I mostly write this blog for myself. I dig around and re learn things or get motivated by my past endeavors. I actually started this blog to be accountable to myself and it helps me stay focused on my goals. I doubt anyone will read this post and it’s fine!! Here’s the prep2020 update!
My show is 10 weeks out. I want to be clear, that my March 21 show is mOBSCENE which is a pole burlesque show I am producing.
It’s a big deal for me and I am performing too. I have so many heavy hitters in this show. The cast list is some of the best in the performing community. I decided to create a look for this show and that’s what I’m doing.
So far.. I’m doing great. I’m feeling tighter. I did great all the way through the holidays. I didn’t blow my plan up. I actually did advanced macros so it was easy. I’m very calm. My progress in 4 weeks is great.
I decided that if the planets align, I’ll finish my prep for the next 4 weeks past mOBSCENE and to the NGA show in Peoria. I’m planning on it, but we will see. That probably sounds lazy to some people. I’m working through some menopause (ugh) hormone issues so I’m not sure how prepping will be in the last weeks. This is new territory. But it’s exciting to have that goal.
I have many pole shows this year and many photo shoots too. This all aligns with my goals.
Food: I’m actually keeping my macros high. I haven’t even dropped my macros. What I have done is really tidied them up. I’m trying different food combinations and looking at ingredients to see how they affect my hormones and belly fat. Yeah.. I said it.
I’ve been through over 2 years of some intense trauma work and my cortisol was through the roof. I am finally feeling better.
I’m not mad either way about what happens in that April show. Health is my priority but also, listening to my body.
I am not using a scale either.
I like to prep myself because I can learn more and help my clients too. I’m up for this experience but I am not using prep as a coping mechanism. I’m going to do this project with peace and see where I end up.
I haven’t prepped really since 2017. I took years off from my last competition to recover mentally and have been working on my mental health. Lots of self care there.
So my goals for 2020 are to prep for a show I am producing in March! It’s not a body building show but I’m going to come in looking strong. I am treating this prep as I do my bikini competition shows. It’s mental for me.
I’m excited to be back on prep!
I’m 54 now and I’m also exploring food and hormones and going to working hard to figure out how to deal with all these changes in my body. No one wants to discuss how hormones effect women and we are sort of the forgotten humans when it comes to fitness. Honestly, the midsection is really hard for many of us, and add peri-menopause or Menopause.. ugh. So I’m going to focus there.
I have lots of shows and photo shoots on deck for 2020 so I’m super focused. I’m actually feeling really good! We are taking our team to the NGA Show in April and many of us are prepping together so we will all have some camaraderie.
I wish you success with your journey!!! Let’s do this!!
In our pole community, almost daily there is a post like this:
“My boyfriend/husband/partner doesn’t like me pole dancing. He said I’m a whore. He tells me I’m not very good. He tells me I’m dancing around the pole like a slut. He won’t let me go to class. He won’t let me post my videos to my insta feed when I only do it so I can share my successes. He says I’m going to be a prostitute now. He said he doesn’t want anyone looking at me dancing. ..” ON AND ON AND ON AND ON..
Every one of the threads follows with some women saying:
“Try to explain to him, tell him we have to show skin for grip. Tell him you feel happy when you dance. Tell him, we all share videos so we learn. Tell him you won’t dance exotic or wear heels.. Help him understand. He’s just insecure. Help him feel secure.. help him. help him help him…”
STOP IT. We need to stop it now.
We are grown women with autonomy over our bodies and we can make choices for our selves based on what makes us happy. It’s not our job to ‘explain’ ourselves.
Any human, for any reason who chooses their own perceptions over their partners happiness is TOXIC. It’s not about them. In fact, we don’t have to convince them it’s a ‘good thing’ because we know dancing is a great thing. It’s not up to anyone else!
And don’t be fooled.. this happens in my bikini/body building community too.
We have had clients husbands slut shame them on show day. It’s unreal!
This is not a dancing or sport issue.. it’s first of all a control issue and secondly an issue where grown women are taking up less space and encouraging each other to be accommodating to men /partners perceptions.
“But.. you don’t understand my relationship…”
Yeah.. I do. It’s toxic. When your partner degrades you, shames you and tries to control you, it’s their issue. They are abusive and toxic. The opposite of healthy. People who love you, care about you want you to be happy not sad and lacking self esteem.
In 2013 I competed and then set on a course to build my glutes.
In 2015 I dug out a pair of my old ‘boyfriend’ style jeans and they wouldn’t go over my thighs. I took to the bed. Crying. Rob said something like.. “we worked on this with food, you trained hard to build your glutes” Stating the obvious.. didn’t matter. I was broken in pieces. Brains are a thing that sometimes do us dirty.
