Today you get a chance to listen to Alisha’s interview. She managed to win for the second time! In the first contest she won the transformation category and in the last one she won the open, so you could say she did it all.
Here are her latest pictures, check this out:
For the first contest it was very goal specific, Alisha wanted to lose fat and get more fit. However, this time she had to show a completely different look in order to take first place. She had to build more muscle and focus on building a specific shape.
What the real challenge for her though was figuring out her “sweet spot” where she could maintain a great looking body and her peace if mind.
She worked really hard, and was completely tired afterwards.
For the first contest she was afraid of looking too skinny. And while she was excited by how much bodyfat she lost other people were telling her that she was too skinny.
Alisha will admit, she probably took it too far, because even people that she met for the first time were asking her if she is okay, because her face seems skinny.
But it is really hard to do all in just twelve weeks. It’s one thing to lose fat, but building muscle is completely different, that takes more time, especially for women.
This is why it takes several contests to get close to your ideal proportions. For this second one Alisha achieved what you could call a body re-composition. Her upper body and face is definitely not skinny anymore, her body is symmetrical and her measurements are near perfect.
What Alisha Did Differently This Time
Right after the first contest Alisha was decided not to compete again.
But she felt a bit left out and started thinking about it.
What really changed her mind was seeing the results from the second contest and the fact that a lot of girls that placed in this one mentioned her being a big inspiration for them. For her that was the coolest thing that could have happened.
She made up her mind and decide to compete again.
This time was a little different. Not only did she have to come up with a new plan, because she needed to show up with different pictures, but this time around she didn’t really need to lose much fat. She stopped punishing herself for eating a bit more on certain days and made her weekends maintenance days.
Here are her pictures from the previous contest:
The difference was that she knew where she started and how many inches and pounds she had to lose to get back to her contest shape. The only thing she needed to do was mark the calendar and get going.
Her goal was to win, she wouldn’t even submit her pictures if she looked the same.
There were 12 weeks of hard work in the gym ahead of her.
Weekends were the maintenance days and week days were the “dieting days”. Four weeks out she changed the plan and went low carb for the entire week while keeping low calories. This kept away her hunger, however after this trial she realized that she isn’t able to lift that much in the gym anymore. She had to adjust to a point where she would get enough carbs in her meals and have energy for her workouts.
There are different ways. If you want to try let’s say three different approaches and determine which works for you best, it will take three contests until you do determine the best method. Your body is your own experiment. Or as once Madonna put it:
I am my own experiment. I am my own work of art.
Once you know what works for you the best, you will have a template you can use over and over again.
There Is a Difference between Photoshoot Shape & Everyday Shape
What most people don’t realize is that you look different in reality than you do on camera or in pictures. This is why you need to go more extreme for the photoshoot to show the world how you actually look. This may be hard to grasp, but if you have ever taken some good pictures you know this already. There is just so much going on at a photoshoot such as lighting, how far are you from the camera, tanning, posing heel height, background etc.
Extreme techniques like water depletion and carb loading are a way of helping you look your best for the photos. This is only sustainable for several hours though.
Obviously this is only visible if you drop the fat on your muscles, but once you do you will be surprised how water, food and training can make you look sharper or bloated. And you need to learn what makes you look better to take the photos in your best state.
Once you do the contest you will have a new set of challenges in front of you. The biggest might be figuring out how to stay where you are and not go back to your pre-contest body.
In other words you need to find your maintenance point. Good analogy would be a swinging pendulum. If you were used to overeating your pendulum is swinging mostly to the left, if you started eating less for the contest it’s going to be swinging to the right. But if you go too far to the right, the pendulum will get too high and while it will stop there for a fraction of a second it will quickly fall to the left, which you might see as some kind of overeating after the contest that a lot of fitness models undergo. This is the proverbial yo-yo dieting.
The idea is to go through several contests and get in the best shape possible, reshape your body and focus on building a lifestyle that allows you maintaining this new body with as little effort as possible or in other words you need to figure out what you have to do to minimize the swing of your body pendulum.
Please understand that bodyweight is a range, it will keep changing based on your daily actions, the idea is not to have it stable (which is impossible), but not go too far up or down…reduce the swing of pendulum.
Take Home Message
- The big thing is not to be so hard on yourself, be more realistic with your goals, realize what the range of those goals will be based on lifestyle, understand you will have fluctuations and expect it, if it’s not working change your pattern
- Commit to doing the contest
- Bodyweight is not stable, you have a range based on what you eat and drink
- Sometimes you may not notice that you are progressing and the stagnation is really just in your mind
- Expect people to disagree with your approach
- Gaining muscle takes time and one contest is not enough for full body re-composition
- Go through as many contests as possible, you will always learn something new about your body and improve your shape
- Don’t punish yourself over slipping away from time to time, you are allowed to take a step back as long as you keep taking two steps forward…you don’t have to be perfect, just consistently improve over time
- If you are tall, then an inch on your waist won’t be that noticeable and my actually be within your maintenance range
- Don’t compare yourself to others
- Track everything
- Never give up…ever
Words & phases mentioned in the interview:
- VI workouts – Venus Index workouts
- Venus Index Contest No.:1
- Venus Index Contest No.:2
- Venus Index Contest No.:3
- Alisha’s First Interview
- Interview with Erik Ledin
- Uncensored Podcasts
Listen to the interview here: