By Amy Pelz – NABBA Figure Pro
As many of you know, I brought home a 1st place award in the short figure class. It was pretty unbelievable. I think I’m still in shock. Before I go into detail about that, let me start by sharing a few details of those last couple of weeks.
Emotions were running pretty high because it was nearing show time and I didn’t know what to expect. I was doing cardio before work, lifting at lunch, and cardio after work. I’m sure that my body was ready to break down and give up on me at that point. My energy was at an all-time low due to cutting carbs and I was consuming a lot of the same foods, so there wasn’t much variety. I was constantly tired and all I wanted to do if I wasn’t in the gym was sleep.
Toward the end, I practiced my routine and my posing. I got some posing tips from Bill’s friend who has also competed in figure. She had lots of great opinions and pointers.
The last couple of days I coasted. I got my first spray tan on Thursday. That process summed up in two words: sticky and gross. I got my nails done and waxed my entire body. No arm hair if I wanted to look totally polished. You’re probably wondering why someone would go through all this pain for a few minutes on stage. Well, that’s just it: you want to bring your best package and for the few minutes that you get on stage, you want to showcase it as best as you can.
Friday evening I went to the check in and drug testing. I was pretty intimidated. Everyone was covered from head to toe. I don’t know if that’s because no one wanted to give anything away or because it was raining and they didn’t want to ruin their spray tan. During this time, I was carb loading. I was eating 50 grams of carbs per hour from 5 pm until 9 pm. I was feeling very bloated. I was also extremely thirsty because Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday I drank a gallon of water a day. After that I had to cut and cut until I got down to nothing on Saturday.
Saturday morning I was up and ready to go by 4:30 am for my makeup. I got my hair done as well. I was ready for my big day in the spotlight! Backstage was like nothing I’ve ever seen. They had the “pump” room set up with free weights and barbells. I felt like I was the only newbie there, but after talking to a couple of the girls, it was their first time too. I met a lot of women in the industry and all were very nice. I was trying to scope out my competition, but most of the girls were in the bikini division.
A few hours went by and they called my class. I can’t put into words how nervous I was. My mind and heart were both racing as I stepped out onto that stage for the first time. All of a sudden though, I felt ALIVE. I’m usually a pretty shy person, but I felt like I belonged on that stage. Something all came together for me. It was pretty magical. It was like all of my self-consciousness was washed away. This was me and this is who I am.
We were instructed to do our quarter turns and routine poses. Then we were required to do our posing routines to music. I messed up and forgot my moves, but I don’t think anyone noticed because I was smiling the entire time.
Fast-forward to the evening show. This is always the big show for fitness competitions. This show is geared more toward friends and family. The morning show is more for judging. Bill was there for this and really calmed me down. He got my head in the right place. “You’ve got this Amy” and “You can do this”. Well, the night show was even better than the morning. I knocked out all of my poses and my routine. I wasn’t sure how I was going to place. As they were calling out the places, they got to 1st and they called my name! I had won! I was so thrilled. My feelings were overcome with joy. My hard work had paid off. All of those hours of grinding away in the gym and dieting were all worth it.
In case you wanted to know, I did indulge this whole last week. But, I’m now back to clean eating and exercising and I couldn’t feel better.
If it wasn’t for Bill, my mom, and my boyfriend, I don’t think I ever could’ve made it through. I just wanted to give a special thanks to all three of these awesome individuals.
Thanks for reading and following me on my journey!