Monday, February 25, 2013


NEVER GIVE-UP: “So many people can be responsible for your Success.
but only you are responsible for your failure.” 

”You are afraid to die, and you’re afraid to live. What a way to exist.” 
~Neale Donald Walsch

”The two most powerful warriors are patience and time.” …so remember: great achievements take time, there is no overnight success.
~Leo Tolstoy

"Don’t say you don’t have enough time. You have exactly the same number of hours per day that were given to Helen Keller, Bill Gates, Michelangelo, Mother Teresa, Leonardo da Vinci, Thomas Jefferson, and Albert Einstein."

“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore, is not an act but a habit.”

“Don’t count the days; make the days count”
~Muhammad Ali

“I count him braver who overcomes his desires than him who conquers his enemies, for the hardest victory is over self.”

"The cowards never started and the weak died along the way."

"We’re all born small and weak. We all grow old and weak. What you do in between is up to you."

“It’s very hard in the beginning to understand that the whole idea is not to beat the other runners. Eventually you learn that the competition is against the little voice inside you that wants you to quit.”
~George Sheehan

Monday, February 18, 2013


Today my motivational message is a bit different than usual. I usually share a lot of quotes; quotes with a theme (at least I always feel there is a theme), but there's a lot more pictures of me this time and a personal note of motivation!

I am on vacation in Mexico as you read this, and am probably struggling between feeling guilty ( because I am not sticking to my diet and I am drinking alcohol..during the day too!); along with eating more food and fattening food at that.

We all go through that - and the self sabotage is not healthy. We should all have a chance to enjoy, to relax, to just cut loose and feel hedonistic and free without worry of consequences.

I think that I have an extra burden, knowing that I have a competition soon  and many of my peers have already started their strict diets, but I tend to remain lean. Much leaner than most, so my diet shouldn't be too bad,  and actually if I diet too long I will start to look haggard since I am starting out lean already. I mean, I think I have three pounds to lose pre-vacation, so a pound more post vacation?

The thing most people don't understand is that it's not just the scale - but it's how your body looks, how it has been consistently treated. How the muscle and the fat rest within the confines of the skin, the tightness, the elasticity, the smoothness.  This all changes based on the small things ingested, and how the body has been treated on a regular basis. So you really cannot party hard and eat like crap and then "buckle down" for a few weeks and make it all OK. It's just not that easy. If it were, then everyone would do it wouldn't they?

So while a competitor may not gain weight, they may may look fatter, puffier, softer and all around out of shape based on one or two meals, now compound that to several, basically my week in Mexico....and you see my point?

Today I have pictures of me the day before vacation, with my un-tanned skin, trying on suits I have not worn in a year, not since last February when I was in Mexico.

Some women would kill to look like me, yet I found all sorts of things to improve. But I won't repeat them because it won't do anyone any good will it? I still had fun, and I will continue to have fun, rocking my fun suits.

My point today? Celebrate your accomplishments,  celebrate your drive, spirit, energy, enthusiasm, happiness, playfulness, energy, tenacity, stubbornness  the list is endless. Celebrate each baby step you have taken to get to your goal.

Celebrate YOU, and what you have molded ourself into.

Change takes place when you decide. So the power is in our hands. Take the steps necessary, reach out for help, appreciate those who give and support.

These suits are all "Pin Up Stars" from Italy. They all have beads, sequins, ruffles, rhinestones, pleats, beads, embroidery, or some interesting pattern. Most have a super detailed top and a much less fancy bottom, i have found most of the bottoms are still too large for my taste. Probably the fact that my competition suit is so small, these seem huge.

I (or David) have named some of them. We have Nemo; Sprinkles, Target, Jungle Book, Rose, Mermaid, Stripper, Kitty Kat. Guess which is which!  Oh the black one? I love the bottoms and cannot find the top! 

Monday, February 11, 2013


"Flatter me, and I may not believe you. Criticize me, and I may not like you. Ignore me, and I may not forgive you. Encourage me, and I may not forget you."
~ William Arthur

“A word of encouragement during a failure is worth more than an hour of praise after success.”

“I know of no more encouraging fact than the unquestionable ability of man to elevate his life by conscious endeavor.”
~Henry David Thoreau~

“Encourage those around you by never giving up on your dreams.”

