Hi guys! Happy Marvelous Monday!
Sorry that I've been gone for three days. That's just NOT normal for me considering I crank out the writing like no other. However, I wanted to save a very special post for today so show my appreciation for a few people.
I wanted to do this in light of a recent event that I attended on Saturday night. I went to the 2012 ABA Natural North American Championships, where my second mother and trainer Mary and her amazing daughter Ashley competed. I went with my friend, McKenna, and Mary's family and friends.
I'd first like to congratulate Mary for winning 1st place in the Figure Masters category and 2nd place in the Figure Open Short. And as for Miss Ashley... congrats on winning 1st place in Figure Open Tall and winning her PRO CARD! Oh my gosh, I was so excited to witness this.
Here's the lovely mother/daughter duo looking absolutely breathtaking:
Ashley is on the left; Mary is on the right. :)
Okay, so now that I got that out of my system... I am going to write about these fantastic ladies.
As for Mary... oh gosh. Where do I begin?! I was that skinny girl in the gym doing weight training and then doing endless cardio. I was in that gym almost more than my own home... it was crazy. I knew something was wrong with me, and I always just immersed myself in pictures of beautiful women competing in figure and bikini competitions. I wanted to be that. And I read that these girls would eat next to nothing, do weight training and then had to do a lot of cardio. So I did that too. But I was naive. I did not realize that they did this for a competition and competition only, not because they stay that way year round. Well eventually, I realized I dug myself deep into a hole and needed help getting out. A friend of mine trained with Mary, and whenever I went to the gym I was so intimidated by this tiny, fierce looking woman. She owned that gym (and still does). She's a bulldozer. She does what she wants and she does it efficiently. I was scared of her. People dubbed her "Scary Mary," so of course I was a little afraid. I remember one time I went to the gym and she was working out by herself and there was me and I actually hid because I afraid she was going to look at me and just shake her head in disgust. Like, what is this tall skinny girl doing?! Eventually, I took a business card of hers (which I still have) and I got the courage to send her an e-mail practically begging for help. I needed to put on weight. I needed her to help me accept that. I didn't have any intention of training with her; I just wanted her advice. When I clicked "send" on that e-mail I thought Well I'll never hear from her and the next time she sees me she will just laugh at me. I'm pathetic. But low and behold, a few days later her name popped up in my inbox, and she was gracious. She wanted to meet with me. I took my mom along and soon enough, I was signed up to train with her. I was so happy that finally things might get better.
Ever since then, I have learned so much. She helped me find my passion for weightlifting. She encouraged me to push hard so that one day I can compete in figure. She always listened to what I had to say. I owe so much to Mary. I call her my second mother but she is also just like that big sister to me. I don't think I'd be in the place I am now if I had not e-mailed her. I would probably just be wasting away doing the workouts I was doing and not getting the proper nutrition. I thank God for Mary, as well as my mom for pushing me to keep going. Last night, as I heard Mary's name called for 1st place, I was so happy. My eyes even swelled with tears because I adamantly knew that this woman deserved this. I screamed so loud. THIS was Mary's moment. She's always coached other competitors to shine on stage but not Saturday night. No--it was HER moment to shine. I was so proud of her. I hope I stay in contact with this woman for a long time, and I hope she is okay with that. ;) I love you Mar-bear. <3
Mary winning 1st! And yes, the piercing scream is mine. >:)
And now onto Ashley. :)
To Ash, I remember being shocked when I found out that Ash and Alex (they're twins!) were Mary's daughters. I knew they both went to my school and I had heard about them before. Again, I was intimidated. The first day I met Ashley, I was getting ready to train with Mary. Before I was going to be trained, Mary was training Ashley for her first figure competition. I walked into the weight room as Ashley was doing squats with the most ferocious look on her face. Excuse my French, but she was making those squats her bitch. I was scared. I was thinking Holy crap. I already experienced enough intimidation with Mary. This girl looks like she could fight a freaking tiger. We were introduced, and from that moment I thought Ashley did not like me. I left the gym that night thinking Well this sucks. One of Mary's daughters hates me. I requested her on Facebook previously before I had met her and she accepted. I thought she didn't like me until I logged on to Facebook and as I was scrolling through my notifications, I saw her name pop up and saw that she wrote on my wall. Say what? She basically told me that she loved meeting me and couldn't wait to get to know me better. It was such a sweet gesture and I was shocked but ecstatic at the same time. So she doesn't hate me! She was just in BEAST MODE at the gym. HOORAY! A few weeks later, I was at her first figure competition and one of her biggest fans. Here is what I ADORE about Ashley: she's tough, she won't take your crap, she's dedicated but she is also humble. I gladly identify myself as her little protege. She even introduces me to everyone as "her little Brittany." ;) Ashley is amazing and I am so proud of her for getting her pro card! Love you Ash!
Mary, Ashley and another competitor who took 2nd, the lovely Kiki!
Also, I need to give a shout out to Alex, Ashley's twin who makes car rides 10x more fun. Alex is the funniest girl and the most supportive person I have ever known. I LOVE her! Holly, Mary's youngest daughter, is such a sweet girl and is ALWAYS there cheering her family on. Holly, you are amazing. And Barb, a fellow trainee of Mary's, is the sweetest lady I have ever met. She bought us BURGER KING. That's a win in my book. Barb, can everyone be like you?! I also met Joe from Pride Nutrition and he is such a sweet guy. I am so happy I got to meet him. And I loved meeting everyone else apart of Pride and Team Fab. :)
And finally, I have my last homegirl to thank :)
Her name is McKenna!
McKenna and I before leaving!
So basically, this girl was in my math class the whole year. We sat on the opposite side of the room and not once did I utter a word to her. I first saw her at my gym in around January. She is so gorgeous, like Greek goddess gorgeous. People liked her at school and so I didn't really know if I should go up to her. We always smiled at each other whenever we saw each other. She eventually signed up with Mary, and I was so happy to hear that. Again, I logged onto Facebook and I received a message. I'm like Okay, I have a message, let's see who it's from... It was from McKenna. At first I was a little confused, but I was pleasantly surprised to see that she wrote me a long message. Okay, let me get this out there... the message that she sent me was not only the longest one I have ever received, but honestly the nicest thing anyone has EVER said to me, I kid you not. I was crying like a baby because I've never had someone make me feel so good about myself... ever. She basically told me how much I inspire her, how awesome and nice I am, and how she would be there to support me through whatever. I read and reread that message over and over again until it sunk in that people actually liked me. From that day forward, I have thought the WORLD of McKenna. She is outgoing, hilarious, and she isn't like 'most' girls. The one day that I went to the gym to train shoulders with her, I told her about figure competitions and how I aspired to be a competitor one day. I think I had her hooked, folks. Everybody better watch out because one day, McKenna and I are going to strut our stuff across those stages showing everybody what hard work looks like. We even picked our songs to walk out to... "SexyBack" by Justin Timberlake and "I'm Sexy and I Know It" by LMFAO. It's fitting, right? ;) We both love the color turquoise and we're both weird cornballs. I think we make a pretty dynamite duo, dontcha think? ;) McKenna, I love you girl and thank you so much for going with me and being my partner in crime. You are amazing in every possible way!
McKenna, Mary and I!
Okay, so I know this post was long but I had to tell my beloved blog friends about these important people in my life. Hopefully you enjoyed and I promise to keep you all updated on these fine specimens of human beings. :)
I LOVE ALL OF YOU GIRLS!!! (You too, Joe.)
Questions: Who is important in your life that pushes you to get past your goals?