Dec 30 2011
This is where I was at, 6 weeks to my first figure competition… Right before I found the lump.
You can see the change that was happening in my body from 12 weeks, 11 weeks, 10 weeks, 8.5 weeks, then 6 weeks.
I initially made these videos to help me practice posing, to send to my coach Claire O’Connell, and to self evaluate. Posing seems easy, but it’s actually quite difficult. Mustering up the courage to put on the tiniest little bikini and portray confidence while you are literally being judged on your physique is a daunting idea for any woman. Usually it’s what nightmares are made of.
That’s one of the reasons I have fallen in love with figure competitions. Learning to move with grace and poise while afraid, while being judged, while being singled out and looked at, are skills that spill over into so many other areas of life. Beauty, strength, poise, grace… these are all qualities that I believe make a woman. Figure combines all of that.
When I first found the lump, I was on top of my nutrition, had developed an upper body muscularity I haven’t had for years, and felt so good about my progress.
It is hard to put my goal on hold, although I know it is necessary. I have worked hard throughout a lot of life challenges in the past 3 months. I have been dedicated even when life circumstances have given me reasons to veer off course.
Part of me is angry, but that is only a small part of me. Being flexible and being able to adapt is a very large part of being strong, both physically and mentally.
I believe that there are often several reasons things happen that we are not able to see within our narrow perspective while in this world, but if we take a step back, we may find comfort and faith in the larger picture.
In this situation, I believe one of the reasons I started training to become a figure competitor was so I would become so lean that I could visibly see this lump, catch it early, and remove it.
I’m putting off my first competition due to the upcoming surgery, but I am planning that as long as there are no complications I will begin training for other competitions scheduled for this Summer.
After my biopsy was done yesterday I already have a little pain putting my arm overhead or pushing/pulling, so I’m going to lay off upperbody starting now.
It is so important to listen to your body! I have learned this the hard way from coming back too soon after other injuries. This time I’m looking at the big picture.
I plan on letting it heal for at least the full 8-12 weeks. 2+ weeks for the biopsy, then another 4+ to 8+ weeks after the surgery. Scars are cool and all, but I have learned through past experience to follow doctors orders. Consistency and persistence is how we hit our goals, not through impatience and rushing.
Even so, I am planning on training lower body. I am putting together my training program now and will have it designed before 2012.
Why not rest completely?
For me… having some power over what the rest of my body is doing is a big part of keeping my spirit healthy. Sitting idle isn’t healing for me, but I am finding time to relax.
I have been doing a 6 day split, so I plan to still continue with a 6 day split, but I will focus only on lower body training.
When I go at this again for full contest prep I might need to put in some extra work to achieve upper body/lower body symmetry, but this is my current plan while my biopsy and surgery site recovers.
I will be splitting lower body into four different sections:
I will be doing calves 2 days a week and abs 2 days a week, so that will be my new 6 day split while my upper body recovers. I should be able to add upper body back in 4 to 8 weeks after the little surgery.
I’m going to do 30 min cardio in the am until its all healed. I might need to take some time off from it completely after the surgery. 45 minutes seems to get it throbbing too much after the biopsy, but I will monitor it and bring it back up once my body is ready. I’m slowing down, but also staying on course.
Results from my biopsy will be in next week. Surgery will be after that.
Once I get through that I will plan which shows to do, plan the next 12 or 16 week prep time table, hug all my family, friends, and my coach.
2012 will be a good year.
Did you like this post? What has been your biggest challenge with adapting to change? Tell me in the comments!
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