Sunday, April 29, 2012

2012 Fox Cities Showdown

Hey Everyone!!!!!!!
NOTE: (First part....written morning of the show)


Since I will probably have little sections of time today...I am going to keep adding to this post as the day goes on because so much will happen in a short period of time :)

Right now it is after 5:00 a.m. and I woke up at my normal time just like I assumed. It is too early to start getting ready so I actually just whipped up my student teacher reflection for the week that is due tomorrow and submitted it. I got a decent amount of sleep last night considering the circumstance :) In Arnold's Six Secrets to Success he says you need no more than 6 hours of sleep so you have 18 hours to DO WORK!  :)

I get to eat my first meal here in about 45 minutes and I am going to eat a normal "Meal 1" except no veggies today because 1. I don't want broccoli in my teeth haha and 2. Sometimes I get "veggie belly" and I don't want that on stage either :)

I am feeling good this morning. Heart has been racing more and more as it gets closer...more excited than nervous this time. I did the work, I put in the time prepping meals, working out, and posing, and I know I am ready! I am REALLY excited to show all of my hard work on stage today not only in front of the judges, but for my family, friends, and supporters. I know quite a few that bought tickets, and are coming to the Showdown. I found out my brother is coming to pre-judging and I am SOOOOOO EXCITED!!! It means the WORLD that he is able to come watch. I support him in all of his passions in life, even though he is not body building any more, he is still working out and eating clean. He is doing a super job with school, his new internship, and rugby. I'll always be proud of you, bro :)

Around 7 a.m., Jessica Richie, owner and stylist of Salon Envy is Stevens Point is coming to my house to do my hair. Another stylist, Mataya, is also coming to do Dirty Diana's hair too!!!! I am so excited!!

Ok so actually yesterday was very busy so after that lil intro I wasn't able to share more about my here I go!! :))

My hair stylist did an amazing job on Diana, and my hair!! It was soooooo beautiful. THANK YOU GIRLS FOR MAKING THE DRIVE ON OUR SPECIAL DAY!! :)))

Frosting rice cakes made by my mommy :)) She even made some to match my suit!! <3
My sister came over with my nieces and they brought me flowers. My niece,who is almost 4, came over in her blue sparkley bikini and we had to get some pics together. It was too darn cute!!! Thank you for stopping over yesterday!!! It meant a LOT to me!!!!

Diana and I in the parking lot with our "1 Year BodyBuilding Anniversary Rings" :))) ....{SHE WENT TO JEREDS!} haha

Diana and I drove to the the venue, all set for pre-judging. We ran into Jerome and Natalie Dihn in the parking lot. She looked absolutely beautiful and it was so nice to see her right away!! We got in side and there were quite a few competitors there already. It was nice to see some familiar faces :) I bought my NPC card, registered, height checked, and I was ready to go! I met my buddy Brandon Chopp, who was competing for the first time. He competes in the middle weight class....nice job, pal!!!! Way to Bring it!!! (BOOM!!!) The athlete meeting started at 11:30, and the auditorium was filled with amazing athletes. I saw a lot of females, and I knew my class was going to be stacked....sure enough...15 girls in Bikini B. That is the most I have ever competed with.

Celebrating our 1 year anniversary: Ashley, Me, Cassandra, Diana

I had some down time...and by down time..I mean like 5 hours..:) So I went over to the spray tanning area, and Yvonne Wright, the Liquid Sun Rayz tanning vendor for the show did some touch ups for me. Out of the four shows I have competed in, she did the most amazing job on my tan.

Drying my touch up coat from Liquid Sun Rayz tan :)) Thanks Ladies!!!!!!

The color was great, and it stayed looking sharp all day. I didn't get ashy or grainy was just simply fabulous!!! THANKS AGAIN!!!!! <3

Natalie and Me :)) PROUD OF YOU GIRL!!! YOU LOOKED AMAZING!!!!!!! <3
The show was ready to rock and the the auditorium was FILLED to the brim for pre-judging. I had fun backstage with the girls. All of my friends were in the same dressing room area, and I made some more friends as well. We had fun bonding!!!! Nothing like gluing suits on and fixing eye lashes and fake nails for a friend :)) There are a lot of things that go on back stage that are unexplainable :) We have a blast, and the support system is amazing<3

The morning took a lot longer than expected...and bikini did not get to go on stage until after 3:00.
I was about halfway in the line up to do my "individual presentation" on stage. The girl in front of me was also named Sarah Jean (except she had an "h")....she was a sweetheart. It was a lot of fun! Before I walked out there, I told myself  "This is it...this is what you have worked your ass off go get it!!!!!" I went out with a big smile, and let my hard work shine on stage.

 My posing has significantly improved from last year, and even in a class of 15, I still got first call outs. What a GREAT feeling. I was in the "middle" for quite a while which was a great feeling.I was called out a second time in comparisons in another group as well. I had a lot of stage time and was feeling pretty good after pre-judging.

Bikini A and B Ladies!!!!

Since the morning show took so long, there was a little less than 2 hours before the night show. I stayed at the venue between shows and relaxed.  I was very excited to see my friends and family that were coming to the show. The Showdown sold out last there was a line that went on forever for those who wanted to purchase a ticket for standing room only. It was amazing to see the amount of people who wanted to come and watch this amazing show. Thank you to all of you who came!!!!! I really appreciate it!!!!

In the pump up room
It was suit was glued on, I was oiled up, and ready to go! It was so exciting knowing that this was the big moment that I have been waiting for! I could hear my family and friends cheering in the audience. No matter what, I can always pick out my moms voice out of the crowd :) Off to the side, I saw a giant poster that said, GO MISS LINDBOM!!! I knew Mrs. S was in the audience :) We were filed off the stage and they called the top 5 contestants back on stage for awards. My number was called third and I went out on the stage with a giant smile on my face feeling so proud. I had a lot of really amazing physiques in my class, so it felt good to be standing up there in the end with those other 4 remarkable ladies.

