I DID IT! My Journey through my First Fitness Bikini Competition

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Sorry this post has taken me so long to write, I’ve been going through a little soul searching after my show (which I plan on doing another post on that next … but its been an interesting ride , that’s for sure! )

BUT anyways…. Well…. I DID IT!!! And holy crap was it hard! Probably one of the hardest things I’ve done so far, and funny thing is I cant wait to do another!!!

How was it? Really fun yet stressful and exhausting too. But it was all worth it, wanna know why???? Because I placed Top 5 in both the classes I entered in!!! =)

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So going into this competition, quite honestly I wasn’t expecting to “win” anything because in my mind, I had already won with myself losing 85 pounds. And my thought process was if I won something , then hell, more power to me! Ideally my goal was to make it to a competition and I had done just that.

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Back stage during the show, fixing up spray tans and getting oily and ready to step on stage I was actually pretty calm. I have a  major in theatre so the stage isn’t really scary to me it was more of the omg I just don’t want to trip on my heals or forget my poses/transitions (which I did  hahaha).

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During first callouts, when they called my number I almost remember looking down at my number to make sure that was in fact the number they were calling. As I walked forward the look on my coaches face was priceless, as he nudged my posing coach and automatically grabbed his camera. That moment right there is one of the reasons I’m going to do another show in the future. You could see that he was very proud and excited that they called my number, especially since it was my first show. Then the second class I entered in they had called out 4 numbers and then who’s do they call next? MINE! so I made 1st callouts in both the classes I entered in! (first call outs a pretty much placing the top 5) – which was funny at the time because I didn’t realize that’s how it worked so I thought they were just calling my number to call my number hahaahah.

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As time goes on, and people start coming in the door for the show, we all start talking about the treats we brought for afterwards. Some made cupcakes and such…. I made a little something called slutty brownies. what are slutty brownies you may ask? Amazing!! …one layer of cookie dough, one layer of Oreo (I used cookie dough Oreos) and a layer of brownie. yummmmmmmmmmm and boy were they good.. but they made me sick =(

As the “show” started, (they do pre judging in the morning and then a “show with music and everything towards the night for an audience) My boyfriend and his family came, my aunt and my father came to support me… unfortunately bikini goes on stage last so I got to mingle with them a little before and during the show and you could tell they all were very proud of me.

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My aunt mentioned going to dinner afterwards so I’m back stage thinking about food haha, Evans dad was randomly taking pictures of the “hot” girls and my dad was joking with Evan the entire time about needing to workout , or maybe just needing a beer instead haha. After the show, besides eating 3 of my brownies, a red velvet brownie another competitor made and a macaroon…  we went to Hacienda ( I decided Mexican food was much needed) and I downed 2 chicken enchiladas and a chicken taco… topped with chili and cheese and everything haha. Then when we got home I had a few Oreos dipped in almond butter, a sandwich, and some fig nutons. By this time I was definitely in a food coma.

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The next morning, sine the family has made bbq ribs in front of me like 3 times during this prep I told Evan that’s what I wanted for dinner so he prepared that all day. In the mean time I ate a pumpkin pop tart, a small bowl of spaghetti, 3 waffles with a massive amount of fruit on top and by this time I was sick. .. And by the time the ribs and bbq was read it was all I could do to down one fricken rib.. I felt bad since he cooked all day and I couldn’t even bring myself to eat any of it….

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quite honestly I wasn’t planning on eating all the things I did, I wanted to still keep my hard work at bay but since I basically had some issues with binge eating before (which is what my next post is going to be about ) it was almost like I couldn’t stop. It almost got to the point of embarrassment with how much food I consumed and I wasn’t proud of it at all, yet I still kept eating. . . . as the water weight came back on and some extra weight as well from all the crappy food .. I started feeling lethargic, unmotivated and questioning if this competition was a good idea …

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As these last few weeks pressed on a kept in touch with my coach and telling him how much I’ve gained was a wake up call in itself. I told him I needed more goals to shoot for because a part of me had been prepping for sooooo long for this competition that I almost felt like a “what’s next” moment and didn’t know exactly where to go. But with that being said, I’ve learned my lesion and man , oh man, cardio is SO much harder when you have crap in your system .. it literally does NOTHING to fuel you for a intense workout.

