Friday, May 30, 2014

Prepped to Start My Contest Prep

by Kris Pitcher

Clutching my abdomen, I released an impressive bout of flatulence. "What was that?!" Jacques asked. "A squirrel?" I replied, hoping he would not pinpoint me.

I was clearly in distress...and I was clearly ready to start my prep diet. I was searching my brain trying to think of what had given me such a problem. It wasn't even anything terrible. Diced garlic in a jar. A lot of it. I had sauteed kale in it. It was delicious.

Fortunately for me, there were often squirrels in our living room. It was also fortunate that I had closely enough monitored my eating that I could identify the gas inducing culprit. It's moments like these that ready you for your diet.

Success is all about being ready. I've spent the last couple of weeks "getting ready" to start my prep diet. I don't do a 12 week prep. No quick prepping for me. I take it slow. We like to be ready early, if that's the case.

Feed into the show, decrease cardio - that's the name of the game. With that, the diet begins June 1. But I haven't exactly been on a bender. A few pieces of fruit, a few extra pints of Arctic Zero, and I've REALLY been enjoying my evening rice cake with peanut butter and jelly.

I enjoyed my spam musubi at the airport. That was a celebrated "last", a conscious choice knowing the next times I travel it will be strict purse chicken for me. I might have had two squares of dark chocolate one night instead of just one.

That one square is going away. Just to be clear. Getting ready for me means getting my head straight. It means preparing my mind for what I am choosing to take on. It's not a huge shift. But I will flip the switch.

Once I do, there is no "kind of", no "part way", and certainly no bites, or cheats. It is all on. I'm a total of 14 pounds up from stage weight a year ago. Hopefully, I've gained a couple of pounds of muscle, and we'll just see where we go.

I might have 12 pounds to lose. We won't know. I am excited to uncover the progress, to see the shape we've refined, and to see the improvements. I've never been in this place before. I've never been starting my prep in this shape, or in this condition.

"There's not that much to change." Jacques said. I laughed because I know how the extras impact me. A little will make a lot of difference, and that is exciting. His point was I've stayed really clean 85% of the time.

It's that excitement driving me to start, motivating me to get going. I'll enjoy the freedom of this final weekend. But frankly, I'm prepped to start my contest prep!

Friday, May 23, 2014

Take Flight on Fairness in Life

by Kris Pitcher

It became clear as her husband boarded the plane and she did not, I would become the recipient of her conversation. The announcer had welcomed the fancy people, and those who would NOT be using the overhead bins for their carry on items.

She's standing close to me, as though we're traveling companions, and says, "I can't believe these people who board the plane with, like, five items and they're not using the overhead bins? Come on!" I could see this was a point of passion for her.

She went on to tell me her husband was surprised she was still mad about people she saw boarding in L.A. with way more than they should have. Noticing she had 3 items, I made a remark about the inconsistency in enforcing the two item limit.

And I'm thinking to myself, this woman has been mad for HOURS over something which really doesn't concern her. She had a seat on the plane, her items fit on the plane, and she made it to her destination without interruption.

They called my row and I smiled and said, "That's me, have a good flight." I took my two items and boarded the plane. The thing is, you control yourself. You choose how you respond to the input around you.

Will you harbor anger, disgust, resentment, and entitlement? You decide, it's your choice. Life isn't fair. The rules are different for different people, Not everyone follows the rules. And it's not your job to enforce the rules.

Mind your business. Take care of your corner of life and do what you need to do. Do the right things and that energy comes back to you. Karma is where "fairness" enters the equation, if you believe in it. But it's not up to you to deliver it.

I'm sure this lady was mad for the duration of that flight too...she's probably still mad today! That's all on her. There are consequences to those choices. The choice to harbor anger, bitterness, distaste for the world around you. Our reality is we control very little.

Take the reigns of the things in your life you do control. Make the difference in those critical areas. Then, take flight!

Friday, May 16, 2014

Potty Mouth

by Kris Pitcher

I went to the women's restroom at a restaurant last night and went into an open stall. Settled down on the seat and frankly...I was trying to decide if I needed to poop. Don't judge me.

Then from the neighboring stall I hear this woman talking. Was she talking to me?! In about 1 second I realized she was not talking to me...she was on her phone. Seriously. Why are we still talking on the phone on the toilet.

Isn't my potty private? I feel like it's private. I don't think I need to be talking to anyone while that's happening, and I'd rather you don't listen. Private. This lady yaps away as the stalls around her are busy. She flushes, and I can hear her out by the sinks. Yap. Yap. Yap.

