When I say that I’m going to do something, I fucking well do it. Yep. I get ‘er done, never approaching things halfway, always ‘bringing my best.’ That’s not to say that the final results are consistently stellar. Take, for instance, my figure competition on Saturday. If you have been following this blog, you know how hard I worked during the past year, and especially last five months: dieting with few unsanctioned cheats, training for 133 of the past 135 days (shout out to 2DO, though I doubt she approves of those two days off), swallowing shitloads of supplements, and obeying QMR’s directions in minute detail. The week leading up to the contest I even spent my nights wearing the saran pants pictured below. In an extremely depleted state, I would first take a hot bath in epsom salts, and then slather my thighs, buttocks, and abdomen in preparation H, before covering myself tightly in cling wrap and attempting to sleep. During my first fitting, I foolishly forgot to leave a pee hole. My three-day water load and long gel nails soon took care of that oversight.
Though I am tempted to regale you with a list of my other activities this week—it would include dermabrasion, two massage appointments, various chiropractic events, a manicure and pedicure, tanning, water loading, carb loading, fat loading, a dehydration ritual with herbal diuretics—-I will instead relate an amusing story. Transforming myself into a human hemorrhoid required a good deal of ointment as you can imagine, and I was forced to visit the local drugstore to purchase a second giant tube. After paying for this single item, my 8 litre water load suddenly kicked in and I practically shouted ‘Oh God, I need to use your washroom!’ Clearly appalled, the sales clerk directed me to the back of the store and I ran into the small cubicle, desperately clutching my ass sauce. I then realized what she must have thought and was about to explain: ‘Oh no no no…I don’t have raging hemorrhoids; I am going to rub the contents of this yellow-capped tube all over my body and then roll in plastic wrap.’ That anusless use of the soft tissue shrinker would obviously be both more reasonable and less embarrassing than its intended function.
Seriously though, I was a little shaken up. Yet I continued with my posing and went back in line where I started to laugh a little. Then when I was called to the front for comparisons—my official number was lucky 13—-I gave a wave of acknowledgement to the audience as if to say ‘that’s right, I’m the tits lady!’ I likely lost points for that, but strangely found myself not caring about the judges. Aside: I came in #10 out of 23, whereas those in the know had placed me at about #6. Thanks gals! Far more unpleasant than this mishap was the combination of intense dehydration with sore feet and a near-migraine headache caused by shifting barometric pressure. I felt awful but made the most of it, trying to hit my poses as best I could and keep smiling. I prayed for it to be over so that I could have a barefoot glass of water and tan-removing shower. Goodness, I have so much more to tell you about the show day. The backstage interactions were particularly fascinating. This climactic—dare I call it epic?—segment of the FFG journey requires multiple entries, and I have invited friends in the audience to write guest blog descriptions of their experiences for next week; I will also be uploading a photo essay in the near future. At this point, however, I need to tell you more about my Debonairely Anxious Designer, whom I had previously referred to as PEAP (Photographer with the Eyes of an Arabian Princess). Although an incredibly important part of the FFG team, the recent MFA who designed my logo, t-shirts, invitations and business cards, and who photographed me training, posing, cooking, eating, having my hair and make-up done, and standing practically naked while a giant lady rubbed me all over with chicken wing sauce (translation, while G-Smash painted me with Jan Tana Ultra 1), was difficult to name. For he is a complex person, who does not reveal himself all at once. Unlike me, who stripped off loose jogging pants and a hoodie to flaunt my empty breast sacks with barely a moment’s hesitation. Will those pictures be posted as well? Yes, yes they will. In any case, I finally realized that my designer is more like a worried DAD than a princess. Despite being over a decade younger than me, DAD has been protective and stressed all week, almost barfing when my crystal incrusted bra flew off. He is the best nervous nelly friend and supporter I ever had! Thanks DAD! Why did I put myself through this torture? Well you already know why. I had to get on stage. In order to be a real bodybuilder or figure girl, one must compete. It is not enough to train and diet. This identity requires pushing the body to its limits, starving it before force feeding it and then draining it of all liquid. It requires suit adjusting, bikini bite applying, Dream Tan patting down. I had to walk across the stage in agony in order to have the authority to write about this process. I can now become an author and explore FFG at greater length. I accept, however, that I will never really be a figure girl, or at least not a particularly good one. My body refuses. It responds to the weather, and will not be tamed. It has limitations in terms of flexibility and birth defects that I am unable to overcome. In the end, I could not go all ‘tits and ass’ like many of the other girls, pushing it out there, strutting it around. In the end, there was a core part of me still inside my ripped, shaved, massaged, and cosmetized body that said ‘Fuck no, I won’t go. I won’t conform to this extreme objectification.’ So I ultimately failed to become a convincing figure girl, retaining my usual state of reserved awkwardness. Should I laugh or cry about that? I choose to roar, in keeping with the panther icon that DAD created for me. I am happy to report that Ogre feels the same way.
You did great! There were a few competitors who obviously shouldn’t have been there, but from our non-muscle-y perspective, we couldn’t see much difference between you and the top 5.
I have to say though I found some of the competition a bit disturbing. So many people looked like they were struggling to even stand up! But what was worst was the emcee seemed to love pointing out how fucked up people were – asking about how dehydrated they were and making light of it. When he asked two women about when they last had water, one could barely squeak out ‘yesterday’ and the other couldn’t even speak. But the worst one was the woman who couldn’t even remember how old her kids were.
Hope you are in recovery mode!
First of all – congratulations for getting on stage! It does sound like you had a bit of a rough ride during peak week, for which I am really sorry.
I was in the audience and didn’t know that you were you when it happened. I was so upset for you and then impressed beyond belief that you kept smiling. I would have never know it was your first show. The poise that you chose to show was awesome and you looked great!
I hope you have an amazing week of recovery and rest; you deserve al the best.
You get first place in my books!!
Congrats on your show. I’ve enjoyed reading about your journey and am pleased to hear that you haven’t whole heartedly jumped on the all “tits and ass” bandwagon — that you haven’t lost sight of who you really are. Enjoy the recoup!
You had me laughing and crying all within the same post, FFG. You are a hilarious writer, and I must say that I have probably only said that about 5 writers…ever.
Hope you get to recover from all that craziness and enjoy life. I’ve been where you are (in competition experience), and I can flat-out tell you that I enjoy “not competing” more than I do “competing.”
For the record, you do not have to compete to call yourself a “figure girl” or bodybuilder. It’s more about the lifestyle and training. Focus on the health and happiness aspects…ditch the rest. 🙂
Yours is the first blog I’ve ever read that truly makes the figure competition experience an interesting one to read about. I’ve been “in” bodybuilding culture and out of it, but the only other compelling piece of writing on the subject was Sam Fussel’s memoir of becoming a bodybuilder. I wanted so badly to find something written by a woman going through the whole competition process, and I’m so glad I found your blog. Your self-deprecating humor is hilarious, but I have nothing but respect for you – as a competitor and a writer. Thanks so much for sharing your experience like this; I look forward to reading more of your blog!
Thanks for your reply, as I am always interested in what fellow bodybuilders think of this blog. I liked Fussel’s book very much and also wonder just how different the motivations and experiences are for male competitors. Any male competitors or bodybuilders reading this can feel free to provide information!
I’m impressed! You’ve managed the almost impsoisble.