Bikini Prep Series

Bodybuilding Saved My Life and What Being a Sponsored Athlete Would Mean For Me

WARNING: This blog post is RAW, and has triggers of drinking, eating disorders, suicide and depression.

One year ago I was thriving financially, getting tons of lucrative shifts at my bar job, but I was dying slowly inside.

I was working a lot, and making more money than I ever had before. I started working with my coach, and dabbled in the idea of competing.

But, I was also drinking alcohol nearly every night…ok, actually every night. I had just gone through a traumatic couple of relationships, and alcohol and the gym was the only thing that eased my pain. I was also training for a marathon. Yea, I know, it all sounds messed up!

I wasn’t tracking my alcohol, and siting around 150-155lbs at 5’7″.

I kinda felt on top of the world though. I was making money, it was no issue for one of the first times in my life. I was planning a vacation to Florida to visit my Mom, who I missed terribly after she moved the year before. Rent was no issue. I had a couple close friends and no boy problems. But I was drinking every day. Whether I was working or not, working out or not, I would crack that bottle of wine, tequila or vodka open every night and tell myself I deserved it for working so hard.

Marathon training intensified, and I was working hard in the gym. Alcohol helped me get through long, late night shifts, and customers always wanted to buy shots so it helped fill my tip bucket. So I thought, I earned it, I ran 10 miles today! I was kind-is following my plan from my coach, not tracking my drinks, guesstimating macros instead of weighing my food, and thinking I was “trying”. I went to visit my Mom and had a great time, so great I actually want to try to move down that direction because I feel it fits me so much more that freezing cold, no job availability Rhode Island.

Here is where things started to change. I came back from Florida and work was slower, and I had to start dipping into my savings to pay rent. I splurged on things I didn’t really need. I had a spending habit and a lifestyle I was used to. But my cheese started to move (read the book “Who Moved My Cheeese?” if you have no idea what I’m talking about.) While it wasn’t awful, it wasn’t great. Then my bar shift began to get cut and I was only waitressing, which wasn’t awful, but wasn’t as dependable. All my shifts started to fall on holidays or snowstorms that made the roads impassable. My savings was wiped clean in a few short months. I was struggling.

I had sent a show to my coach that I was interested in and she was ready to start my prep in January. Well, after getting the rona and being out of work, snowstorms messing up my jam, and being inexplicably cut off the bar, I wasn’t in the greatest mental state. I would drink, eat whatever, and then feel guilty that I would let everyone down and would go back to my old habits of purging. I would drink so much I would feel sick for 2 days. My weight pretty much stayed around 150 and I was upset I wasn’t losing, after all, we had a show date of April 30 now.

My job was unstable, only having 2 waitressing shifts a week, I started to apply for graphic design jobs again, with nothing but rejection and feelings of worthlessness, and started working on my wedding photography business again. Desperate, I fell for a marketing scam promising results and put $2,000 on a credit card into some stupid scam that would make you “bargain bride” ads, and tell you to search for your target bride and then friend request them and message them. Ew. So. Cringy. (If you have any questions about this, message me so you don’t fall for the same!)

I tried to get other jobs, but they were false promises. I was still doing better where I was and had my whole week free to work out, work on weddings and prep….and drink.

It wasn’t until after my birthday in February that it hit me. I’m going to be the fat girl on stage if I don’t change something. Or I let my coach down and drop the whole idea. Or I change my mindset, body and life.

After my birthday binge eating/ drinking, I had no alcohol left in the house and treats were gone. I only had healthy food and started stalking some preps on YouTube during cardio for meal ideas and prep ideas. I would have 1 drink on date nights (I might have forgot to mention I started dating a kind, caring, supportive, loyal, awesome man that December!) and that was it. I signed up for the show, not on April 30, but 2 weeks later in the OCB instead of WBFF. And what do you know, my weight started dropping like crazy. I swear those first few weeks I think I lost 10 lbs. I was weighing my food, tracking, doing lots of cardio and having my 1 drink a week. At first it was hard, I missed it and I craved it. I wasn’t “cool” anymore at work, even though I told people WHY I wan’t drinking. My friends found me boring, but my boyfriend stuck by me when I told him NO ANYTHING. No treats, not food or drink surprises, everything is planned, tracked and weighed. And I kept dropping.

While my work life got worse and I started to really go broke, my body was transforming into something I had never seen before. I would cry about struggling to pay the rent, and everyone said don’t do the show, it’s an expensive sport, but I had given up drinking entirely and it showed. I felt prouder than I ever had. My clothes were basically falling off, I WAS going to be on that stage.

Suit: Angel Competition Bikinis, Shoes: The Shoe Fairy

Of course on my road to show day I had a ton of doubts that I would be ready, a few confidence breakdowns and struggles, but seeing the changes made me not give up. I was a more positive person, I was eating healthy and inspiring people around me to do the same. My boyfriend even lost 20 lbs during my prep!

As I drove to my hotel for the show, I felt unstoppable, a confidence I hadn’t had since maybe my teenage years. It didn’t matter what happened in the show, what placing I got (ok, I didn’t want to come in last!), I had lost 30 lbs, was healthy, and confident. I was inspiring everyone around me! They all asked how I did it and how they could do the same. I felt like I could take on the world, and I felt I could do better!

Well lo and behold, I took first in my class in Masters 35+ and 3rd in Debut! What a rush it was being on stage and making friends backstage! I had such confidence, a renewed sense of self-worth, and knew this was my thing and where I belong. I was ready to do it again, and again we did! 10 weeks later I competed in OCB Hall of Fame and placed 2nd in Open and 3rd in Masters 35+!

