Saturday, 14 May 2016

Entering into peak week!

8 days out. It’s insane that the competition is that close. I’ve been a ball of emotions this week going from the ice woman who was probably the moodiest I have been in a long time on Tuesday and Wednesday to the child-on-Christmas-Eve levels of happiness and excitement towards the end of the week.
 
Last weekend when it got to 2 weeks to go I thought ‘oh this is gonna be easy now’ as after all how hard can the last 2 weeks be when I’ve been dieting and prepping for 18 weeks? It turns out very at times. Almost like when you’re waiting to go on holiday, the weeks overall seem to fly by but then when it gets to those last few days before you go it seems to drag as you wait eagerly in desperation to get away to that sun, sea and sand. There’s no sun, sea or sand where I’m going but a plethora of tan, sparkles and muscles and the principle remains the same.
 
Cardio ready on Tuesday morning...
 
I’ve been hormonal this week which hasn’t helped matters so Tuesday and Wednesday, wow, I feel sorry for anyone that came into contact with me on those days. To say I was in a mood would be an understatement. I was horrible. Patience levels at about minus 56, every little thing just angered me, and I had to bite my tongue once too often (although probably not often enough looking back as a few people were on the end of my sharp tongue - apologies). I was hungry and craving treats and despite taking myself off to bed early on both Monday and Tuesday I was more tired than ever and just struggled massively to come round during the day. Typical symptoms when it’s that time of the month but multiply that by about 1000 when you’re dieting this strict and after such a long time of it, and I knew I just had to give it a couple of days for me to break out of it.
 
Luckily Thursday came and with it a sense of calm and a brighter mood. I had a PT session on Thursday evening which helped massively as I’ve not seen my PT in a few weeks as he’s had some personal things to deal with so it was a relief to catch up with him, check on progress, show him my routine and find out what the plan was for the final week.
 
Posing session after Thursday's PT session...back double biceps!
 
With a plan firmly in place now I’m just absolutely buzzing to head into peak week, I’m mentally focused and started to think more now about being on stage and what I need to do and I’m just so excited for all of this to come together. When you’re prepping for such a long period of time whilst you do keep your eyes on the prize and know you’re doing it for that one competition, you do have to put that to one side sometimes and just focus on the everyday and on the process. Now it’s got to the point where I’m actually less focused on the process as that’s just second nature now and I’m more focused on the event which is nerve wracking, exciting and scary all at the same time.
 
So what will happen next week? I’ll stop my cardio from Monday which was music to my ears haha. No more 5am wake up calls to go and do 40 minutes on the stair master before work every morning. And no more cardio after my evening weight sessions too. This is so that I’m not really using my legs that much. We had our last legs session on Thursday when I had my PT session so for the last 10 days you don’t train legs. The legs hold water when you’re training them so over the next week it’s about getting that water out of them and to do that I also have to try and spend time with my legs elevated too. So that’s forcing me to actually rest as anyone who knows me knows that I’m always on the go and find it difficult to just sit down and relax. Currently writing this with my legs propped up on some cushions with a cuppa in hand – I think I could get used to this.
 
I train Monday to Wednesday next week with 3 heavy upper body sessions and then I stop training until after the event which is next Sunday. It will feel weird not training for those last few days and it will feel weird letting my training gradually drop off over the coming days as mentally I’ll feel like I’m losing my muscle definition or putting on weight which I know I’m not but I know I’m going to feel like that.
 
My diet will remain the same up until the competition so I’m allowed my refeed tonight which is a steak and a jacket potato and then I’ll be back to the usual foods tomorrow. I am sick of cod and broccoli now so it’s a bit of a struggle to get that down but the end is in sight. From Monday I also introduce a glass of white wine and a small bowl of honeydew melon into my diet on an evening before bed. I don’t even like wine but I’m actually so excited to have that after over 130 days without one drop of alcohol. And just because it will actually be some different flavour in my mouth haha. The purpose of the wine and the melon is to start dehydrating my body a bit.
 
