Not the same Beauty In The Buff

Last time you heard from me and I had an exciting New Years Vlog with all the plans (resolutions) I made. And in true resolution form, those plans didn’t last a week BUT with good reason!

A week after I made my 2017 plans, I hit a wall. It wasn’t a bad wall, in fact, I knew it was good, but I couldn’t figure out what was happening.  It was like I could literally feel myself in the middle of transition but I didn’t know where my life was going.  Everything that once motivated me was no longer important, especially with the blog/vlog.  Since I’ve lived in Arizona, I’ve spent my life trying to find things to make me feel important because I didn’t feel at home. I needed a positive distraction to find my purpose while I let life run its course. Out of nowhere, I finally felt like I was exactly where I should be and I made the decision to make an effort in creating my home here, establishing genuine relationships and enjoying myself more!

This didn’t mean I gave up on fitness, competing or “Beauty In The Buff”, but I did need to take a break from my goal focused mentality and live in the moment which is exactly what I’ve been doing.  I will be back on the blog and Youtube, but I am going back to how it all started; documenting life-discovery through fitness.

I started “Beauty In The Buff “when I made my decision to compete for the first time. Through that experience, I found a whole new life and documented the whole discovery process.  I  lost sight of what I enjoyed about blogging and try to change my direction, but that direction isn’t me. I am still discovering life and Fitness continue to be a huge component in creating the woman I am today.   I know I will lose some followers as this blog will quickly transition into more of a personal blog than anything, but that’s ok.

So here is a quick recap of what has been going on and what you’ll be seeing more of in the near future:

  • I’ve decided to commit to Arizona and purchase a home (on the house hunting quest as we speak)!
  • Because of my decision to buy a home, my summer show will be postponed.  I need to buy my house to be able to figure out my competition budget. Also, the June show I wanted to do is not happening anymore.
  • Since I’m not focussed on a particular show, I’ve incorporated powerlifting and swimming in my fitness routine for some variety. I am working on cutting for the summer since bikini seasons is sneaking up on us.
  • I’ve been going out more, meeting new friends, not quite dating but my interest in putting myself out there again is beginning to peak.

Thanks for following, Squirrelfriends.  I hope to be able to entertain you while I work on this thing called “Life”.

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My Diet Breakthrough!

Guys, I’ve had the most remarkable breakthrough with my body regarding my caloric intake!  I didn’t realize that part of my post show challenge was that I had a bit of a lingering fear of food and carbs in particular. This isn’t a new occurrence but I had really thought this was something I got past.  In many ways, I made huge strides, but I always believed that my body could not handle a high carb diet and kept it at a moderate level (around 175-200g).

When I made the decision to get off “dieting” (aka tracking every meal I ate), it was scary. I knew I would be fine in the end but I didn’t trust myself and the ability to make good food choices without gaining the weight.  I was scared of my decision-making, food, and my body.  However, in the first week, I kept reminding myself that this was for the best. As much as I didn’t want to gain weight, I knew that this was a possibility and I was prepared for it. I surprisingly didn’t gain weight and didn’t stress about food as much.  After a couple of weeks, I grew more confident in my decisions and my body and decided that it was time to eat more! I wanted more muscles which meant I needed to eat more food and I was prepared to put on the fat if it got me to my “gain” goal.

During the next 4 weeks, I slowly increased my carbs in every meal to the point where I would go to bed feeling full and yet my weight wasn’t changing.  I was eating whatever I wanted, ate protein in every meal, increased my carbs yet nothing was happening. I knew if I wanted to gain weight that I would need to eat above my maintenance calories so I decided to start tracking my food to get an idea of how much I was eating.

To my surprised, I was averaging 140-150g of protein, 50-60g fat and 250-275g of carbs with NO WEIGHT GAIN!  I was so excited to see that my body was maintaining my weight with those macros, especially with my carbs. I really believed that I couldn’t handle high carbs and I was wrong…oh, but it get’s better! Since then, I’ve continued to increase my fat to 70g and carbs to 330g and I’m eating roughly 2500 calories and still not gaining a pound.  In fact, I gagged on a shit ton of carbs before bed last night and woke up a pound lighter.  I’m floored!! And yes, I literally gagged because I’m now dealing with the struggle of getting in all this food so that I can put on the muscle.

This is such an exciting breakthrough for me and it makes me so happy to see what my body is really capable of! I didn’t give my instincts or my body enough credit and now that I’m finally giving it what it deserves, it’s paying me back in return.  Guys, intuition and risk-taking are a beautiful thing!  Our metabolisms are freaking amazing, but you have to get off the diet to reap the benefits. Trust me, It’s terrifying but worth it. Take a break from the diet and listen to yourself…you won’t regret it!