But a lot happened between the two shows, I messed up big time, and not on my diet. I accepted a new bar job and was promised lucrative weekend shifts, plus shifts during the week. After weighing pros and cons, and tormenting myself over the idea of leaving a job I loved for something new, I took the plunge….And I learned the hard way the grass it not always greener. Not only was the money not great, the customers are vile, and I get yelled at for eating, peeing too much, not being flirty enough with customers (aka the owners friends…I had no idea this dude was the owner) and when there is nothing to do, trying to distract myself from the fact that it’s FREEZING in there by looking at my phone (studying for the NASM, not texting)! Ok I get that you aren’t supposed to be on your phone at work, so don’t at me for that, but when you’re suck on a deserted back bar having to split with 2 other bartenders that are also bored out of their minds….what exactly are you supposed to do?

Then I finally got somewhere on a remote graphic design job at great pay, but it is only part time. I started this week and absolutely LOVE it. Pray for me it goes full time, because the thing I dislike about graphic design is that everything is a contract that ends in a few months with no benefits.

Through prep, I have pretty much been completely broke, scraping and struggling to survive. But I prevailed.

Now I believe I have ruined myself financially by making the choice to leave my job, knowing there is a slim chance I will be able to get it back (I’m going to go try so keep your fingers crossed)!

After the last show, my coach and I talked about where I want to go in this sport, and I said I will be an Olympian. I will be a personal trainer and nutrition coach. I will work harder than anyone you know. And we agreed I need to get on an NPC stage this year.

So despite the fact that I pretty much have no income, and cry every day feeling depressed, the gym and pushing in prep is what is keeping me going. It’s really all I have right now. Bodybuilding is the only thing ever in my life that I have put 150% into and it has given me 150% back of what I put in. Every job I have had has pretty much berated me, knocked me down, lied and made false promises, and made me feel worthless. My father and half my family wants nothing to do with me…and blames me for it. My Mom is the only person who loves me, and now she lives half way across the country. I feel alone 95% of the time because all my friends are busy with their husbands, living with their boyfriends, and having successful careers while I can’t even pay my rent or electric bill and nobody wants me to live with them.

Prep is the only thing keeping me going, it can’t be taken away from me.

I have on my bathroom mirror: I will do whatever it takes.

Because in 14 weeks I WILL step onto the NPC stage, tighter, leaner and better than I’ve ever been.

I will do whatever it takes.

Even though inside I feel hopeless, that money will never come, that I spend the time I’m not at the gym crying, that suicide has crossed my mind a few times, I will do whatever it takes.

I know this blog might seem negative, but I want to be honest and real with anyone that is following me. I want to show you that if I can prevail, so can you. If I lost the weight and quit drinking myself to death, so can you. If I can step on the NPC stage with basically no job and no help, so can you.

I will be an Olympian one day, and it all starts here.

I will be able to finish my NASM while growing my design/ marketing careers and my wedding photography business will blossom again.

I will do whatever it takes.

I will prevail.

And so can you.

Oh and I did enter to be an Angel Competition Bikinis Sponsored Athlete! While the negative self-doubter in me says I have no chance…..I mean, why not try! It would be the thing to save my prep, and if you never try you never know!

Bikini Prep Series

Peak Week Round 2 | OCB Hall of Fame Bikini Prep

Ok y’all we made it to PEAK WEEK! There’s been a LOT of doubt in my mind about so many aspects of my life, mostly feeling lost, sad and confused about my work and “career” (if you could even say I have one) and what the heck I’m actually doing. But the one thing I have NOT second guessed or deviated from is my commitment to fitness and competing. It’s leading me to think maybe this is where I belong for work, because nothing else seems to well…work.

Start of peak week 7/15/22 vs 5/6/22

Not only am I so excited about the improved package and posing I’m bringing, but I’m so excited to put on my sparkles and get up on stage again. It’s crazy that in 10 weeks, while on a caloric deficit, we most definitely recomped and put on muscle. I pushed my heart out every dang day in that gym, and through cardio, and prepping food to eat around my crazy work schedule. You think prep is hard? Try doing it when you work on your feet until 3 am, and have to split your food up to get you through working out, cardio and work, plus the little amount of sleep I’ve been getting. I’m pretty sure I’m too old for this now!

Peak week 2 vs. Peak week 1

So needless to say if it’s one thing I’m happy about it’s how I look! Here are some of my favorite meals I’ve been eating before peak week:

Extra lean ground beef tacos with Mr. Carb tortillas
PB and Banana French Toast for refeed days!
Shrimp, veggies and jasmine rice for work
Bison burger for 4th of July!
Nuts and more, PB Fit and protein frosting rice cake dessert
Cod, sweet potato, asparagus
Apple PB Protein oats

Ok, so let the peak week BEGIN! I’m going to spend today trying to relax, because I feel like I got hit by a bus after work last night. If anyone has any career advice for me, drop it down below or send me a message on Instagram @aliciaataylor_ or @alicialairdcreative 😍

Next post will be another day by day documentation of peak week weight, food pictures feelings!

XO

Alicia

Bikini Prep Series

3 Weeks Out | OCB Bikini Prep 2022 | Certified Personal Trainer and Nutrition Coach

So I’ve had a lot on my mind lately but first I want to start with a prep update! I did a little comparison between 4 weeks out this prep vs. last prep and OMG my mind is blown! Even though the scale has gone up this week, I’m still 13 lbs less than I was at this point last prep and LOOK at the difference!

4 Weeks Out Prep 2 (left) vs. 4 Weeks Out Prep 1
4 Weeks Out Prep 2 (left) vs. 4 Weeks Out Prep 1
4 Weeks Out Prep 2 (left) vs. 4 Weeks Out Prep 1

So even when you think you’re not progressing, check your progress pics, that’s what they’re there for! Not only do I look better but my posing has come a long way. I’m still probably sticking to the blue suit again for show day, but I will bring both again just in case!

