I am a bodybuilder : Congratulations Team T.o.M.

Seeing these pictures of the team no one could ever tell what they went through.

First I had to twist their arm. I saw potential, a high level of motivation and a need for a higher goal.

Then they loaded on food, the bulking phase is by far the most enjoyable beside having to explain over and over to the onlookers that we are on a plan, that we are overfeeding on purpose, that overfeeding is still a delicate business that does not include simple sugars, alcohol in excess or fast food.

The training at this point is also enjoyable, heavy weights 3 times a week and NO cardio.

The “Boss” Mark (our trainer) has his way with training and dieting and it is quite different than mine. I started training with Mark last December and immediately noticed a more detailed focused and motivated mind. You eat you train you sleep he says… arrghhh judge for yourself. He is perfect for Team Captain!

Next, depending on the category you are going for, the cutting phase could start 20 to 12 weeks before the show. Calories go low, simple carbs and alcohol down the drain, exercise days increase (fine tuning that new body), cardio is in. At 1st a few times upon awakening, from 30 to 60 min but soon enough everyday or so, as well as post workout. Carbs come down to nil, cheat meals are just a dream and it gets very hard to handle a job or be nice to people.

After all, you are on a mission with a very specific goal in mind and these are some good ones that will come up: “Really? Another 30lbs? Where from?” “You look good the way you are” “Is that really healthy?” “A bodybuilder? Will you paint some abs on that belly?” “It’s really hard to diet” “Why do you need to diet? you are already skinny!” “Will you take steroids?” “Is protein powder a steroid?” “What’s wrong with quinoa?” “Peanut butter is soooo fattening, you should not have any”…:)

Well, with the competition closer and some of you saw it, it was crunch time! Not the time to lose weight but to run through the finish line. A never ending line of hair, nails, posing, wax, make up, tanning, painting, training, eating and sleeping (yes Boss) and not much else.

Competition was tough. When so new, one doesn’t know what to expect, some were nervous and screamed some cried. Every one looked INCREDIBLE! And I am so proud to call them our team. Each learned lots about training and eating, themselves and everyone else’s boundaries. How to really appreciate life itself the way it is given to you.

Now you know that:

You always have time to train and eat well

You should always go to bed early

Lifting heavy weights make us smaller yet stronger

Appreciate your food but eat well most of the time

Enjoy the process because the end product and feel is ephemeral

What blew my mind? Jessica lifts weights as heavy as I do, Bar heavier, Chantelle and Sid train unconditionally (when hurt, tired and sick), I can hardly believe how hard they worked and I can only wish to have their strength to pursue my own journey!

Good Luck to all of YOU…

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