Update – 20 Days Out

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Happy Saturday!

It’s been a good day so far, I had my Bikini photo shoot with Amir 🙂 I’ve been relaxing all day with the hubby and pup, taking today as a rest day and getting’ back at it tomorrow. Yesterday I found out that my pool is going to be closed April 5th – 15th! Super upset, I feel like swimming twice a week for 45 minutes really gave me the edge on the competition, creating lean muscle fibers, and a great source of cardio. Tomorrow Derek and I might go to Samena (the old pool he used to work at) for a swim workout. I am also going to L.A Fitness to practice my posing, hopefully get a tan session in too.

20 more days! EEEEEEEK! Smashing out my goals, photo shoots done, waiting on my sponsorship package from Femme, attending my first Bodybuilding Competition next weekend, starting to water load the next week, then PEAK WEEK! Holy shit! Crept up so FAST! Really hoping my posing is on point, still need to perfect my transitions. I can’t wait to get my bikini photos back! I still have A LOT of errands to accomplish in preparation for the show:

  • Posing Practice – Sunday, April 6th with Daniella at L.A Fitness & Thursday April 10th 5:00pm with Randa at L.A Fitness.
  • Vancouver Natural – Saturday, April 12th 6:00pm Finals show with Ashley!
  • Depletion – Begin drinking 2 gallons of water a day Saturday, April 12th; one week before peak week. Begin tapering my water off DURING peak week until competition day where I take a few sips throughout the day.
  • Xpel – Begin taking Xpel Thursday, April 17th; 10 days before competition day. Start flushing out my water weight.
  • Peak Weak!
    -No gassy foods! Beans, gassy veggies, whole wheat, etc.
    -Exfoliate Skin in preparation for tanning appointment!
    -Begin training at regular intensity at the beginning of the week, decrease training intensity throughout the week.
    -Decrease cardio:
        -Sunday: 60 minutes cardio
        -Monday: 50 minutes cardio
      -Tuesday: 40 minutes cardio
      -Wednesday: 30 minutes cardio
          -Thursday: 20 minutes cardio
          -Friday: Circuit Training / Plyo Workout
        -Saturday: COMPETITION DAY!
  • NWCC Tanning Appointment – Friday, April 25th, 4:15pm at Station 2 located on the 4th floor of the Meydenbaur Convention Center. Wear loose fitting clothes, make sure skin has been exfoliated every day during peak weak. Bring credit card of cash!
  • Hair – Sleek and straight! Research tips online, wearing my Plumeria hair clip as pictured.
  • Make Up – Teal blue eye shadow, need to purchase NW45 Mac Foundation for face.
  • Nails – Teal blue nails with glitter top, doing them myself.
  • Items to bring!
    -‘Rewards Box’!
    -Hair products & make up
    -Bikini and shoes! Of course!
    -Change of clothing
    -Flip flops and silk/satin robe
    -Resistance bands for pumping up back stage
    -Food! Stay away from heavy carbs, eat clean foods that don’t cause gas such as chicken, brown rice, and small amounts of fruit
    -NPC Card!

Whew! I’m sure there’s PLENTY more that I’m just forgetting, I’ll continue adding to the list as I remember what they are. Tomorrow I am re-evaluating my diet plan. I will be planning each day, every meal, to the ‘T’, no extras here or there by earning my calories through working out harder. Consistency and restriction is key! The process has been good to me and I need to honor it better than I have been.

20 days out! Stay tuned! This girl is excited, anxious, and nauseous all at once! Wish me luck 🙂

~Jess

Motivation

I need some motivation.

Some SERIOUS motivation.

Emerald Cup is in 7 weeks! Shit! I need to get my A-Game on! I know I say this every weekend, usually Sundays, but I’m serious…. time to start the real cut. Time to shed some fat, pump up the cardio, and stick with my two-a-day plans. My husband is re-vamping my workout schedule this weekend, he’ll be adding plenty more cardio. I’ve also committed to this weekend being my LAST cheat meal…. yes, that’s right. My last 😦 Restricting my calories, being a macro nazi, and LAYING – OFF – THE – PEANUT BUTTER! FOR REAL THIS TIME! UGHHHH, that shit is my kryptonite. To better prepare myself for this cut, I’m gonna be planning my meals for the whole week in myfitnesspal and I’ll be bringing my own lunch to work so I can properly measure everything.

