Why Now? Why Not Now?
By Nikki Lewis
Over the next three months I will be sharing with you all the in’s and out’s of my journey towards my first figure competition. I will be competing at the Mighty Muscle on the Mississippi Bodybuilding show on October 1st, 2016. Often when we see someone set a lofty goal for themselves the first question we tend to ask them is, “why?”
I also have been asked that same question many times over the past week. My response is usually a condensed list of my personal reasons for choosing to do the show, but as I was sitting here typing, I thought a better response would be, “why not?”
Why not now? Why not choose to do something that seems next to impossible? Knowing that this choice would alter my life in many ways for the next few months seemed daunting at first, but once the fear of failure passed (it’s still there..a little) it was pretty easy to commit. Before I get too in-depth about my goals, I will share a little bit about myself.
I am a Wife and a Mom to our beautifully blended family. Having a blended family with 5 kiddos keeps things pretty interesting when it comes to schedules and planning, so that is an added challenge with amped up workouts and an eating schedule. I also work full-time as a victim advocate and volunteer coordinator for a domestic violence agency. Working in this field is a passion of mine and although it can be stressful at times, I really enjoy helping others. My love for helping others is probably why I am doing this.
As most mothers and wives do, I tend to get wrapped up with pleasing everyone else and making sure everyone else is taken care of before myself. The beauty of this goal is that it’s going to force me out of my comfort zone and force me to put myself first quite a bit more than usual.
I started working out at Suppz Gym this past January when they started their weight loss challenge between gyms and started working with a trainer once a week. It was hard for me to justify all the time away from my family, but then I remembered a conversation I had with my Pastor Mark Hoene a few weeks before that. We were talking about parenting and different things Moms feel guilty about and he asked me, “If you and your children were in the woods and you had one candy bar to feed them and you weren’t sure when you were going to eat next, what would you do? How would you divide it up? Then before I could answer, he said, “I know you and you don’t even have to tell me, I know you would feed your children first and not yourself. I smiled and said yes I would. That’s when he explained to me that is where I was going about it wrong. He explained that as a mother and the caregiver for my children I should feed some to myself first, then divide up the rest between the children. He explained that if I didn’t take care of myself, I wouldn’t be able to be the best caregiver for my children. So, with that piece of advice in the back of my mind I pushed forward and finished the challenge. I didn’t win challenge, but I did win some confidence back after losing the last few pounds of baby weight as well as I learned that I’m a better Mom when I take time out of the day to take care of me. After the challenge I noticed my motivation was waning and I really needed something else to keep me on track.
A figure competition may seem a little extreme to some and I would have to agree that after completing 5 days of training and following my competition diet, it is definitely more challenging than I had imagined.
Mostly the eating part at this point.
I knew going into this that I would be following a fairly strict diet, but actually making that happen when there are 4th of July BBQ’s, long car rides, and days out on the pontoon, truly test how dedicated you are. Did I mention there were Doritos and Scotcheroos? Two things that I’m not sure if I’ve ever willingly passed up..haha..but seriously. After making it through that weekend successfully, I feel like I can conquer the world!
Even with that small success in my back pocket, there is much more to do.
I have ordered my posing suit and shoes, lined up a nutrition coach that specializes in competition prep, and have added on to the amount of training sessions I’m completing with my trainer at Suppz Gym, Justin McLimans. I have a great team of supporters behind me which is awesome!
I look forward to sharing my journey with you with the next two blogs. I plan on posting again in mid August to share my progress, challenges and successes and then the final post will be all about the month coming into the show and a recap of the whole experience.
I look forward to sharing my experience with you all!