And here is this weeks check in at 3 weeks out. Even though the scale is still up, Mother Nature came, I haven’t been getting enough sleep and I have had the weight of life on my mind which I will share.

Trying to find more even light in my house!
Whew! Can’t see the tan lines!!

So even though the scale is up, and I’m stressed and feel….constipated….and Mother Nature is still here, looking at these makes me feel good. I’m also still on a refeed, but a little bit lower of one, and have been 100% on plan. I listen to Savana Sharp’s podcast a lot while I do cardio, and she talks a lot about positive energy, the Law of Attraction and Mindset, which are things my coach also really emphasizes and I have a lot of work to do on. My mindset used to be soooo negative. It was doom, gloom, nothing will work out. When I change my mindset, good things happen. When I was doing cardio Friday, Savana talked about The Secret (read the book, must watch the movie!) and it reminded me of an Anne of Green Gables quote:

To me, this makes me think of my job. As most of you know I’ve been a bartender/ wedding photographer/ graphic designer. I graduated with my degree in Graphic Design in 2015 and worked many miserable corporate contract jobs with long commutes and days in a dark cubicle with little activity. Coming home I’d be tired, but I’d try to go to the gym or go running, then cook a healthy (but most likely over-portioned) dinner and drink a bottle of wine.

I will do a whole “My Fitness Journey” post at sometime but for this one I want to just get to the point!

So pre-2020 I was cocktail waitressing, and had about 25 weddings a year I was photographing. I was living on my own, single, making pretty good money. When The 2020 happened and both my jobs were not relevant anymore I became really depressed. What do I do with my life now? I tried applying for graphic design jobs but was unsuccessful. So I just hung out at home, ran a lot and worked out and kept my weight pretty stable even though I was drinking…A LOT.

When I could go back to work I started bartending and cocktail waitressing and money was GOOD. I was on a high, I stopped doing weddings because I just wanted to be at the club all the time and bringing in that cash money. I figured my life plan was so this as long as I was hot enough, photography on the side, save save save, buy a small house or condo, then retire to Florida and do some photography and bartend down there at a traditional place.

Well needless to say, the dynamic at work shifted and all my shifts were taken away and cut in half. On top of that, due to people being more interested in drinking at work then serving the customers, it became VERY slow, so money has been very tight since and I’ve been basically hardly getting by.

So now I’m back to…who am I? What do I do for a career as opposed to hopping from bar job to bar job? I did get a new bar job, but it’s longer hours and still stressful, and I can’t see myself doing it long term (unless I get the day shifts which are short and sweet!) and after my first bikini competition I got thinking….how can I make this lifestyle…my life? I had messages all the time “how did you do it?” “What do you eat?” And I started wondering if it’s possible to make a reasonable living helping people through health and fitness, still have time to workout because I’m not at a traditional 9-5, and live and breathe fitness while helping people achieve what I have. Since my end goal is to move to Florida, I think it would be wonderful to help active 55+ people with fitness (especially fellow golfers work on their game)!

So I signed up for my NASM Certified Personal Trainer and Nutrition Coach courses! This is the first step toward my goals! I’m not sure what exactly I’d like to do in the industry, maybe start as a trainer and nutrition coach, coach online, and then someday direct programs or manage a team or trainers.

My next step is looking into getting my Masters Degree in Nutrition to have a more official title and understanding on how to help people make healthy but tasty choices and see that healthy eating doesn’t have to be gross or boring. I think I’d also like to use my design skills to write and publish cookbooks and healthy eating guides (Creative Eating Like a Bikini Competitor, Easy Clean Eating for Beginners, Eating for Health and Fitness Over 55….just some thoughts, nothing final!) and fitness guides (Fitness For Beginners, The Gym for Beginners) because I know that when I first started I’d just go down the line of gym machines with no clue, and I know a lot of people do that.

Anyway, enough rambling (although getting my thoughts out is why I have this blog hehe) it’s time to have my last snack, get to bed early and start working toward my dreams!

Keep dreaming!

Alicia Laird

Future IFBB Pro and NASM-CPT/ NC

Bikini Prep Series

Bikini Prep Series | 7 Weeks Out

This past Saturday marked 7 weeks out! I started a job at a new bar and picked up a bunch of coverage shifts which is leaving me pretty sore and tired, but everyone there is soooo supportive. No one waves treats and fries in front of me or eggs me on to “just have a bite or a shot”. They don’t make fun of me for my meal prep bag and my boss even offered to heat up my chicken for me when he saw me eating it cold. Also bartenders aren’t allowed to drink at all so I don’t have to constantly explain myself to people!

Since I’m starting to get back on my feet, I signed up for the show officially and booked my tanning and paid the deposit. I’m going to be doing my own hair again and makeup this time so I’ll have to buy some lashes, contour and foundation but that shouldn’t be that big of a deal, my coach is awesome at makeup.

Weight is still the same at 134.4, even though I’ve definitely indulged in extra bites here and there and a piece of dark chocolate pretty much daily, which stops as of now. This time at least I don’t have to lose 20 lbs in 7 weeks, as I don’t see myself going much lower than like 127 ish for my 5’7” frame. I have put on some muscle in the last few weeks and am feeling great! Coach didn’t cut any food yet but gave me an extra 15 min of cardio which is fine with me because I love walking outside in the summer in my neighborhood!

I feel like I still have some good lines going and can’t wait to see what we bring to the stage this time!

In other news, golf lessons have been super fun and help me get some more steps and movement on Mondays, plus the outfits are super cute!

