bikini competitor

30 Things Every Bikini Competitor Should Know

I was completely clueless a year ago when I (unknowingly) made a decision that would completely change my life.

The journey into your first bikini competition is one riddled with the unknown, a series of remarkable transformations and ultimately, a life-changing event. Granted, it will change some people’s lives more than others, but it will change you nonetheless.

My hope is that while you pursue your goal of competing you may not have to experience some of the harsh realities and, to be blunt, mind fucks, that so many competitors go through during and after their first show prep. These next 30 pieces of knowledge are tidbits  inspired by things I have witnessed after following pro and amateur competitor’s journeys, personal conversations with fellow bikini girls and some are things I’ve had to experience first hand, aka had to learn the hard way.

There is a slew of information out there and sometimes knowing too much can be just as detrimental as knowing too little. This list isn’t about how you should or shouldn’t diet, what exercises you should be doing, but rather, how to stop you from losing your sanity.

Enjoy the journey, embrace the suck and keep these things in mind.

30 Things Every Bikini Competitor Needs to Know

1. You need a qualified coach. Note the emphasis on qualified. 

2. Don’t worry about your competition.

3. Let your coach worry about your competition. That’s part of their job.

4. Run your own race.

5. You CAN do this.

6. Each day will not get easier, but each day you will get stronger.

7. Food is not an enemy, don’t view it as such.

8. You may feel tired or hungry sometimes- that’s okay. If you feel completely exhausted or legitimately starving, that’s another story.

9. If you stick to the plan, it will work.

10. Don’t doubt the plan.

11. Stick to the plan.

12. Seriously, stick to it.

13. Don’t complain about how much you’re doing. You want it? Put in the work.

14. Train insane or remain the same. Make every workout count, don’t slack honey.

15. On the other hand- don’t sacrifice your long-term health and well-being for a $10 plastic trophy. It’s not worth it.

16. You don’t have to share your journey with the world. It’s cool if you do, but it may be putting unnecessary pressure on yourself.

17. Do this for you, no one else.

18. Listen to your body.

19. Rest days are essential for both your physical and mental well-being. The #teamnodaysoff mentality can be detrimental to your health if taken to extremes. 

20. There will always be another show.

21. Stress can hinder progress, learn to let it go.

22. Not every day is going to be amazing but not every day should be miserable.

23. Trust yourself, trust the process, and trust your coach.

24. If you fail to prepare then you are certainly preparing to fail.

25. Get creative with your meals. You aren’t doing yourself any favors by eating the same, boring, bland food day in and day out.

25. Carbs are not bad. You need them to survive.  

26. Make time for your friends and family. Don’t become a hermit.

27. There’s more to life then working out and “eating clean”. Remember that.

28. If all you talk about is prep, fitness, etc. you’re going to get real annoying. You’ll probably even annoy yourself- that’s how you know it’s bad. 

29. Be focused, not obsessive.

 

And most importantly..

 

30. You are not your body.

 

 

 

New Beginnings

This Easter Sunday I am reminded by the magnificent power of new beginnings. I feel as though every spring I experience a new awakening, a new desire to dream big and do bigger, a time to be reborn.

It is no surprise that during this special time of year that is Easter, I have experienced a number of new beginnings and feel as though I have been given the direction that I have been praying for.

A door has been closed.

A dream has been let go so that an even more wonderful one can take shape. It’s amazing what happens when you let go of what wasn’t meant for you.

Peace begins to settle where there was stress and chaos.

Clarity, focus, and direction seem to miraculously appear.

Life is breathed back into your soul. You radiate.

Happiness fills every ounce of you. (Pharrell knows what’s up.)

Passion takes hold of you from out of nowhere.

You are perfectly content knowing and trusting that because you have done what you were called to do- for me this was letting go – that something amazing will happen. You put your faith in the Lord and His timing. Seek Him and ask for direction. Direction and guidance to live the life that was meant for you. Spend your time trusting and faithfully expecting..Then..

There it is.

The idea. The dream. Or rather, the new dream. And oh what a sweet, sweet, dream it is.

