It's finally here. The week of the NPC bikini competition I've been training for all summer.
Many competitors think of "Peak Week" as the most important week of prepping for a competition. I like to think it's more like the 5 minute cool-down of the hour-long run on a treadmill...you feel exhausted on one hand, but have a giddiness of seeing the endpoint and accomplishment of the work you've put in.
So what is "Peak Week," anyways?
Simply put, it's the Monday through Friday leading up to your competition where you get to see how good you are (or aren't) at not losing your shit.
But really, many people do lose their shit. You envision your goal during months of training and all of a sudden it's in arms reach. Your nutrition, training, and schedule during Peak Week are specifically dialed in to make you look your best on stage. There is no room for error if you want to do your best, and the pressure can get in your head.
Not to mention the reality of wearing this, under bright stage lights, in front of tons of people:
By now you might be wondering why people even participate in this sport. I don't know if I have a good answer for that, but I plan to document my daily Peak Week experience here - the emotions, daily grind, random thoughts, and feelings of it all. Maybe we'll find the "why" written between the lines, or maybe we'll just ride a roller coaster of happenings through the week. Either way, should be fun.
The alarm went off at 4:30am, but I didn't need it. I was already awake. Sunday had been an exhausting day of playing catch-up with house chores, but as soon as I had laid down to sleep, rest eluded me. The feeling of the NPC bikini competition being so close filled my chest with hopeful expectation like a kid on Christmas Eve waiting for Santa. This morning, my limbs feel numb from the hours of workouts and posing practice, but my head feels like a fully charged battery. I wish there was a fast-forward button to get to Saturday. The physical fatigue mixed with the intense excitement makes me feel a bit conflicted as to how hard to push on these last few workouts. I decide to trust myself and do what feels right. So I get out of bed, rush to the gym with black coffee in hand, and beast out fasted cardio. Today's motivation was watching the 2014 Victoria's Secret Fashion Show on YouTube (yes really ... you have to use what keeps you motivated).
Two-a-days are a thing that have somehow shown up in my schedule. After work, I chugged a shot of espresso and did weights. My body feels electric, tired, strong, and lean all at the same time. Evening motivation came from bathroom selfies. I can't help but indulge in this narcissistic habit... I've traded in every minute of my social life, and dare I admit, most of my personal and family life in general, to get to this point. I need to see that all my effort hasn't been for naught. I want to believe in myself, and most of the time I do, but sometimes I just need proof.
The adrenaline of excitement wears off shortly after the evening workout. As I type this, I don't want to do any stretching. I don't want to practice my posing. I just want to sleep.
But I will finish what I started today, because that's what reaching a goal means.
Until tomorrow, -The Wonder Vegan