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So all in all, I had a blast, was it worth it still after the aftermath of binging. yes, because I’m still learning to love myself obviously.. and I’m still working on processing how I see myself as well… I know I’m not perfect, no one is. Its your choice to either learn and grow from certain screw ups .. or you can let them overpower and consume you. But untimely its all up to you.

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Healthy Protein Bars

Some people know how to read nutrition labels and know what to look for when choosing out food. However, there are those either getting started on making healthy choices and they think just because it may say something like “high protein” or it comes from a commercialized diet plan (i.e. Slim Fast, South Beach, Atkins, or even something at your health store for that matter) it could be worse than a candy bar in some cases. I’m going to show you what to look for when picking out a good and nutritious protein bar, which macros are going to help you throughout the day. So here are some good bars I recommend along with a lesson about bars so you don’t think your being healthy and depriving yourself from a milky way when in all reality you may have just …well… ate the Milky Way. lol…. IDK about you, but I’d rather have the candy bar if that was the case! =)

*** macronutrients
                                 – carbs, protein, and fats.
Pure Organic
Pure Organic Bars (My favs: Cranberry Orange, Wild Blueberry, Chocolate Brownie)
Nutritional Layout: (used Chocolate Brownie for this example)
  • Calories: 190
  • Fat: 7g
  • Carb: 27g
  • Fiber: 4g
  • Protein: 6g
  • Sugar: 16g
Upside and when to ideally eat: All organic with no artificial sweeteners, gluten free, non-GMO, minimal ingredients and made from all whole foods. Real food, nothing fake whatsoever.
Downside: I would not eat this bar at night that’s for sure, its more of a breakfast mid-afternoon bar. There is a high amount of sugar that could possibly spike your blood levels too soon before you head off to bed. Now, the sugar is coming from fruits, nuts and seeds so its good sugar but its still sugar. Eat it in the morning and keep a watch on other sugary things you consume throughout the day.
When looking at Calories:  You ideally want to shoot for anything under 200 calories per bar. Whole food based bars can be a little tricky when it comes to this since they usually are a little higher because a high amount of fruit and nuts. (these are good calories and kinda rules out the fact with the high calories.) But usually anything more than 200 would almost be a meal. And there are those bars like that out there and sometimes say to eat the bar and drink 8oz water with it…
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Quest Nutrition Bars (My favs: Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Chocolate Chip Cookie Chunk, White Chocolate Raspberry, Chocolate Peanut Butter … all of them lol. )
Nutritional Layout: (Used Apple Pie for Ex)
  • Calories: 170
  • Fat: 9
  • Carb: 24
  • Fiber: 18
  • Protein: 20
  • Sugar: 3
Upside and when to ideally eat: Any time. I love these bars! They are almost perfect… if they could make a plant based one I would be the happiest girl in the world because I have a hard time digesting any dairy (hint hint wink wink @QuestNutrition ) – but ive ironically gotten better at it through this contest prep Im in so that’s exciting!! I miss some dairy haha.
Downside: they use sugar alcohol which hasn’t shown anything bad as of yet, I wish they would start sweetening with stevia.. And only like 4 net carbs in most of them, some less. net carbs are the carbs you count because fiber technically is a carb, but you subtract the sugar alcohol and fiber from the carbohydrate and there you have your “net carbs”. <— little lesson right there! =)
When looking at Protein: Higher is ideally better since the protein will help keep you full. But you need to be aware where the protein is coming from too. Is it from nuts, whey isolate ect.  ??
power crunch
Power Crunch Bars: (My fav: Mint Chocolate, French Vanilla Cream, Wild Berry Cream)
Nutritional Layout:
  • Calories: 200
  • Fat:12
  • Carb: 10
  • Fiber: 1
  • Protein: 13
  • Sugar: 5
Upside and when to ideally eat: Another one that is pretty much ok to eat whenever. Since there is a bit more carbs in this one I wouldn’t ideally do them right before bed or anything. And the protein to carb ratio isn’t too huge compared to some other choices you can make. But these remind me of those wafer cookies I used to eat when I was a kid, I bet if you dipped it in almond milk it would be yummy…. hum ill have to try that.
Downside: lower protein. Higher carb. but still a good choice.
When looking at Carbohydrates: So let me clarify this, carbs aren’t “bad” … whether your trying to stay low or don’t care too much here is what you ideally look for in a bar when it comes to carbohydrates. Carbs can serve as immediate energy and sustained energy too. If your consuming the bar after your workout (which by the way, you should always have some protein and carbs right after your workout to fuel you muscles- this is called the anabolic window) I would shoot for 30g or less. And if there is more carbs in the bar than protein you might has well have a cereal bar…
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Victory Bars (my favs – fudge brownie, cookies and cream, peanut butter)
Nutritional Layout:
  • Calories:200
  • Fat:5
  • Carb:25
  • Fiber:20
  • Protein:21
  • Sugar:8
Upside and when to ideally eat: Whenever. These are along the same line as the quest bars. They do have more of a “protein bar” type of feel to them with them being mostly a solid bar.
Downside: Higher in sugar but still not bad at all.
 