In terms of water we won’t be water loading me at the start of the week which is what some people do in their peak week. I’m already drinking a lot of water for my size (5 litres per day) so I don’t need to add more in and we will just look to reduce this from Friday. It’s important not to dehydrate too much during peak week as your muscles need the water in order to still look pumped on the day.
 
I’m booked in for my spray tan next Saturday and then my Dream Tan arrived this week which we will apply on the Sunday morning. I picked up my figure suit earlier in the week which is simply stunning and I’ve got all my hair and make-up essentials ready to go. I’m allowed to refeed next Saturday as normal and then we will change things a little bit with the diet on the day of the competition to make sure I’m stage ready. This will include very little water consumption, snacking on wine gums before heading onto stage and carbing up to get my muscles pumped for the show.
 
I feel a range of emotions as I head into the final week and quite emotional towards it all if I’m honest. It’s been an incredible journey; I can’t even begin to explain how crazy it’s been. From starting the diet in January I’ve come so far since then and experienced so many highs and lows along the way and to think it’s now just 8 days away is quite surreal.
 
I got up yesterday for my last morning of fasted cardio and powered through my 40 minutes on the stair master and bizarrely part of me will miss that. Over the last few months I’ve been in the gym most mornings doing cardio and whilst it has been tiring and a bit of pain at times I’ve enjoyed it in some ways. It’s given me a chance to get my head together on a morning when the gym is quiet, I put my music on and just zone out. It’s started my days in a positive way, it’s given me focus and it’s given me time to think about things. There’s also the same people there every morning so you become familiar with those people and they’ve watched my progress and been so supportive; always checking in with how I’m doing and offering words of encouragement. And the satisfaction from getting your ass out of bed at 5am and going to do that every day is nice. But I have to admit it’s going to be nice to get up at a more reasonable hour and to get my sleep pattern back in order as even on weekends now I struggle to sleep past 6am as my body clock is wired for early, active starts.
 
My happy Friday face after finishing my last morning of fasted cardio
 
And the fact that the whole process is almost over leaves me with a range of emotions too. I am ready for it to be over and to get back some normality but it’s been an incredible few months and as much as I’ve hated certain parts I’ve also loved certain parts. I’ve loved watching my body change so much and be at its leanest. I’ve loved strengthening areas of my body I’d never really paid that much attention to and actually getting an upper body and muscle definition in there. I’ve loved having a goal to work towards and as bizarre as it sounds I’ve loved having something so hard and challenging to battle through as I know that will only make me a better person in all aspects of life. It truly is one of the hardest things I’ve ever done and in the grand scheme of things there are not many people that actually do it. And that’s because if it was easy, everyone would do it. It’s not easy at all and it takes a certain type of person to actually see it through from start to finish and I’m incredibly proud of myself for that.
 
I’ve become my own best friend throughout this process. Whilst I’ve had incredible support that has genuinely got me through it, ultimately it comes down to you and only you. You’re the one who has to get up and go do fasted cardio; you’re the one who has to control what goes on your plate 24 hours a day 7 days a week; you’re the one who has to sacrifice social plans; you’re the one who has to push through those dark days when you struggle to see the light at the end of the tunnel. I’ve given myself the pep talks, I’ve reasoned with myself when I’ve needed it, I’ve tried to look after myself as much as possible when my body and mind has been struggling. It is a selfish sport and you have to be selfish in order to get through it. But throughout it all I’ve always said to myself ‘you’ve got this’ and I’ve known that I have. No matter how many times I faltered or had doubts I knew I’d do what I had to do to get me on that stage in the condition I needed to be in. And I’ve further developed a good relationship with my mind and my body.
 
So 8 days to go. One week tomorrow. I’m ridiculously excited. I’m ridiculously nervous. But I’m ready. My mind is focused. My game face is on and I’m ready to smash out this last week. I’m going to try and do a few more posts this week as it gets closer to the day so I’ll keep you up to date with how my peak week progresses and how I’m feeling as I get ready for that stage.
 
Thanks for reading and enjoy your weekends J

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