My experience at Loaded Cup 2015 in Ringsted, Denmark, although brief, was great because it was fun and I learned a lot about the sport and about myself.
On registration day
What a fantastic day! I got to meet one of my biggest idols, the stunning Michelle Lewin, and that is definitely the highlight of my experience there.
She was so down-to-earth and sweet, and I was so fortunate to catch her at a moment where there was no line to take a picture with her, so I got to chat with her in Spanish. She asked me whether I was competing and how I was feeling, was I "drying out" for the big day and did I find the dieting hard? As I told her that I was excited but tired and very, very thirsty, she immediately told me that she did not miss competing at all. She told me that she felt much better just eating healthily and enjoying her workouts because she had energy for them. I could only agree with her! The struggle is very real during comp prep!
I got to meet and greet Michelle Lewin's husband, Jimmy, who was also very kind and he's Swedish from Malmö originally - Did you guys know that?
I also had the honor of meeting the badass Brazilian figure competitor Larissa Reis who is also gorgeous with an impressive physique. How lucky am I? Such a great experience to meet these inspiring and successful fitness icons that I look up to.
So my comp day started at 04:30 am.. Yikes, I know. The comp was held in a town that is around a 45 minute drive from where I live, so I had to get up early to do my make-up, hair and get the final layer of competiton tan before heading out.
The picture below is actually from my previous comp in September 2014, but it pretty much illustrates what a normal comp day morning prep looks like for me. Just standing around naked, drying and doing my make-up and hair in the meantime.
We got to Ringsted Kongrescentre at around 7:15 am. and set up camp backstage. My category was going to go on stage for pre-judging quite early in the schedule so I started warming-up and getting my pump on as soon as I got my bikini on.
My pump routine usually consists of bicep curls, lateral raises, front raises, reverse flies and rows with a band.
I also throw in a few sets of push-ups - which always feels kinda weird doing in a bling bikini, full make-up and heels.
Once I feel warmed up in my muscles I start to practice some of my poses so I feel confident and also so I won't cramp up on stage when flexing.
It may not look like hard work when you see the girls posing on stage, but believe me, it is a work out! You are flexing and tensing every muscle, twisting your torso, arching your back, clenching your glutes - all while you smile charmingly at the judges and do your best to make it look effortless.
Finally I was on stage for pre-judging with 8 other gorgeous, strong competitors from Denmark and other countries such as Russia, Hungary and Sweden.
The competition was fierce! The standard was high. Every girl on that stage looked amazing and had worked her butt off to get there. At the end of the day, it was down to what the judges were looking for because all the girls on that stage looked like winners. I mean just look at that line up below!
Only 6 out of the 9 girls could go through to the finals, unfortunately I was not one of them. I was disappointed, naturally, I had worked so hard to get there and I was really hoping I'd get the chance to strut my stuff in my t-walk. Alas, that was not the case! But that's competition for you, you never know how it's going to turn out on game day and that is part of the excitement.
I was bummed out for a couple of hours, but then I decided that I was going to take the best with me from this and that is: more experience and more insight to what my international counterparts look like and how they pose and present themselves.
Once I was given the news that I didn't go through to the finals, I packed up camp, went home to take a long, warm shower and then went out to EAT!!
I went out to brunch at Café Luna (my favorite brunch place in Copenhagen!) with my amazing fiancé - who is also my "coach" on my comp days.
Now I have to take a moment to give a little shout-out to my man, Mikkel. He is one-of-a-kind! The poor guy paints me with my competition tan, carries my comp suitcase around for me, helps me with my pump routine, helps me backstage with everything.. I love and appreciate him SO much! From the bottom of my little Mexi heart, thank you for everything, baby.
So what now?
I had initially planned on going on to compete at the Swedish Grand Prix in Malmö on April 12th. However, after I didn't go through to finals in Loaded Cup this passed weekend, it made me doubt whether that was a good idea.
At first I didn't want to go because I felt a bit disheartened, I'll admit that. Getting the boot from the comp was tough on my little ego, I'm not made of stone.
Then, once I stopped feeling sorry for myself, I started weighing my options and I decided I needed to make a new strategy for myself and work on my weak points. In order to do that effectively I would need more time, more training, more dieting. Simple as that.
Now I don't have a coach like most athletes do, so I have to force myself to look at my physique, be brutally honest with myself and, although I may not like it, I just have to face the facts. I then start designing a new program and/or diet plan for myself to get me where I need to be.
So I took a good, unbiased (well, as much as I possibly could) look at myself...
I looked at my body and I came to the conclusion that I need to work on:
Adding more mass to my shoulders
I'd really like to bring out my lats a bit more
More tone to my thighs, I want them quads to pop!
My glutes can always be rounder and firmer
I wish I could take a picture of myself from behind, I tried but I really suck at it. How the hell do people manage to take a good butt-shot? Someone send me the link to a good tutorial, please!
Ok, going off on a tangent there, sorry!
So now I'm in the process of designing a training program for myself to work extra hard on these 4 areas while still maintaining overall symmetry and still staying as lean as possible. I definitely don't want to get above 16% body fat, mostly to make it easier on myself when my next comp prep comes around. I also think that constantly fluctuating in body fat % to such extreme degrees can't be healthy in the long-term. I'm not stating that as fact, I haven't researched the subject, but that's what my common sense tells me.
I'm not done designing my program yet but basically I'll be hitting my weak points twice a week. I'll focus on compound exercises, going as heavy as possible and constantly progressing.
I'll continue to do my fasted HIIT cardio sessions 3 -4 times a week to maintain my body fat %. I like to do uphill intervals on the crosstrainer, as well as sprinting intervals on the treadmill. All my cardio sessions are about 25 - 30 minutes long so I don't burn muscle mass but get the most fat-burning effect from HIIT.
I'm giving myself 6 months to train up for my next competition which I'm hoping will be Olympia Amateur Europe in Prague in October 2015. The competition will be even tougher there but I will work my butt off to step on that stage with an even better package than I just presented at Loaded Cup.
That is the beauty of this sport (or any sport, for that matter) each game day, each defeat or victory is an opportunity to keep evolving and keep improving. As an athlete you are, and should never be, done working, it's a never-ending journey to being the best you can be.
I'll continue to post progress shots every week to keep myself motivated and accountable. If you guys are interested, I could even post my program once I'm done designing it? What do you guys say to that? Write on my instagram profile if you want to see my program, ok? I don't have comments activated on my blog at the moment.
Well, friends, that was my experience at Loaded Cup 2015, a bit about my reflections and my new goals for the future. Thanks for stopping by! And thank you for continuing to follow me on my fitness journey.