It’s seems so real and so close now since I keep receiving weekly countdown emails since 8 weeks out from Craig Productions. Here’s the most recent one I received for 7 weeks out:

“Dear 2014 Emerald Cup Competitors: 
 
It’s the 7 week countdown!! All of you are demonstrating championship character. You are putting in countless hours of work in preparing for your time on stage. Yes it’s hard. Yes there are some days you wonder why you are doing this. It’s because you are a champion. You think like a champion. You act like a champion. You do what a champion does. This is what sets you apart from someone else.
 
Preparing for a competition shows you have the character to work hard at something and finish it. How many people do you know that could go through everything you have put yourself through these past few weeks, months, years? How many times during your preparations have acquaintances, friends or family asked you to skip a workout or have some cake at a party? They don’t understand. They don’t understand how bad you want this. They don’t understand the mind of a champion.
 
You are showing them what a champion does, how a champion thinks, how a champion acts. Every day you wake up and follow your plan you are an inspiration. Others may never achieve what you are achieving but they are watching you. You are teaching them how it’s done. You are inspiring them. When they take on a challenge, they will remember you.
 
Your green 2014 Emerald Cup competitor wristband reminds you that you are a champion! It reminds you of your goal. It reminds you that you are unstoppable, that when challenges arise, you overcome them! You will be victorious. You will look back on your whole experience and be able to say, “I did it! I accomplished my goal! I am a champion!!”
I personally think the email is a lil’ intense, and to be frank, cocky as all hell. I’m not doing this competition to compare myself with others like this email implies. I’m not comparing myself to fellow competitors or to people who ‘don’t understand’ why I’m doing this. I’m doing this to compete with myself. To mold and sculpt my body, because I can, because I believe the human body is a piece of art.
Sometimes I forget WHY I’m doing this, sometimes I want to quit because I think it’s really dumb, vain, narcissistic, and down-right fake. When I started this blog months ago I was all about winning, being number one, taking home a trophy, doing WHATEVER it takes to win, hoping opportunities would unfold and provide a better life for me. I was placing way too much stress into this, and it started sucking the joy out of the process. Now I want to do it to prove to myself that I can, I can do anything with my body from performance to aesthetics, and I can do it properly and bring something new to the stage.
I’ve gone through waves of stressing about my macros, that jar of peanut butter I killed in 20 minutes, beating myself up for missed workouts, exhausting myself with two-a-days, etc. The next month and a half is gonna be the REAL test with this cutting plan, but I’m gonna hold my head up high, fit in ALL of my workouts, put the peanut butter on the top shelf where I can’t reach, and have a positive humble attitude.
I can’t say this has been the most enjoyable process, because that would be a lie. It’s been downright crappy sometimes, but it could always be worse…. like it’s about to be, haha.
So here’s to 7 weeks out, 1,000 – 1,200 calorie diet, cardio, and intense workouts. Adios peanut butter and cheat meals, see ya on the other side 🙂

2 More Weeks…..

2 more weeks of cheat meals, peanut butter, and Quest bars that is! Ughhhh…. I’m dreading it! Sacrifices! I didn’t even get a chance to try to the new ‘Cookies & Cream’ bar by Quest…. waaahhhh! 2 more weeks, maybe I can snag one before then!cookies n cream

I’ve been naughty and haven’t been fulfilling my ‘two-a-day’ goals the past few weeks. Of course Seattle decides to pour rain and snow when I start my new training plan. Last week I only completed one ‘two-a-day’ and this week I will only be completing two ‘two-a-days’. A little disappointed in myself….. In my defense, it’s been crazy with vacation and interviews!

At this point I’m more worried about my posing than I am about my workouts and dieting! I still haven’t set up a practice with a friend, I need, need, NEED to do that ASAP! Hopefully this weekend…. I need to start emailing, Facebooking, and texting friends! EEEEEK!