My mom comes to visit from Florida next weekend so I’m super excited to see her and will probably take her on my walks with me and to the gym. It’s so nice to see she’s so proud of me for this competition journey, I’m hoping that I can help her do her macros and build a workout plan as I learn more and get closer to my CPT and Nutrition certifications. I just want to let anyone out there know, you CAN do it. You CAN choose to work out and what you put in your mouth. You just have to commit, and decided to do it. Push the chips away, push the booze away, and push the toxic people away that force that shit on you. If situations arise that are food and drink centered and you don’t want it, just pop in for a bit. Birthday outings have been difficult for me, and I literally just went to one where wine and food was ordered FOR ME and I should have just left. The food was actually very healthy salmon, broccoli and rice with mango salsa…something I can have! But people ordering drinks for me…nope. Not cool. Now before I decide to do anything I’m going to make sure nothing will be forced. I’m going to tell people no means no or I don’t go. Simple.

Bikini Prep Series

4 Weeks Out | Second Bikini Contest

Ok so I know I haven’t been posting as much but let me tell you, I’ve been BUSY! I started a new job with longer hours on my feet leading to more hunger and extreme irritability. I’m still stressed out and behind financially, but every day I’m doing what I can to remedy that. My first week at the new job I took a bunch of extra coverage shifts but that knocked me on my butt totally after that. I’m also studying for my Certified Personal Trainer class with NASM and making time for doggy walks, self care, spending time with my Mom when she came to visit, and my boyfriend. I know I can’t bartend like this forever, so some other career path is definitely needed, and I’d love to help other people achieve fitness and health goals like I have. Also I’ve put things into perspective in that I TRULY do want to move to Florida in the next few years, unless my boyfriend has more of an emotional commitment and we are planning a future (as opposed to him saying I’ll be buying my own house in a few years…ok then…it will be in Florida)! With Personal Training I think I would really enjoy working with a 55+ active adult population, and don’t see myself coaching and training bikini competitors even though I am 100% all about competing into the future myself! But who knows!

I’ve also put together a list of goals for summer for my mindset, spirituality and general well-being.

I’ve been going deep into my mental side lately (I’m pretty mental hehe) and after talking a bit with my Mom there is definitely some positive changes that I can make. Socially I usually avoid everyone and ignore and don’t make eye contact with people. A lot of this comes from just being creeped on by men. My Mom was telling me just say hi to people, it will make you happier! And you know what, as long as they’re not drooling men, I have been and it instantly does give me a dose of energy and makes me feel like a nicer and more outgoing person.

Second, is I swear WAY too much. Like WAY TOO MUCH. I have known this for a while and have just embraced it as a quirky trait, but if I want a professional training career with active older adults, I want to be more respectful, humble and welcoming, and not sound like a trailer park is coming out of my mouth every 5 seconds.

Ok so on to what you probably really came here for…PREP UPDATES.

We are pushing this week because I have a few days off in a row with one shift being a shorter day shift that’s not so hard. We added cardio and lowered macros because my weight has been sitting right at 132-133. Well after 3 intense and exhausting days and a really bad night sleep, it shot up to almost 135!?!? What!? I’m so confused, and have not been feeling wonderful about this. Anyway, here is this weeks check in!

Coach says don’t worry about the scale because we look good and we will be ready. So I’m enjoying some refeed carbs and fats (yayyyy extra taters and peanut butter!) and trying to spend some time on stretching and relaxing.

On the refeed note! Last prep when I got a refeed I’d go out to a restaurant and eat something (still healthy, just restaurants are harder to track exactly) and had 3 glasses of wine. This prep I’ve continued to eat the same things during the refeed, just more of them. So more rice, a top to my low calorie bread burger, more sweet taters and more oatmeal!

We’re not playing! I will be a pro, I will stay positive about my career, talents and worth. I will be successful!

I will buy a house somewhere warm and be an IFBB Pro, successful personal trainer and nutritionist and make a difference in peoples lives the way I have made changes in mine to achieve my goals. It’s never too late, and dreams have no timeframe!

Happy Training!

Alicia Laird, Future IFBB Pro

Bikini Prep Series

Bikini Prep 7.5 Weeks Out | Show 2

So we are back to being almost 8 weeks out! I’m still hovering around stage weight despite all of the guilty indulgences I’ve had from stress the past week or so. I had half a brownie bomb at work Friday, then cupcakes at a wedding Saturday. Glad I’m no longer drinking my feelings and stresses, but the sugar monster is definitely coming out to play. Checked in with coach on Monday at 136, but then had a lot of 💩 and am back to 134.2. At 5’7” I feel like anything below 130 on me might not look so great and will look too lean.

After being the leanest I’ve ever been, I definitely see areas that need more building so I’m thankful for the extra calories and hope they go straight to pure muscle on my glutes and shoulders! I’ve also been working my abs more because I slacked on them so bad this past year I definitely didn’t have as many lines as others on stage, I was just flat. The good thing was that was the first show and now I can see what’s under all the body fat I had and can see where we need to work!

So we’re definitely in a good place to keep some gains coming and get in some extra credit efforts in the gym!

Off topic, my first blog on here was a ballet blog as an adult ballet dancer! I’ve recently started taking class at home again, even though my floor set up is not ideal, because all of the local classes are week to week instead of having drop in options.

Still got it!

Macros haven’t changed this week and cardio is still 45 min 5 days a week which is much nicer than the hour I was doing 7 weeks out last time because we had so much body fat to lose. Still trying to figure out eating at my new job, but I’ll keep you guys updated with recipes and the bartender bikini prep life as we go!

I’ve had a few chocolate lapses this week because for some reason my cravings are crazy, but trying to get used to being hungry during long shifts and just dealing with it again.

