Four weeks to go…when things get weird.

There's always something to wine about
There’s always something to wine about

“Some more wine?” I hear my husband ask cheerfully. “More wine?” I think to myself as I flash with irritation. I haven’t had any wine. I can’t have wine right now. I’d love some wine but he damn well knows I can’t. Why the hell would he ask me…” Then I hear the first few beats of “Don’t You Forget About Me” play through the iPod dock. He was just announcing that he’s about to play Simple Minds. “Simple minds” and “some more wine” can sound very similar in a Scottish accent, but it’s very clear what just happened. I had a wine hallucination. It’s real people!

At four weeks to go, with every muscle that appears I am starting to lose my mind a little more. It’s the inevitable inverse relationship of fitness and intelligence. At least that’s my theory. It’s also the point in your prep when you realize there is absolutely no room for errors. I do try to stick to my diet and exercise plan 100% but there’s almost always a time when things go wrong. Twice now I’ve gone nuts: and by that I mean purchasing a small bag of cashews on one occasion and a vegan protein bar on another. In both cases I was going to be out for a while, starving and these seemed to be the best options. That’s never a good thing to do while prepping for a bikini competition, but it happens. Twice in 12 weeks isn’t so bad, and I’ve yet to miss even a single rep of a workout.

But at four weeks you do start to worry and look at other fitness competitors. When I see someone on Instagram who’s fitter than me posting “OMG only eight more weeks” I do freak out a bit. It’s time like that I have to give my head a shake and realize why I’m doing this. There will always be someone out there who’s naturally fitter, more dedicated and will place better than me. I know that. I also know that when I stand on stage I’ll be super fit…for me. And wearing so many sparkly things which is also a big part of the fun.

So the next four weeks will be a bit of a blackout period for me. I need to avoid any potential opportunities for screw ups, preserve my energy and start planning the last few elements of the competition: hair, nails, posing, packing etc. The stressful parts of these last weeks are balanced out by the fun stuff and excitement. I am really looking forward to stepping on stage again so the aesthetic elements are all part of the fun. It also means I can let my meals get dead boring. This would be hard to stomach for the full prep but for a few short weeks it’s not a big deal. Most meals consist of pretty bland lean protein, with fats and carbs inserted as needed. I used to think I’d enjoy coming up with clever, creative ways to make normal meals healthy–and to a certain point I do–but this is not the time for that nonsense. This is the point where meals are about getting protein in your face and getting on with it. There’s something oddly freeing about that.

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Straight up tuna washed down with black coffee. It does the trick. Not pictured: three amaranth rice cakes.

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