Post-Competition Blues

You read all of these blogs talking about people and their journeys into bodybuilding and healthy living and those are fantastic! You get motivated and inspired and it’s a lovely sense of community in the bodybuilding and competition world.

But once the competition is over, the blog posts stop completely or they change gears to something else like a new fitness endeavor or another life journey (I’m totally guilty of this.)

It’s been exactly one month since my competition and I have been through some ups and downs post-competition.

The hardest part being the eating. 

During my first two weeks post-competition, I was pretty good at sticking to my eating clean. I had a couple of cheat days per week (when I visited those restaurants downtown.) Although, I wasn’t too religious at the gym. I was just taking ‘er easy and spending my time rollerblading or hiking and enjoying the late-blooming beautiful spring weather.

Obsessed with my new kicks. Sneaker wedges are essential for the gym babe!
Obsessed with my new kicks. Sneaker wedges are essential for the gym babe!

Then things switched up a bit. The last couple of weeks, I had been more lenient on my eating plan (eating way less clean), including indulging in bread (!!!!!) and some bulk candy. (My vice, apparently.) But I also was more dedicated to the gym and was lifting crazy heavy and reaching PBs left, right and centre.

(I hit 165lbs on squats, 270lbs on leg press and 95lbs on bench press. I even successfully did four pull-ups!) So that was a definite ‘good’ during this post-competition experience.

However – obviously – I have gained weight after the competition. (It is both unhealthy and impossible to retain your stage weight and body fat percentage. For one, I was eating less than 1,000 calories a day and severely dehydrated.) I have never been one to let the scale dictate my life, but it has become somewhat of an obsession for me. Watching my weight climb slowly back to just below my 14-weeks-out weight is very difficult, especially mentally.

But the strange thing is I still feel good about how I look for the most part. Sure, I don’t have my shredded abs anymore and I’ve probably gained an inch back on my waist (and my chest is not so flat anymore. Bonus!)

Bikini Bod (2 weeks Post-Comp.)
Bikini Bod (2 weeks Post-Comp.)

I’m sure it could have been a lot worse and I could have binged a lot more and been put in a lot more difficult of a situation — like gaining more weight than I had originally lost. Plus, this wasn’t about losing weight. It was about challenging myself and transforming my body and healthy living outlook.

I’m eating cleaner as of this week and planning on continuing my lifting heavy regime at the gym whilst challenging myself at the gym.

(Tonight is legs and I’m going to attempt my first Smith machine-less squat. I’M GOING TO ENTER THE BULL PEN UNMANNED. JUST ONE WOMAN IN A PAIR OF SPANDEX. I’ve never used the power rack before except for dead lifts so this is a big deal, okay?!)

Now that I have more control on my eating plan and I’m back in the swing of the gym routine, I just have one more obstacle to conquer: my digestive system.

I’m not sure if I had mentioned before – I probably have – but I thought I had developed an egg intolerance nearing the end of my training. Post-competition, I went for a check-up with my family doctor and she suggested I get blood work done. Results came back that I had elevated liver function. Almost like a trigger, the day I heard those results was the day I started to get digestive problems – severe stomach pains and lots of bloating. I did a follow-up blood test yesterday morning and I’m awaiting results.

But yesterday I was feeling terrible. (I had eaten a few macaroons at lunch, but still, I had eaten them on Friday and I didn’t feel this way.) I had severe stomach pains, a noticeable pounding heart, chest pains, my back hurt, I was lightheaded, bloated and I think I went to the bathroom 15 times yesterday. Normally I feel better on my train ride home but I was almost doubled over walking to my car in discomfort and pain.At the suggestion of my dear old mammy, I went to a walk-in clinic where the doctor presumed my pounding heart was from PMS. (Uhhh…what? I normally just get bad cramps and a bitch attitude, so I’m not sure about this.) She suggested I try out Iberogast – a natural remedy endorsed by the ‘GI guys’ – for my stomach symptoms. Iberogast is a liquid that you drop into water (or shoot it straight!) with your meals three times a day and it is usually given to people with mild IBS.

Needless to say, today I feel so much better. I ate a lot more fruit and trying to drink more water to help my poor old internal organs.

So, I guess I just wanted to share my post-competition experience and struggles, so maybe if you experience the same thing, you know you’re not the only one!

Now I’m off to scare the boys in the weightroom. 300 pound leg press here I come!

I have become super veiny post-competition. LIFTING HEAVY AND STUFF.
I have become super veiny post-competition. LIFTING HEAVY AND STUFF.

xx

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12 Comments Add yours

  1. I read this after three pints of beer and a burger, so your fitness regime looks pretty good to me

    1. Paige Andrea says:

      I could totally go for a burger right now. THANKS FOR THAT!

  2. Haha, the BULLPEN! Love it, I’m often the only girl in the serious weights room at my gym, and you describe the experience very well. You’re a fab writer, love your blog.

    1. Paige Andrea says:

      LOL the bull pen is exactly what it is! Animals who have been raised in a barn with no manners (most of the time!) And thank you so much – that really means a lot! 🙂

  3. great post! i’m always so curious about what life is like after all these fitness bloggers finish up their competitions. it must be hard going from something so meticulously scheduled to a free-for-all post-comp, but you seem to have it under control! good for you!

    1. Paige Andrea says:

      Thank you! Yes, I wanted to share the not-so-glamorous side of competitions and fitness journeys, because it really is difficult sometimes! But we’re all strong ladies and can push through! 🙂

  4. “GOING TO ENTER THE BULL PEN UNMANNED. JUST ONE WOMAN IN A PAIR OF SPANDEX.” I love that!!!

    You did an amazing job on your comp and should be proud. All the post eating and weight training and gaining lol are just part of the deal, but keep rockin!

    As long as you are happy with your look, its all good. So go get whats yours at the gym today girl and take whatever comes at ya with a smile 🙂

    1. Paige Andrea says:

      Hahahah thanks! It’s just a different kind of training now and I have to accept it! I’m lifting crazy heavy and loving it! Hopefully I’m scaring all the bulls in the bull pen! (I wear my camo leggings for extra intimidation factor! 😉

  5. Your going to love your post competition body and training, Im sure you loving the strength gains! & Congrats on ditching the smith machine! LOL I wish more women wouldnt be scared of barbell squatting.

    1. Paige Andrea says:

      Yes I am lifting way heavier and it feels good! Intimidating alllllll the mans in the weight room lol. To be honest, males in the weight room can be intimidating. I know at my gym, I’m probably one of four women who actually use the weightroom. And one of two who use the power rack.

  6. ya ditch the smith machine and bring on the REAL squats haha! not that I should speak… haven’t been in a REAL gym in a long long time haha… Bodyweight all the way! But I crave heavy weights and a real gym. You could kick my ass with your awesome PB lifts! good job 🙂 Sounds tough post-comp but keep stickin’ with it chica! Did you ever get a real answer with your bloodwork and egg intolerance thing???? xo

    1. Paige Andrea says:

      Hahaha yeah I need weights – bodyweight is not enough for me at all! And I was told I had slightly elevated bilirubin levels in my liver and I shouldn’t be alarmed so I’m getting another blood test soon. And I ate a large amount of eggs last Sunday and was fine so I think I’m okay again!

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