Awards were presented......"And in 5th place...Sara Jean" My heart sank. The crowd went silent. I walked over to my trophy with a lump in my throat. Amanda Latona handed me my trophy (which ok...was FREAKING AWESOME!!!!!!!!!) and I stood there for what seemed like the longest minute of my life. I tried to smile like I was proud. It was so painful. I am not saying the other girls didn't deserve it....because they did. I just never thought in a million years I would take fifth. We filed off of the stage, and no matter how hard I tried, the tears came streaming down my face.

I didn't want anyone to see me upset. I didn't want to cry. I didn't want to be that girl...but I couldn't help it. I went in the dressing room and collapsed. My whole world came crashing down. I never worked harder for anything in my entire life. My schedule this semester was insanely busy with student teaching, and with all of the instability in my living situations I made sacrifices that were indescribable. I'll admit it now. For two whole freaking weeks I was homeless. I had no where to go. I lived in my car and slept in there when it was below freezing out, woke up every morning regardless, ran bleachers, showered at the gym, and ate tuna and cold rice because I didn't have a refrigerator. I hit rock bottom- and even then, I did not skip a beat. I did not give up. I did  not let anything stand in the way from my dreams. I was shaking and tears were flowing uncontrollably. Diana, and Cassandra came by me and they started crying too. They knew how hard I worked. They knew on top of my training, and diet I had obstacles that were barriers for the average individual. They knew how bad I wanted it.

I pulled myself together.  My friends reminded me how far I came. Just because my body wasn't 1st place material in the NPC's eyes...doesn't mean I am not a champion. I made progress this year that was out of this world. I competed 8 lbs heavier, at the same body fat as last year. EIGHT POUNDS!! Are you kidding me...that is some serious size for anyone. That my friends, is something for me to be proud of. Every single girl that beat me had a coach. I on the other hand to not. I do all of my training, diet, contest prep, and posing on my own. Yes, I have great support that helps me reach these goals, but in the end, I am my own coach.  My physique has improved so much, and I am very proud of it. I don't need a a medal to show that I won in the competition with myself. This whole experience only gives me fuel to add to my fire to keep on pushing to the top.

After the show it was late, but we all still went out for Sushi to celebrate! It was so amazing and delicous! Renee, Kristine, Diana, Karin, Cassandra, and I all sat together and enjoyed some tasty food! It was nice to see so many familiar faces after the show to celebrate the day. On the way home I talked to my girl and inspiration, Laura Gutilla. She gave me some insight that I will carry out with me as I make my way to the top. Thank you girl for your are such a great role model to me....oh and I hope your Birthday is amazing today!!!!! <3 <3

I got home, showered off my protan, took out my extensions and laid in bed with my chocolate covered strawberries from Lori (BEST POST COMP TREAT EVER) and I fell asleep dreaming of what the future holds.

I am a firm believer that everything happens for a reason. There are so many variables in this sport..any other day..different judges, different line never know what is going to happen.  Maybe the journey to IFBB Bikini land isn't the path I am meant to be on. Maybe something else is out there. Maybe I will try figure, do great thing in that division. The sky is the limit and the possibilities are endless.

I want to end this post by thanking Demetrius Alecos, the Fox Cities Showdown promoter. He is truly amazing and does everything in his power to make his show the best one in the states! Every detail is thought out and planned for an experience of a lifetime. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to once again change my life. Your show will always be a place I hold near to my heart.

<3 SJ XO

Friday, April 27, 2012

1 day out....

Hello Everyone!!!!

It felt amazing writing this date on the board after school last night. Cant believe it's here!!!!!

I had the opportunity to sleep in this morning....but do you think that happened? Nope...head popped off the pillow at 5:10am and I started pounding my water for the day. I looked in the mirror...and holy crap I was lookin' tight. I am really happy with where I am at!!! Mind blowing looking at the differences from last year and this year. I am really excited to show it all off tomorrow!!!!!

 I did not want to mess up my meal schedule because everything has been so incredibly consistent. Even though I was not in the classroom today, I am still ate the same times (after my shower, before announcements, lunch, afternoon recess, after school, before bed). It was sooooo weird not being in the classroom today. I missed the kids like crazy. I'd look at the time and think...."they are in reading right now..." or "the kids would be out for recess and I'd be eating tuna with Mrs S." Throughout the day I was in contact with Mrs. S about the school day. Fridays are pretty easy because we have book buddies with the third graders, library, and computer lab. I helped Mrs. S plan the rest of the day, and felt bad for not being there. She insisted this was my day and I needed to get ready for the Showdown. I am very excited to see her tomorrow at the night show, and have my family and friends meet the amazing mentor I have been working with since October.

I ran some errands today and picked up ingredients for my mom's homemade butter cream frosting that she is going to put on rice cakes for me to eat after the night show:) My mom is a professional cookie cake maker but since I cant that anymore with the gluten in it, she instead uses a cake decorater and makes my rice cakes all fancy with frosting and puts M&Ms on them. I am really excited :)  walked around the store forever...up and down the candy aisles but nothing appealed to me. I am not really looking to pig out after the show...I just want a few frosting rice cakes, my surprise from Lori...and some sushi and I'll be a happy girl!

I got my bag all packed up this afternoon and I am all set to go for the big day!

Silk robe...Check!
Flip flops...Check!
Tuna and Rice....Check!
3M Super 77 Glue (Bonds many foils, plastics, papers, foams, metals, and cardboard.....uhhh they forgot bonds bikinis to rock hard bodies haha)...CHECK!!
Notes from my students...Check!
Resistance bands for pumping up....Check!
After party dress and heels....Check!

