The BEST part of competing

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Bodybuilding is hard. Sometimes, people are not nice. Keyboard warriors giving their unwelcome opinions and unwanted advice. The list goes on. I have never focused on any of those things and prefer highlight the positives. Today, I want to highlight the best (in my opinion) part of this crazy journey of competing some of us love–camaraderie. The people you meet, the places you go, the things you learn from each other, the support you receive from other competitors who were total strangers just the day before and the memories you make. Some of the best times!

I’d like to introduce you to Cambrae Thompson. She is a Facebook friend. I’ve never met her in real life–does that matter? Nope. I was told her story by a friend and so I decided to give her a “shout out” if you will. Why? Because I think she did an amazing job and should be given credit for her hard work. Cambrae you are beautiful and I wish you all the best in your future endeavors! Give her a follow on Instagram too!

Below is the interview (conducted by Tim R., our now mutual friend and a fellow blogger).

Panama City, Florida had the opportunity to host its first All Natural Bodybuilding competition in July of this year. While the show itself was a huge success and there were many competitors, I had the opportunity to sit down and interview the young lady who took first in both Figure and Physique, as well as walk away with her Pro card in the One World United Natural Bodybuilding Alliance.

Ms. Cambrae Thompson was an absolute pleasure to talk with. Vibrant, energetic, dedicated, driven and setting a course to help others reach their maximum potential in the future. As we spoke, it became apparent that fitness has always been a part of her life. She was a dancer, runner and swimmer while growing up and had always been a competitor. She is also a climber. Cambrae has a weakness for dogs, books, and the outdoors. She has a drive to excel at whatever task she sets her mind to. Out of High School she enlisted in the Marines. It was clear she has a mind of her own and is a clear patriot. This opportunity gave her the chance to earn her own way through school which she is now attending. Her major is Kinesiology. While in the Marines, she says she was slow to get to actual lifting, preferring the high intensity workout routines more. Things like CrossFit stylized WOD’s and lots of cardio. But when she found her way to the gym and began lifting heavy with intensity, she took to it like a fish to water. Cambrae now loves her lifting time! So much so it annoys her when it’s referred to as ‘the grind’. “Lifting is a privilege” she says “and those who can go should always be grateful for the opportunity”. I could not agree with her more.

Over the years, she has had the opportunity to help others as a Personal Trainer and a group fitness instructor. I asked her what some of the more common goals people have are and while I think we’ve all heard some of them before, the most common being the desire was to lose weight and a common misconception to that desire was the fear from clients that they would become too “bulky” and a lack of understanding that muscle assists in burning fat. I think all personal trainers can agree they have encountered that same mindset. Cambrae has decided on her Kinesiology degree in an effort to pursue Physical Therapy where she can undoubtedly help a lot of people. The second challenge is the notion that there is a quick fix to obtain the results clients desire and the likelihood they will go back to the way they were eating and their former lack of activity levels. She often has to explain this is a lifestyle change. What people are looking to do takes a lot of effort and it must be a continued one.

With that in mind, I asked her how her training changed when she decided to compete. She used a local coach, Tim McClain, to help with her posing and diet. She faced calorie restrictions as many do, but was supported by her lifelong habits of meal preparation and healthy eating. She also changed her lifting focusing on lifting for aesthetics and reducing her maxes. A lot of cardio was added back in…not her favorite part from what I could gather from her facial expressions. Overall, her lifting schedule remained the same, more fine tuning to achieve the desired effect. Given her results in the show, I’d say she was successful! While she is unsure if she will compete in the future, there is always the desire to push herself and see what she can accomplish. Personally, I’d love to see her compete in the future and bring the same drive and dedication with her to other organizations.

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Happy Monday!

Good morning and OMGosh can you believe it is almost September! It definitely felt like September this morning. I arrived at the gym for cardio at 0500 to find THREE fire trucks in the gym parking lot. No idea what was going on. The let me on my stairmaster and that’s all that mattered to me :D. I would have been hella made if I got up at 0430 and couldn’t get it in! So, that leads me to … a quick contest prep update. I anticipated writing more about this journey and well, like most, I have a kid, a house and a full-time job and sometimes life just gets in the way! I was out of town visiting the Great Smoky Mountains weekend before last so coming home and going straight back to work just leaves you feeling like you are waaaay behind the power curve. I’m all caught up now and planning to post a little “fun” about my trip this week too.

So I am now 12 weeks out. Doesn’t seem possible that November will be here in 12 weeks. To some, that sounds like a long time. To me and this process, that isn’t long at all! Things have been going well–so well I even got a cheat meal! Five Guys burger and fries never tasted so good! Unfortunately, I still struggle with the mentality that “cheating” is wrong and woke up the next morning up 3lbs (can you say holy sodium in those fries Batman!). So, I kills the cardio, drink ALL the water, get back to plan and BOOM—next day, extra weight gone. PHEW. So a few changes have been made to my macros and cardio. Yes, I use flexible dieting (you can e-mail if you are interested in knowing more). Which reminds me I have another recipe to share!

OK–back to prep. I have been scoping out flights and hotels. This is NOT a cheap hobby. I guess I need to think about a suit…so many choices! Maybe next week I’ll share progress pics. MAYBE.

I have a great week planned and hope you do too.

LJ

Happy Monday!

blue.pngI hope you all had a great weekend. Mine was quiet–just the way I like it. Finished my book, let my just last week legal to drive teenager drive me around–only drove through one red light (ok yellow–flaming yellow) and drove over one curb ha! I also did a whole lot of experimenting in the kitchen!