I have seen a change in my waist, abs and glutes for the better while we’ve been eating more than last prep, and I know those are some areas I need to build in. I want to compete as much as possible this year and get that pro card, and see where I can go with this, so the little bites and tastes are being cut. No more “one fry” at work (thankfully temptations aren’t available at my new job!)

I’m ready for change, and will be successful. I will come in tighter and leaner for this show and I will get my pro card!

-Alicia Laird, Future OCB PRO!

Bikini Prep Series

Bikini Bodybuilding Show 2 Prep | OCB Hall of Fame 2022

So last week I allowed myself to have a few treats and it’s perfectly ok. I stayed pretty close to my macros, and enjoyed some chocolate after my cheating 2 days post show!

I allowed myself to have wine, pizza, mozzarella sticks, sushi, donuts, Cadbury eggs…whatever. It’s out of my system and I’m ready to be back on the wagon for my next show before we go into a building season.

Debut Class B

Looking at my stage photos I’m SO proud of how I did and placed! I’m so happy I placed at all! First in Masters Class B and Third in Debut Class B! I also see where I can improve! I need to work on those shoulder caps (lateral and posterior especially), growing the glutes, and tightening the waistline coming in leaner. My abs could use more work too because when I was in my building season last summer I was not only drinking too much, but skipping ab workouts. Adding some weighted ab exercise and more ab training will get my lines to pop more!

Monday 5/23/22, First check in post show

Weight: 136.6, 1.6 lbs above stage weight

Not mad about this at all! Now I’m not going to be updating my weight and documenting daily like I was during peak week, but I will do weekly updates from check ins and start posting more of my workouts, food, and fitness tips. I’d love to use my graphic design skills to make infographics, custom fitness illustrations, and designs for the fitness industry. If only I could get a JOB as a graphic designer for a fitness or supplement company or really anything in the bodybuilding world. I’ll keep dreaming and manifesting. Everything I need is within me. On that note I’m going to explore a new opportunity tonight and am nervous but super excited. Can’t compete when you’re broke!

The good thing is we are going into this (or continuing this) prep with more food and less cardio and the scale has been good to me. I’ve been able to have more energy and really push weights in the gym. I’ve been trying to focus on the muscle contracting as I lift. I really see where I need more roundness in my glute and shoulder muscles and am breathing and focusing on them as I work.

Another thing I’m working on is my NASM-CPT and Nutrition Coach certifications. If the bar doesn’t work out, I could work as a trainer and NC at a gym which would leave my weekends open for weddings and competing!

I feel like good things are coming and I just have to be patient, keep working hard, and keep putting myself out there. In my career, I have a lot of talent and things to offer. Just because I’m not appreciated now doesn’t mean that I won’t find somewhere else to appreciate me.

Photography, design, my illustration idea, and a new start at a new place are exactly what I need. Going into this next show at a better starting point is going to help me come in better than before!

Bikini Prep Series, fitness, food

You look amazing! How did you do it???!

The number one question I’ve been asked lately “what have you been doing?” “What are you eating?” “Send me everything you eat!” Well friends, that’s why I have this blog! It’s all here!

While on bikini contest prep, I have adhered to macros, workouts and cardio tailored to me by my coach based on how I’m looking/ feeling and show timeline. I will admit that I was NOT 100% compliant until about 2 months before the show, and even then I had a few slip ups.

There is no magic pill. It takes dedication and no excuses. You can’t binge drink and eat pizza every day and expect it to just happen!

#1 ALCOHOL

Up until about a month before the show I was having one alcoholic drink with dinner with my boyfriend per week. Before that it was a couple per week and maybe a shot or 2 at work (I’m 100% over that now). I cheated on my birthday with lots of wine, lobster ravioli, sushi, lobster rolls and more wine in February. I really doubted I could do any of this for quite a while. I loved my booze, am encouraged to drink at work, and love date nights with my boyfriend! Then one day it just clicked. What am I doing with my life? Do I want to be like these drunk people acting foolish and going nowhere in life? Or do I want to be healthier, feel amazing, change my life, figure out my purpose and true career goals. Well the answer was clear. Immediately, all the leftover Tito’s in my house was poured out. I practiced in the mirror “no thank you, I’m prepping to win a bikini bodybuilding contest” when booze and bad food was shoved in my face at work. At first it was hard, I craved my relaxing glass of wine at the end of the night. I was asked to go out and get wasted by my friends. I said no. I was 100% compliant to Malayna’s guidelines and pulled a 360° turn around (her words)! The weight from quitting drinking alone fell off. The first 10 lbs were easy. After a few weeks I didn’t crave alcohol at all. Even now, after indulging in post show treats and a few glasses of wine, I noted my goal wasn’t to get drunk, but to just enjoy a social drink. I also noted I will 100% take chocolate over wine any day!!! Not drinking alcohol is something I don’t even think about anymore, and I don’t miss it. I never want to act like a fool (it’s a good time to be the only sober one and see the mess take place) or wake up feeling like I got hit by a bus hungover. Your girl has too many goals!

2 days post show and feeling strong in the gym!

Ok so now that my alcohol speech is over (it really did make a huge difference how I got here) let’s move on.

#2 WATER

Since I started working with Malayna, I have been attempting to drink a gallon of water a day as our protocol. Literally, for months it was the hardest dang thing ever! I’ve hit it a few times, but not consistent until probably around February. Like anything, the more I planned for it the easier it got. During peak week I was drinking a gallon and a half a day, so yea the gallon is easy now!

#3 WEIGHTS

Pick things up and put them down. Heavy things. Don’t be afraid to lift HEAVY (with good form of course)! I’d always go to the gym and lift 5-10 lbs and do hours of cardio because I was afraid of bulking. You will not get bulky! You want those muscles to show when you lose the fat and lifting heavy burns more fat! My coach gives me my workouts tailored to me and my goals. I’ve never missed a workout and have always been 100% in the gym even on vacation and toward the end of prep when I just want to sleep.