I had some down time so I decided to do the best thing and that was rest. I put in one of my Office dvds and I laid down for a while. I fell asleep and woke up to the door bell. I got up to see who was there...but it was no one. A package lay down at my feet. It had my name on it and I was SO excited!!! I opened it and inside was a surprise from my girl, Lori. Inside was....

I was literally jumping up and down in excitement!!! YAY!!!!! A post show treat...and its something I can actually eat!!! {Thank you girl!! I will arch it extra good for you tomorrow!!!!}

My bff Diana and I had our tanning appointments at 5pm so we went together. Ohhhhh the excitement of turning 20 shades darker in seconds :)
This is where the magic happens
 For all of you that have never been spray is an experience. Let me tell you! You strip down and g in a tent and spray lady uses  an automatic spray gun thing that shoots out freezing cold spray on your body. You stand there and rotate, moving your legs and arms in certain angles to make sure every inch is covered. Between coats the freezing continues as you dry in front of a fan. After about 15 minutes of freezing cold air...the lady comes back and does another coat :) I had my tan done through Liquid Sun Rayz and Yvonne did my tan. She did a super job!!!! :) I will get touch ups tomorrow before the show.

2 coats later...:) JACKED AND TAN!!! Thank you Yvonne at Liquid Sun Rayz
After the spray tan appointment, Diana and I went to Walmart to pick up a few final things. We were thinking...o gosh we are going to get weird looks. Ok...funny thing is no one even said anything. We apparently blended right in haha :) We picked up some movies to watch for the night.

Time to put my legs up....relax...and dream about giant medals :)))
<3  SJ XO

Thursday, April 26, 2012

2 days out....ELEMENTARY SHOWDOWN :)

Hello Everyone!

I cannot believe how the week is flying by! Every day has been jam packed for me, and I am giving it 125% heart, passion, and dedication. I woke up this morning hoping it was only like 3:00am, and I'd have a few more hours of rest...but was 5:15...almost time to wake up. I went to bed later than normal last night because one of my best friends, Corey, came to town and I wanted to catch up. It was really nice to see him.

I cannot believe the 2012 FOX CITIES SHOWDOWN is SOLD OUT!!!!!! I found out the news yesterday when I got home from school. There are still tickets for the night show for $10 but it is standing room only. If you are still planning on coming...I would still order your tickets because I am sure only so many people can be standing too.

I got ready this morning, packed up my car for the weekend, and headed to school early. The sun was shining and there were also a lot of stratus clouds {applying the new second grade knowledge haha) so either it is going to rain...or maybe if I'm lucky it will past on through. I hope the sun stays out...could use a little cheeriness in my day.  Today was my last chance to get caught up on things before the busy weekend arrived.

:) Excitement after the Show

The students came in and we had a very busy morning planned with a special program with the other second grade classrooms celebrating diversity, and also a school gathering in the gymnasuim. Dancers/Performers from Africa came to school...and little did I know I was going to be performing too. The dancers were very animated and the kids loved it! They played drums and danced, and were very engaging with the audience. One of the dances was an competition dance between two men and they went back and fourth "competing" with their flips and muscle flexing. As soon as the kids saw that they went wild and they made sure to let the performers know that Miss Lindbom is a body builder. Before I knew it was was on stage dancing with the performers (thank goodness for my mad Zumba abilities haha), and one of them picked me up above in the air and then we all flexed our muscles for the kids. SHOWDOWN AT THE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL :) 
One of the performers came up to me and told the kids..."Your teacher is very healthy. I bet she eats her fruits and vegetables!"
A little girl replied, " Actually Miss Lindbom eats tuna, rice, and brocolli SIX times a day!"
All of this happened and it wasn't even lunch time yet. What an amazing morning!

In the afternoon, we did our usual math, music, spelling, and science. We continued our cloud observation books...and it was a beautiful day outside for it.

A student handed me a note and told me I had to pack it for the weekend. Here is what it says:

Good Luck Miss Lindbom. i hope you get to be a Perfeshanal Body Builder. That is cool that my Uncle works out at your gym. After I saw you flex your arms, I know your going to win.
PS- I think you are going to be the best one there I think your going to whoop them by a lot of points. When you said a long time ago you saw all those buteful woman on stage and wanted to be like them, you are one of them, Miss Lindbom because you started body building.

I am definately saving that note forever. That is enough for me...knowing my students look up to me. In my heart, that is winning to me.

Something for me to look forward to on Monday morning :)
 After school I headed back to the Fox Cities. The drive home was relaxing and it gave me a chance to gather all of my thoughts before the craziness began. My mind got lost thinking about the stage....thinking about the emotions that would over come me as I let my hard work shine. My eyes filled with tears....I thought...holy is almost here. I want this more than anything. I have worked harder for this the past 17 weeks than I have for anything else in my entire life. Blood, Sweat, and Tears went into this. Dedication, Passion, and Heart. 125% every day with NO EXCUSES. As Saturday unfolds it will be part of another journey...the journey to chasing after my dream of becoming an IFBB Bikini Pro this summer.  I believe I can do it. I have the work ethic, and I know I am never going to give up. This is my dream...and I am not going to let anyone take it out from underneath my feet. 

::Don't dream the dream...LIVE it and MAKE it YOURS::

When I got back into my home town area, I met my Iron Sister, Diana and her daughter for some Showdown pampering :) We got our nails done and shared out excitement for the weekend. It was a much needed  stress evening with two of my favorite girls! THANK YOU DIANA FOR BEING AMAZING!!!! :)) Team DIRTY BEAN!!! woot woot woot!!