If those jeans would have fit.. then I would have not achieved my goal. My plan would have been “off”.
I have lost many competitors from PANTS. They quit when their work pants don’t fit. They don’t want to invest in more work pants. They don’t like going up a size in pants.
They want to win in this sport but remain the same. We can’t remain the same. We shouldn’t. We all should be moving forward. The industry joke is ‘buy leggings”. I actually only own leggings or jeggings. I don’t even try on denim so my head doesn’t explode. We get used to being thrilled when we go down a jeans size not up. So…
These are things that we all do.. we put things in our head that are measures of failure. If the scale says this number, I’m trash. If the scale says this number.. I’m winning. It’s made up. 😭
My pants issues are just part of the issue I have with my body and perception of what is optimal.
As our body changes, it’s not a straight shot down to ‘skinny’ because we don’t live like that. We are eating, lifting and creating a physique that WE want. It’s not linear. We have to eat to grow and we have to build what we want. We won’t give up because pants told us we aren’t good enough. ❤ Pants are not in charge. Www.sleekbodyonline.com
The sport with no finish line. Every day moves you further along, even when it seems ‘boring’ or uninspired. It comes with time and energy..
Ahhhhh… beginnings…New beginnings!
I’ve been doing fitness for a long, long time.. but that does not mean that it isn’t a struggle to stay motivated. Fitness ebbs and flows. It does because life does. I’ve done years where I’ve been on prep, or focused on body building shows exclusively. I’ve had years recently that focused on mental health and learning more pole, performance. None of these things are wrong. I grew weary of being in show prep. My body was just sick of it.
So let me tell you what I have done since day one, without fail. I have done workout, selfies and progress updates. I have everything uploaded into drop box and I can see exactly every point of my journey.
I can see freakish lean, buffet fluffy. I can see off season perfect as well as times when I struggled in my macro journey. I can see when I was in my saddest times, the times I felt good and the times I felt really strong.
Every one of these pics are snapshots of my journey. The good, bad and the gym hair, don’t care, ugly.
Why is this meaningful? I look at this pic of my back when I first started getting ready for a show. This was probably back in 2012. I was so motivated to do my first show. It’s all I thought about. I’m sure it bored everyone around me. I thought I looked awesome and I was getting better and better. Motivation and adrenaline level 3000.
Time passed. Shows came and went.. I probably felt less motivated and had to focus more on strategy for subsequent shows. It became habit and skill. But.. I probably beat myself up plenty because I didn’t look IG ready all the time. I probably said negative things in my head about being too this or too that and not good enough. I’m sure of it.
That’s really normal for me.
But…as it turns out..some changes happened.
I probably work up one day around that time and felt bad about myself. I probably allowed my negative self talk to focus in on the things I didn’t like about myself.
But I made gains. I made progress. It’s real.. because I often forget to look up or see how far I’ve come. I’m always digging into why I’m not perfect or 100 percent better. /
There is no finish line though. There is progress. I need to focus more on that!
Progress pics tell our story!
Think of your progress pics, in the same way you track your lifts, and your macros. It’s information!
If you don’t know how to take good progress pics.. go here
I decided to produce my own show in 2020 and I’m very excited to put a new transformation into play. I’ve been working very hard for 2 years on my CPTSD.
I want to touch on that for just a second. Not every day is good. There is a lot of fatigue and some days it’s hard to do much. I think this is a really nice goal for me to put some energy into this show and creating something I have never seen before.
I am about 23 weeks out from that and have decided to make a new physique shape for my show. Something I’ve never done before. It’s a great challenge. I’ve picked out my wardrobe for the show so it has to be spot on.
I spent yesterday digging through years of progress pics. I decided that I do have more skills, more muscle, more knowledge, more information than any of those days before. I’m capable of digging in and creating a new improved process to get to my next set of goals. My journey in pics showed me so much and inspired me to remember where I came from.
My point of this blog is to just give you some real life.. not every fitness guru is showing you the reality of what being fit is. It does flow and sometimes it’s hard. Sometimes health and life issues get in the way. Sometimes we are on fire and sometimes we are not motivated. We have to figure out how to create the life we want and still achieve our dreams. I love the idea of always documenting our journey. It takes very little time, but it’s so powerful to see changes!!
I find some people fear them or they set non specific goals.
But.. clients who use more specific verbiage like this “I want to get back down into my size 10 jeans.” “I want to build my glutes.” ” I want to be able to get down on the floor and play with my kiddos.” “I want to do 5 pull ups on my own.”
