Monday, July 25, 2011

"Best Night of my Life!" - My 1st {FITNESS} Competition

Pictures I took along the way!
Earlier this year I decided to enter my first "Figure/Fitness Competition". I started my diet and training about 13 weeks before May 20th (the day of the show). Check out this post to read about {My Transformation Story} and how I got things started.

Everything was done in week intervals. My carb-cycling diet plan, my weigh-ins, the weight training, and the amount of cardio sessions I needed to do in order to stay on track. Before I knew it, the weeks were just flying right by. I had things to get in order like my posing suit, clear high heels, jewelry, tanning/nails/hair appointments, dance sneakers, costume and so much more! This part was just as fun as the training because I love the "girly-side" of the presentation. It was like getting ready for a Beauty Pageant made for Fit & Muscular Women.

Read this blog post
from my Fizzy Blog to see all of the fun things I ordered from
Etsy Sellers (like me) in preparation for the competition.

I truthfully had so much fun with my training during the whole 13 weeks. Go to "My Workouts" page to get an idea of what my training schedule looked like. I guarantee it's not what you would expect! About half-way through my training, my posing suit came in the mail and I was excited to see what it would look like. I put it on and tried not to panic. I already knew that I had started to get leaner (which I had) but with the suit on I had to fight those negative fears that I was too far behind and wasn't going to be able to pull this thing off. Instead of listening to those thoughts I just ignored them. I decided to have faith that if I kept forging ahead... everything will come together eventually.

3 coats of Spray-Tan!
 The week of the competition, I had my last weight training session and cardio class to keep things light and lean. In my free time, I would practice my posing and Fitness routine so I could to get things down and gain more confidence. I had an appointment set up by the show promoter to take a "polygraph test" to clear that I had been drug-free in the preparation for this show. The day before the show I had my very first couple of "spray-tanning" sessions which was interesting and sticky to say the least. I took it easy the night before. I ate light, watched a movie and tried to go to bed early.

I'll admit that the day of the show I was excited, nervous and anxious. I had no idea what to expect! It was like training for a marathon without ever have competing in a race before. When the competition started and I simply went with the flow. There were women in posing suits and heels EVERYWHERE! You could tell that the majority of the competitors had done a show before, so I tried to follow their lead. It was a little crazy at first because I had to go out on stage and pose without heels for the "X-treme Fit" category. Then run off-stage to get my clear high heels on as fast as I could because the "Beginner Short" category followed right after. My trainer, Al Norby would keep me focused and pumped up back stage with bicep curls, tricep dips and push-ups.

Competition Weigh-In: 108.9 lbs. (8-9% Body Fat)

I would have to say the most nerve-wrecking part of the night was presenting my "T-Walk" which is a solo performance of walking and posing on stage. This was my opportunity to strut my stuff and stand out from the crowd. I stayed calm and smooth once I started my walk. Hearing my friends and the rest of the crowd cheer made it even more exciting. I also made sure to focus my attention on the judges. I wanted them to feel like I was performing for them! I had no idea how my body ranked up against the rest of the women so I just did my thing!

After the "T-Walk" I quickly changed into my "Army Soldier" costume and got ready to perform my Fitness Routine. My choreography was a complete reflection of who I am: Sassy, Strong, Funky, Flirty and FUN! When I got to the 1-armed push-ups in the routine the crowd went crazy. It was so amazing to highlight my love for dance with the showcasing of strength. A combination that is the perfect fit for me!

The night went by like a blur even though the show lasted over 3 hours! Before I knew it, it was after intermission and we had the "awards section" to complete. They called out the Beginner Figure Short Class (myself and 3 other women). The swiftly named out the titles and awarded me with the 1st place trophy!!! What a feeling! I smiled as they took my picture, but in the back of my mind I knew that this meant I had another round of posing to do in front of the judges to compete for the Beginner Figure "Overall" title. Thankfully my posing coach, Lenore Theobald, prepped me for this possibility. I quickly went back stage with such a rush of excitement and grabbed my dumbbells and bands to get pumped up for more posing.

Eventually, they called us out, the Beginner Medium Winner, the Beginner Tall Winner and myself. We went through our quarter-turn poses twice which was intense and adrenaline pumping! The judges did their last minute notes and sent a note to the MC with the winner's name on it. After a dramatic pause, the MC announced the 3rd place title and then said "#24 Bethany Nelson" takes 1st Place for Beginner Figure Overall". My friends said they also heard the MC say "I'm sure we'll be seeing more of this competitor in the future!" as I walked off stage with my trophy. It officially was the "Best night of my life" and I hadn't even found out how I placed for the X-teme Fit category yet. It honestly didn't even matter that much anymore because I had accomplished so much already. I ended up with 2nd place for the X-treme Fit class and was proud to pack up 3 trophies for the night! What a great feeling and I CAN'T WAIT to compete again and see where things will take me!

photography by OCB Productions

photography by OCB Productions

(see more photos here)

Best Benefit:
Seeing where I could take my body physically
and learning how to COOK more!

Best Investment:
"30 minute" Personal Training Sessions
2-3 times a week with Al Norby.

New Guilty Pleasure:
A SHELLAC manicure at Salon Intrigue with Lisa

Hardest Hurdle:
Having allergic reactions to certain foods
even ones that are already Gluten Free.

Favorite Find:
BeautiControl Skin Care products.

Best Moment:
Seeing my "Family of Friends" during intermission
and then hearing my number called for the
Overall Figure Beginner Title.

Special Mentions to my Trainers,
Fitness Instructors and Coaches!

al norby
curt dahlen
aaron callister
lenore theobald
katie haggerty
nick bez

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