North Carolina NPC Bikini Competitor
Team: Fit Ritch (Wendell, NC)
Preparing to compete is both rewarding and challenging. I learned so much about myself during my 17 week preparation for my first NPC bikini competition. Those weeks are crucial-- if the plan isn't followed you miss the opportunity to bring the package that is truly your best.
While these weeks are a challenge, I would argue that the highest level of commitment lies during the weeks when there is no show coming up in the near future... no coach asking for weekly progress photos. Your off season physique is REALLY YOU. You are not the 8-13% body fat-girl that you are on stage.
This is the body your soul really lives within... the body you need to be proud of and confident in. I find the most fulfillment and gratification in my off season figure. When I'm not show prepping, I'm nailing hard workouts with heavy weight/trying different techniques, enjoying delicious foods, laughing it up, and living life. This is the time I want to be the most satisfied with my body.
An off season workout/meal plan structure is important. My coach has put time and effort into my macro nutrient requirements/workouts, so I develop a plan to execute those expectations and guidelines. Every Sunday I prep my food for the week. While my food is baking in the oven or simmering on the stove, I sit down at the kitchen counter and plan my workouts and rest days based on what makes most sense for my schedule. A day when my to do list is overwhelming becomes a rest day, an evening out with a friend because a cheat meal day. When I put the time and effort into planning and I have a sense of accountability and ownership that doesn't exist otherwise.
I can really sum up my thought on off season maintenance with just a few words