Overall do much better in their project than clients who say
“I want to lose weight.” “I want to get healthy.”
That very broad goal isn’t very measurable.
It might feel overwhelming to have a long term goal. I think it is. But setting smaller goals is really effective. Our clients actually set new goals for each check in and we work on that specific one. We are looking for successes they can build on.
What I find is that usually.. the workouts aren’t the issue. The challenge might be consistency. Through our program we have no diet/program fails we have information. We have learning and tweaking.
If a client is able to pinpoint something that is tripping them up.. that’s what we work on!!! I’m actually excited when we figure something out!!!
How to work effectively:
Once you establish a short term goal.. 1. Write it down!! 2. Tell someone!! 3. Create a plan.Decide how you can tweak your plan to make it work. 4. Wake up each day and say ‘”today I’m going to get my water in!!” 5. Keep going.
In my check ins with clients, I’m not looking for perfection. I’m looking for problem solving and tweaking. We don’t need to throw the baby out with the bath water and start over. We need to tweak what is holding us back from our goals so we can get some successes. Once you start having successess.. you can build on them.
We have openings for clients on our online/studio team.www.sleekbodyonline.com You can find a coach there. Our bios are there for you!!!
If you follow my blog, then you probably realize that I am totally transparent on my posts. I’m able to track my journey and if you are so inclined to follow.. then you will get the good, bad, and ugly.
The last time I competed was June 2017. That show.. omg.. whew. I was messed up when I finished it. I had a really great show in October 2016 and wanted to wait a year to compete for my pro card. In 2017, UFE removed the Halloween pro qualifer so the only option was to do the June show. I made a decision to do that so in 52 weeks, I’d prepped for 48 weeks. My body was not happy. After that show was over, I was mentally a mess. I decided to stop for a while and try to recover. It took me about 6 months before I could even look objectively at my pictures from that show.
Here’s a few shots from this show. I loved doing it with my sisters though. I’m glad I took a break.
Over the last 2.5 years it’s been a roller coaster of good, bad and holy shit for me. I’m finally in a place that I feel super pumped to do this new project. #Mayhem2019
I’m really lucky because I have some really amazing things planned for my year. I’m doing some pole shows.
I have a brand new secret project that is HUGE for our family. It’s going to blow up and it’s going to be a game changer. Our team!! ❤ ❤
Mayhem will be the perfect icing for this cupcake!
DON CURRY PHOTOSHOOT
I’m 8 weeks out right now for my huge photoshoot. I’m doing a photoshoot prep right now so I can look my best.
I did this shoot last year and I cannot wait. I have so many costumes and shoes planned!
After the shoot, I’ll take a few weeks and then start show prep. I’m also working really hard with my pole coaches to get my routines down for my shows. So Yeah.. stage lean will be the last thing I see. I need to maintain my strength to do my pole shows. I’m pretty psyched to plan this prep and make it all happen while eating as much food as possible!! BOOM
Posing starts with the Queen B on May 25 and I need a total overhaul!!
I’m ready to slay!
SLEEK BIKINI FIGURE TEAM
I’m doing my own prep with the help of my besties who are on staff at Sleek Body.
My goal is to go into this show with the best wardrobe I’ve ever had. The most beautiful themewear. I want to bring a better package than 2017 and have a calm mind.
Our team has really focused over the last 2 years on making our prep very calm and not scattered or upsetting. I feel like slow and steady will always help me succeed. Of course, I’m doing IIFYM!!
So we are off and running to this new project! 27 weeks track with Mango.
Coach Mango!! She’s on her posing.
Training at Fit City and Sleek Body for this show!!
My partner in my prep is the mister and he is my chef! He watches a lot of cooking shows. It’s a good fit. I’m lucky. I get that.
“I workout at home. I am not buying any more equipment. How do I make the workout harder?”
“The workout my coach gave me is too easy.”
So let’s dig right in and talk about your workout and the effort you need to apply to it. For amazing results, it should be intense. That means you should have laser focus and give 100 percent effort to your sessions.
We often see clients walking through their workouts with a very lacadasical pace.
Last week, I got a check in from a client who said “I need harder workouts”.
If you have ever thought that.. you need to work harder. This is on you. I can give my clients a series with 5 pound weights and I anticipate they will kick their own asses with that.
I will give you some really nice ideas here now to increase your intensity and raise your game. I’m throwing shade on that last check in.. Work harder!! I’m squeezing so hard here.. RARRRRRRRRR
Ways to increase intensity:
Lift heavier: I gave Mary Beth 3 sets of 10 reps with her bicep curls. She’s been doing 8 pounds on those curls for 2 months.