It was so nice to come home and see my mom! She is always so supportive of me. She had chicken and brocolli in the refrigerator ready to go for the weekend. {THANKS MOMMY!}

At night I took another shower and exfoliated again. I have been using my exfoliater all week to prep my body for the spray tan. I also completed my full body shave so I would be all set to go for the weekend!

Tomorrow at this time I am going to be jacked and tan....very, very, tan :)))

Night everyone!!!!

<3 SJ XO

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

3 days out....

Hello Everyone!

Wow I cannot believe just three days to go! I sure hope they fly by because BABY, I'M READY! :)

Woke up this morning after getting less than 5 hours of sleep. The excitement is taking over my body and I cannot relax no matter how hard I try. Even with the lack of sleep, I still jumped out of bed and got ready for my day. I was excited to go to school with my new blonde hair and lash extensions. I could only imagine what the kids were going to say...they notice every detail. On the way to school I heard the song, Part of Me by Katy Perry and it made me smile. I love this song because it reminds me of my dreams and the journey I am on. I am working so incredibly hard, and the beauty of it is that no one can take it away from me. No one can take the feelings and emotions I feel on stage. The experience, the memories, the sense of accomplishment is mine.

I got to school early again so I could get ahead on my lessons for the following week. I also checked the job posting board online to see if any more positions opened up. I have applied to 6 different school districts so far....some by Point and some in the Fox Cities. I applied to a third grade position this morning that is located back in the area I am that would be awesome!!! Everything happens for a reason...God has a plan :)

Another fun day at school  today. The students made a cloud project with cotton and created the different types of clouds. We also read, Cloud with a Chance of Meatballs. The students created their own land and talked about the type of weather that occurred. One of my students wrote about the land of Miss Lindbom where it rained tuna, rice, broccoli. It was so cute!

I am starting to really feel drained and not performing up to my normal level during the school day. I noticed today while correcting the students' math story problems my mind was stuck. Even when the kids were writing today and asking for spelling of certain words I had to think extra hard about it. My mind is going in every direction and I am not getting the rest I need. The students and my teacher are all understanding and do nothing but support me and give me boosts to get me through the long day. Monday and Tuesday I had a headache by second recess and it carried on throughout the night.

The school day ended up being a good one. The kids always give me an extra burst of energy. Every day that I get to spend with my second graders and Mrs. S is truly a gift <3

All day I was anticipating the arrival of one of my best friends, and training partner, Corey. He was coming to the area tonight and I have not seen him since last semester because he was away at his internship. He is an amazing friend, and thanks to him, and his time and efforts I made significant progress in the areas I was lacking. Thanks for everything, Boss!!!!

I had a KILLER workout in the gym tonight! My buddy Alex drilled me for 40 minutes with an intense ab workout and then he had to leave for a group project so I ended my final workout completing one exercise 4 sets each per muscle group. Corey came in the gym at the end of my workout and we had a chance to catch up. It was SOOO good to see him and he was very proud of the progress I made even while he was away for the semester.

I was amazed with the amount of energy I had in the gym tonight. I am surprised I am still awake right now haha When I got home I made up my rice for the weekend and talked to my Iron Sister, Diana on the phone for over an hour. It was sooo nice to catch up and finalize our plans for our big weekend!!! I am so excited to see her tomorrow and get our nails done Woot Woot:)))

Alright...anymore talking and it will just be a rambled mess. Time to crash :)

Night!!!!! HOLY CRAP-OLA....2 DAYS tomorrow!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

<3 SJ xo

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

4 days out....

Hello Everyone!

Thanks for following on my journey. It is nice to see that so many are reading my posts! It really means a lot that I have so much support.

I woke up this morning before my alarm went off as usual. I heard the birds singing out my window, and I popped right out of bed and headed down stairs to shower. I was feeling pretty good, and got a decent  6 hours of sleep. I went to the mirror as I do every morning and I checked out my progress. I am really, really proud of where I am at. Each day I think I am ready, and then I check myself over and can't believe the night and day changes I have. Just FOUR days to go....holy shit it's almost here :)

I looked at my clothes hanging up...what to wear...what to wear. I checked the weather...28 degrees. I looked at my clothes again...I really did not feel like drowning in dress pants 5 sizes too big so I decided I would take the chance of freezing and threw on my sun dress and a sweater. I got ready for school, and headed out early again.

I walked in the classroom and Mrs. S had the new microwave waiting for me. Yay for warm meals again and no more cold tuna, rice, and broccoli! I cranked through some lesson plans for next week because the last thing I want to do on Saturday between prejudging and the night show is writing lessons and grading papers :) I am staying organized and planning ahead so I will be all set for Monday. No excuses.

Thank you Mrs. S!

My energy level today has been again around a 6.5, and my motivation at a 10. Again, I am so thankful to have such a wonderful, cooperating teacher to spend my days with. She is understanding with my meals and now my overloading of water intake. I couldn't do it without you, Mrs. S!!!!!

The kids came in for the day and they boost my spirits right away with their smiles and excitement. Mrs. S and I had a fun day planned with our weather unit. The students were continuing their cloud book. We go outside and look at the clouds once a day for a week, draw pictures and write about it. We also talked about different types of weather today and the students wrote poems. Below is a poem a student wrote and gave to me. She drew a picture of herself and me playing outside. Too cute:) Tuesdays are also great because the kids have music AND art so it gives me a chance to catch up on grading, documenting, and planning ahead.