#3 CARDIO

No you can’t avoid cardio completely (except in off season, when I was building it was like 10 minutes a day and a 10k step goal) and if you’re prepping for a show it can get intense. My highest cardio of peak week was 90 minutes of incline walking. No HIIT, no sprinting, no running. Just walk. Walking is the best thing to lose weight. Seriously. Most of my prep I was doing 45-75 minutes 6 days a week. This is also mostly my own fault for not complying with the no alcohol thing. This time around we’re starting with 45 min a day and seeing what my weight does post show.

45 min a day is great! I loveeeee a nice sunny day, a good Podcast in my earbuds and a walk around my neighborhood! Those 90 min sessions were friggin tough, but I just had to watch some YouTube and push.

#4 DIET

Macros. What’s a macro? A very common question I’ve been asked lately! Macros, or Macronutrients, are Protein, Carbohydrates and Fats that you consume through the day. Micronutrients are vitamins and minerals. My coach sets my Macro goals for me based on what my body is doing and how far out we are. Peak week my carbs got as low as 80 grams a day to dry me out. Currently we’re at 145 grams a day on diet break/ reverse before we push into this next show. Now I see what I’m capable of I’m ready to beat my last package!

A useful macro calculator online: https://www.katyhearnfit.com/macro-calculator

Again, there is no magic pill. It takes work, time and dedication. The biggest excuse I hear is I don’t have time. If it’s that important to you to look good, you make time. We all have jobs (I have 3), commitments, bills, etc. The only thing I don’t have to worry about that a lot of people do is kids. But I also know plenty of women who have kids and also compete and live a healthy life for their families and themselves. Put yourself first for once!

HOW??!

Take an hour a week to meal prep for yourself. Put your hair in a messy bun and rock out to some T Swift and cook! My 1 hour meal prep is coming on the blog soon!

Take 10 minutes in the morning and 10 minutes before bed to plan. Failure to plan is planning to fail. Before I go to bed I think of what is left in my fridge, what’s going to go bad, what am I craving, and start thinking of meals for the next day.

Groceries: Make a list! I’ll be providing my grocery store staples on and off prep. I actually find on prep I spend less at the grocery store. Unless I plan on making something special, my meals and groceries are pretty much the same every week.

Workout: Write up a workout plan or find a free one online! I’ll also be blogging and writing up plans for busy people so stay tuned! I love the YouTube workouts by Pamela RF. They’re quick and fun! She even has calendars on her social that tell you exactly what to do. There’s always 10 minutes if you want it bad enough. Start with 30 minutes 3x a week.

Walk: Park farther away, walk to the mailbox, walk the dog (heck, walk the cat, kids, hamster….whatever) walk for 10 minutes at lunch after you eat, walk around the block after dinner. Start with trying to get 5k steps a day, then 6k, then 7k etc!

Water: Go on Amazon and buy a half gallon water bottle. They’re pretty (mines pink!) and easier to carry than a 1 gallon. Try to finish it around 1:00, then fill her up! I use mine to measure and just pour water out of it to make sugar free lemonade, drink my BCAA’s and my greens and reds. Anything to get the water in!

My next post will be a full day of eating, with a video so you can see everything I ate on Wednesday, May 18 while on diet break after my contest.

Breakfast!

What is next for me?

I’m not going to lie, prep has got me in such a routine that I almost feel lost without daily checks ins and posing. I guess I’m feeling the “post show blues” even though I’m still on prep. Because we have 10 weeks and I’m starting in a better place. I definitely want to make some tweaks to posing and make it more fluid and dancer-like (seeing as I am a ballet dancer!) and I have some great ideas for my next I-Walk! I started at the gym today even though I didn’t have my heels.

I also have been looking for a new apartment since the rumor around town is that we’re getting a 22% increase I can’t afford by myself. All of my friends are married or live with their boyfriends so a roomate isn’t an option. I spent all day calling apartments and hearing the same thing….we’re full. Even if we weren’t full, we start at $2,000 a month. SERIOUSLY!? Even the ghetto of West Warwick where I’d have to live among druggies is full. Literally everything is FULL. So I had a minor panic attack because since my shifts at work were taken away and the only 2 shifts I have left are really half shifts because they’re shared, and the lack of customer service because everyone is focused on drinking and partying is driving away customers is leaving me almost making less than when I worked full time in graphic design. I had a minor “what am I going to do with my life?!” Meltdown today and came up with some solutions.

1. Weddings are picking up! Yay! I’d like something to do during the week to earn money though.

2. Fitness photo shoots? Travel?

3. Remote design work! It’s everywhere!

4. Custom illustration. Pets, dancers, weddings, whatever. Bikini show day illustration??? I don’t think ANYONE has done that!!

5. NASM- Finish CPT and Nutrition Coach classes! I could do this at my gym during the week since I pretty much live there!

Ok that’s all I have for now. For my background, I have a degree in Fine Art, a degree in graphic design, and have been running my own wedding photography business since 2015. I have more talent and skills and don’t get drunk and give terrible service at a bar where I’m unappreciated (yes I’m being a salty beach, I’m just fed up). I know my worth, and I want to make a difference in peoples lives by helping them find the same Zen I have with living my fittest, healthiest life.

No matter what hurdles I have to face I will do it.

10 weeks to beat this package, IT’S GO TIME!

Bikini Prep Series

My First Bodybuilding Bikini Competition Prep | SHOW DAY!!!!

Saturday

Weight: 135

I kinda freaked about the increased weight but Malayna said that’s good because it means we filled out the muscles with the extra carbs yesterday. OMG. IT’S SHOW DAY!!!