Your body gets used to lifting a certain amount and it adapts. So now you need to grab a heavier weight and push your muscle to do more.
Pro Tip: Muscle engagment. Visualize that you are lifting 100 pounds on those curls and resist!! Squeeze. Visualize your muscles growing!! Connect the hardware (brain)to the soft ware (body). Tell your muscles to grow!!
Muscles grow when they are challenged!! We have to keep on the progressive overload if we want results so keep lifting heavier!! Look for increases in strength to let you know you are building!! YES.
More reps: Our client said she’s not investing in more weights and the 10 pounds she has to use is all she is going to use. Hmmm..
I asked her to add sets. Progressive overload is still happening by using a more volume training approach. She can do 4 sets of 12-15. I promise you, she will burn out and feel that fatigue!! If you can’t increase weight.. increase reps.
Super sets: This is a fun way to fatigue the muscle. Fun for who? hahahah.. It’s a burn like none other.
Marybeth was given
bicep curls 3×10
Tricep kickbacks 3×10
No rest between those two moves. A super set is just putting two moves in succession. You can super set anything together. After she does her superset, then she will rest. Repeat 3-4 times.
Giant set: adding 3 or more moves in succession before you rest. It’s often called a Circuit.
Let me be clear.. if you can do more.. do more!! If you have energy for a second workout or could go take a class.. you did not do your job. You should be spent.
Ok.. here’s one for you..
Let’s say you are doing cardio blasts at home or the gym. You are bored or just not feeling the effort is there. You can increase intensity in your basic movement by using the STAR method.
STAR stands for Speed Tempo Air Range of Motion (ROM)
How to do this:
Start with a very basic move. Any one will do.
Round 1: do your basic move.
Round 2: change the speed (faster.. slower.. up to you)
Round 3: change the tempo.. to what? Doesn’t matter. Slow, fast slow fast.. just alter the tempo.
Round 4: Add a hop or jump to it!!
Round 5: See how big the movement can be!!
My video below shows this!!
My video shows a very basic movement. It can work with any thing!! You could increase the box height too. You could use a ladder.. you could just do super basic movements on the floor like skaters or jumping jacks. You could use a bosu too!
How to do this for cardio. Set your timer for 30 seconds work/ 10 seconds rest.
Pick one move then do the STAR method. That’s 5 rounds! Or do it twice! Mix and match rounds.. you got this..
In your weight training, you can also somewhat modify this to your lifts. Using tempo changes, holds, less rests, more rests, all create variance in your training. Our bodies need to be pushed.
One thing to remember, you are fully in charge of the work you are doing. So push really hard!!!
This is Baby Iggy. He’s very sure you can train harder. So go on and do that.
Did you ever wonder why some people act the way they do? Are some people a mystery to you and you don’t know what to do with them? Do you know why YOU do the things you do?
I do. I know now. But I didn’t know and it was causing me a world of problems!!
This blog is going to explain how I worked this out and it was a total game changer. Stay with me. I want you to look at my title and realize that I do not want you to take advantage of other people. I want you to understand how to work with people better and that is very helpful to everyone!!
Here’s how it worked for me. Tony explains that most people’s basic needs are (in no particular order)
4. Love & Connection
Each one of these needs can be fulfilled with Positive behavior Neutral behavior Negative behavior
Think on this for one moment.
A person who’s put their top basic needs will do everything to get those needs met.
If someone has a need for Uncertainty, variety , chaos
They could fulfill that positively by planning interesting things to do.
Meeting new people or learning new skills. Spending time with different groups of friends or people. Searching for new music, maybe…
Neutral would be neither positive or negative.. just switching things up during the day so it’s not the same old same old..
Negatively, seeking relationships outside their primary one. Looking for ways to disrupt others lives. Blowing people up. Blowing one’s self up.
Here’s one I see a lot in my work: Top needs is Security/comfort/Certainty: I see many clients using food to comfort!! Because they come to me, stress eating, or ‘eating their feelings’ we can assess that they are neither using positive or neutral behaviors to fulfill that need. My goal with them is to help them to understand this and hopefully they can work on positive or neutral behaviors for that top level needs.
So sit down for a moment and order your needs. Your needs may not be the same year after year. You may evolve. Your top needs though.. probably have been the same all along.
Here are mine!
1. Certainty/comfort Security
Let’s talk about my #1. I live an die by security.
It drives me. It always has. It causes me great anxiety when I do not feel my number one need is being met.
Funny (positive) ways I meet my #1 needs.
I have a huge supply of oatmeal under my prep table. It’s there because oatmeal means I have what I need to do my plan .