“Confidence, like art, never comes from having all the answers; it comes from being open to all the questions.“
~Earl Gray Stevens~

“You need to be aware of what others are doing, applaud their efforts, acknowledge their successes, and encourage them in their pursuits. When we all help one another, everybody wins.“
~Jim Stovall~

“...there are persons who seem to have overcome obstacles and by character and perseverance to have risen to the top. But we have no record of the numbers of able persons who fall by the wayside, persons who, with enough encouragement and opportunity, might make great contributions.“
~Mary Barnett Gilson~

“If human beings are perceived as potentials rather than problems, as possessing strengths instead of weaknesses, as unlimited rather that dull and unresponsive, then they thrive and grow to their capabilities.“
~Barbara Bush~

“Only as high as I reach can I grow, only as far as I seek can I go, only as deep as I look can I see, only as much as I dream can I be.
 Karen Ravn 

“I am not afraid of tomorrow, for I have seen yesterday and I love today.”
 William Allen White 

Friday, February 8, 2013

Body Composition Analysis (Hydrostatic BodyFat Testing)

Cute butt huh? LOL! I love butts! The thing is, they can be really beautiful...or really not so beautiful!

This is just prior to my Hydrostatic Bodyfat Test, I had to take the pictures at home as the mobile truck was 40 miles away (mobile but not in my direction!) and it was a cold and blustery day!

I am not flexing in any of these photos, in the top photo I am standing with my arms out, my husband teases me all the time because it's automatic. 

I have testing done every year and Mike maintains the records so when I get a test it also shows all my previous tests. 

He has a large truck with a huge stainless steel tank inside, filled with nice warm water. You wear the least amount of clothing possible, hence the small swim suit. I don't know why I say it's small, I have many that are much, much smaller. I collect them you see, and in fact may post a blog with me in each of them. They are a designer called Pin Up Stars from Italy, typically "one of a kind", meaning that you will not see someone else wearing one, I guarantee it! Except maybe one like this, I had one exactly like this stolen one year on vacation. I was "pissed" to put it very mildly.  It has a target design on the front, rear and the triangle top cups.

So, I am weighed to get my overall weight first, then I lay in the tank and a weight belt is placed on my lower hips, all air is expelled then I plunge underwater and continue to expel all air until I feel as though I shall die. When Mike pounds on the tank for me to come up, I shoot up like the water is on fire.

Then...I do it two more times!

I need to do this to get an idea of how much I need to lose, which means this will determine my diet, my cardio and my general life for the next couple months. Oh, it will let me know how much I can enjoy vacation in Mexico too!

I have been good, sticking to my diet, but I was a little "too good". I didn't gain as much muscle as I had hoped, which would mean I didn't eat enough excess calories. 

I have searched on the Internet to find how much muscle a person can expect to gain in a year, but the answers are all over the board. That's because there are huge factors at play. A young person will gain more than an older person. A male, more than a female. An un-trained person more than a trained person. The list goes on and on. So all the "studies" that say you can gain 20 pounds in one year are performed with very young, untrained males. Easy as pie. All they gotta do is pick up a heavy pie and eat it and they gain muscle. Me? I am old, I am female and I am very well trained. So, it will be slow going for me!

When I tell people how low my bodyfat gets, most don't believe me. I doubt they think I am lying, they probably think I am being duped or something. But I am not. Below is my latest results. 

Age 51; height 63.5 (5' 3"); weight 127 pounds; bodyfat 9.9 pounds; lean mass 117.1 pounds; bodyfat percentage 7.8%

It's been much lower, take a look at the previous tests. Once it was way too low, and I had to see several doctor's until that got straightened out! 

I haven't even started my diet yet. Let me quantify that. I always adhere to a super clean diet, but I "stray" a lot when I am not prepping for a competition. So...I haven't stopped "straying" yet! In fact, only five days before this, was siting in a bar enjoying a glass of French champagne and  a bowl of spicy chicken wings with blue cheese dip. Only to learn that I cannot eat their blue cheese, it must be made with a powdered milk product. I am lactose intolerant and this played a number on me for hours. You know it's bad when your husband looks at you and says "how long will this last?" LOL!