When looking at Fats: Keep saturated fats at a minimum but it is ideal to have some fats in your bar. The fats are basically going to either make up some calories in he bar or it wont if its a lower fat. But fats aren’t bad either… its usually from nuts in the bar the fats come from.
kind
Kind Bars (my favs- Dark Chocolate Mocha Almond, Peanut Butter Dark Chocolate, Carmel Almond and Sea Salt …. all of them hahha)
Nutritional Layout: These have a wide range between carbs and sugars… they are all kind of different .. but yet all good.
  • Calories: 180
  • Fat:12
  • Carb:17
  • Fiber:7
  • Protein:7
  • Sugar:11
Upside and when to ideally eat: Mornings or mid day. As you see they aren’t really a “protein” bar its more of a carb bar hahha or granola bar if you will. They have tons of flavors and different forms of kind bars now too. There is the Kind Strong, Mojo, Healthy Grains and they even have granola now! So you have lots of choices but like I said they are more of a breakfast bar.
Downside: Sugar is going to be higher in these since the sugar will be a natural form of sugar. I believe they are made with cane sugar but I might be wrong.
 
When looking at Sugar: This can go either way but .. lower the better. Some bars have natural sugars ( cane, stevia, tapioca syrup, ect) while some bars have sugar alcohols (xylitol, sorbitol ect. ) Now they haven’t shown any evidence saying that sugar alcohols are necessarily bad for you but some people have issues with them so try it  out and be your own judge. I personally know if I eat too much sugar alcohols (also found in things that are labeled sugar free or chewing gum) I retain water. . . . With natural sugar try not to have it be too high..
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Clif Bars (all if them. Blueberry Crisp, Mint Chocolate Chip, White Macadamia Nut )
Nutritional Layout: ( these range as well – used crunchy peanut butter for example)
  • Calories: 250
  • Fat:6
  • Carb:40
  • Fiber:5
  • Protein:12
  • Sugar:10
Upside and when to ideally eat: Another morning bar!! Love these, these can ideally be used as a meal if you pair it with some protein say a shake or something because of their high calorie content. They have tons of flavors (I love the holiday season because that’s when they come out with pumpkin spice and gingerbread!!! YUM) They are a higher carb bar so it will give you some sustained energy for your day. these are more like a granola bar as well.
Downside: Very high in carbs (which is fine, as long as your not eating these bad boys before bed hahha) and usually higher in sugar.
 