In my show prep, I have security in protein pancakes. My husband makes them and each day we laugh and say “Those pancakes smell like first place.”
I find security in working many hours. I worked a few jobs at a time when I was younger. I always know I’m going to be ok.
Growth and learning are my number 2. I spend hours reading, doing workshops, feeding that need to learn and be better. I attend pole workshops and take lessons and maybe I got something out of it but maybe the act of doing that fulfilled my need.
Growth/Learning and Love and connection are super compatible because I connect to so many wonderful people. I, myself built a community of amazing people who are like minded and who strive for positivity. So many of those people in my life fuel my connection when they send me a cat meme or share a post. Deeper connections are there but they are relationships that are positive for my life as opposed to seeking connection from strangers or randos. That would be a neutral or negative way for ME to fill that need.
For me 4/5 are interchangeable. I am very happy when I have helped someone to feel better or fix a problem. That validates me. Contribution looks really far down on that list but it sits in there nicely with my number 4.
I would put Uncertainty so far down on my list of needs it should be buried under the ocean. I don’t need variety. I’m a creature of habit and like it that way. In fact when I’m called on having to ‘fly by the seat of my pants’ I hate it.
My husband gave me a surprise trip to Mexico for Christmas and we were set to leave on New Years Day. Nope. NOPE. NOPE. Oh no . The amount of anxiety I had regarding that was too much to bear.
This is my husband’s list of needs. I want you to look at his and look at mine and see how there is a certain challenge we have to work on.
To him, that Mexico trip was perfect. It was impromptu and would shake up an otherwise cold, icky winter. It was for sure variety and the surprise factor of handing it to me for Christmas probably was really exciting to him.
But we are in a relationship that needs to work so when I got that trip for my gift, I did not react well. I got panicky and had to cancel it straight away He probably did not get the validation he was hoping for , for such a luxurious gift!!! I am sure that was very difficult for him!!
We work super hard on helping each other and making sure we are getting our needs met in a positive way. His needs aren’t wrong.. they are just different.
If you also think about your person or even yourself, you can see how if one person choses a path of negative behavior to fulfill those needs you can end up with broken relationships. I’m touching on just a few things..
Uncertainty, Variety, Chaos: Acting out, drugs, partying, infidelity, really anything can fit there.. if it’s negative, it’s going to be a problem!
Significance/Validation: Fear of Missing Out (FOMO) is a rampant culture phenomenon on social media. People risk their lives chasing likes, pushing the envelope simply to appear, be or stay relevant.
This past week, a couple died in Yosemite National park chasing the most daring selfie.
We see all kinds of unhealthy behavior in viral videos and in real life when people use negative behavior to meet their needs.
So how does this pertain to you and using it to your advantage?
Once you have sat down and assessed who you are, how you are fulfilling your own needs you can then delve into your partner or family, friends. How can you positively help them to meet their needs?
One of my kiddos is somewhat like me in that, he has anxiety and is a creature of habit. It would help him for me to positively reinforce security, comfort and certainty to help him feel safe. When I know he needs validation for his art, I can help him self validate and give him positive feedback that he can use to grow. If I know his lowest need is uncertainty, it would not be helpful to give him 1 week to move out of our house and find a new job and start a new school. Does that make sense?
In my jobAs a coach, it’s super helpful for me to learn about my clients to help them feel secure in their plan and that they have what it takes to reach their goals. If I can see validation is super important to them, I can give them positive feed back quickly. I spend a lot of time on social media and much of what I do is offering positive reinforcement to others.
One way that helps someone to feel positive is to skip the “you’re so hot” comment but offer them feedback that shows you know they are working hard. I try to find ways to let them know they are strong or that lift was incredible so they feel proud of themselves too.
If I have a client who is uncomfortable with public validation, (shy or just not present on social media) I might see where their other needs are. I have some clients who love to learn! I have some who don’t but they want to be a part of something (contribution) so I give them things to allow them to be of service to our team or other members. It’s interesting how a person’s driving needs are very apparent on social media. Dig into their posts!
One of my clients really likes variety. She can’t stand the same ol same ol so I love to give her workouts that change more often so she feels excited to get new ones. She feels accomplished when she completes the past set too! I have another client who begs me NOT to change workouts because she’s really into them and the progressions are making her so happy. That spreadsheet of improvements is making her excited about her plan.
One of the things we can look at as a big picture is when you see people who display behavior that we find deeply troubling to look at their basic needs and how they choose to fulfill them. Tony tells us so beautifully that people will go to the ends of the earth to fulfill those needs and doing with positive behavior isn’t always what’s chosen.
I hope you find value in this blog. I hope you listen to the pod cast and really understand who you are in your needs.