Now, when God gives you this new dream, you better be ready to run with it. You better be ready to WORK.

Procrastination is a way of squelching your dream before you can fully start chasing it. He puts you in a position, gets everything aligned, sets the clock, it’s go time.

It’s the 3..2..1.. before a wod.

The moment before you walk out on stage to compete for the overall.

It’s the moment you step up to the microphone to answer your on stage question.

It’s sink or swim time, and you’re ready.

I’m excited to begin pursuing and start doing. I have closed the door. Let go of a dream that was taking up too much space in my head and my heart. I’ve finished a project that has taken me years to complete. I am free. A weight has been lifted. I in essence, feel brand new.

He has risen and it is because He gave His life for us, so that we may experience the wonderful power of his grace and love, that we too shall have a new beginning. So that we may be renewed. Thanks be to the Lord for all the blessings He can and will bestow upon His children when they start listening to the dreams that were meant for them.

5 Biggest Dating Turn Offs- Guys Listen Up!

Sometimes it really does seem like chivalry is dead. In this day in age it’s a miracle if people actually fathom going on a date before sleeping together. I for one am not that into dating and much of it has to do with these 5 things that are serious red flags in my book. In the hook up culture that has taken over our generation it leaves me asking myself, are there really any decent guys left out there?

5 Things that make any self-respecting woman go..”next!”

1. Lack of First Date Creativity

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Wow, you’re actually fortunate enough to have met someone who wants to take you on a date and not just asks you to come over and “watch a movie”…astounding! How sad that this is actually something out of the ordinary instead of the standard, but I digress. Okay, so you found a decent enough guy who knows how this dating thing is supposed to go, but then when push comes to shove they lack any sort of planning or creative ability.

“Dinner and a movie?” Lame.

“Froyo?” Lam-er (and what a cheapskate!)

“I don’t know, what would you like to do?” Seriously…you’re the one who asked me on a date..YOU are supposed to take initiative and plan something.

Guys, look, dates are auditions.

We’re getting to know you, just like you’re getting to know us and when you show me right off the bat you lack any motivation to have some fun, think outside the box, or take charge it really makes me question what type of potential boyfriend or even friend you’d end up being.

If I want to sit at home and “watch a movie” I can either a.) do that by myself or b.) have plenty of gal pals who I can feel completely comfortable wearing sweats and sharing a tub of Ben & Jerry’s with all the while divulging in some good girl talk.  (Which by the way, never, ever gets old.) Not to mention there’s no awkward sexual tension or pressure.

So if you suck at being creative, I really don’t know how to help you except suggest that you  find a girl who’s just as boring and doesn’t mind. Maybe try Googling something and pretend like you’re at least a teeny bit original?

2. Homeboy Sucks at Texting

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Dear God, if you are a horrible conversationalist when it comes to the art of texting it just makes me not want to talk to you- like, ever.

The budding of a new romance is supposed to be fun, exciting and make your heart skip a beat every time your phone buzzes with a new incoming text. But when we have the same dead-end generic conversations that are left awkwardly hanging because you don’t understand the concept of how to continue a texting conversation umm, yeah. Ttyn.

If you really want to impress me, call just to chat. I might be a little weirded out at first since hardly anyone does that anymore but if we have a connection it will definitely score you major points. Remember the days when you would actually dial someone’s number and have a legitimate conversation with them?

Let’s bring it back to the glory days when a phone was for talking, not texting.

3. Brosef doesn’t try to get to know you- at all.

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If you stick to generic, surface level conversation topics, please tell me, what is the point? No you don’t need to ask me my deepest darkest secrets or life’s greatest ambitions on the first couple dates (that by the way would also make a girl “next” you) but ask questions about things that are important to me or that I seem passionate about and I’ll be sure to do the same.

If I don’t get the sense you’re trying to understand who I am, then I think you’re either just dating me for my looks and/or to get in my pants, or you’ve already made up in your mind who I am and don’t care to get to know the real me.

Neither of these situations works well for you. If those things do apply, then do us both a favor and next yourself.