Pictures from the kids today :)

A student surprised me at lunch and illustrated a picture of me at the "Muscle Show". He drew me with the giant medal on and a trophy thats says: 1st Place, Best Lighfter
:) I'll be sure to pack that in my bag for Saturday. I told the kids if I earn that giant medal, I'll bring it to school and let them try it on. Are they jacked or what!?! haha

By lunch time I had 1 gallon of water down again. I made the mistake of walking in the teacher lounge and there was food everywhere. I think it was for secretaties day. There was ...cookies...cake loaded with and crackers...chocolate...cake pops....and more. I went back to the room right away and got out my third meal of the day. All I can brown rice will never get old. I look forward to it everyday. It is my new oatmeal this season :)

By the time the kids were in art I was feeling pretty run down and my head started hurting again. It almost feels like I am dehydrated but that doesn't make sense because I am flooding my body with water. I think I just need to get more rest .

After school, I had my hair appointment to look forward to. Exhale....Relaxation for 90 minutes). I started going to Salon Envy this fall, and the owner, Jessica Richie is my stylist. She is AMAZING let me tell you! Even when I graduate and  if move out of the area, I will drive back because she is just that good. She has been so supportive, and helps me in any way she can. She did my hair on Saturday for my photo shoot, and she is driving to my house the morning of the show just so I do not have to stress about that too. 
I love love love my highlights!!! Sooo prettty!!!!!! Also a thank you to Lauren for doing my lash extension :) I am ready to rock!!!!
THANK YOU MIZZ RICHIE!!!!! YOU ARE THE BEST!!! It feels great to be blonde again!!!!!!

After my hair appointment I went home to make some more food for the next few days. I am so thankful for my rice cooker this season. It is a life saver!!!

I just packed up my meals for tomorrow while enjoying my egg whites. I don't care what anyone says...microwaved egg whites are delicious. They are light and fluffy and I look forward to them every night. (crazy...I know...)

Well...tomorrow is another day! Make every one count!!!!  Good night:))

<3 SJ xo

Monday, April 23, 2012

5 days out....

Hello Everyone-

I decided I wanted to try to write each day this week during Peak Week so others who compete, or who want to compete can follow it. I also wanted to have it as a reference in the future to look back on when I am at this point again.
Today was a pretty good day. I'd say on a scale from 1-10 my energy level was at about a 6.5 and my motivation was at a 10. This past week I have leaned out a significant amount so I decided again doing a.m. fasted cardio this week. I woke up at 5:25 to get ready for my day. I enjoyed some salmon for breakfast (Mmmmm wonderful way to start my week!) and headed out the door by 7am for school. I don't have to be to the school until 8am everyday, but we always have meetings etc so I like to get there early so I can get organized. Sure enough a voice came over the loud speaker and we had a meeting at 8:05. It got out later than expected so when all the other teachers were talking after the meeting, Mrs. S insisted I go back to the room to eat my chicken and keep pounding my water. I started my 2 gallons of water/day on Sunday. It is going alright. By noon today I already had the first gallon gone. The kids were cheering me on throughout the day. THATS A LOT OF WATER! haha Mrs. S got a new microwave for the classroom (since our exploded last week during recess when I was done cooking my chicken haha). She had me carry it through the school and every person we walked past she insisted we stop so they could feel my muscles. She sure knows how to make me smile.

I still taught my regular lessons today, and did not take a step back just because of the circumstances of the week. My mind was where it needed to be. I had a slight headache through out the day but I think that is most likely from not getting enough sleep last night (too excited to sleep)!

Salmon Breakfast :)) Mmmm

One of the boys in my class came up to me and said, "Mizz your muscle contest this weekend?" I told him it was, and I was very excited. He wanted to hear all about the trophies. I told him about it and before recess he came up to me and said, "I really believe you are going to get that giant medal you want."
I said, " Thanks, kiddo. Why do you think that?"
He looked at me and said, "Because you are a super hero teacher that eats tuna for breakfast and remember my uncle said your a freak in the gym!"
haha :) These kids make every day great :)

Being at school all day on a strict schedule really ensures my meals will be at the same time everyday. It works out really well for me, and Mrs. S is very accommodating. She will take over if needed so I can quick eat my tuna and rice in the back of the room. The students are really understanding too. Sometimes when they come in right away in the morning I am still eating, but I walk around the room and still hold up my duties and responsibilities. 

After school I was feeling pretty tired. I ate my chicken and headed up to my room to digest and relax a lil while before the gym. I headed to the gym a little early because my buddy Docta Ryce was doing my final body fat test on me. I know those tests aren't accurate but its just another form of data I can use to track progress. He performs the 7 site caliper test on me, and each of the pinches were significantly lower than the previous test he did 3 weeks prior. That gave me a little kick before I walked down the hall into the gym. It is always nice to see my friends in there at the end of the day. Several ask about the show, and they know I am getting so excited about it. Right above the bubbler is a poster for the Fox Cities Show Down and I have a Post-It note on there each day with a countdown. It is a nice visual reminder :)

My buddy Alex met me in the gym to drill me through one of his intense ab workouts. I know in bikini you don't need to have a jacked up rockin' 6 pack...but my third line is just about always showing now so I just want to see where I can get it by Saturday :) 

We did circuits for the ab workout that included: 

1. Leg Throw Downs (I lay down and he throws my legs down and I have t stop them before they hit the ground and bring them back up. He does them in front and to each of my sides so I never know what is coming next. (2 min 30 second rounds)

2. Planks (1 minute and 30 seconds Front, 1 minute Left Side, 1 minute right side, 1 minute front rounds)

3. Slammin' Bitches aka Ball Throws (14 lb ball over my head and slam it down as hard as I can for 1 min 30 second rounds)

4. Knee Raises (I hang on the pull up bar and pull my knees up...sets of 25)

 5. Decline crunches and side twists with 8lb medicine ball (went for 30 seconds, 40, seconds, 50 seconds, and the last one a good song came on and oops I did over 100)

6. End with an Arnold Special....Roman Chairs (you sit on a bench...lean back and focus your breathing squeezing your abs for 5 minutes....for the last minute you go back even burns!)

