A Chance to Reevaluate
I’m Catholic so this week I get to transition from the gluttonous celebrations of Marti Gras/Carnival/Fat Tuesday into the season of Lent, fasting and abstinence from meat on Fridays.
Marti Gras fulfills the idea that Drake so eloquently put it: YOLO. You only live once” can inspire you to do crazy things and bust out of your comfort zone. The carpe diem philosophy allows you to eat, drink and be merry.
Lent (the 40 days before Easter Sunday) is sort of flip sides of the same coin, as it begins with Ash Wednesday. On this day Catholics get ashes on their heads to remind them that one day they will die and God will judge their life. You only live once, so let it be a good life filled with faith, good works and charity. Lent is a time for you to reevaluate your life and chance course if needed. It’s sort of like spring cleaning for your soul.
Whatever your faith (or non-faith), March is the perfect time to reevaluate where you’re at and where you want to be. And as this is a fitness blog, let’s focus on recommitting to your healthy lifestyle goals.
This is the time when gyms get full again with people wanting to shed some weight in time for bikini season. (Yes, bikini season is right around the corner.)
For me, bikini competition season is also fast approaching. I decided that since I could do bodybuilding competitions anywhere in the world, why not combine it with a vacation, which is why I decided to do the Musclemania show in Costa Rica. Originally the event was scheduled for May, but they just revised the schedule, bumping it back to the end of July.
My overwhelming feeling was of relief. Even though the original date would have been 12 weeks away, it just felt too close for me to do well, especially with my calf injury. Don’t get me wrong, I would have dieted hard and looked muscular enough to stand on stage, but it would have been more about the vacation aspect of it than really bodybuilding.
That’s when I realized that I need to reevaluate my concept of bodybuilding. Last year I did four competitions and two of those competition preps were honestly quite miserable. I was competing because I felt like I should, not that I really had a specific goal.
It wasn’t until I took a break from training over the summer that I really got the bug back to be on stage. Keeping these things in mind, I think I’m going to limit myself to fewer competitions this year.
Also, I want to add more lean muscle mass. Not to the point where I look like I belong in the figure division, but I would like to look so strong that my arms look cut even without a spray on tan. I would like my abs to be so six-pack that when I wear a bikini people will curse aloud, as in “Damn! You’re shredded!”
That also means I needed to reevaluate my entire meal plan. I noticed that I had been falling into the same old ruts. Eating the exact same foods seasoned the exact same ways and not really focusing on my diet until the absolute very last minute before I had to step on stage. Which, by the way, drove my trainer nuts.
Anyway, I switched up my protein and carb sources to add a little variety and it’s been making me feel a lot happier about eating clean.
I’m really excited about my new fitness goal! As of Saturday I will be 20 weeks out from my competition and it will be the best one yet. I’m totally recommitted to aiming for a win and reinventing my physique. It would be tough (a lot of heavy lifting) but fun.
How about you? Why not look at your fitness goals again. Do they inspire you or are they more of a chore that you “should” do? Once you get passionate about your goal, really go for it! If you want to lose weight, do it! Run the race, climb the mountain, take that dance class. For the next 40 days remember that you only live once, so do what’s important to you and make it count.
If you’re serious about getting healthy, but need help getting started, try my S.L.I. Method on my website ShesLosingIt.com. Only YOU can do the work, but I can give you the tools that I’ve learned over the past five years about nutrition, exercise and overcoming excuses.
Lisa Traugott is a Mom’s Choice Award winning writer, fitness blogger, wife and mom of two….and Original Cast Member of AMERICAN GRIT, starring John Cena, on FOX!!!
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