The Monkey Wrench

Somehow its February. I can honestly say 2018 has been moving at rapid speed for me. I was traveling the majority of the month with some fleeting down time with my dog Stella and husband Gavin.

Prior to the New Year I had a conversation over a burger (ironically) that led to some decisions in regards to competition in 2018. Due to my qualification at the Iron Ore Classic in the fall I was going to train for the Vancouver Pro/Am in July. However, there have been a lot of changes in the organization. Instead of the BCABBA I'll be competing with the CPA, which comes with some different rules and mandatory poses.

I missed the thrill of the prep anyways so I thought I don't want my first experience with this organization to be in July. I wanted to do a regional show first. Introducing the Leigh Brandt Muscle Classic in March. That became my goal...somewhat. I entered January with the kind of sort of mind set that I was possibly maybe going to do a show in March.


This is where the problems started. Lack of focus.

I went home for a visit to Ontario. I called it my last hoorah. I still went to the gym regularly, but I indulged in a whisky tasting and other culinary fineries. 

Then I flew to Orlando for a work shoot. I called it my last hoorah. This was my final week before clamping down with a more restrictive competition diet.

About halfway through that shoot I was ill. Quite literally. That flu that has been running rampant decided that I would be its next recipient. The final days of the shoot I knew I wasn't fun. I was up all night with chills and a cough. I was socializing as that's part of the experience, but could feel myself increasingly getting run down. I missed 3 gym days in a row on that shoot.

When I got home I didn't move off the couch for 18 hours. In total that flu bug meant 7 days off the gym. My longest stint away in 2.5 years. It can not be coincidence that at the time I was taking the worst care of myself with diet and that is when I became super ill.

My competition dreams for March were waning, but I decided the call on that would be made by my Coach Ondrej. I see myself everyday. It's hard to tell exactly where my physique stands in regards to being competition ready. I can't help it, but I don't compete just for the experience. I enter the stage knowing I gave 100% and I'm competing for 1st.


There is never any reason to lie to your Coach about your performance. Ever. Mainly because they know before you've even said anything. Their job is analyzing and critiquing your physique. So if you've missed 7 days or put the all you can eat into the all you can eat buffet...they can tell.

Ondrej was encouraging. Prior to the months hiccup I had been pretty steady with my off season nutrition and certainly wasn't missing time at the gym. Just like you don't make all your gains in a day...You don't lose them either. Your psyche will tell you otherwise. That is why a Coach is key.

So although it would be a much shorter prep and therefore a little more difficult...We decided we could do it.

Cue this last week where once again I was doing the morning show live from Florida. Trust me it was amazing. As much as its an intense schedule I am constantly reminded how lucky I am that during that week those activities and views are my assignments and office. Within one week I traveled from West Palm Beach to Fort Lauderdale to Miami to Boca Raton. We worked 14 to 16 hour days. It was a lot of fun as you can imagine. I even got to check out the most indulgent hotel room (Penthouse at the Hilton Bentley-Former home of the Kardashians) ...As my producer put it...It quite possibly may have been the first time real work was done in the Kardashian penthouse.

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I started off strong with squeezing in my gym visits. I opted for healthy dining options. However, with 14 to 16 hour work days I didn't plan it well. That's when my brain was like well if you don't do LBMC you could do the Vancouver Island show right after it.

There lies the problem. Lack of focus.

Could I have ate restrictive and made sure to get all my workouts in. Absolutely. I'm a believer in no excuses. I chose swimming in the penthouse pool over a sweat sesh. I chose a 20 minute power nap over 20 minutes of cardio I could have squeezed in. I chose getting up at 6am instead of 5am.

I chose.

I really feel it was my wishy washy mindset over the March deadline that really allowed me to waver on getting the work done. This is why when it comes to goal setting having a clear and concise goal is one of the key ingredients to your success. If it doesn't have a deadline you aren't keeping yourself accountable.

In addition it comes down to more than motivation. Motivation is a fleeting emotion. I have a friend who just started a YouTube channel called Supercharger Wellness and it took him saying something I already knew to have a revelation over my progress this last month.

Motivation comes and goes. However, we use it as a tool we think we are always going to have. Motivation will fail you. Determination is what makes the difference. Determination is what would have gotten me to choose the treadmill over the pool, to choose to set the alarm clock to 5, to choose the cardio over the nap.

It is the time of year that many have seemingly fallen off the wagon when it comes to their resolutions and goals. Based on my performance for aiming toward a competition I would have to admittedly include myself among those many.

The beauty is realizing that its never to late and that if you decide to infuse your life with that determination NOW you can still reach those goals. Just because you feel like they may have faded away or that you derailed...don't use that as an excuse to not get back up and keep going.

I've reprogrammed my mindset. I know that I can do it. So March 24th is my deadline to hit the stage again. It's officially 6 weeks and 5 days away. It's ambitious, but so long as I can make it there with a healthy game plan it's going to happen.

So as the circulating meme has alluded. January was your free trail month. If you left your goal behind already don't use that an excuse to wait all the way until 2019 to try again. Just start now. You've got this!

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