 

4. Mr. Dating Potential is on his phone…non-stop.images

‘Scuse me, I know this is the 21st century but there still is this thing called “personal relationships” and “social interaction” not “social media interaction”.

If we’re on a date and you can’t stop texting, checking your Facebook/Twitter/ESPN, or (gag) Snap chatting, then please excuse me while I go have a conversation with someone who can set their phone down for  a minimum 30 minutes.

This is especially a problem if you exhibit turn-off #2.

You can’t text me, but miraculously have a plethora of conversations with everyone else when you’re in my presence? Who are you texting that isn’t annoyed by your lack of ability or why do you all of a sudden forget how to text when I’m the recipient of your barely tolerable attempt of communication? Get it together, man.

5. Dismal Complimenting Skills

Take a hint from Ry Guy

Take a hint from Ry Guy

It’s really not that hard to do guys. “You look beautiful.” “You have a great sense of humor.” “I’m having such a great time getting to know you.”

Why aren’t these the first things guys say?

Instead you’re more likely to get a slip of the hand to grope your ass or an awkward too long stare at your chest. Yo buddy, I may have a great body but let’s hope if you’re interested in dating me that’s not all you’re taking into consideration. Because let’s face it, I could be, (let’s use a favorite term used by men)…crazy!

So before trying to make it to second base before it’s warranted hold off on the touchy feely. Get to know me, just like I’m trying to get to know you, and make sure I’m not a psycho. Because we’ve all had that “crazy” ex and we certainly don’t need another.

I may be generalizing a bit, and perhaps these five things seem a little harsh (and yes, women are EQUALLY responsible for doing these things as well) but I hope you take the article all in good fun but also, hear me when I say this, avoid doing these things if you’re looking for (even just the possibility of) a genuine relationship with someone. I beg of you.

Side-note, this is about DATING. Not hooking up, hanging out, etc. It’s a lost art for my generation but I have hope that guys and gals alike will get it together and genuinely try getting to know each other before committing to more serious, “next-level”,  intimacy. 

What are your dating turnoffs?

Comment Below! 

 

Sometimes You Gotta Lose

Losing sucks right? I mean, if we’re all being honest, no one says “Yay! I worked so hard, spent so much time and energy preparing and then I don’t win- wonderful!” Dream didn’t come true! #Awesome

However, just because you lose doesn’t mean you shouldn’t do it with grace, respect and excitement for the individual who won. Don’t be a sour puss because they were “better” than you, be happy that they accomplished their goal and dream. They were the best that day, so congratulate them, because winning was a part of their journey, not yours.

Embrace the Suck
It hurts to know your best wasn’t good enough but don’t let that detour you from giving up on something you want so badly. Take a little bit to evaluate what improvements you can make, what you could do differently and accept that perhaps this just wasn’t your day, your competition, your year and that God has other plans for you. Sometimes we don’t understand why we have to lose but I am a firm believer that losing doesn’t define you, just like a win doesn’t define you. It’s about the person you become because of it.

Nobody likes to lose.
A popular pageant question is “Does losing build character?” And my response has always been, most definitely. It takes a strong person to win, but an even stronger person to lose and remain happy, confident in themselves, with a smile on their face. Losing ain’t fun, but it’s a part of life. Even though we know losing is inevitable, I still think we need to go through life expecting a win. Expect that your hard work will pay off. Expect that your goal will be accomplished. Expect your name will be called as the winner. Expect, expect, expect.

But, did you really lose?
In the moment it’s heartbreaking, it’s discouraging, it makes you question and wonder why you even try. But in the morning, the hurt and sting of a loss isn’t so bad. Have you heard the saying, “what a difference a day makes”? Well, tis true. Sure you may still be hurt but don’t let that make you bitter, let it make you better. Today is a new day, you may have lost yesterday but that doesn’t mean you can’t win today. It doesn’t mean you won’t win tomorrow, a year from now, 10 years from now. You lost today, big whoop. There’s always another day to try again and make it a win. Change your perspective and become a winner.

Remember when I said God has other plans for you? Well, the next time you lose, take some time to pray and reflect on it.