My favorite bakery in town closed and so I decided to attempt to recreate one of my favorites from there. They were called Harvest bars so that is what I shall call these. Blueberry harvest bars. They did not really make a “bar”.  More of a baked oatmeal to eat with a spoon? I loved making my own blueberry jam but as a whole, these are not sweet so if you are into “not too sweet”, give them a try!

For the blueberry jam:
1.5 cups (roughly) blueberries–I used fresh
2 tbsp. chia seeds
2 tbsp. VitaFiber – you can also use maple syrup here
Put the blueberries and syrup in a sauce pan on medium. Heat about 5-10 minutes. Add chia seeds and stir 5-10 more minutes. Set aside to cool.

For the oatmeal part:
1/3 cup oat flour
1/2 cup oats
2 medium bananas
1/4 cup VitaFiber
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp vanilla
Mix it all up. I used an 8×8 pan and parchment paper Pour half the oatmeal mix on the bottom, blueberry in the middle, the rest of the oatmeal on top. Bake at 350 for 30 min.
I cut mine into 6 bars.
Macros:
C:117
Fat: 2
Carbs: 24
Fiber: 4
Protein: 3

Let me know if you make these and what you think!

Thursdays are for Thinking Out Loud

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What exactly is #thinkingoutloud Thursday?

For those who love to write, sometimes the words just don’t come.  But thinking out loud–admit it, you do it too :P–has no structure and is just writing about whatever it is that comes to mind that day, or maybe yesterday, letting the stream of consciousness flow, if you will.

So, I am borrowing some topics from Amanda, the host to this link up to see what I can come up with…and it’s a great way to maybe get to know me a little better if you are a new reader–in my mind, I have readers–don’t laugh at my dreams!

Current book:

Of course I’m reading a Nicholas Spark–“The Lucky One”.  I’m a hopeless romantic and if it involves the military and takes place right here on the North Carolina coast, I’m in!  BUT, I also have some more mmmmmm educational things I need to read.  I’m a fitness nerd but even some of this stuff gets a little dry:

 

Periodization.pngA necessary evil in the world of personal training continuing education.

I also have the opportunity to review some other nutrition related books.  Callisto Publishing has sent me this:

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And I have another on the way!

Current music:

Halsey.  This is new for me but it has been on my Pandora and of course the more you give thumbs up, the more it plays.

Current drink:

Water.  Always water, HOWEVER, I have been on a iced Americano/iced coffee kick.  And not in a good way…hello STARBUCKS, goodbye $ ha!  But I actually bought some and made my own!  It is soooooooooo good!

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And I’m mixing it with this:

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Current food:

I’m dieting so I want ALL the food but lately, protein pancakes.  A lot of them-simple ones too.

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I am the protein pancake master ha!

Current obsession:

See current drink above 😀

Current craving:

Peanut butter.  What else is new?

Current procrastination:

Writing.  I have two assignments due and I got…nothing.  Womp womp.

As always, feel free to comment!

LJ

 

 

 

 

Proteinish Cookies!

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Hello there friends. I didn’t make Happy Monday so how about cookies instead? This is a really simple recipe but actually had good flavor although I will say a TAD on the dry side so I need to find a way to “moisten” them up 😉 I call them “proteinish” as they are not super high in protein but more than your average cookie!

I wanted to try baking with my Salted Caramel protein so here’s what I did:

1 TBSP baking powder

2.5 scoops MaxMuscle Salted Caramel protein

1 cup almond flour

1/2 cup Truvia (or your sweetener of choice)

1 egg white

1/2 cup non-fat, plain Greek yogurt

1 tsp cinnamon

pinch

Mix it up and bake 8 minutes on 350. NOT 8 minutes on 450 which is what I did with the first batch 😀

I will say almond flour is some calorie dense stuff but macros were still not bad. According to my calcuclations:

Calories: 82/Fat: 4/Carbs:10/Fiber: 1/Protein: 6

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Aliens, eggs and body fat

Happy Friday!  I really need to do some work to this blog.  It IS kind of ugly, but I can still write so…here we are.

Have you seen the movie Alien?  Probably.  I live under a rock when it comes to a lot of movies.  I went to the wellness center for my errrrrrrrr not so monthly BodPod (I don’t like to go in off season although I really should).  Apparently, these things look similar to the…eggs?  In the movie?  Well I was not happy with this egg today.  Bodybuilding is a LOT of numbers and I LOVE numbers.  Is your body fat important?  NO.  But it is still a number and since I have access to this, I like to chart trends.  Let’s just say I hope this trend is now going down since this is officially prep time! :O

I’m also aware that many people think these tests are highly inaccurate.  So be it.  As long as I have a number to start with, and each month that number goes down, I feel like I am on the right track.  Have you had your body fat tested?  I’d love to do one of those fancy underwater ones!

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After my visit I went to visit my dear friend Bill at MaxMuscle, Fayetteville.  Bill has sponsored me for the last few years and I am forever grateful.  I now have one of their new proteins–Salted Caramel and it is amazing!  It tastes great by itself but I’m going to get creative in the kitchen this weekend so stay tuned for a recipe!  What is your favorite protein?  If you are local, stop and see Bill and tell him I sent you–he will let you try anything you want before buying!

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I hope you have a great weekend and return to follow my journey!

 

LJ