My coach has drilled it into me over and over again: when someone beats you and they were better than you, you've got to just shake their hand and admit "she was better than me." I can't do that this time. Because I don't believe that to be the truth. I'm not going to talk smack because that won't do anybody any good, but I will say this: my conditioning was spot on, my size was good, I was lean and hard, but not too hard. I brought it.
I was practicing my posing on Friday afternoon and as I stood there looking at myself in the mirror I started to cry. I didn't even recognize myself in this body. I truly never dreamed that I could achieve a physique like this. My delts looked like the girls that I've wanted to look like. My abs were cut and tight and my obliques were poppin'. My legs and my butt...seriously, do these belong to me?? This body is something I never thought possible. I thought it was something only other people could achieve or only those girls in the magazine. I've built this body and I am damn proud of that.
I believe that the things in life that we have to work the hardest for are the things that we appreciate the most. Every person that took the stage yesterday has their own dramas, their own life challenges. Some are more genetically gifted than others and don't have to work quite as hard to achieve the desired results. Others, like myself, have to work much harder because we don't have the genetic gift. That's probably one of the reasons why this morning when I woke up I went straight to the gym for my cardio and came home to my steel cut oats and egg whites. I have no desire to "junk out". I've worked too hard to get to where I am right now. I'll give my body a rest and hit the training hard again in a week and continue to build and improve.
Although I am sad and disappointed and experiencing all the emotions that go along with a let-down like this, I am NOT discouraged and I will NOT give up my dream. I've always said after every show: I will build the physique that *I* like to look at in the mirror and eventually I will meet a panel of judges that like it too. I have to live in this body, so only I will dictate what it's going to look like.
My mental vacation is over and it's time for me to deal with the realities of my life right now. I've got a lot of life stuff that needs my attention. These last few weeks have made me mentally stronger and hopefully have helped prepare me for what lies ahead. I want to focus on my kids, my job, my friends. All the while I will be living the lifestyle of a physique competitor because that's just who I am now. It's not just something I do for a few months before a competition...it's every day.
I am proud. I am determined. I am strong.