Breakfast: Black coffee, 2 plain rice cakes, PB, sugar free jam, 2 egg whites.

Kinda getting nervy so don’t want to overdo it.

Ok, here’s some tea they don’t tell you about going #2 with a tan. First, don’t Google “how to poop when spray tanned for a bikini competition.” Just don’t. Unless you want to see poop porn. Well, after being kinda constipated all week, stuff started moving show day am. A few times. PANIC! How do I do this. Here how: Hold a wad of TP over the 🐱 in case you get dribbles. Aim toward the back of the bowl. Put a thin layer of TP down in the water to stop splashes. Pray.

Sorry if that was TMI but I hope it helps someone out there! Ok 💩 is done, moving on to packing up because I can’t get extended checkout, and I want to get my big suitcase in the car before I do my hair.

Holy crap it’s hot out!!!

Hair was a success! I use this little thing called the L’ange Duo to curl my hair. It holds the curl and it’s perfect every time. Best $80 or so I’ve ever spent. Curl perfection!

Tannnnn!!!!

I tried the top on for my blue bikini and Malayna and I decided it was the one. I then wanted to put my whole suit on even though my face looked like a ghost compared to my whole body


Gahhhhhh omg is this real!?!! Ok makeup time! I brought some makeup with me for touch ups in case I messed anything up between the hotel and venu. Thank goodness I did, because (and I’m a little afraid to write this because I don’t want to sound awful but I also wanted to be honest) I very much hated my makeup. My brows were made enormous, like the thickness of two of my brows which I asked to fix but they were still too big. Eyes looked great, but my lashes were glued on halfway up my lid. Not sure if that’s just a show thing, but it felt weird and now all my confidence went down the tube. A few people said it’s because it’s stage makeup, but I’ve been a dancer my whole life and have never had stage makeup like this. Also from fixing the brows a gray smudge I couldn’t fix was on my forehead (Tiffany and Malayna said it wouldn’t show on stage/ camera) but it shows in all my selfies and has to be photoshopped. Next time I will just do my own makeup so I know it’s exactly what I want.

After eating a rice cake and some PB, I headed to the venu. It was a little confusing but I found a little spot to hang out and wait for Tiffany. I sent some check in pictures to Malayna so she could make an eating plan for me. Since it was running late there was plenty of time to relax, eat, pee, get tans touched up and pump up. We made a pump up plan and I laid out my bands, water and pump food.

Ok yea I love myself in royal blue! Already thinking about my next suit, but blue rocks! Getting anxious and jittery for the show, watching Wellness finish and awards, pumping up and running through some posing backstage. It’s almost go time!

Debut is is first! Class A then us in Class B. We are given a quick run down on what to do and how it’s going to work while backstage. I’m wishing I’d brought my trusty cranberry NYX gloss, but oh well. It’s time!

Walking out on stage the first time was not as scary as you would think. I felt ready. I was shaking a bit from jitters and anticipation it was actually happening, but it was not noticeable in the videos. My thoughts on stage were just running through posing, smile, vacuum for your life, look at the judges, be graceful! I was pretty close to center the whole time, which I couldn’t wait to tell my coach. Before I knew it we were done! I was officially a Bikini Bodybuilding Competitor!

Debut done!

Next was novice! They said it was a stacked class and we were up there a longggg time. It legit felt like forever! This time I was moved to the end, but then back in one so I felt like I’d end up in 4th or 5th.

Ok Novice shook my confidence a bit, but finally we had Masters! I felt GREAT during Masters! Tiffany and I were dead center the whole time, her coach even gave me a high 5 after and was like “you two killing it in the middle!” Since all the judging was done (ha, or so I thought. MISTAKE right here that probably cost me my pro card), I wanted to have some water and a rice cake with PB. Omg it’s like I couldn’t stop. Since the day had been delayed so much, I was HUNGRY. Next up, I-walk and awards!

Not my best, I could have definitely added more sass and ballerina-ness to it, but now I know what to expect for next time! Little bobble at the end there, and I could definitely flow better with my arms during all my posing. Again, first show, it’s fine. Now it’s time for awards! I have no idea how any of this works so at this point I’m not expecting anything but I’d be happy with a nice little 5th place medal or 2. Backstage they tell us that Masters and Open has an overall and that’s how you get a Pro Card. The winners of each height class go up again for judging. WHAT. I didn’t expect that. I even made a joke that “good thing I’m not winning because I just ate like 3 rice cakes and PB”. Welp.

3rd Place in Debut!

On to Novice….nothing. Nada. Oh well. kinda bummed because I’d hoped for top 5.

Masters….nothing again (yay Tiffany in 3rd!) wait….no way I got first…nope no way….HOLY CRAP THATS MY NUMBER! 65 IN FIRST PLACE ALICIA LAIRD THATS MEEEEEE!!! Don’t cry don’t cry don’t cry! Wow , this is COOL!

Then I hear the announcer “Alicia don’t go far we’re about to have the overall.” Sinking feeling in my stomach. I shouldn’t have ate that rice cake. Shit.

Ok overall seems to be going good. My posing is better, I’m confident, I got this. Wow I’m about to get a Pro Card on my first show! Nope, I lost. Bummer. I’m still a little meh about that part, but I got 2 trophies and won my class! Time to celebrate the accomplishments and not be bummed!

Ohhhhh donutttttt!!!!

I’m super excited the show ran late because my boyfriend was coming from work and I saw him in the middle of Novice so he got to see most of the show!

Masters Overall
Masters Overall (I lost)
After fixing my makeup and totally removing everything but the eyes and using my own makeup and brows to go to dinner!