When that was done my heart was really going. I worked out each of my upper body muscle groups to get a pump going, and then I headed up the stairs to finish with 30 minutes of cardio. As I walk up the stairs, my energy level hits me and I realize how tired I am. I climb up on the treadmill, crank that sucker up as far as it goes on incline...speed of 4.1 mph and I'm off! 20 minutes in, my friend April came running up the stairs to talk with me for a bit. It was nice to see her and I am really excited she is coming to the Showdown! Usually I need my ipod to get through cardio but this past week or two has been different. I zone everything out. I don't even realize what music is blaring from the speakers or who is around me. I feel like I am on stage. I picture it all. I picture every move I am going to make. I can feel my heart racing as the excitement takes over my body.

At least once during every cardio session my eyes start to water. I get so emotional over everything I have over come in these past two years of the past this crazy the past week....and it drives me to push harder. Over the weekend I watched several YouTube videos from several IFBB and National level NPC shows and watched posing from the pros...and noticed small details such as hand placement, jewelry, hair, make up, stage presence etc. Some of the videos I watched were ones in which a new competitor turned pro. My heart ached each time I watched it, as I imagined just what that would feel like. This is my passion. This is my dream, and I want this more than anything. I don't expect it to be easy to be handed to me. That is why I am working so hard and dedicating so much. Every decision I make, every action, every step, is focused around this goal. I belong on that stage. I BELIEVE it. This is my dream, and I am not going to let anyone take it from me.

I live by this every day <#

After cardio I say goodbye to my buddies for the night and I head home. I usually hear from my mom, sister, and Diana before I go to bed and they remind me they are proud of me. A final push to rev my engine for the next day.

The words from one of my good friends, Bree Brooks... ::Never dull your SHINE for someone else::

2 gallons...check!! Egg whites....check!!! Then.....sleepy time! Another day closer!!!

<3 SJ xo

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Crank the ::HEAT::...ITS PEAK WEEK!!

Hello Everyone!
Keep it UP, competitors!!! We are almost there!
I hope you had a wonderful weekend, I know I sure did. Just 6 days out from the 2012 Fox Cities Showdown. I am still giving 125% everyday and not skipping a beat. Everything is falling into place, and I know when I wake up at 5:25 am on Saturday, April 28th, I am going to be ready. I am not stressing or worrying about any other competitors- just myself. I put in the blood, sweat, and tears. I did the work. I gave it my all. The rest is up to the judging panel the day of the show. Do your best....forget the rest! :)

I made some nice changes week and started significantly dropping each day  starting Wednesday and it is continuing. I haven't touched my diet as far as changes in a few weeks because I am having steady progress with where I am at right now. However, if I continue to drop I may make some slight changes but nothing drastic  because there are just a few days remaining and I do not want to mess anything up. This week I am going to keep my activity lighter in the gym as well because I know with the diet alone I'll lean down even more, and judging by the mirror, I feel on point now.
This was the first weekend of prep I did not go home. It was really weird not driving home on Friday night and meeting my Mom at Golds. Instead, I went to the gym alone and if the music was off I would have heard a pin drop. It was just me. Typical...everyone is out ruining their gains because its the weekend and they think its time to get rowwdyy...not me. I did my normal quad annihilation, some glutes, abs and my hour of cardio. I got home, ate my egg whites, did some posing practice and went to bed because I knew I had my photo shoot in the morning.

Saturday I had the option of sleeping in...but let's be real body is a machine. Everyday my head pops off my pillow without an alarm and I am ready to rock. I woke up...looked at my phone "You've got to be kidding me..." it was indeed 5:25 a.m. and and no matter how hard I tried going back to sleep my body wanted me to do cardio and then eat meal 1. So that's exactly what I did. I was all ready to go for the day around 7am like I am on a typical school day. I went to visit my hair stylist, Jessica Richie at Salon Envy and she did my hair for me. (THANKS GIRL!! YOU ARE THE BEST!)

My best friend Diana and her daughter Maria came to visit me for the day and do a photo shoot just for fun. She was nice enough to meet up with my mom before she headed here and my mom sent along cooked chicken and lots of frozen broccoli to get me through the week :) I am so thankful for the support system I have!! Teamwork makes the Dream Work! Watch for pictures to be posted :)

I had fun doing the shoot yesterday afternoon. We did some pics in the gym I go to at school, and some more outside.  We had a lot of fun :) It was fun to look at the pics and compare them to the last time I did a shoot in that gym last June. I am amazed by the changes and I cannot wait to show the world on stage in 6 days :) After the shoot was done, I still had an hour before the gym closed so I decided to do some cardio. I got on the treadmill, put my ear phones in and went. After about 25 minutes I looked down and realized I had never even turned my ipod on. Instead my mind was racing and thinking about the excitement of the upcoming week. I had so much internal energy, it was amazing.  I got home, ate my egg whites, did some posing, and took it easy for the night.

This clock work I woke up, looked at my phone....damn 5:25 a.m. I forced myself to go back to sleep. I I went to bed later than planned and knew my body needed rest. I think I was so excited to wake up because I knew I get to eat salmon for meal 1 today :) I popped my head off my pillow at 7am, heard the birds, saw the sun and was excited to get out and do sprints. I normally sprint 2 blocks..walk a block and repeat. 

