Just got home from the natural bodybuilding show that I want to compete in next summer. I’m very disappointed. It was supposed to be a big show with lots of female competitors. Bigger than the June show. It was smaller. And at least of third of the show – probably half – was non-bodybuilding categories like sports model (female and male) and, of course, the bikini divas. Those categories have more competitors because it’s not so hard to prepare for something like that. The judging criteria for those categories is actually opposite what you would expect for a bodybuilding show. Muscularity is discouraged. So about half of the competitors in this show don’t train like I train. Don’t eat like I eat. I have nothing to learn from them. Boring. There is a symmetry award and even that didn’t go to a bodybuilder in this natural “bodybuilding” show.
Figure competitors train like bodybuilders and there were two competitors in that category. The one with the most experience, best poser, most muscular development – got 2nd place. What?? The judges made those women pose over and over again side-by-side. They kept saying how it was “close”. I didn’t think it was close at all. I bet they flipped a coin or something. (I know that happens.) Now that I’ve talked crap about the judges, I should probably go read the rules and reflect on what I saw – a teaching moment. Duh. That’s my real job.
The people who run these shows aren’t on the ball. The prejudging was advertised to start at 1:00 pm – they changed it to noon. I thought I showed up early and was 45 min late. There seems to be issues with playing the music given to them by the competitors for their routines. One man had to improvise his routine because they couldn’t play his song. That’s inexcusable. That’s why they have things called “sound checks”. So the lack of competitors at both the June show and this one make me think that they have been disorganized for awhile. I think people are competing in bigger shows run by more professional organizations. I’m going to check out the women’s physique category in the NPC organization. NPC doesn’t test their competitors – so it’s not all natural bodybuilders, but natural bodybuilders can compete. The physique category is a new one created for female bodybuilders who train as bodybuilders, but aren’t as large as the pros who have that masculine (unnatural) look. The rules specifically say things that imply no drugs and competitors will be docked points if it appears that they are too “ripped” or “vascular”. Sounds like natural bb to me. Their posing suits can be simple and they don’t wear heels. The only thing that makes it different from a traditional bodybuilding category is that they pose with open hands instead of fists. I can live with that as long as I don’t have to deal with the shoes. And I’m excited about the NPC’s attempt to bring back the 1980’s pre-steroids female bodybuilder look. Those are my role models, you know.
So as I write this, I’m bummed. I’m not pumped up at all. I’m not motivated. (And I’m hungry because my feeding schedule was screwed up by this show today). I’ve been to two natural shows this summer and neither have inspired me. I’m competitive and I haven’t found the competition yet that makes me want to work harder. I feel a like a sailboat with no wind – but that’s just right now. I tend to find my drive again once I’m back in the gym. I LOVE lifting.
On a positive note, I got to meet more people who work at Trainer Adam’s new job. Nice people. I know they are happy for their diva clients, but I wish they could get a win in a bodybuilding category. They have more shows coming up and I hope it happens. I think it would give them more credibility – but that’s just me and I know my world view is somewhat skewed.
I’m pretty sure I had my hopes up too high for this show today. One of the judges told the audience that it didn’t really matter how many people showed up to compete. No competitor knows for sure how many people they will be competing against when they go to a show. So every competitor shows up “ready”. For bodybuilders, that means they’ve trained hard, they’ve taken care of the nutrition, they’ve practiced posing forever – they’re READY. That’s the thing – this sport is about working harder than than the unknown competitor. It’s about pushing yourself to do your very best work. Never quit.
Now, where’s my food??