When I was little, there was a point in time where all I dreamt about was stepping on a bodybuilding stage.
Every Saturday morning on NBC, I watched the bodybuilding shows that came on television after the cartoons went off and I always looked forward to being like those amazing women I saw on stage.
One day, I decided that I was going to step on stage and become a competitor, an IFBB pro. I would be among the top in the world and claim my spot on the Olympia stage.
All of that happened for me, although not at the timing that I expected.
I thought it would happen a lot sooner in the late 90s, but eventually, I got there with a lot of blood, sweat, tears, and hard work.
Being a competitor has been an incredibly rewarding experience and I didn’t reach the top of the sport until I was in my 30s. Then, I became an IFBB pro and got to the Olympia stage.
To be a competitor with yourself, whether as a pro or an amateur and to step on that stage over 30, I will guide you through the process of doing it the right way.
I may not be an active competitor anymore and a bodybuilder, but once you’re in this sport, there is no going back.
I can say that being a pro, a competitor and being a part of the sport has been a tremendous gift to my life, fitness and profession.
It has been a dream of mine for so long.
So, to see that dream become a reality for me has been the most rewarding experience and I did not start on this stream until my 30th birthday.
My Goal To Compete Started A FULL Decade Before Turning Pro
Back in 1999-2000, I was about 19-20 years old and I had decided then that I wanted to compete in a show.
There was a show coming up in Brooklyn. It was in the fitness division. During those times, there were only two divisions; fitness and bodybuilding.
I was going into the gym and was practicing these one-arm push-ups and I remember being very excited about this new path
Then I got sick with walking pneumonia and I had to drop my plans to compete.
I dropped that completely and decided to focus on my dance career and it wasn’t until 10-11 years later that I picked up the sport of bodybuilding and had been going straight on ever since.
I Want My Journey To INSPIRE You
With my story, I want to inspire you with the fact that it’s never too late to dare to dream. it’s only too late when you’re dying.
Prepping for your show is the least of your concerns so no matter how old you are, it’s never too late to go after that dream now.
For some of you, you’re going to have to be realistic. Whether or not being able to turn pro is something that you can do.
Being a pro is a genetic game and just like any other sport and talent, you’ve got to be born with the genetics that’s going to take you to that next level.
If you have those genetics, it can be improved and it’s so wonderful today that we have the master’s level competitions and so many different divisions that anybody who wants to can step on the stage and find a home for themselves.
Build Your Body Before You Start To Diet
Before you decide on a show and start that prep, you have to focus on building your Physique.
A lot of people think that bodybuilding is the sport of just getting ready, dieting and training and then you go on a stage and get compared.
I tell my competitors all the time, nobody cares about how you train, and how you eat. They care about how you look.
The sport of bodybuilding in Itself happens by way of building your body, taking your body to the next level, looking at your flaws and trying to eliminate them.
You can do this by building a physique that is symmetrical from top to bottom, left to right and front to back.
That’s at peak conditioning when you step on the stage and that is posed and presented correctly in the sport.
Shape Matters – So Pay Attention
Before you decide on a show, you’ve got to make sure that your body lines up genetically and physically close to your division’s ideal.
If you know you want to step on stage and you don’t have enough muscle to do that but your heart is set on that, it is okay.
The stage will always be there.
Pick a later date to think for a year going into a full-on offseason and working your body to the point.
Build your body before dieting and picking a show. Don’t be afraid of taking the time to step on stage.
Allow Yourself Enough Time To Diet And Prep For Your Show
This is important for women of all ages but especially for women who are a little over 40 and 45 because that’s when your hormones take a turn in a way that you don’t expect.
There’s a common consensus about the 12-week crap.
You might say ‘oh we’re going to prep for 8 or 12 weeks.’
For first-time competitors, that is never going to be enough time.
It’s only enough time for those who are naturally thinner and have higher metabolisms and those who are already very close to that stage look.
For a majority of women, especially those who are completely new in this sport, you are going to need more time to get ready.
