Saturday, February 6, 2010

Sarah's Weekly Ramblings

Well, friends, it’s been a couple weeks. My deepest apologies, I’ve been extremely busy with work and life, and juggling the two. Working long hours ain’t easy, but sometimes it’s a requirement to keep that paycheck coming. It messes with my schedule, my mood, my energy levels and my social life. I tend to complain about it and get very irritable when working 10-12 hour days… when, in reality I need to look at the bright side, I have a job in this tough economy, I enjoy my co workers, and I have been doing fairly well at this career. Sometimes we take for granted what we have.

To top off all the working hours, I’ve also been stressed about my car situation. Buying a new car is NO JOKE. Haggling, dealing, listening to all the crap, budgeting, signing papers, it’s a huge headache. Thank goodness I found the vehicle I’ll spend the next 6 years of my life paying for, and am more than happy with my purchase. It was a big step for me, my first brand new, fully loaded vehicle purchase on my OWN. A bit scary, but I have no regrets. And, if anyone is in the market for a used 2001 Infiniti I30t for a steal, holla’ over here, **wink, wink**!

I’ve also been learning how to deal with the head-games that bulking plays. I’ve done a fairly decent job at sticking to my off-season diet (we just won’t discuss last nights kitchen raid, the cabinets even have teeth marks!), however, actually trying to gain weight while being a female in a “thin culture” is a new experience for me. Being a (new) competitor, I constantly get asked about my diet. It’s interesting getting such a variety of responses, especially now when I attempt to explain how and mostly why I’m making it a goal to gain weight. I thought after the competition people would stop caring about what I put in my mouth, stop giving their opinions on whether what I’m doing is healthy or destructive, I was completely wrong. Now, instead of getting the “we’re concerned about your weight-loss” I get, “why would you WANT to gain weight? Aren’t you supposed to be all thin and cut-up to compete?” Ugh! It’s like no matter what I do, people feel the need to share their opinions, and more often than not they’re negative. Not only that, but it’s like a revelation when I eat carbs. You’re allowed to eat rice?? But, isn’t that bad for you?? It’s past 4pm, won’t you get fat doing that?? Ahhh, the naivety! I’d learned during prep to pretty much ignore the comments, but I was really looking forward to a little break from that. I guess it’s all part of the game, all part of the process, and all part of making us stronger. Life is a learning experience, you have to take the good with the bad, and unfortunately sometimes it’s a struggle. But we all deal with it and choose to be in this sport. I really wouldn’t have it any other way…

People’s comments are just one aspect of the mental competition. We apparently get these comments year-round, no matter what our diet entails, and that’s just the tip of the iceberg. However, the numbers on the scale, the inches that are added to our bodies, the “fat pants” we have to dig up that we swore we’d never wear again, the self-consciousness thoughts that run around in our heads while wearing tight-fitting and arm-reveling clothing… That’s a whole different story. These are the things that sometimes make us forget why we’re doing this in the first place, I’ve even read of competitors wishing they never got into the sport because it skewed their view on food and body image, this is a big deal, ladies! Everyone has their fat days. But we (ahem, I) need to learn how to keep things in perspective. Being as lean as I was during competition time is just not realistic. Plus, I will never grow as a competitor if I attempted that. I want to be a big-shot one day, at least in my own little world. My future goals far exceed my desire to be lean year-round. My goals are my driving-force, and in order to reach those goals I need to sacrifice a few months of my life and be a little out of my comfort zone. We’re all beautiful no matter what size our clothing says, we need to embrace being strong, beautiful women and forget about that scale, forget about that jump in dress sizes, keep our eyes on that prize and know it’s only temporary and for a much greater cause down that path to our dreams…

I’m definitely only speaking for myself here, but feel like a number of competitors feel the same way (based off forum entries I’ve read through the years), although I know some girls don’t have any issues while gaining mass. Eventually, down the road, after a few years of this, I’m hoping to not have such a “fluffy” off season, but I know that will only come with time and experience.

Just for giggles, two weekends ago was the Fit Expo in LA (which I briefly wrote about in the last article). I finally have the picture of me and Jay so I thought I’d go ahead and post that up. Enjoy!

1 comment:

  1. Great entry, Sarah! I really think that the hardest part about trying to put on pounds (of muscle!) is dealing with others' reactions to your changing body. People don't know how to respond to something they don't understand. And those who do and still criticize? I chalk that up to jealousy. Jealousy that you have enough confidence in yourself to actually do the dirty work and put in the effort, the time, and yes, the calories in order to achieve your goals for your physique.