Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Happy Holidays!

The Holidays have now come and gone. It was a busy time with lots of family functions and making good memories. Of course, along with all of the family activities comes a lot of yummy food! Good times!
But now things are getting back to business with the training and eating.

We took some great pictures of the family and kids at a local park. It was definitely a task, but we are all glad we tackled it. This year, for the first time, we sent out picture Christmas cards using our family picture.
It's been several years since we have taken a family picture. So I'm really glad we took the time to make it happen this year. The kids are growing up too fast!

2007 was a good year...full of lots of changes and new experiences! I'm looking forward to 2008...another year of growth, continued changes, and opportunities. I want to thank all of you that have been so supportive in this past year. Your support meant a lot to me and so many times helped to keep me strong. I hope to experience your continued encouragement in this upcoming year.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Happiness in the Midst of Sadness

Early this morning my grandfather, Verlyn Cox, passed away. It came as a bit of a surprise to some of us, because we didn't know the cancer was that far along and we thought we had a few more months. He was in a lot of pain and couldn't eat much of anything. But because of his pain, his death comes as bit of a relief because now he is in pain no longer. And since he was a Christian, we know we will see him again someday.

Even still, it is hard not to be sad and miss him. I had planned on going to visit him in Illinois after the first of the year. I wanted to spend some time with him before he passed. But unfortunately, he didn't last that long. I am happy and sad about that at the same time. Happy because I would have hated for him to have to endure life the way he was and in that kind of pain for even another day, let alone several weeks....just so I could selfishly see him one last time. But, of course, I'm sad that I didn't get that chance to see him again before he left us..to give him that last hug and last kiss goodbye.

He loved his wife, children, many grandchildren, and even more great grandchildren very much. He was very proud of his ever growing family and was interested in every single one of us. He will be greatly missed.

I love you, Grandpa. This is not 'goodbye', but 'see you later'. I look forward to giving you that hug and kiss 'hello' when I see you again!

Thursday, December 6, 2007

A New Program

Hitting the weights these past few weeks has felt awesome! This week I started doing some DC training, doing a two-day split. It's exciting doing something new and I look forward to seeing the changes it will bring about. I can't wait to watch the increase in strength and the muscle mass that will follow.

I've changed up my cardio schedule just slightly and I'm doing a variety of exercises (3 hours a week total). I'm enjoying the new lifting schedule as well... Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays only. They make for long workouts, but it's nice to have the extra nights off to spend with the family.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Workin' to Grow!

This week I started my 'structured diet' and workout routine. I've changed up my cardio a bit. So many people disagree with how much cardio I'm doing. But right now I want to make sure I do not gain an excess of bodyfat. As I feel things are leveling out, I can back off of the cardio as needed. For now, I have scheduled myself 3 weekly morning cardio sessions of 40 minutes and then 4-5 weekly 20 minute sessions after my weight lifting in the evenings. I finally braved the scale yesterday....weighed 174. Not too bad at all...that puts me 12 pounds more than I was at contest weigh-ins and 20 pounds less than I was before contest prep started back in June.

I'm back to keeping a lifting journal of each day's workout. I haven't done it in several years. It helps to keep you more focused on increasing your weights/strength when you can see exactly what you did the week before and push to beat it! I'm looking forward to watching my strength increase....which means the mass will soon follow!

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Hitt'n the Weights Again!

It has felt totally AWESOME hitting the weights again....getting back to the old intensity and working the heavy stuff! I've missed those kind of workouts sooo much! It just feels so good.

I'm still doing cardio (45 minutes after my weights sessions, 5 days a week). I'm trying to make sure I stay leaner now. I don't want to get as heavy as I was before contest prep.

My goals now are to get my strength back to where it was, focus more on my hams, glutes, calves, and lower back to build and tighten them up, add a bit more size and detail to the upper body, continue working abs (I hadn't worked abs in a long time before starting contest prep), and doing all this while trying to stay on the lean side.


Thursday, November 1, 2007

1st Place Heavyweight

I competed in my first show this past weekend, October 27 at the NPC Texas State Championships. I weighed in at 162.5, which put me as a heavyweight. I won first place in my weight class, which also qualified me to compete in a national show. I have until the end of 2009 to use it before it's lost.

Preparing for this show and then competing has definitely been an experience. I'm not sure that bodybuilding is for me. I was pretty sure before the experience that competing really wasn't my thing, but was told that I should give it a try to make sure. At least now I can say that I have done it. Ummm....been there, done that, got the trophy, and now I'm over it! There is still a possibility that in the future I may do it again....but that is not before a year or more.

I am considering competing in powerlifting. I think that is more along the lines of what I love....lifting and strength! Although, I would want to stay more on the leaner side. But for now, I'm just letting my body recover and slowly getting back to my workouts. I can't wait to be 100% again and hitting the weights hard!

I'm finally able to enjoy 'normal' food! It has been wonderful! I've had pizza, some mexican food, chocolate, brownies, cheesecake, pancakes, and a few other samplings. Although, I'm still experiencing the 'rebound' (my body adjusting to regular food)....which is quite miserable. Hopefully within the next week or so my body will level out and things will be back to normal.

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Kickin it at the Rodeo

Last night we went to the Pasadena Rodeo to hear my brother and his band (County Road 101). They had a great turn out and they sounded FANTASTIC! It was a lot of fun!

It was also good for me to get out and feel a bit "normal" for a while....even with all the stares and comments!

Only three weeks left of prep....I'm starting to get a bit nervous that I won't be ready in time. But I'm just going to keep with it, knowing that I will end up wherever I end up.

My energy levels have been way down and my body has been aching and hurting. I'm just taking it one day at a time....one cardio session at a time...til I finally reach my destination. Slowly, but surely, I'm getting there!