I have been asked by a lot of people how I have been able to be so patient after dealing with restoring my hormones, getting my period back, and of course building muscle in an 11 month improvement season and gaining more fat than what would have been 'ideal' for an off-season.
Many other competitors have expressed gratitude to me when I share my updates and tell me that my patience with the process is inspiring and brings them back to reality themselves.
I have been thinking a lot about this topic the past week as I have felt an overwhelming feeling of peace and presence in my prep this time around unlike any other I have had before.
This hasn't always been easy for me though. I used to be a much less patient competitor. When I competed from August 2017 to September 2018 I did not want to stop and I did not like the idea of anything taking longer than I expected.
I got a good wake up call though when my coach told me I just am not ready for a national stage yet and building and restoring my health should be my number one priority before prepping again.
This would be a good time to mention that I didn't have my period before I started prep for August 2017, it wasn't all bodybuilding's fault for my struggles but it definitely didn't help that I was putting constant stress on my body day in and day out while working a ton and going to school full time.
I found myself wanting to get to the next level and the next level and the next level over and over again like get to the next stage and the next show date and my next best.
Which is NOT a negative mindset to be in when under the right circumstances but mine was coming from a less than peaceful place of urgency.
Taking time off really taught me patience. Not that the year of prepping didn't in its own ways too but the time off was a great reminder to me of a couple of things.
1. I am going to live this lifestyle anyways so what is the rush?
2. I love this sport and competing so why would I want to rush it?
3. It is an art and to honor the sport the way it deserves to be I need to remember that building the body I needed to build to bring my best wasn't going to happen if I kept dieting and prepping and doing show after show.
Honestly though, when it came time to prep again, I was in my head a lot about how, "I have so much more fat to lose" and "It is going to take me sooo much time just to get even close to stage ready" or "If where I was wasn't enough will I even get where I need to be if I have already gotten so far from where I was" and other thoughts that sound similar to that.
However, I made it a priority to change this mindset around and step into a more positive place. The 11 months of improving went by SO fast and I know that now it is less about 'getting to the stage' and more about 'how I get to the stage'.
Since focusing on some of what I shared above, and some of the steps I am going to give you further in this post, I have found that I am truly relishing in every moment of this prep now. I am enjoying my cardio, giving thanks at every meal, getting excited about every lifting session and like every time before--just following the plan.
That's the biggest thing.
If you are following your plan, trusting and communicating with your coach, as well as being honest with yourself...YOU WILL GET WHERE YOU WANT TO GO EVENTUALLY.
It is pretty much inevitable that if you see a leaf 5 steps in front of you and you want to go step on that leaf so you decide to take 5 steps forward that you will get there if every step is taken. 4 steps, you are almost there. 6 steps, you have gone too far.
Bodybuilding is like that. You are going to have to take a lot of steps along the way, and they probably won't look all that different from each other since consistency is a massive part of this sport, and eventually you will get where you wanted to go.
When struggling to find patience in the process you can try these steps:
1. Look at today's wins rather than tomorrow's potential batttles
Rather than thinking, 'Oh no, I have 30 pounds of fat to lose, it is going to be so so hard'. Just focus on the tasks at hand today.
2. Find the Joy in Everything
If you feel like you have to suffer to get where you want to go, then why are you going? You should be enjoying this. If you are not enjoying it, find a new approach.
3. Ask yourself, 'Would I be living this way if I wasn't trying to step on stage?'
If the answer is no, then reevaluate your reason for committing to this. If the answer is yes, then just keep trucking because you will get there anyways.
4. Be conscious of why you are in such a rush
Are you trying to rush to the stage because you said you would? Because you don't want to wait until xyz time to compete? Since you have a deeper desire for validation? What is the rush?!
5. Make Mindset Work a Priority
I also repeated a mantra to myself that helped a lot, 'One breath, one rep, one meal at a time' which kept me present and less focused on "how long with this take" and more on "how much I appreciate and love the process"
Don't stand idly by while your mindset weakens and can no longer sustain the longevity you need to progress in the sport. If you have a long way to go, which let's be honest any competitor who wants to go beyond a bucket list show better be ready for the long run, you'll need to develop a mindset with the stamina to support those endeavors.
RELISHING means you are truly taking joy in what you are doing.
RUSHING means you you are doing what you are doing with an uncomfortable urgency.
THERE IS NO RUSH, SO WHY NOT RELISH?
You can even ask yourself every day, how can I relish in the opportunities and challenges of today?
The more you connect to the energies of peace and patience, the better!
I have a couple of modules on this in my On-Demand Mindset Coaching Platform for competitors who feel like 'it is going to take a long time to get where they want to go' and 'feel like the goals are too big' or even literally 'impatience on prep'.
The site includes over 45+ modules on mindset so I won't include them all here. It has been developed to address your specific needs using a system I created that digs deeper into what you are going through with a couple of question then immediately redirects you to a solution sheet with exercises, practices, and even some with video trainings on how to get through it.
You deserve to be at peace and in love with something that requires so much of your time and energy.
Enroll in my On-Demand Mindset Coaching Platform for Competitors Now By Clicking HERE