Nationals Posing Routine

WOW! Nationals was crazy/so much fun. I will be writing a detailed post on it in the next few days, but here is a clip of my posing routine!

 

Remember, it’s important to learn what poses suit you and your body type. Not every body is the same. It has taken me a long time to figure out what angles look best and I still have tons of work to do.

 

ON STAGE!!!

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Breakfast Egg Muffins

I absolutely love breakfast food, but always hit snooze one too many times to actually put together an appetizing breakfast. I recently got some large muffin cups and explored 2 different muffin ideas.

This way I can make them the night before, store them in the refrigerator, quickly re-heat them in a microwave the next morning, and eat on the go.

I basically opened up my fridge and threw in whatever I had. Feel free to add and/or subtract any of the following ingredients. Make sure to share your recipes with me in the comments section. Enjoy!

Muffin 1

1) 1 slice uncured turkey bacon
2) 1 whole egg sunny side up
3) 1/4 cup egg whites
4) 1/4 tomato
5) Mixed greens
6) Salt and pepper to taste

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Instructions
1) Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees
2) Spray the inside of the muffin cup with Coconut oil (or any oil of choice)
3) Line the muffin cup with the turkey bacon
4) Add greens to the cup
5) Add 1/4 cup egg whites
6) Crack the egg in the middle
7) Dice and add the tomato (make sure you don’t crack the yolk)
8) Sprinkle salt and pepper on top
9) Bake for 25 mins and let it cool for 10 mins before serving or packing for later

20g protein, 4g carbs, 7 g fat

Muffin 2

1) 2 oz shredded chicken breast (on the outside of the muffin)
2) 1/4 cup egg whites
3) 1 scrambled egg
4) 1 large crimini mushroom
5) 1/2 cup broccoli
6) Salt and pepper to taste
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Instructions
1) Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees
2) Spray the inside of the muffin cup with Coconut oil (or any oil of choice)
3) Line the inside of the cup with shredded chicken
4) Whisk the 1/4 cup egg whites and 1 whole egg together
5) Add eggs in the center
6) Slice and add broccoli and crimini mushroom in the middle
7) Sprinkle salt and pepper on top
8) Bake for 30 mins and let it cool for 10 mins before serving or packing for later

27g protein, 5g carbs, 7g fat

muffin cup 3

47g protein, 9g carbs, 14g fat

Glute and Leg Strength Training Videos!

Since I’ve been working out my legs so frequently for the past 4 weeks, I thought I’d post a video of some different leg and glute exercises I’ve been incorporating into my workouts. Yes, I usually always include heavy barbell squats, legs press, hamstring curls, quad extensions, deadlifts, and other typical bodybuilder leg exercises weekly, but adding in a variety of exercises spices up your workout and hits the legs and booty and different angles!

1) Smith Machine Alternating Deficit Lunge

2) Step up into Curtsy Lunge

3) Super Deep Kettlebell Sumo Deadlift

4) Glute Kickback on the Lying Hamstring Curl

5) Cable Glute Kickback with Knee on Bench

6) Abduction- 2 variations (leaning forward and leaning back)

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5 Steps to Transition From Contest Prep to Off Season

You worked your butt off dieting down, doing cardio daily, lifting like there’s no tomorrow, and looked phenomenal on stage. After the high of competing, now what?!

Step 1: Contact the Judges

Whether you won the overall or placed dead last, there is always room for improvement. I found it very useful to contact the judges and ask exactly how I can come in better and what it’ll take to win.

Make sure you send in photos of yourself in different poses. Email the promoter of the show and ask him/her for feedback and to forward your email to every judge. You can find the promoters email address on the NPC News Online website.

Sample email:
John,
I had such a wonderful time competing at your show last weekend. I wanted to know if I could please get feedback from you and all the judges on what I can improve on (conditioning, symmetry, posing, hair, makeup, etc.) I am attaching a few photos of myself. Thank you very much, looking forward to hearing from you and competing at your next show.