Then she's in my way. I nudge in, smile, and wash my hands. See, she's having trouble because she's trying to talk on the phone AND wash her hands. I kind of want to punch her.

I dry my hands, she's still contorting her neck and working to get a paper towel. Honestly, is this conversation critical? Could she manage her time slightly better? And this is why your phone is full of bacteria.

If you're a potty mouth, think about getting the poop off your phone with a handi-wipe. And people wonder how their phone falls in the toilet? Maybe I'm a traditionalist? Maybe I'm a prude? Maybe I don't have a friend to phone?

At any rate, may I suggest you stop talking so much crap and just do your business. Separate your tasks. Do what you need to do and save your visiting for a hands free moment. Or at the very least, open your eyes and become the slightest bit aware of those around you. Put your phone down for just a moment, and stop being such a potty mouth. Just a thought.

Monday, May 12, 2014

What are NPC Judges Looking For - With Separation, and Not Excessively Lean

by Kris Pitcher

Scoring – Judges will be scoring competitors using the following criteria:
  • Small degree of muscularity with separation, no visible striations
  • Overall muscle tone with shapely lines, overall firmness and not excessively lean
  • Full general assessment
  • Healthy appearance
  • Make-up
  • Skin tone
The above criteria comes directly from the NPC website regarding the Figure division. This is what I'm working on this year. My feedback last season from the head judge was: too lean, too light

I also know the girls in the top 5 were fuller, bigger, and thicker than me...with way better butts. I've been working on all of that (insert smile). Staying in relatively good shape off season will help me to meet those goals and build the physique closer to what the judges are looking for.

Right now I'm sitting 13.5 pounds up from stage weight last year. And I hope to be carrying more muscle and I'll likely need to be a little fatter up there on stage. It's just that fat has to be in the right places.

My shape and fullness has to be right in order for me to have the right look. That means my backside has to be in shape. Glutes are a project in themselves. Glutes and shoulders...and back...and quads. OK, it's all a project!

The big goal is to be in shape, but not too lean. To put on muscle and look thicker and fuller by fueling without getting fat. We did a great job last season of growing into my contest, feeding me into my contest and being able to back off in the end.

That's the way you want to do it. Slow and gradual, then back off if you're ahead of the game. I trust the process fully to my coach, husband, and best friend, Jacques. This year, we'll both be prepping together. We do that well.

Small degree of muscularity with separation, no visible striations, overall muscle tone with shapely lines, overall firmness and not excessively lean...that is my mantra. Prep will begin soon! I'm so excited for the season to come. We've worked hard off season and I get excited to uncover what we have built. With separation, and not excessively lean...

Let's do this!!!

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Jock Straps for Women

by Kris Pitcher

It's true, there's a new revolution for women and everyone is getting one. It's the jock strap for women. What? Don't you have one yet?! I bet you do!

I learned about this product from an amazing group of women. They ALL have one, some even have two jock Ssraps. In fact, one of them showed me hers...right in a crowded restaurant!

"These are our Jock Straps." she said, pointing to the two un-bronzed people sitting with their group. "They're our athletic supporters." she smiled.

And it's true, none of us can do this sport without our jock strap, our athletic supporter. Some of us have a family of support, a spouse, a room mate, our co-workers. Others have a coach who leads, supports and guides us.

Hilarious! I immediately knew I needed to tell you about your jock straps...because I know you have them. Who are they in your life? Who supports you on your journey? Do your kids support you? Your husband, wife, girlfriend?

Who is your athletic support? Who helps you prep your food, do the dishes, pack your meals, get the laundry done and everything that goes into being able to get yourself ready for competition. It's not just the big things, it's the little things on a daily basis.

It's just being there to hold you...quiet support. It's telling you what you need to hear when you need to hear it. It's showing you what you need to see when you can't see it. Your supporter is the one by your side kicking you out of bed to do your cardio when you'd rather stay in and sleep.

Your jock strap helps you get from your job, to the gym, to pick up the kids, to make the grocery run, to remind you to put your pants on. Your jock strap is constantly there for support your goals. And if you've recently been through a prep, gotten yourself on stage, and are still in one piece...take a look around and figure out who supports you.

Having solid athletic support is critical in this sport, and really anything in life. Grab hold of your jock strap and keep it close to you. Thank those people in your life for supporting you. And laugh as you make your way through this process and join the revolution...after all, you've got a jock strap!