by Kris Pitcher
This can be a lonely sport. At 5:00 am when I get up to do my cardio, I feel alone. No one's with me when I pull my chicken out of my purse at the restaurant, or during a meeting either. It's just me.
You might have found your local community, you might have friends, you might be on a team with fellow competitors. But you are the only one doing this. Day in and day out until you turn up for your show, and all of a sudden you realize...I am NOT the only one!
That's right. There are LOTS of people getting ready. For your show, for shows around the same time, all across the country. One of the things that keeps me motivated is thinking about what those other competitors might be doing.
Do I want to give up any advantage to someone I'll be standing next to? Not even. At 5:00 am I am not alone. My competition is also up, she's also doing her cardio. And I think about that. On the day I don't want to go to the gym to lift...I know she's at her gym.
"She" is an imaginary competitor. Mark my words, she IS out there. So on those days you feel alone, think about just how big this quiet sport is. You might not see other competitors in your community, at your gym, or in your town, but they are out there - and they are getting ready.
Feeling alone in this is normal, use it to your advantage rather than whining about it. When you feel like others around you don't understand, don't sweat it. They don't have to understand. Know there are competitors everywhere going through the same thing. Get perspective, and don't wallow in "alone".
Embrace the individualization of this sport, focus on it, and let it drive you. You are the only one doing this for you. You are alone. Embrace it within the context of something much larger. We're alone together.