Regards,
Sumeet Sahni
Open Bikini Class C (4th place, #254)

Step 2: Set Your New Goal(s)

Now, using the information you’ve gathered from judges and what look you noticed they were leaning towards at the competition, you can make a goal.

After my first show, my goal was to put mass everywhere and work on my posing. After my last show, my goal is to put mass on my calves, not to put anymore mass on my upper body, only pose with legs crossed, and to make sure I don’t come in overly conditioned (too lean).

Step 3: Determine Your New Diet

It’s really important to make a transition diet plan for post competition BEFORE you even compete. The last thing you want is to be bingeing and have no structured diet after your show.

I gave myself a week post show to have a few cheat meals and then got on my off season diet.

Your off season diet should be based on what your new goal(s) are.

Step 4: Plan Out Your Cardio

What will your offseason cardio look like? What will the frequency, duration, and intensity be?

Personally, I like to do about 3-4 sessions of HIIT a week.

Step 5: Prepare For Your Physique To Change

This is the hardest thing for me to come to terms with. After having ripped, veiny abs for 5 months, they have disappeared! Be mentally prepared for your body to change fairly quickly post show.

My weight usually goes up 3-5 pounds within the first month of off season and from then on I usually slowly gain weight, if my goal is to put on muscle, until it’s time to diet down for a show. If my body fat gets too high, I go on a mini diet during my offseason.

Making a post show plan for yourself will make your transition into the offseason mentally, physically, and emotionally easier! Make sure your off season plan is well thought out and productive.
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You Are More Than Your Placing

This past competition season, I’ve placed the best and worst ever. After coming off my win in my first competition in October (18 competitors), I felt amazing! It was so good to know that my hard work and vision for what a bikini competitor should look like was in line with the judges.
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I went on to compete in November and came in 4th in Novice Bikini (30+ competitors) and 9th place in Open Bikini (35+ competitors).
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Woah, wtf happened?! Then crept in the negativity. Maybe I don’t have the right look. Maybe I need to compete as a figure competitor. Do I even want to continue competing then? Did I not do enough cardio? I’ll be honest, after prejudging, I didn’t even want to go to the night show! Yes, I’m dead serious.

I knew that I would be able to find the positive in this situation, but in the moment I was so unhappy and couldn’t get myself to be ok with the uncontrollable. I felt stuck in my negative self-talk. All I wanted to do was eat a cheeseburger and hide forever.

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Here’s the thing, after exactly 1 month since my second show, I’ve realized that competing is so subjective. There are professional bikini competitors that are on the more muscular side and pros that are more on the thin side. Competitors that got their pro card in their 2nd show, and competitors that after competing for years won their pro card. Natalie Melo went from Ms. Bikini Olympia to 4th place! Judges are always changing and what they are looking for is probably also changing too. Through the ups and downs of competing one thing HAS to stay constant. You better absolutely love the way you look and the package you bring to the stage every show.

I was way more positive during the prep for the first show. I was focused, determined, and happy! I’m not sure what exactly happened for the second show, but I started feeling run down, exhausted, and negative. Also, my coach and I decided to present a different look to the stage. I came in a little softer and really didn’t like the physique I was bringing to the second show. Now, I don’t know if I’d place better, the same, or worst if I came in drier and tighter, but I know I would’ve liked the way I looked onstage better, which would in turn show during my presentation.

At the end of the day, when you are alone with your thoughts and falling asleep, if you are not happy with yourself, what good is first place? And what if you came in last but loved the way you looked, learned so much, are in love with the sport, and can’t wait to compete again? I’d call the latter the true winner.

I learned that I am more than my placing. I can’t let the placing written on a trophy define me as a person. 1st or 9th. Instead, I focus on the things I can control (working hard everyday, helping others better themselves, sharing my journey, and finding the positive in every situation, even if it means digging really, really deep within). Crazy things start to happen when you’re positive. Goals become clearer, sticking to a diet gets easier, you look better, and you attract more positivity. At that point, winning just becomes the icing on the cake!
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How I Walked In and Out Feeling Like a Winner!!!

