I survived my first ever bikini competition! My quick summary is that it was exciting, exhausting, and mostly consisted of standing around and waiting for my turn to go up on stage for one minute.
In the evening we went out and got to walk around on stage by ourselves for 30 seconds, and then go off-stage to wait for our scores. I didn’t place, which was frustrating because there were only seven girls and the top five place. My coach says that I look good but my presentation needs work. I absolutely believe him, I just wish that they could have judged me against my presentation skills five months ago instead of against six other women. Because I was hilariously terrible five months ago, and last night I was at least decent. One person even thought I should have won, which cancels out the several people who thought I deserved dead-last, at least in my mind (the scores omit the highest and lowest score, in case you’re curious about the math here):
Before I did the show, I had completely convinced myself that I was going to turn around and sign up for the two shows coming up in October. Now I have no idea if I’ll compete again – I’m at least taking a break for now. My original goal wasn’t to become a regular bikini competitor, I only wanted to have the Ultimate Hard Body. Now I’m the closest I’ve ever been in my life, and I know how to eat and exercise properly to make it happen. I also really miss running, and want to focus on becoming 100% healthy and able to run again. I would like to apply my new-found discipline to running and all of the injury-preventative measures that I clearly need to take along with running, and see where I can take that.
I feel like I’ve done justice to all of those inspiring quotes about how you should put yourself in uncomfortable situations. This has been by far the most out of my element I’ve felt in a long time, which is definitely not a bad thing, just exhausting. I didn’t even feel weird about getting on stage in front of everyone – I feel like all the presenting I’ve done in my MBA program has helped me get over that, even though I was usually fully clothed for those presentations. I felt more lost and behind-the-pack when it came to the whole hair/makeup/fake tanning part of things. I have about 5% confidence level in my abilities in those areas, so even when other people help me out, I stress that I look terrible or different than everyone else. Another reason I’m feeling the pull back into running – as far as I can tell, my performance in a race has never been hurt by how pale I am.
Ultimately I’m really happy I did this. Mostly because I’m in way better shape than I was before. There’s also a certain satisfaction to be gained from knowing that you can work your ass off for a year, line up with a bunch of women to be judged by a group of strangers who rank you nearly last, and still feel awesome about yourself. I’m not quite ready to put myself through that again right away, but if I ever get over how disgusting it was to have four layers of spray tan caked on my skin without showering for an entire day, I’ll definitely think about it.