Here is a crazy thought… Exactly one month ago I was super tan standing on a stage in front of a few hundred people in an extremely expensive suit that had less material then my beach ware!
Saturday aka C-Day aka 2012 NGA North American Pro/AM 🙂
After my grotesque binging the night before I took it easy at breakfast. This was the first time since early January that I didn’t eat oatmeal for breakfast and I kind of missed it. After eating some matzah with jelly, small pastry and piece of an orange it was time to suit up 🙂 Today I was putting on my first ever posing suit… which was of course borrowed…thank you Karen. Not only did I get to put on an overly embellished suit but I felt honored to receive a Stokes Figure “warm-up” the day before from Terry’s wife Jess when I went in for my tan. I got to represent for Stokes Fitness with a tank, jacket and sweats. Man did that feel good. I threw on some makeup, redid my hair and but some baby powder on as mock deodorant (I swear you will never be around so many smelly people in your life… you can’t wear deodorant with your tan because it turns your armpits green…something about your PH balance…and you can’t shower because the color would wash off…safe to say I kept my perfume on hand at all times!)
My mom dropped me off at the theatre and came back later on when my Dad, Brother Pete and his friend Al met her at her hotel. I wandered around a bit until Storm showed up and then threw our stuff in a room in the back and started getting ready before the competitors meeting. I was a little overwhelmed. Everyone looked like a Barbie on steroids and here I was with a less sparkly suit, short non-poofed hair, simple jewelry, classic makeup and frankly a little less definition then a lot of these girls. It was pretty cool that some girls noticed our Stokes gear and came up asking us about our trainer saying they’ve heard of us (definitely points for Terry 🙂 ).
I was nervous and kind of lost all morning. It was a huge relief when Terry showed up with Mike. He definitely provided a little more direction, unfortunately it consisted of me relaxing which wasn’t about to happen anytime soon. I spent a lot of my time entertaining myself by “pumping up” – I know it sounds so silly. Lots of pushups, squats, shoulder presses etc. It was pretty interesting watching a slue of women in bikinis working out! You had to keep it light so you didn’t sweat off your tan…
The competitor meeting was prior to the start of the show and ran down the pre-juding events. The show was to start off with Pro-Figure and Men’s Pro-Body Building. It was a HUGE relief to realize many of those women that I was terrified of were Pros and I wouldn’t be judged against them… thank you jesus! Unlike most shows Figure was the second to last event and followed by none other than Bikini. In other words the show was essentially run backwards from what I was used to. This meant I had a lot of time to kill. I really paid attention to the classes I was entered in, recording all the other competitors numbers so I can get a look at what I was up against.
I spent the Pro portion of the show munching on rice cakes and almonds. My family showed up right as mens amateur body building was starting. My Dad walked right passed me. Yes, I was almost a different nationality!
Back stage there were some pretty incredible people. Women and men from all over the state who have all shared different experiences in preparing for the show, whether it was their first time or their 10th. No two girls trained exactly the same. Although it was great to hear all their tips and tricks, I’ve learned you choose one voice and go with it. Mixing different techniques can lead to disaster! PS did you know they “Bikini Bite” or glue your suit to your booty to prevent slipping? Make sure you use the lavatory ahead of time and put your heels on because you will not be bending, sitting or squatting until after pre-judging is complete!
My turn to go on. I was going out in two classes in a row, getting a break for a group of girls and then it was back on the stage. Shitting my pants… yeah that is probably the best way to describe how I felt before my first class went out. There were 4 other beautiful women in the debut class. All of them pumping up with weights before walking out. I just stood there. I was the last competitor so that meant last in the line-up. And it was time. Figure Debut. I wasn’t comfortable with my posing but went out there, hit my spot in the line, faced the judges, slapped a huge smile on my face and hit my first front pose.
Posing is not easy. It is practically a science to get every muscle out the right way. And holding it for extended periods of time is quite painful. Squeezing my legs was the hardest. “Quarter turn” the judge says, and here comes my first side pose. “Quarter turn” he says again. Now here’s the biggie. Gotta get your back out! In my opinion a Figure Competitor’s back can make or break her. If she has a great back and can get it out with ease it really stands out. “Quarter turn” to hit the next side pose. “Quarter turn” and we’re back to front. Don’t think we were done just yet. They started moving us around in the line and the posing started all over. General rule of thumb… if you are moved toward the center of the group you can expect to place alright.
Off the stage went the Debut Class and it felt like I turned right around and went back out for Figure Novice B. This time the “shit my pants” feeling had disappeared. When it came time for the Figure Open Tall class our time on stage seemed a bit longer. There were a lot more girls in this class then the other two I was in. But then it was over. Time for a break before the night show…
…to be continued…