I also moved my photo shoot to March 1st instead of next weekend. I’m feeling a little bit ‘fluffy’ from the 2 Year Anniversary celebrations, on top of Mother Nature knocking this week. Definitely NOT feeling toned, tight, and camera ready. I need to time look perfect in the new bikini I will be receiving from ‘BellevueDesign’! I’m so excited, Morgan Dickson did a fabulous job and I can’t WAIT to see the purple beauty with bling-bling in the mail! Check out her Etsy! She has multiple colors: Platinum, Ruby Red, Amethyst Purple, and Royal Blue! Great prices and cute connector options. Check out her IG account as well, she recently did a free bikini raffle, keep an eye out for more!

etsy21 I adjusted my macro ratio to allow me more nutrients for the heavy workouts that are about to ensue. Today I will be working out AFTER work (ewwwww, which I hate doing). I have to start getting used to working out after work since either A) I will be moving to the morning shift 6:00am to 2:30pm or B) I will be receiving a promotion (fingers crossed!) that will have me working 9:30am to 6:00pm. Either way, my workout schedule will be adjusted, so I need to grow a pair and learn to suck it up! Plus, March I have to be strict with ‘two-a-days’ anyhow, so it doesn’t matter what my schedule is!

Tonight I plan on doing some cardio on the spin bike, about 30-45 minutes. Really trying to stay within a 500 calorie deficit! I might add some plyo and ab training circuits depending on how much time I have left! Tomorrow I plan on doing my Endurance Day- Running, Biking, Swimming with a couple Zuzka videos in the evening, and Friday I plan on a plyo workout in the morning, and cardio after work. Trying to create a tight lean body by February 22nd so I can take my progress shots.

Happy hump day err’body! We’re almost there! The weekend shall be upon us in no time!

~Jess

Meal Plan

Hey guys! I’ve been getting a TON of questions about how I achieve my abs and I always like to remind people that ‘ABS ARE MADE IN THE KITCHEN!’ I know, I know, it sucks that there isn’t some magical exercise that you can do ‘X’ amount of repetitions to achieve a rockin’ 6-pack. Sadly we have to sacrifice the refined sugars, pastries, cookies, candies, sweets, and all the junk.

So I’m going to take you through a rough daily break down of what I eat on a daily basis. I aim to eat every 2-3 hours, so approximately 4-6 meals a day depending on when I wake up and how high my activity level is that day. I shoot to stay within 1,200 calories a day as well as a personalized macronutrient ratio. I either workout early in the morning or I run 4-7 miles home at night after work. Here’s a sample of what my day today looks like:

1) 6:00am ‘fasted’ workout at the gym going heavy, hard, and incorporating jump rope intervals for cardio. Total Time: 1 hour and 40 minutes

When I get home I immediately throw on the coffee pot, shower, and get ready for the day! I eat my first meal at 9:00am right before I walk my dog. Today I ate: oatmeal2

-1/2 cup oats
-1/2 cup unsweetened Almond Milk
-2 Tablespoons Peanut Butter
Cinnamon sprinkled on top!

On days where I don’t workout early in the morning and don’t require something so heavy to keep me full, I’ll have a protein smoothie with the following:

-1 cup frozen fruit
-1/4 cup fat-free plain Greek yogurt
-1/2 cup unsweetened Almond milk
-1 scoop Optimum Whey protein powder (24 grams protein!)

2) Today my second meal was at 12:00pm. This meal was decently sized, so I can probably wait 4 hours for my next meal. I enjoyed: lunch

-2 Turkey Muffins (packed with protein and less than 100 cal each!)
-1/2 cup steamed broccoli
-1/2 cubed sweet potatoes with cinnamon

I usually will have a chicken salad at work, since I am fortunate enough to get free lunch with my job! I use about 4oz of chicken (size of your palm), cottage cheese instead of dressing, incorporate plenty of DARK greens, walnuts for healthy fats, and a couple craisins for sweetness. I will either have 1/2 cup of quinoa or 1/2 cup of brown rice on the side for my carbs.