Today, I don't know what it was, but I couldn't stop running. My legs were going whether I wanted them to or not. I ran all around and then I stopped in the gym when it opened so I could weigh myself. Every Sunday  I like see where I am at. I could have cried. I didn't just reach my goal weight,but I was slightly under it. My goal of having my third ab line show finally happened this morning too. I was feeling GREAT! When I left the gym I wasn't really ready to head home yet so I went around campus and ran some more. I always enjoy looking at the pretty flowers planted by the buildings.  I took random pictures of my mom favorite flowers and sent them to her too since she couldn't be here with me to enjoy it.

Lilacs for Mom :)

The sun was shining, the birds were singing and then it really hit me...Holy shit...I am graduating from college in 28 days. I forget because I am not on campus anymore sitting in lectures, but instead spending full days teaching the second graders.I cannot believe I am almost done. I cannot believe I did it. I am very proud of this accomplishment. I am not sure where the next road will take me, but I believe something good is coming my way. It is time<3 I know I've earned it.

I hope everyone has a fantastic week!!! If you are competing this weekend...keep it UP! You are almost there!!!!!!!

Time to finish pounding my water for the day, make sure my meals are organized, lift, cardio tan, and get ready for Monday with the kids :) Hope to see you all Saturday!!!!!!!!!!!!

<3 SJ xo

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Once Upon a Time....

Where it all began....2 short years ago....

Holy Smokes!!! Just 10 days out from the 2012 Fox Cities Showdown! I cannot believe where the time has gone. I am so incredibly proud of myself, and the work I have done. I have never put so much heart, passion, and drive into something before. This semester has been incredible through my journey student teaching in second grade AND prepping for my fourth NPC show, competing in the Bikini B class. I have had several obstacles with my body and not having a home at school for a while...but I blasted through those with a positive attitude believing that I will make it- no matter what.

This NPC show, it is more than the greatest show put on in the world :) It is where my journey began just two short years ago when my younger brother, Joshua was training for his first body building show where he would compete in the teen class. Looking back at those 12 weeks...I remember how crabby he was (haha sorry bro you were a BEAR to say the least...but you know I love ya) but more than that how much he sacrificed. I didn't understand the sport at that time but I remember eating meals at holidays like Easter, and Josh would be looking down at his chicken and eating quietly as we ate whatever my mom made. I remember him leaving and spending three hours at the gym and I just thought he was a nut for doing this.  When it came time for the 2010 Fox Cities Showdown, I wasn't sure what to expect, but I knew I was definitely going to support my brother. I remember looking around and seeing people eating chicken and yams everywhere. I was thinking...hey that's what Josh does! I wonder if everyone does this? haha

2010 Fox Cities Showdown...Josh took first in the teen class. My life was forever changed <3

I went to pre judging and I sat in the front row. My jaw was on the floor all morning. I watched in awe as each athlete was on the stage, showing off their hard work. By the time Josh got on stage, my heart sank and tears filled my eyes. I was so proud of him. I thought to this is why he made all the sacrifices...this is what the dedication and passion came from. When I saw the different categories of women on stage...bikini, figure, and then body building I was determined. I saw what they were doing and how strong and beautiful they looked, and I thought...could I EVER possibly do something like that?

Literally that Monday, I started researching. I looked into diets, and training. I gave away all of my food to my friends, and started a clean slate. I headed to the grocery store and I was determined to make this work. My brother literally spent 3 days with me in the gym and was like, "Ok sis....back/bi, chest/tri, legs/shoulders....Here is what you do...Ok good luck" haha And that was that. Then he went back to GB for the summer and I was on my own. I was determined that I was going to compete at the 2011 Fox Cities Showdown, and make my brother proud for following in his footsteps.

I spent that summer working my ass off, waking up at 3:45 in the morning and going to the YMCA before I would work at my nanny job 10+ hours a day. I prepped, measured all of my meals at the start of each week. I took advice from other lifters and used that to make my training more successful. I remember going to bed at night, and even if it was 11pm, I couldn't wait to get up in morning at the ass crack of dawn just so I could go into ::beastmode:: in the gym.

Progress after first summer of training: End of May, Mid June, and July (L-R)

I left for school that fall with making some amazing changes over the summer. I knew I wasn't going to be working out at the YMCA anymore....nope...I was going to be working out at the UWSP Strength Center with all of the (at the time I viewed them differently) big, scary athletes. I remember each day I would be dressed and ready to go to the gym, and I would get there and peek my head inside and it would be over crowded with purple and gold with the sounds of grunting and iron smashing on the floor. I was the little fish in the big pond, and I was scared. I was surrounded by average joes and older people like I was at the I was surrounded by college athletes. I called my brother and he told me, "Sara, you are the strongest girl I know. Heck your stronger than guys in my gym! Go in there, and show those stupid meatheads what a beast you are!!!" So I first it was scary. I didn't want to get in anyones way, and some of the equipment varied from what I was use to so I had to switch up some of my training.

As the school year progressed, I continue my strict training and diet regime and knew that my time would come in April. The campus gym wasn't scary anymore, it was like a second home for me and a lot of the athletes I was once intimidated by were now my friends. I made a lot of sacrifices and spent all of my free time outside of being a full time college student and working two part time jobs in the gym. I did my first contest prep: diet, training, posing, etc all on my own. I told myself I WAS going to make my brother proud and reach my goal to train and compete in the 2011 Fox Cities Showdown.....

{And that is EXACTLY what I did}

My brother, Josh and I at 2011 Fox Cites Showdown...less than one year before I decided to change my life.

Josh and I were featured in INSIDE WISCONSIN SPORTS magazine
 Looking back at all of life was forever changed thanks to the Fox Cities Showdown. This event is more than a competition to me, it is where I made the decision to follow a new path in my journey and inspire others through my success, obstacles, and passion. I made this lifestyle change, and I will continue to do it for the rest of my life. I live, breathe, and dream body building. I could not get through the day without the gym. I have only began the process, and I cannot wait to see where I am next five ten years...and so on. 