Perhaps your loss is a blessing because it frees up time to go through a door He has been waiting to open for you but you were so distracted by this other thing that wasn’t meant for you.

Maybe this is your sign to pursue that other dream you’ve shoved to the back of your mind.

Perhaps He’s telling you to not give up on this dream and take the necessary time to grow and learn so you’ll be prepared next time.

Or maybe He is simply just telling you to wait, relax, take time to rest, so He can set you up for something that’s not even on your radar yet.

He may be pruning you for your destiny so I beg of you, do not become discouraged. Become encouraged that you may have lost today but He will not let you lose everyday. God has a plan for you, trust it.

Keep on Losing
Loss and failure are tricky little things, and they’re oh so similar. The only way you can truly lose, they only way you can really fail, is if you never try. If you’re failing and you’re losing that means you’re actively doing- go you! Big props. If you are experiencing the sting of failure, soak it all in cause it’s character building time. You will recover from every first runner up, every mediocre placing, every bad grade, every disappointment- the world and your life will go on, I promise.

Loss has taught me to never be afraid to lose. Never be afraid to give something your all, while clinging to the fear that you might not win. Punch that fear in the face and say, “so what if I lose, I’m going to give it my best anyway.” Because it’s more possible you might lose than be crowned a winner, but really losing isn’t so bad.

And if you can’t kick the fear out? It still nags at you with all the what ifs and worries, do it afraid. Go after your goal with a vengeance and even if you can’t kick the fear out completely, let it come along for the ride and show it you don’t care. You’re gonna try anyway.

You may feel embarrassed, but why? I can guarantee you no matter what, you’re being much harder on yourself than anyone else is. Those people who support you, they’re still proud of you. They still support the fact that you had the guts to do whatever it is you do. Stop worrying about what other people think anyway. This is your life, this is your dream. Chase it with every fiber of your being.

From a person who has never won a pageant in all the years I have competed I’m telling you right now- never give up. I can guarantee your loss today is going to make your victory that much sweeter. All the times you got knocked down and came back for more because you still had that dream, that passion, that desire, it’ll pay off.

Keep the faith. Your loss is setting you up for a win.

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Before the Stage

It’s hours away before I step on stage and compete for the title of Miss Arizona United States and I wanted to share a couple of thoughts and feelings that have been on replay in my mind.

Dang, this is fun!
I’ve never had this much fun in a pageant in my life. I think it’s because I have a different attitude. I’m not so focused on the crown and what will happen if it eludes me. I’ve truly gotten to know the women in my division and they are all so beautiful and genuine. We’ve shared so many laughs, random dance offs and positive, motivating conversations. I’m so lucky to be able to compete with like-minded, passionate women and these new friendships are just beginning of bonds that I know will continue to grow.

Gratitude
I am so blessed and fortunate to have this opportunity. I am so grateful God has put me in a position to inspire others and also be just as inspired. There are so many women who may never had the opportunity to experience competing in a pageant and it is my sincerest hope that if any woman has ever had the dream to do so, God will provide and open the doors so that they can. Pageantry has taught me so much about myself and helped me build character, skills and the confidence for other areas in my life.

It’s not about the crown..Really
Not going to lie, the thought has creeped into my mind a couple times, “What happens if you get first runner up again or don’t even place?” And I’ve come to realize that as badly as I hope to be crowned the winner tonight, if that dream doesn’t come to pass it’s okay. My platform is not just one I whipped up to compete in a pageant- it’s become a part of my life’s journey. Regardless if there’s a crown on my head I’ve found a passion and a story that I want to share with any and everyone who will listen. Strong is a lifestyle and if I don’t win, well..I’m confident enough to know that God has bigger plans for my future and my platform.

Everyone who has competed this weekend is an inspiring woman in her own right and although crowns and titles are a wonderful validation of our hard-work, passion, and talent- it isn’t everything.

The support and encouragement I’ve received is astounding and I thank you all from the bottom of my heart. Thank you for being my rocks! I love every single one of you!

Xo

Your Ging