Everything else: Look at the ingredients, if its a HUGE list of 11000 things your cant even pronounce … don’t buy it. If sugar is like the second ingredient, then just go buy a candy bar instead. Look at the protein, then carbs, then calories and of course the ingredients. =)
luna
Luna bars ( all .. I like the peppermint stick a lot, along with Smores, Chocolate Fudge Brownie)
Nutritional Layout:
  • Calories:180
  • Fat:2
  • Carb:27
  • Fiber:3
  • Protein:9
  • Sugar:13
Upside and when to ideally eat: Morning, mid afternoon bar. By now I hope you can see the difference between breakfast bars and anytime bars. They have tons of fun flavors and even though they say a “woman’s bar” men can eat them too.. its just marketing and they have more vitamin B and folic acid in them.. whoooo what a difference right? hahha
Downside: lower in fats (which depending on your goals isn’t really a downside) and higher in sugar.
My favs:
 LOOOVVVEEE Quest bars they are probably my favorite when it comes to what they actually are. 20g protein low carb and a good amount of fat. That being said I don’t eat them all the time, they are not ment to be eaten as a meal replacement either so try to get your nutrition through actual food, your body will thank you for it!
Also love kind bars, kind bars are more of breakfast bar to me since they are more of a “granola” type of bar.
… I pretty much love all these bars hahha. I didn’t post any of the bad ones =)

Life is hard to balance at times …… (14 and 13 weeks out update)

Oh my gosh guys! Sorry life is definitely busier than usual but I’ll try my best to keep it updated! haha.

Between the training, cooking, eating (all I feel like I do is eat btw haha), work and everything else it is all I can do to just come home and not pass out right away …

Now, if you have been following me on instagram, you’ll know that my weight keep fluctuating and this is something I personally find extremely annoying and I know I need to learn not to let it get to me. … with that being said its a good thing I take measurements now and pictures every week because that’s the only way I’m really seeing a difference. But its a good difference! =)

Week 3 (14 weeks out from show.)

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Going into week 4 (13 weeks out from show)

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hardest part so far? … cardio on those damn stairs.. I tell ya we have a love/hate relationship right now .. and cravings OMG… I just want a PB and J lol….

MY CRAVING CRUSHERS:

  • Gum – deserts
  • mints
  • sparkling water!!! – look for no sugar/sodium/ nothing…
  • tea
  • spices

ooh that  list looks sad lol.

OH also… I have the best boyfriend ever! we past 4 years on the 4th of july … he got me this!!

oh…so … beautiful….

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Tip of The Week #17 Have some Patience!

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Today were going to talk about a little thing I like to call patience. …. I have very little as does the rest of this “on-the-go, need-to-get-sh*t-done” society. But its going to play a huge role in your weight loss and getting to where you want to be so pay attention!

  • Look, I get that you want a toned tummy and a lifted butt…who doesn’t? … but its not going to happen over night. You didn’t gain that extra 50 lbs ( or however much you’d like to lose) over night did you? I’m assuming that answer is a no. Nor did you gain it in a month either. It took time to put the weight on, therefore its going to take time (usually a little longer sorry to say) for it to come off. That’s just how it works. Accept that its a process or journey you’re on and its going to take time …. period.

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  • You are not superman or superwoman either! …. most people don’t realize that with media how it is, people want it to be fast like it was for The Biggest Loser contestants… its not going to happen. If you want to do this ( lose weight) the right way, you will not be spending 5+ hours in the gym, and eating very few calories, that’s only going to hurt you in the long run. 1-2 lbs a week is usually a good estimate of how much you should be losing, if your on the higher end of the weight spectrum, you have more to lose so more might come off at first where as someone who doesn’t have as much to lose is going to have a slower weight loss. When you lose weight too quickly its either a sign of malnutrition and/or water loss and possibly muscle loss too. Plus, you want to lose it slower because not only will it stay off longer, but when you lose lean muscle mass, your jeopardizing your metabolism making it slow down, hence making it harder to lose weight.

