I was very aware that I wasn’t in the kind of condition I’d intended on achieving way back when I started dieting for the season. Prep hadn’t gone as smoothly as I’d expected and, as a result, I could have done with a good few extra weeks dieting. Such is life.
I pulled it together really well in the final three weeks, but couldn’t catch up and, as a result, knew I was going in to this show carrying more body fat than I wanted to.
Having said that, I was pleased with how I was looking: bigger than last year (in the right way!), fuller and with a much nicer shape. My posing had improved a lot, and I had a great new routine which I couldn’t wait to perform. I had a new (to me) bikini and a lovely bit of bling for my hair (made by my clever friend Lizzie – see her website for bodybuilding stage jewellery here).
My weekend started with a panic when the salon tan I’d booked went tits up. Long story but suffice to say I ended up driving to Kent ghostly-white and hoping my lovely sister would be willing and able to tan me up. She sure was! We spent a somewhat hilarious evening which gave new meaning to the question “are you close to your sister?” ;D
As always, I slept pretty badly the night before the comp: nervous, excited, ready to get it done and eager to step on stage! But soon the rest of the household were up and we were on the road.
We turned up at the venue and that’s when I saw her…
(to be continued)
Nicola Joyce – the Fit Writer – is a freelance copywriter and journalist who writes for the sport and fitness industry. Her main website is here.