My story to the NABBA stage OCT 2014
So here goes… I had been away a few times over the summer with fitness conventions & holidays, as always I was training and eating clean. A gang of us had signed up to do hell & back on 13th Sept so we were training hard for that and it was a great day!
I have had digestive issues since my early teens and as a results this drove me to become a nutritional therapist to gain more knowledge on dealing with the idiopathic IBS symptoms I had. I avoid gluten, dairy & sugar and I feel great off these both for health and training purposes. These foods are very inflammatory and I feel sluggish if I consume them.
Over this summer my symptoms became severe, every evening I suffered with bloating, gas, cramping and disrupted sleep. It didn’t matter if I ate salads or sweet potato fish and vegetables. I was knackered and frustrated!
I decided I was going to investigate these issues further. At the end of August, I used a reputable lab in the UK to do allergy, digestive function and parasitologist testing. I also had my GP run bloods for any related issues.
Results – As I suspected I had picked up a parasitic infection.. Not just one though, I had three nasty little critters attacking my bowel!
My blood test results came back displaying inflammation in the bowel ,this terrified as there is a family history of bowel cancer. I was referred for a colonoscopy, endoscopy and CT scan to investigate this further.
I spoke with my colleagues in nutrition and my GP, we researched the best way to destroy these critters! The plan was 10 days of strong antibiotics and then nutritional supplements for 3 months after to heal and seal my gut after the damage the parasites had caused. I’m not a medication person so I found this very hard!
While all this was going on, I focused my mind on my fitness. I maintain a clean and lean lifestyle and I was a happy 13% body fat and weighed 58kgs. I decided to contact Karol from the Petarda whom I have known for many years now and see would he think I could make the cut to get up in stage on the 19th Oct.. He told me he thought I could get up on stage 2 weeks before at the RIBBF competition in Limerick on the 4th Oct! Wowsers I said!
I explained to Karol that I had to get some tests done was on medication for 10 days. We decided to see how my stomach was after the tests and medication. Lucky we did as I was bloated, fatigued, nauseous and unable to eat properly for the 10 days (those who know me, know this is very unusual for me, I love my food!) I was miserable, but focused!
I continued to train as normal all the time, 5 days of weights and 6 days on cardio (morning power walk for 40mins)
The test results from scans and other procedures came back clear so no growths, thank god! I was relieved and even more focused now! Wahoooo!!
The last day on the medication I mailed Karol, there was a big difference in my body in 2 weeks, I had lost muscle with the lack of food, and I was bloated and retaining lots of water from the medication I felt like crap, but still determined.
The plan- continue to train, increase water intake, increase food intake (now that I could!) drink dandelion tea to reduce fluid retention, sleep better, relax and enjoy the run up to the competition. No stress!
I said I would train and follow Karol and Elizabeth’s advice till the end and see what results we got. If I wasn’t happy I wouldn’t get up on stage! Accepting that it was a short stint to the stage, the normal preparation time for a competition like this is 12-16weeks, I was been cheeky in trying in 4!
However seen as I am an all year round clean living individual, I didn’t find any of the preparations difficult. I didn’t have to drop much weight or body fat. I took on the challenge to focus me and it really did!
Here are a few pictures from the end of the summer to the NABBA show, though the weeks of tests and medication. It’s amazing how your body changes so quickly.
I was very nervous on stage, the Olympia is a big theater especially when it’s full! I was just happy to get on stage on the day and I am delighted so say that I made it to the finals. I was chuffed with myself receiving a medal, having being so focused and facing my fear of that big stage!
A huge thanks to Karol & Elizabeth in the Petarda team for helping me out those last 2 weeks before the show. I’d never have gotten up there without your help, advice and constant observation of my changing body composition. You are both legends. https://www.facebook.com/karol.stuglik?fref=ts
Thanks to Anita Kondrat & Sarah Good my buddies for your constant encouragement and the help with confidence & posing, love to bits xx
Thanks to Deidre O’Halloran for my amazing make up, all girlies know that when your make up it perfect, you feel amazing x
Thank so much to Ken & Janet in Discount Supplements for your delicious clean Supreme Nutrition paleo protein. It kept me going when my appetite was suppressed on the medication. Ken really knows his stuff in the supplement world and is striving to produce clean & lean products for all athletes and health conscious people.
I’ll look forward to the next competition with less drama in the run up to it all xx