Wow!!!! Last weekend was incredible. I WON 1ST PLACE IN CLASS C!!! I competed against 18 other beautiful girls.
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Ok, now on to the juicy part of the journey. Everything about this prep felt right. My diet was on point. I WAS NEVER STARVING! I had carbs in every meal of mine, except for occasional zero carb days, I was only doing 30 minutes of steady state cardio, and my strength was almost the same as my off season.

Why?! How?! Well, I don’t know for sure, but I think it’s because I took a 1.5 year off season, lifted crazy heavy weights and always went HARD for my workouts, put on 10 pounds of muscle mass (my morning of the show weight went from 107 lbs to 117 lbs, same body fat), slowly increased my calories to increase my metabolism (I always stuck to my diet, only 1 cheat meal, even in the off season), and barely did cardio.

Don’t be afraid of getting a little soft, gaining weight, and taking time off from competing to make gains. I promise, you’ll get lean again and competitions aren’t going anywhere.
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What else did I do?
– I visualized winning every single day.
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– I made sure that when I worked out, no one out there could possibly be working harder than me.
– I practiced posing ALL THE TIME. Even when standing in the kitchen prepping food.
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– I promised myself that I would present a totally different package (hair, makeup, posing, suit) to the stage.
– Lastly, and probably one of the most important things, I didn’t look around or compare myself to the girls that day. I kept to myself, focused on my goal, repeated to myself…Either I have it today, or I don’t. I’m going to present all the hours of hard work, every single perfect meal, and every thought about winning on this stage. There is no point in even getting nervous… I kid you not, I never got nervous that day. Everything was out of my hands and I felt so relaxed and confident.

I walked in and out feeling like a winner!

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It’s so important to make numerous goals when getting ready for a show. Some of mine were:
– To put on muscle mass, especially on my lower half
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– Control my mood swings
– Not cheat (unless it’s a planned weekly cheat meal)
– Keep a very positive attitude
– Give my workouts my all
– Not compare myself to other girls, which lead to me going Instagram free for the last 4 weeks of my prep.
-Learn to ride the wave. Some days would be easier than others.
– Really, truly believe in myself

When you establish goals to get you through your prep and you succeed with them, it’s hard to not walk into show day feeling like a winner.
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Bikini Competition Check List

The big day is coming up and I thought I’d share my check list with others. For my first competition I felt like I only really focused on my physique, which is of course extremely important, but there are other bases I wanted to cover this year so I make sure I bring a better package and am well prepared!

SHOW

First things first, you’ve gotta pick a show or two and register!
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NPC CARD

You can register for the NPC online or even at check ins the night before. Cyrus and I will be getting it the night before, because last time we had to send a check to a P.O. box and it took a really long time to receive it in the mail.
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POSING

it’s never too early to learn how to pose. I felt like my posing needed a major revamping, so I contact IFBB Bikini Pro, Jessica Arevalo, and learned a new routine. I’d suggest practicing, the right way, as early as possible. I want to look natural on stage, so I practice at least once a day.

HEELS

Yes, I went to a stripper store to get my heels. The first few times I wore them, I had to heat up the straps with a blow dryer so they would loosen up. I personally like the ankle support with the strap, but that isn’t necessary.

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SUIT

For my first competition, I got a basic bikini from http://www.suitsyouswimwear.com.
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This time around, I wanted a suit that was a little more extravagant and custom-made. I drove to Sacramento with a few other competitors and got to personally design my new suit from Jagware. They are so nice and Delia made my suit so incredibly fast.
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HOTEL

Don’t wait for the last minute to get a hotel room. Cyrus and I have the luxury of competing close to home, so we will spend the night before at home, but we got a hotel room to relax at during the time between pre-judging and the night show. We did this last year and it worked out great. You will have a few hours of down time and it’s a good idea to get in a nap, relax, eat, and get ready again at the hotel.

Don’t forget to bring your own sheets so your tan doesn’t rub off on the hotel sheets.

Try to find the closest hotel to the venue. Sometimes the host hotel isn’t the closest!

