Discoveries and Lessons Learned in 2014

2014 was a roller coaster of good, bad, ugly, great memories, sweat, and tears for me. I made a lot of progress but I also took a few steps back from time to time. I reached my goals and learned from the process it took to achieve them. I’m so excited to see what 2015 has in store, but I want to reflect on how great and not so great 2014 was, the discoveries and lessons learned:

 

1) I competed in Emerald Cup 2014 – This was probably one of the highlights of my year. Competing in ECUP opened opportunities for me, introduced me to new people, pushed me past my physical and mental threshold, caused me pain and tears, drove away friends and family, taught me the science of nutrition and training, made me completely broke, and taught me that bodybuilding ain’t my sport. I placed 7th out of 24 gals in my category, and had the support from friends and family that I didn’t deserve. It was an experience I will never forget, but will also never partake in again.

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2) Lost a few friends – Losing friends can be a part of growing up. Some times it doesn’t phase you, but some times you think about them every day. Some times friendships can’t be mended, some times they are lost by things you did or didn’t do. Although it’s a shame, I learned to cherish the good and bad memories and just keep moving forward.

4) Did my first fitness photoshoot – In fact, I did two photoshoots this years! My first fitness shoot was so much fun! I’m not saying the second one wasn’t, but the first photoshoot was capturing me in my element and natural surroundings. My second photoshoot was a month before competition date and I was feeling carb depleted, kinda exposed in my bikini, and overall bashing myself mentally for how much farther I thought I had to go to be ‘stage ready.’ Either way, huge thanks to Amir Zahed, friend and co-worker for the great opportunity and excellent photos.

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5) Became a sponsored athlete with Femme – This was extremely exciting! Femme is a brand new company in Australia with Australian and U.S Athletes. I was signed on when they first started in March, so the beginning was quite rocky, but under new management our relationship has been strong. They provide me with amazing supplements such as Femme Peach Skin Tightening Cream (my personal favorite, check out my blog post for giveaway details!), BCAA’s, Pre Workout, and Carnitine. I can’t wait to begin events with them once they grow into a larger company.

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6) Made it to the morning shift at the EBC – This might not sound like a big deal, but believe me, it was for me. I was about to begin an interview process with Regus while I was on night shift (11:00am to 7:30pm) until they moved me to the opening shift (6:30am to 3:00pm). As much as I enjoyed morning workouts and my morning routine, working the night shift meant getting off way past 7:30pm once everyone has left the building. It really hurt my mental health. I was completely over working a year of night shift. Moving to the morning shift opened so many doors for me, the biggest opportunity being school.

7) Paid off my debt – 2013 hit our pockets financially in a big way: buying a new dog, being forced to move out, paying more for rent, surgery for our dog, having to move AGAIN after 5 short months, marathon in Leavenworth, Iron Man in Vancouver, etc. After the miraculous reunion with my biological family and a savings bond being passed down from my great great grandma, we were able to move and pay off our debt with our tax return as well.

8) Went to my first volunteer event – My Christian high school used to do quarterly volunteer events with Union Gospel Mission and it felt really good doing those, so I decided to do another volunteer event with my work with the Special Olympics over the Summer. We weren’t working as closely with the athletes as I thought we would be, but it felt good to be donating our time to help out with the vendor booths at the event. I want to make it a goal to do a few more volunteer events this year as well.

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9) Began my own eBay store – Talk about extra side cash! I sold basically my entire closet of unused clothing on top of other odds and ends and have probably made well over $1,000 so far! Keep it coming! I started buying half price tag items at Goodwill to resell. It’s been pretty successful, I’m excited to see how much I can rake in for 2015.

10) Took a vacation to San Diego with the hubby – We went to San Diego in July after racking up enough air miles to help out with a huge percentage of the ticket cost. We went for 5 days and literally lounged on the beach every day and drank every night. I got the worse sun burn I’ve ever experienced, but also the sexiest darkest tan. I still have swim suit tan lines on my booty.

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11) Discovered what Influenster was – Pretty much the best online discovery I’ve made this year. Influenster is platform where you can connect all your social media to increase your social impact score, write reviews to maintain eligibility for prizes, receive FREE prizes, write reviews and fulfill tasks and challenges, and earn MORE free stuff! I’ve earned Sally Hansen Nail Polish, beauty boxes, over $100 in eBay gift cards, and my FAVORITE….. the Victoria’s Secret Sport voxbox with a free Incredible Sports bra, and workout crops. On top of THAT…. I was the lucky winner of the $500 VS gift card for my YouTube review. In love with Influenster.

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12) Got a Twitter account – Not proud of this one. Let’s just say I did it for Influenster 😉

13) Two of my closest gal pals got married – This was a big deal! I was a Bridesmaid for my friend Brittany and was in charge of throwing her a Bachelorette party, so much fun. My other friend Danielle had her Bachelorette party in Vancouver while Derek went to her husband’s Bachelor party in Lake Tahoe. Tons of fun, drinking, and money spent of course. Hopefully no one gets married for a while so we can recover… JK!

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14) I made the decision to go to school – Biggest and most important decision of the year! I started in Fall Quarter and made a 4.0! I have no idea what I want to do, but I’m playing around with the ideas of environmental science, conservation, and/or sustainability. That’s what the first few years of college is for though, figuring out what interests you. I hope I continue to do well for the rest of the year.

15) Extended our current lease for another year – This is a huge deal for us! IN FACT…. we extended our lease for another year, so 3 years total. That will be the longest we have lived anywhere. We really love the security, the location, and how perfect our condo is. We would LOVE to own one like it some day, maybe after Derek graduates Law School.

16) Derek passed the LSAT! – We share our successes, so I feel a huge connection with him passing his LSAT. He was so nervous, but he studied his ass off EVERY DAY of Summer. I’m so happy he passed with a great score placing him in the top tier. He put so much hard work into everything he did to prepare, I had total faith in him 🙂 Now onto Law School and Scholarship applications this year!

 

It was a blessed year, I can’t wait to see what 2015 has in store 🙂

~Jess

 

 

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