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Transitioning Life: Personal Trainer to a “Civilian”

Transitioning from the daily life of a Personal Trainer to a “civilian” has been quite comfortable. Almost too comfortable; I never realized what it was like to be on the other end of the trainer/client relationship.

There was a time I worked a regular 9-5, hated my job, always ate take out and punished myself with long runs.  When I first started working out it was for my first bikini show. With about 2 months left of my employement, I quit my job and stayed unemployed for about a year.  At this time I was spending my days doing what I love the most; blogging and show prep.  Then after my show, I got my NASM Certification and began working as a trainer.  I never had this real adjustment period of learning how to live this active lifestyle and work in an office.

Now don’t let it confuse you, just because you work as a Personal Trainer it doesn’t mean you get paid to work out.  I spent many days sleeping 5 hours, barely eating and forcing myself through a workout.  My workouts were still important to me so I always made the time no matter how busy my day was.

Immediately after my second show, I started working at a desk.  This time I enjoyed what I did, the people I worked with and a lot of people in the office were fitness minded, unlike my previous office job experience.  This made it easier to socially transition but just because we are a fitness company it didn’t take away the junk food office environment.  I started my employment there standing at my desk at least 6 hours a day and sticking to all of my prepped food. Seeing all the free delicious food around didn’t phase me because I always knew it would be there tomorrow.  My only “struggle” at this time was trying to get in my 10,000 steps. I use to get 14,000 as a Trainer and now I’m barely breaking 4k, but that was able to be resolved with some after work cardio.

Slowly but surely, I began to sat just a little bit more and I snacked just a little bit more ending up taking over my day. The food was there so I ate it; my chair was there so I sat.  Cardio stopped being a concern and caffeine ended up being an all day thing. The gym was the one thing that never changed because this life was too important to for me to ever give up. To be honest, I was thankful for my personal time back so no matter how tired I felt, I still went. I could finally work out for me again!

I realized changing your unhealthy lifestyle into a healthy one can be difficult and life would be much easier if you could take all the temptations away distracting you into being naturally healthy.  But since that isn’t the case that means you’ll have to work and it will be hard.  I suggest starting with one major goal; sure, you can pick a handful of things you want to change like going to the gym three times a week, missing the afternoon snack of office cookies and standing half your day at your desk, but just pick one to focus on.  Work on the others but give yourself credit if you fail at it.

I’ve been putting all my energy into cutting the caffeine but cutting my sugar is in the back of my head. I give myself a break if I decide to eat the M&Ms as long as I’m on point with my caffeine.  Once I am confident with that then I’ll move on the next goal.  Focusing on the one major goal has given me the chance to build my confidence back up and with every day that goes by it gets easier and I feel better.  I definitely got a dose of the office reality but it’s ok.  I’ll get my routine back.

 

How did you transition your life into a healthier one?  Share your experience in the comment box below!

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Caffeine Detox: It Made Me Do It | caffeine detox, adrenal fatigue

Let me start this off by saying that there was once a time in my life that I never had caffeine because I didn’t like coffee.  Then I discovered creamy, sugary, coffee creamer and we fell in love.  I’ve gone back and forth between going months without coffee to cut my sugar and never suffered the withdrawals of caffeine.  Drinking coffee in the morning became my morning ritual and it just felt good to hold that hot cup in the morning.  Since coffee never gave me that boost of energy I would even drink it at night to fulfill my sweet tooth craving.  Yea, weird right?

Then I started my job at Life Time Fitness and my entire lifestyle change. I went through periods of barely eating because I didn’t have time or the money to keep up with my regular diet and supplements, my schedule constantly changed from either an early morning shift to the late night crew, working weekends that weren’t planned, having random months without a day off and constantly worrying about making the paycheck to pay my bills #TheGlamorousLifeOfATrainer.  I was progressively getting more tired as each month went by and now my morning workouts were no longer effective for the boost in energy and I started relying on energy drinks to get me through the day.

caffeine detoxTowards the end of my employment, I decided that it was time to do something for myself again no matter how challenging it may be and that was to compete for my second show. I knew this wasn’t going to be easy and it certainly wasn’t going to help my energy situation but I needed this for my soul. I needed to focus all my free time on me and this was my way of doing it.  So now on top of my crazy schedule, I’ve added in harder workouts and the physical stress of putting my body through a demanding weightloss regimen. It was probably stupid timing but I would do it all over again.