REQUEST TIME OFF WORK

The last few days of prep get a little crazy with dieting and dehydrating, so it’s nice to be at home, stress free and getting in your meals on time. It’s crucial to keep stress very low at the time. You don’t want to be releasing cortisol and holding water.

I personally will be taking Thursday, Friday, and Saturday off of work.

TANNING

Make sure you book your tan as soon as you know who will be the tanner on site. You will be getting tanned the evening before the show and backstage. Cyrus and I both will be getting tanned Friday evening BEFORE my check in. So, as soon as I check in we can head home and try to get to sleep early. On the day of the show last year we were up and moving at 4am.
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Also, I bought a cheap robe off of Amazon to wear backstage. Last year I wore a loose shirt, but I think it’s a better idea to wear something that opens in front so it doesn’t touch your makeup or hair.

Wear flip flops to go tan in.

Bring your own hair clip and or shower cap.

MAKE UP

I am terrible at doing stage makeup, so one of my competitor friends will be doing my makeup. Make sure you do a trial run!! You can also go to MAC or Sephora and have them show you how to apply the makeup and which will look best on stage.

Don’t be scared. If you look like a drag queen, that’s perfect! This is something that I’m not used to, it’s probably why I’m terrible at doing stage makeup!!!

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JEWELRY

I got a bracelet, earrings, and a ring from Macy’s.

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WAXING

Lets be honest, the bikinis are TINY! Definitely make sure you get a full brazilian. It’s a good idea to get a few days before the competition to make sure you if you get slightly irritated you have enough time for it to clear up and not get aggravated by the tan.

HAIR

This show I’ll be going with straight hair. The day before the show I’ll be getting my hair dyed and straightened by my hair dresser.

If you choose to go curly. Make sure you pin up your curls and don’t drop them till you’re about to go on stage. Last year I made the mistake of not pinning up my curls and by the time I got on stage my hair looked terrible!

NAILS

Complete your look by painting your finger and toe nails!
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Are You Getting In Your Own Way?!

I’ve been Instagram free for the past week and I’ve never felt so relaxed! As competition time is getting closer and closer (less than 3 weeks out!) it was getting easier and easier for me to get wrapped up in the way I looked compared to others on Instagram. I’d wake up in the morning, open the app, see a female with a beautiful physique, and start bashing myself for not looking like that. First thing in the morning. Definitely not healthy.

So then I just decided. NO INSTAGRAM FOR A WEEK.

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Why?

– It was causing me to stress.
– I was channeling my energy to the wrong things.
– I was forgetting that this is MY journey. I don’t want to look like anyone else. I want to be the best version of ME!
– Instead of being inspired by others, I was comparing myself to others.
– I was becoming unhappy.
– I reminded myself that I only need validation from myself, not Instagram followers.
– I didn’t need to see what other people are eating, wearing, or doing nor do others need to see that from me. I just need to focus on myself and follow my plan.
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What I’ve realized thus far:
– I was getting in my own way of progressing. WTF.
– I have so much more time and energy in my day!
– I’m more present in the moment.
– All of a sudden, I’ve lost a few pounds, I’m more relaxed, and focused (I sware it’s because I’m stressing less and releasing less cortisol)
– I’m putting all my energy into my diet, lifts, cardio, posing practice, and resting.
– I have more time to blog and share my journey.
– I planned to go 1 week without Instagram, but my new goal is to be Instagram free till post competition!!!

What are you doing that is getting in your own way? It could be anything from negative self talk to waiting till the last minute to prep your food. It’s important to constantly be evaluating what is and isn’t working for you and your journey. Then just decide to stop doing that. It’s really as easy as that.

Just decide.

Keep focused, stay stress free, and take it one day at a time!

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Posing Practice!

So, when I got on stage for the first time, I literally was backstage repeating to myself “I am Beyonce. This is MY show. I gotta show off what my momma gave me (and all the squats I’ve done). I am FIERCE!!!”

Yeah, my posing was pretty terrible, not gonna lie. It’s not Beyonce’s fault! I channeled her just fine, it was just that my posing was really off. I had no idea was I was doing! So, it’s back to the drawing board. Here is a little of what I’ve been working on.

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