Oh gosh delicious food and wine! Shockingly I didn’t miss wine as much as food. Chocolate especially. I’m still craving chocolate! Well the next day I went to get my frosted coffee rolls from Dunkin which didn’t disappoint!

It took 4 Dunks but I found them!
And a Drizzle Cookie! I have more frozen for next show!

Ok it’s time to get back to work. This is my last cheat day then we’re back to clean eating and prepping for bing 10 weeks out from the next OCB show, Hall of Fame!

Date night!

Monday we go back in to a 10 week prep. We got this. We came so far last time we can go farther, better, leaner, next time! I have a lot to do on my abs and glutes, but I know I can do it, even as I start wedding season. Cold prep meals during weddings might be a thing. Ugh. We got this, we got this, WE GOT THIS!!!

Uncategorized

My First Bodybuilding Bikini Competition | Peak Week!

So technically Peak Week doesn’t start on a Monday like for some reason my inexperienced brain thought it would!

I’ve already been hungry at work late nights, so I was expecting to get through the weekend with the same macros I’ve had the past couple weeks….wrong!

Thursday

Weight: 137.6

Macro update, dropped a bit of carbs but also only did 30 minutes of cardio which was a nice break before a push. Ahhhhhh my period is BACK AGAIN! Why does this useless organ need to torture me so???!

I had a lot of energy from the cardio drop, and cleaned my house. Maybe over did it because I got super tired at night and hit the wall fast.

Friday

Weight: 138.2 Period from HELLLLLL

Not looking forward to work tonight. Super tired from cardio and lower food. Thought I was going to pass out a few times in the gym. LOW energy, not sure how I’m going to make it until 3 am. Took a nap and just crashed on the couch before work.

Updated: I survived! It as a crappy night though ugh.

Saturday

Weight: 138.4 period….whyyyyyyy

Exhausted. Trucked through an hour of cardio, came home to eat, walked the dog, finished cardio. ☠️ Work again tonight, Saturdays are usually better so let’s goooo!

It was better! Saw a good friend that I haven’t seen in a while. Got screamed at by a drunk ridiculous co-worker who hates me for no reason. Joy. I’m not in the mood so I just walked away and avoided her. My boyfriend said “does this story end with you punched her in the face?” LOL.

Sunday

Weight: 138

Usually a full rest day but we have 90 min of cardio! Exhausted isn’t even a description. Like I can’t do anything. Everything feels heavy. My period is raging like when I was 14, what is actually happening here!? We don’t have the energy to bleed!!

Monday

Normal check in day!

Weight: 136.2

Feeling a little better after a long day of doing nothing but cardio, stretching and relaxing. Cardio is still 90 min today (last day!) with low carbs. Ready to push because I only want my best self out there!

Tired but we’re back to the gym today too! Shoulders and triceps, actually one of my favorite workouts, didn’t go to bad!

Hellooooo Hammies!!!

Tuesday

Weight: 135.2 Yay! Another drop even with Mother Nature from helllllll

Leg day might be brutal! But this is my last hour of cardio then we start decreasing! My boyfriend grabbed some groceries and things I needed last minute for me since I didn’t have the energy to leave the house. My best friend I haven’t seen in months came over and we watched a movie and I watched her eat sushi while I ate my cod like a good girl haha. Relaxed after. Allergies kicking my BUTT!

I’m not mad!

Wednesday

Weight: 135.2 no change

Added a few more carbs. 45 min of cardio only wooooooohoooo!!

Have a fun photoshoot tonight! Gotta document the WERK! Tired as hell but at least it’s a fun thing. Trying to prep food and pack essentials since I have to drive for the polygraph tomorrow and Friday am will be busy. Worrying about forgetting things!

Thursday

Weight: 135.2 feeling leannnn!!

Had the inbody scan at the gym and it said I’m at 10% body fat, and basically am perfect (I guess few people score a 0 in if they need to build muscle or loose fat) so cue vanity 😄

Ok but for real I used to be super confident as a late teen then people were awful to me and said I was a stuck up bitch (considering who it came from I realize it was just jealousy) but there’s nothing wrong with being confident and KIND! Literally nothing. So keep being your confident self. I sure will be, and I really don’t care what they say! I will always be confident, humble, kind and grateful.

After the workout I sewed up the connectors on my green bikini, ate, and then headed to Hyannis to check in and do my polygraph. It was hot here in RI so I wore shorts, well it was cold on the cape so I was glad I brought a hoodie! I was nervous but it was actually super easy and not intimidating at all. I’m glad I went the day before and got it done!

Coming home I ate dinner, continued packing, and did my nails in a basic French for show day.

I do my own dip nails so it’s so easy and convenient to just chill on the couch and watch TV and do nails! Ok off to bed!

Friday

Weight: 134.4

HOLY ONE DAY OUT! Ok, I’m feeling it! I’m excited! The thing I’m most nervous about is literally packing all my stuff and getting to my tan on time, then not sweating or otherwise screwing it up after. It’s hot and muggy again, great. Should I bring my little desk fan??? Once I shower I’m going to call the hotel and see if I can get a check in time before my tan at 1:30 so I can get my luggage in and not after the tan because I’m terrified to mess it up and they charge you $75 cash only to fix it. Like wtf. I should have bought a ProTan DIY kit as a backup or for mistakes just in case. Better to be prepared no? Ok, put that in the notes for next time!

Ok morning check in done, finishing cardio after my workout as we speak. I have an hour now to get home, rinse, last exfoliate, dress, and get all my stuff to the car. I want to leave by 11:30 at the latest just in case there is traffic or anything to just give me some room (coffee maybe?) or if I can check in early. I’m panicking about sweating because I’m a sweater. I don’t want to be the girl with the big back sweat drip. In the email it says “conditioning for stage lights”. WTF is that!?

Next post will be a show day post!!!!