Naturally, as you get closer to the show, your energy drops. Between the lower carbs and the caloric deficiency, there is just no way that you aren’t going to experience fatigue which is why show prep can be so hard.  So what do you do? Up the caffeine, take fat burners, consume anything that could possibly give you a boost. FYI I did take fat burners for about 3 weeks and had to stop. This was my second time and whatever is in them blurs my vision almost like my eyes are jittery, noooo thank you!  Anything that messes with my eyes I stop.  And I know I said coffee didn’t give me that boost in energy but at this point, I will willing to drink anything to help me with even the slightest boost to get through my long hours of work.

The show is over and now I start my new desk job. My entire lifestyle changed for the better but I was now really feeling the consequence of show prep and the high-stress job I had for almost two years. I was drained; I could barely get through the day without consuming an energy drink and the only way I could manage in the gym was taking a pre-workout.  My weekends were shot and I bummed around napping in between because I could never get the energy I needed to want to do anything fun (not to mention the post show funk I was conquering through).

It wasn’t until recently that I decided I need to stop with this caffeine dependency. Caffeinated was literally in my system from 7am till my work out at 6pm; I was a caffeinated mess.   The path I was heading towards was not going to be a good one and I knew I needed to make a change before I continue to damage my body and fall into adrenal failure. Thank god for the timing of my mini vacation to Florida, where I lounged around and only had a 1/2 cup of a coffee day just because I didn’t have the taste to finish the rest.  I didn’t need to have energy drinks because I was partially distracted with family and we didn’t do anything terribly exerting.  I came home to an unanticipated highly stressed week where I didn’t have time to take care of my responsibilities, go to the gym and sleep in my own bed for more than two nights. Stressed?! My body was beyond stressed and felt like a zombie my entire way through. Strangely enough, I didn’t have a desire for coffee or energy drinks. Well, I didn’t have an appetite at all and barely ate for a week, but I was using that to my advantage when it came to my coffee detox.

I’m 4 days of no caffeine and 2 weeks in on my adrenal supplements. I can’t say I notice an extreme difference in my energy levels yet, but that will come with time.  My skin has begun to clear up and I notice a difference in my digestive system. It is not surprising that I have a sensitivity to caffeine and  I feel confident in saying that I’m on my way to conquering this one monstrosity of a habit and preparing to tackle my next; SUGAR! 

Have you ever cut caffeine? Share your experience in the comment box below!

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What’s the deal, yo?

Well, I’ve been out for some time and it is mainly because I’ve lacked motivation and inspiration for life all around.  Don’t get me wrong, I am happy but my passion to create and inspire has diminished. Mainly because I am trying to get myself together since the last show.

I know, I know, it’s been like four months and I am still talking about it?!  What you have to understand is that post show was a shock to my system.  It was a humbling experience as I thought I would never repeat the same patterns or thoughts again.  I haven’t quite figured out what triggered me but it was something within prep not the prep itself.  So I’ve spent these past few months trying to “regain control” and get back to my old ways but the more I tried to be in control the more out of control I’ve felt.

So about a month ago I decided to stop tracking my macros and intuitively eat.  The second I did that the pressure of trying to maintain a certain look rolled off my shoulders and my menstrual cycle came back and let me tell you, I felt like a champion that morning.  There is something about missing your period as a woman that makes me feel like your less of a woman. It’s strange and it was concerning, worrying about my health was constantly on my mind.  But what do you know? The second I stopped worrying about everything my body bounced back and I felt better.  Stress is a bitch I tell ya.

Since I stopped tracking my macros, my body began to love the food I ate (healthy or not) and my zest for physique improvements came back.  I gained about 5lbs in that process and although I don’t care for my current stats they fail to bother me as much as it use too knowing that I can change  all of that.

Current Stats: 161lbs / 29.8% Current Macros: 192c / 155p / 51f
Current Stats:
161lbs / 29.8%
Current Macros:
192c / 155p / 51f

Fast forward today – I am back on my macros and I am eating more carbs than I always thought I could handle.  I was convinced my body preferred higher fat and lower carb, which in the past always felt good, but recently it seems as though my body is not rejecting the higher carbs as it use to and I am not complaining.  I am feeling more focused on myself and my goals;  I still have plans to compete this year (in early December), continuing to improve my blog/vlog is always on my mind and I am getting ready to sit my ass down and write the book I keep saying I am going to do.  My mind took a couple of steps back which may have taken me by surprised but I can feel that I am coming out stronger from it.

So I am making the decision to make my blog more personal like when I first started.  Truthfully, being able to express my voice has always been therapeutic and it is true to who I am and my purpose in all of this.  Don’t worry, I promise to still share everything fitness and food along the way!

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