Am I bodybuilder or a strong woman competitor?

It’s been a week after my strong woman competition.  Today, the first ever Ms. Physique Olympia was chosen.  And it was Dana Lin Bailey.

Can’t lie – my excitement was so high yesterday following pre-judging online, that I had butterflies and a was a little nauseous. Yesterday afternoon, I went with a friend to see the documentary “Generation Iron” about the 2012 Mr. Olympia competitors. I was riveted.

When I listen to music, I classify every song I hear as “potential posing music” or “not a good posing song”. I practice quarter turns in the bathroom when I wait for the shower water to warm up.

I am a bodybuilder.

The two months of training for that strong woman competition felt like six months. I hated it. I liked how it challenged my fears and mental boundaries about what I’m capable of doing. It feels like I grew muscle and I got stronger.  But I hated doing it. Soooo boring!  But I had a lot of fun at the meet.  I LOVE lifting and pushing myself to do more and more.  I’d definitely do it again – but my passion isn’t there.  All the local shows happen when I’m teaching, so I have to travel to compete anyway.  Expensive.

My rest week is almost over and I have to start training again. Training now will be different. I’m not training for a specific show or meet. I have NOTHING on the calendar. In fact, I’m leaning towards not competing again as a bodybuilder until summer 2015 and I don’t know if I’ll be strong enough to compete in a sanctioned strongman competition.

There is another consideration.  I’m curious to see what kind of gains I can make if I don’t have to interrupt my training to prep for a show. What gains can I make if I just relax and TRAIN? What will happen when I eat clean, eat in surplus, and give my body 18 months to progress before I go into a contest prep cycle again? If I have to pay for airfare and hotel, I want to compete in a bigger show and be more competitive. I’m cheap. I’m not going to pay more to come in last place again.  And if I’m going to compete at age 50-something, I need to make sure that’s not a variable when I’m standing next to the 30 and 40-somethings.  Despite what some people think, I’m very serious about this little bodybuilding thing I do.

There are other things I need to pay attention to right now. I spent this rest week finishing up another certification. This one was a fitness nutrition specialization that I’ve been working on for a year. Since that’s done, I need to take care of other things. I have been distracted by these three competitions and neglected things at home that are important to me. I am also building a new business so I can make a lateral move to it when I retire from teaching – which I think will be June 2016?

And there is that book Hubby and I started to work on…

For training, I’m going to design a hybrid program that uses some of the strongman exercises within a more “normal” training program.  I’d like to go back to a 5 day split based on body parts for a few weeks.  Maybe take another run at the Madcow 5 x 5 after that.

It’s a weird spot I’m in right now.  These transition points are difficult for me.  I usually rely on Coach to help me through them, but I’m going to do this on my own now.  I do this for others.  I can do it for me.

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