I have gained lean body mass every year though, that is a good thing.  Mike asked how low I wanted my bodyfat for my competition and I said "5% or 6%" so he calculate this for me:

I have to lose 2.4 pounds of fat to get to 6%. Easy!

According to Wikipedia, the percentage of essential body fat for women is greater than that for men, due to the demands of childbearing and other hormonal functions. The percentage of essential fat is 3–5% in men, and 10-16% in women. Storage body fat consists of fat accumulation in adipose tissue, part of which protects internal organs in the chest and abdomen. The minimum recommended total body fat percentage exceeds the essential fat percentage value reported above.

The body fat percentage is a measure of fitness level, since it is the only body measurement which directly calculates a person's relative body composition without regard to height or weight. 

Essential fat

So, It's not really healthy for me to be this low, but I do tend to hover right around here, maybe 2% more, year round. 

I felt good when I drove home, good and hungry! I made a nice meal of flank steak, soo-foo, spinach, cauliflower and horseradish. Yum!!!

Below is a Vblog explaining my bodyfat test and the emotions I felt when I heard the results. Email readers must navigate to the log link at the top of the email to view the video directly from my blog. 

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

What is Women's Physique?

My last competition was May of 2012, and it was in the division of Figure. I am moving to Physique. I have worked hard, I have eaten well, slept as much as possible and stayed as lean as possible while still growing. So what is it all about anyway? What is Physique?

I have a video or a Vblog (email readers must navigate to the blog link at the top to view this). It is my longest so far, just over 8 minutes, but you can hear me explain first hand my journey to Physique.

The NPC guidelines state that Women's Physique competitors should have the overall aesthetics and look that is found in Figure with a little more overall muscularity. When it was first introduced a couple years ago I was intrigued and immediately wanted to do it, but I decided to wait and watch what the other women looked like, and which "look" was being awarded by the judges. 

At first most of the women looked like Bodybuilders, I think many Bodybuilders decided to move "down", perhaps because they couldn't add the size necessary for Bodybuilding, or they didn't want to get that big. I didn't think I could compete against them, so I waited. More and more bigger Figure gals started competing in the division, now this was more to my liking and along the lines of my own physique!

After my last competition I made the plunge. I explain it in my Vlog. 

My shoulders  look big and round, I have always had great shoulders and they are my pride and joy.  I look a little "bigger" than most of my friends who are Figure competitors, Physique is the place for me. I also tend to be leaner than most, so this is a plus. While they don't want competitors as lean as Bodybuilders, they can be slightly leaner than Figure.

It's not Bodybuilding, not in any way. If a Women's Physique competitor gets too big, they will be told to move to Bodybuilding or reduce their size.  

Women's Physique is another avenue for me (and other women) to display my hard work and showcase my stunning physique.  For me, it's a way to set a goal, so I have a date and a time, a plan, something to push me just a bit harder each day. It's easy to become complacent, to become bored of the routine. By competing, I keep myself sharp and on my toes all the time. It's that feeling "I can just stay in bed and sleep longer" that quickly dissipates when you then realize sleeping in could make or break the difference between first and second place. 

Please take the time to watch my Vblog below.

Monday, February 4, 2013


“In the depths of winter I finally learned there was in me an invincible
~Albert Camus 

"While we are postponing, life speeds by." 
~Lucius Annaeus Seneca 

"Whenever I hear, "It can't be done," I know I'm close to success."
~Michael Flatley

“It is defeat that turns bone to flint; it is defeat that turns
gristle to muscle; it is defeat that men makes invincible”
~Henry Ward Beecher 

"It was a high counsel that I once heard given to a young person,
"Always do what you are  afraid to do."
Ralph Waldo Emerson

"It's not because things are difficult that we dare not venture.
It's because we dare not venture that they are difficult." 
~Lucius Annaeus Seneca 

"I will work on Invincible until I am made to quit."
~Robert Kirkman 

"It is a rough road that leads to the heights of greatness." 
~Lucius Annaeus Seneca 

"Motivation is a fire from within. If
someone else tries to light that fire under you, 
chances are it will burn very briefly."
~Stephen R. Covey