3) Throughout the day I might snack on a couple of items every few hours. My ‘snack time’ time slots are usually: 11:00am, 4:00pm, and 6:00pm My snacks usually consist of:

snackoptions


-Plain Quaker rice cake with 1 tablespoon peanut butter

-Apples
-4 hard boiled egg whites
-1 scoop protein powder mixed with water (milk has a surprising amount of sugar)
-Protein Cookies!

My snack time changes daily depending on when I woke up, how hard I worked out, WHEN I worked out, and when my first meal of the day was. I try to be as consistent as possible. The first week of proteindieting was extremely difficult (mainly cause I was PMS-ing…. oooops, TMI?) and because I wasn’t used to eating 1,200 calories a day. I am coming up on the end of week 3 and can honestly say that I am barely hungry anymore. In fact, I feel more satisfied on this diet than when I wasn’t keeping track of what I ate and when I ate! It’s the greatest!

4) DINNER TIME! Finally, when I get home (whenever that is! Usually 8:00pm) first thing I do is heat up a plate of whatever I meal prepped on Sunday! dinnerThis week I threw in 6 chicken breasts in the crock pot, cooked up some sweet potatoes, steamed broccoli, made turkey muffins, you name it! My fridge is FULL! Last night (and most likely tonight) I will eat 4 oz. of shredded chicken, 1/2 cup steamed broccoli, and 1/2 cup MASHED sweet potatoes (that’s right, switchin’ it up!).

I stay well fed throughout the day on this diet, and it doesn’t have to be boring at all! In fact, I’m cooking more now than I ever have and I’m finding cool new recipes and healthy alternatives to food that I really enjoy. One of my co-workers, Lazaro, was nice enough to bring in healthy cookies for me! Such a sweet heart! He made them with oats, bananas, yogurt, egg whites, vanilla extract, cinnamon, and honey to sweeten. I’m not sure if he baked them, but they were absolutely SCRUMPTUOUS! I’m going to try them at home this weekend. I looked up the nutritional value on myfitnesspal by plugging in the ingredients he used and each cookie has less than 50 calories, 10 grams of carbs, 1 gram of fat, 2 grams of protein, and 4 grams of sugar! Yummmm!

Anyways, there’s the jist of it! Hope this answers a lot of questions. If anyone has a myfitnesspal account you should definitely add me, see what I eat, AND hold me accountable! I record absolutely everything that I eat…. what’s the point in cheating anyways? “What you eat in private, you wear in public.”

Good vibes are still goin’ this week! Last night I ran 6.57 miles after work! I love running, it felt really really good. I always thought running after work would suck, but I must say, I like the late night cardio craze. If you have a mapmyrun app, you should also add me there and hold me accountable for my goal of running 20 miles a week! Tomorrow I have plans to run home after work as well, maybe not 6 miles since I will also be working out in the morning. Who knows though!

I also wanted to thank everybody for the wonderful comments and support for my progress post yesterday. It feels amazing that everybody has my back and are just as excited as I am to see progress! Also, thanks for voting during my ‘Cheat Meal’ poll, looks like Azteca wins HANDS DOWN! Anywho, hope you all have a lovely day, comment or message if you have questions or overall feedback! Please and thank you 🙂

~Jess

New Year Fitness Goals

Hey err’body! Welcome back from the Holiday Madness! I hope everyone enjoyed some quality time spent with family, relaxing, reflecting on a great year and all the things we have to be thankful for. I had a great time with Derek’s family, let loose, enjoyed myself with great company and great food. I even fit in an hour of cardio Christmas morning doing hill intervals in Derek’s parents neighborhood! Felt AWESOME.

I was extremely spoiled this year! I got everything on my Christmas List! I got the White Mountain black riding boots I asked for, Jimmy Choo ‘Flash’ perfume, ‘Oribe’ Dry Texturizing Hair Spray, Magic Bullet, and my husband spoiled me with a Scavenger Hunt to find $150 cash! I also got wine glasses, an AMAZING cheetah print blanket from Pier One Imports, a wooden storage shelf for my bathroom counter, earrings & necklace, cute sweaters, and a melting scented wax pot. I’m sure there are other things I forgot to list, but the point is….. I was spoiled and I sure didn’t deserve it! Feeling blessed, seriously. MAGICBULLET

I had the past 6 days off! Last Friday I did not go to work due to inclement weather, I enjoyed the weekend preparing for Christmas, Monday was a vacation day for me, and Tuesday & Wednesday were Christmas Eve and Christmas (paid holidays). I am REFRESHED! Mentally I have been in a really rough place for the past few weeks with work eating me alive and feeling like a failure with my fitness goals. I have had plenty of time to take a step back and re-evaluate my goals in the work place, my personal life, and my mental/physical health. I seriously needed the time to re-coop and count my blessings. I have had an extremely fortunate year, despite the obstacles and challenges. I am READY to tackle 2014!

