by 1st Phorm Athlete Jenny Drennan December 22, 2011 3 min read
After busting my ass in the gym for 9 months this past year, dieting and preparing for four competitions (the last being the Olympia) I found myself in burnout mode for the first time. I wasn’t burnt out on working out, but rather burnt out on competing and everything that goes along with it.
Now don’t get me wrong, I love competing and the sense of accomplishment it brings me; however, I just haven’t felt that desire to get on stage lately. Instead I’ve been focusing my time and effort on my personal relationships, living an unstructured life and spending time with my friends. I’m referring to this stage of my life as my new, more “balanced” life.
But let’s be honest, balanced is one thing… half ass is another. Competing is one of the most important things in my life, but it’s only one part of who I am. Also very high on my list is having a clear mental state and view of reality. After burying myself so deep in a competition lifestyle all year and living everyday on a mission for physical perfection, my mindset backfired into a hard core reality check. What world am I living in?! And who the hell am I trying to impress?!
The truth is, I left the Olympia in September feeling frustrated and a bit rejected. Of course I was elated to just be a part of the Olympia, as it was a dream of mine and an amazing experience for sure. However, no one likes to lose, or be told “you’re not the most perfect girl on stage”. Let’s be honest, when it comes to Bikini, that’s what it feels like they’re judging you on. What I’m getting at is girls are bombarded with images of physical perfection and are on individual missions to achieve it; some just take it a little more seriously than others. Yeah some may get farther than others, may be more genetically gifted, or work a little harder to get there… but what we need to acknowledge is that no one’s perfect nor will they ever be!
I stepped on stage at Olympia with 29 of the most beautiful girls in world and I still don’t even feel like I’m on the same end of the spectrum as perfect. Yes, I started competing to better myself for my own personal reasons mainly, but in all honesty, a part of me was searching for perfection and the reassurance of it. No girl steps on stage in the bikini category, hoping people don’t recognize them as being beautiful and having the perfect body. We’ve all stepped on stage asking for reassurance of our physical perfection and the biggest thing I’ve learned after one year competing in the pros is that the last thing I want or need is anyone’s opinion on whether I’m perfect or not.
Since I began, people told me you have to have thick skin to start competing but I think it’s the opposite. I never had thick skin and after two years of it, I can without a doubt say I have it now. And more importantly, I have a clear view of what competing is about and what’s important. I no longer need anyone to tell me where I rank on their scale in order to feel good amount myself as a person. Their opinions do not define my self worth because if I did let it affect me, I would never be happy. I can now say that competing has everything to do with me improving myself and nothing to do with any one else’s opinion of me.
Realizing this has allowed me step out of my rut of little to no motivation and into a more clear and healthy mind set towards competing. Rejection is a big part of physique competition and a part of life as well. The same wind blows on us all. It’s how you adjust your sails that separates us. With this in mind, I’m now ready to enjoy the holidays and get back at it in 2012!
Happy New Year!