So How Long Should Your Prep ACTUALLY Be?
I advise a 16 to 20-week prep for most new competitors and even for seasoned ones.
This allows you enough time to take yourself through a dieting and training cycle without necessarily trying to kill yourself with an over-reliance on cardio and excessive dieting.
When you take this smarter approach to your prep, you end up being able to hold on to more muscle even as you get leaner.
And that is what we’re looking for when we’re talking about what wins shows.
Leanness takes time.
Being shredded to the bone is a science in and of itself and you don’t want to crash diet into your show and mess yourself up hormonally.
Have Your Hormonal Levels Checked
Hormone health is something that we don’t often talk about in the diet and training world.
For ladies particularly over the age of 45 or women who may be approaching menopause, hormone health is extremely important.
Estrogen: Your Friend, Your Foe
Estrogen plays a huge role in maintaining our feminine characteristics. But at the same time, it can be detrimental to your efforts if your hormonal levels are out of balance.
I have encountered so many women who have high levels of estrogen in their bodies and then they wonder why it’s so hard for them to lose weight.
A lot of times, it has to do with estrogen dominance.
For other women, they deal with a slow metabolism.
Cortisol And High Stress Can WRECK Your Contest Prep
A lot of times that can be attributed to high levels of cortisol in the body from added stress and a bunch of other things but also an underactive thyroid.
There are so many women over the age of 30 who are walking around with suboptimal hormonal levels when it comes to their thyroid and they don’t know it.
Their doctors are telling them that they’re normal while their hormonal levels are sub-optimal when it comes to a full panel thyroid test.
Some of the things that you might see symptomatically are the fact that you are on a weight loss plan and you’re doing everything that you should be doing but your body is not responding.
Bodybuilding in some way is sort of a game of controlling hormones to a great degree.
So, having your hormonal levels checked before you begin prep and also in that little offseason where you’re going to build your body first before you diet is a great time to make sure that your levels are optimal so you can have the best experience when it comes to your prep.
Ensure That You Have The Right Coach
Coaching is so important and as someone who is a fitness professional with several winning history and experience.
I achieved so much because I trusted someone else to take me to the next level when I got stuck working on my own.
I knew that I couldn’t do it myself.
I got that pro card behind me because I made that same decision to work with that very person who I said ‘hey! look, I took myself as far as I can and I can’t get any further. I need help.’
I hired them and they helped me to take everything to the Next Level.
A Coach Should Push You AND Respect You
It takes a lot to trust other people with your body, particularly when you’ve been working out for a long time and you’re used to doing things yourself.
Having the right coach is the best decision that you can ever make. So, do your research, find someone who works well for you and understands what being in this sport is all about for you.
Ensure that they see the same vision that you see for yourself. Being the greatest that you can be.
Ensure that they believe in you and they’re going to help you to get there. It is the best investment that you can make.
Don’t go for the cheapest person.
Save your coins and work with someone who you truly know believes in you, your vision and is willing to walk that path with you and will not let you fail.
The Smarter Approach to Your Prep Always Wins in the End - Download My FREE Contest Prep Crash Course
Look, the one thing I want you to learn from everything I share is that you can indeed have a SMART prep, and look amazing in the end. You CAN do things the right way, and WIN on stage.
All it takes is working with the right advice and tips to help you to get there, and to truly develop into the amazing athlete that you already are.
I pride myself on developing my competitors. To TRULY guide them, hands on, to their best. To be there for them for that motivation, mental support, honest feedback, and attention to detail that will get them to their winning physique.
I created this amazing eBook to help you to start to take a smarter approach to your prep – all while looking your ABSOLUTE BEST on stage!
In this eBook I’m breaking down everything you need to consider when it comes to cardio and weight training for prep, dieting for your show, posing and presentation tips, and so much more!
Plus, I’ve got some really great bonus videos that will help you to master the game, and figure out exactly what you need to do to ensure that you look like a star up on that stage.