This sport has not only given me something to work for every single day, but it has given me confidence. It has given me life-long friendships. It has given me the ability to work towards something I want more than anything. It has given me the opportunity to inspire others and change their lives, just like my brother, Joshua did for me.

Thank you to everyone who believes in me. Your support means the world, and I could not do it with each one of of you. I appreciate those who are understanding and know that each day is spend giving 125% effort to my goals and dreams. It means a lot to me. I hope to see you this year at the 2012 Fox Cities Showdown!!!

::Come to the show....let it CHANGE {YOUR} LIFE forever::

Have a beautiful day. Make every second count-
<3 SJ XO

Saturday, April 14, 2012

And this is why I am not a math teacher ;)

Good Morning!

I was going through my old blog posts and reviewing my progress throughout this prep and I realized I actually lost way more that I calculated in the last post. For all of you that know me, I have terrible math skills, and it prob doesn't help I was carb depleted. Please forgive me :)

In 14.5 weeks I lost 20 lbs and a total of 8.5 inches (measurements taken weekly from: chest, hips, waist, biceps, quads, calves).

Measurements: (Jan 1st compared to 2.5 weeks out)
Chest (33.5 inches vs 32 inches)
Waist ( 27 inches vs 25 inches)
Hips (34 inches vs 32 inches)
Quads (23 inches vs 21 inches)
Biceps (11.5 inches vs 11 inches)
Calves (15 inches vs 14.5 inches)

Almost forgot 1.5 inches in there that I lost. That is a huge difference and it took a lot of hard work and dedication to get there. I know this time around, after my round of shows, I am not going to put on a lot of extra weight. I want to maintain looking 3-4 weeks out year around so my contest prep is not such a bitch next time around :) I also have some pending opportunities that may start this summer in which I need to keep closer to contest shape anyway. Keep your fingers crossed for the good things to come my way :)

I cannot believe two weeks from today I am going to be probably getting my hair done right now by the best hair dresser ever, Jessica Richie :)), and my mind will be racing about the day. What an exciting feeling to know that I am so close once again. The feeling that I get on stage is too great for words. I love it because it is something I worked hard for, and no one can take it away from me. No one.  I am excited to  reunite with old friends and make some new ones too!

 I am so proud of everyone, and just remember, if you are stepping foot on stage in 14 days, everyone is a winner that day. You are a winner for doing something that 99% of the population isn't doing. Everyone has a different story....everyone has different accomplishments. We can all be proud of where we are, and what we have done. Don't worry about who is in your class, or how others progress may differ from yours. We all have strengths and we all have weaknesses. Capitalize on your strengths, smile, and be proud for being you. There is only one you <3 

In the words of my good friend, and a.m. cardio ass kicker, Docta Ryce ::DO YOUR BEST...FORGET THE REST::
Thank you to everyone who has been supporting me. It means more than you will ever know!! I hope to see a lot of you at the show!! Pre-judging begins at noon, and the Night Show at at 6pm. Come make some noise!!!!!!!!!!!!

Make it count!
<3 SJ

Thursday, April 12, 2012

So close I can taste it...

Hello Everyone-

Wow I cannot believe that the Fox Cities Showdown is only SIXTEEN days away!!! The time has just flown by, and I am amazed with the progress I have made. In 14.5 weeks I lost 20 lbs and a total of 7 inches (measurements taken weekly from: chest, hips, waist, biceps, quads, calves).

Measurements: (Jan 1st compared to 2.5 weeks out)
Chest (33 inches vs 32 inches)
Waist ( 26.6 inches vs 25 inches)
Hips (34 inches vs 32 inches)
Quads (22 inches vs 21 inches)
Biceps (11.5 inches vs 11 inches)
Calves (15 inches vs 14.5 inches)

I am very proud of these changes, and now that the show is approaching, I am noticing day and night changes DAILY. It is amazing what hard work and dedication can do for a body. Never did I ever think I could compete in the NPC during my busiest semester of college with student teaching. And look...not only am I doing it...but I am kicking ass :) I am doing a super job with my second graders and devoting 50-60 hours a week of teaching/prep time towards them, and all of my other spare time is dedicated to making my future IFBB Bikini Pro title come true. Anyone can do ANYTHING!!

I keep envisioning myself on stage...the bright lights radiating off my tan, hard body. The darkness in front of me and the roars of the crowd. The way my heart races and palms sweat because I am so excited to be there showing off my hard work. Every move I make, every pose I hit, has been practiced hours and hours. The movements are natural to me, and I do it with passion and pride. My smile reflects the love I have for the sport, and my happiness illuminated on that stage. 

I think about it while I am driving...when I am getting jacked in the gym between sets, when I run up and down the bleachers at 4:30 in the morning, when the kids are our for recess, when I am doing cardio after an intense lift, when I am in the shower, when i'm posing in my room every night, when I lay in bed tossing and turning because my heart is racing and excitements pours out of me.

I envision it all, and I really believe...that this is my year. This is my year to EARN my IFBB Bikini Pro Card. This is my year to EARN a sponsorship because someone else is taking a chance and believing in me. This is my year to shine..and make a difference. I have put the work in, and I will continue to do so day in and day out until I reach my goal...and then after that I keep pushing it until my heart stops. This is what keeps me alive...this is what keeps me going every single day. This is what gets me out of bed before the birds to run bleachers or sprints when its below 32 degrees. This is what gets me through my first meal of tuna. This is what gets me to go to bed hungry sometimes after only eating egg whites and having to wait until the next morning AFTER cardio to eat again. I will never, ever give up <3

Stay tunes...16 days and counting!!!

Time to pack up for the weekend so I can go visit my mom :)
<3 SJ XO