Now, I REALLY hate creating New Years Resolutions. I like to think that I am always setting goals for myself on a day to day basis, always trying to improve, always trying to better myself. So, I am creating a start-up list of goals that I have and I am NOT labeling it a New Years Resolution.

1) DIET! I am TERRIBLE at diets, fo’ real. Absolutely awful. This will definitely be my toughest goal yet. I have a tendency to convince myself that I am doing so awesome in the gym and I really deserve a cheat meal…. cheat DAY…. OOoooppsss…. cheat week. Wait, how many consecutive days did I miss the gym?! How much did I eat?! S***….. Yep, that’s me. I like to think that I eat healthy overall, I like keeping my kitchen stocked with healthy eats, I don’t venture too far off my staples for lunch and dinner either. It’s all the ‘extras’ in the work place, or any treats when we go out to parties or have friends over. It will be a lot easier now that the holiday season is dwindling down, but I really want to conquer my diet! I want to make a lifestyle change, not just a temporary change. My diet will be much more strict with competition prep though, I plan to stick within a certain calorie and macronutrient plan. Cheat meals, not days, but plenty of super foods to fuel my workouts and daily activity.

2) Booty building and leg focus I love my ass, but to be honest, it’s kind of jiggley and doesn’t sit as high as I would like it. I want those nice rounded assets that are LIFTED! I want to focus on building firm muscle in the booty and legs, so I have been training them twice a week. Less focus on the upper bod because that’s doing great, more focus on the lower half.

3) Cardio UGHHHHH! I am so bad at running now! I’m probably being too hard on myself, but last Saturday I ran for an hour outdoors with Derek and it was awful. My lungs were ill prepared, but my body didn’t mind. We did about 40 minutes of running and 20 minutes of hill sprints. I was really feeling those hill sprints in the glutes! WHEWWW! Tough run…. it was a humbling reminder that I need to keep up with my outdoor running because that’s what I will need to be doing to shed the fat around my muscles when it comes closer to competition time. Yesterday we ran hills AGAIN and it was the same humbling experience and a steeper hill. I was able to really soak up and enjoy the crisp air and mountain scenery though, and reflect on WHY I am up at 8am running in below freezing weather.

4) Practice walk and posing! Yep, ‘Nuff said. This needs to happen…. A LOT! My friend Hilary is going to help me out with this as well. She has done a few competitions and will show me a few tricks of the trade. Over my break I have been practicing walking in my competition shoes, stretching them out because they are mutha’ effin’ tight! I have been watching plenty of NPC YouTube videos, practicing my walk and posing in my suit, as well as posture. Derek got an ipad mini for Christmas, so you can bet I’ll be borrowing that to make videos so I can watch my walk.

5) Run Half Marathon YES! I want to run another half marathon next year! I did Oktoberfest Half Marathon this year in Leavenworth and it was exhilarating and fun! I beat my personal best and goal by 7 whole minutes, I was pretty proud of myself. I LOVE running and I certainly don’t want to give it up. I’m not sure what race I want to do next year, but I definitely will be competing in another half marathon.

6) Earn PT Cert I want to do this. Whether or not I become a Personal Trainer, I want the certificate so I have the option to. I love health and fitness, and would love to be certified for my own benefit and knowledge. Why not just do it?

Now that I have my goals in place, it’s time to execute them! I won’t lie, I did NOT workout on Tuesday. I didn’t workout this morning either, but I’m working out AFTER work. I will have to workout double time on Saturday or Sunday to make up for the holiday goodies! BRING ON THE NEW YEAR! XOXO……

~Jess ♥