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  • I wrote another blog post about being positive (read it!!) link here:    The #1 Weight Loss Secret!!!     You cannot call yourself fat anymore. Its not doing anything for you or anyone else accept bringing you down. You need to find something you love about yourself first and foremost. You need to love yourself and have and take pride in yourself too. You need to have this weight loss goal for YOU and you alone, any other reason isn’t going to get where you want/need to be. Sure there can be an event or something your trying to get ready for but in the whole scheme of things, it need to be for you and your health. And for peats sake, be positive and quit putting yourself down.
  • Visualize yourself thinner, this can be hard. If you have to dig up old photos of you when you were thinner, heck paste a picture of your face on the body you want… whatever works for you. I like to think about the figure I’m trying to archive when I’m about to fall asleep. Find what works for you. I also have a vision board where I have tons of quotes, a calendar to keep me on track and pictures of fit and healthy bodies.

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  • Keep going!!! Ok so say you started eating healthy and maybe working out a little, some weight loss has occurred but you haven’t seen too many results. So knowing patience is the key…. keep going till you see those results you want. And results aren’t just measured in weight loss either. It can also be gaining strength, more energy, the way your clothes fit, how you feel when you eat healthy/unhealthy, muscle definition etc. So focus on the little results your getting while shooting for that main goal. It will only happen the moment you decide NOT to give up.

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  • Start small and move up from there. Most people want a 180 approach and it just isn’t realistic. Some people can do it, but very few. When people try to change everything all at once they get overwhelmed and frustrated.. leaving them to quit and give up. So start with small things, maybe its to eat healthier, or to be able to run around the block without stopping. Whatever it is, start changing things slowly and you’ll be more inclined to stick to it and make it last. It is truly a LIFESTYLE CHANGE, you cannot go on a “diet” and lose the weight and then go back to your old habits. That is why diets DONT work. Now I’m not saying you cant enjoy a handful of chips or a yummy piece of cake here but the majority of your diet is going to be healthy clean food.

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On a personal note, people don’t realize this has taken me a good 3+ years to get to where I am now. It takes time, once you learn to accept that the better off you’ll be. … so chill out. haha.

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Stop making excuses

So I felt like this was something I needed to write because my boyfriend caught me cheating on my diet last night and what did I automatically do? .. Got defensive and started making excuses… We’re all human, we all do it to some extent the real thing is to understand why and to see what it will do in the long run, and to realize how important your goals are to you.

” The first step in achieving your goal, is to take a moment to respect your goal. Know what it means to you to achieve it.” Dwayne Johnson (The Rock)

 

 

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So everyone has done/said it. Evan I used to think some of these things and still try to justify something when I know I’m only sabotaging myself haha… … and made excuses for why I was doing what I was doing only to regret it later on … why??? . Its only human I think and its natural too, but with that being said, were going to actually stop and think of WHY we do this to ourselves and actually realize that what we’re telling ourselves are truly only one thing…. an excuse.

So here are some main ones I’ve heard and even said too …

  • I don’t have time : O my GOSH! Who does anymore? I said the same thing for many of years…. finally, my Jr year of college, 18 credits full time, working 2 jobs going from 4 am to 9 pm every day pretty much …. found the time. The key is to “find” the time, if you want it, you’ll find the time, just like you found the time to watch that favorite TV show. You have to learn to carve out time for the important things to you, start with those and then continue to do the less important things… like a to do list. Put it in your planner like its a conference for work or on your calendar so its there to remind you that it IS an priority …. you don’t have to workout for hours on end either, nor do you have  to go to  a gym. You can workout at home, take your kids to the park and workout while they play or even play with them. Say they ride their bike to the park, ride yours too, or jog by their side, you have to find ways to squeeze it in and pretty soon it will be one of the most important things you make time for! =)

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  • Its a special occasion! ……. yes it is! Maybe you’re at a wedding or a baby shower and everyone is celebrating and there is all this “not so healthy food” staring at you in the face. (Been there!) So think about it, just because its your birthday or someone else’s, doesn’t mean to over-do it… yea sure go ahead and have a piece of cake but keep in mind how you’re going to feel in the end if you do overdo it, and pig out all day with the excuse of “its a special occasion” … are you going to feel guilty the next day? Are you going to feel sick because your body isn’t used to foods like that anymore? Is it going to be harder for you tomorrow to get motivated to get your booty in the gym? Just take a step back and ask yourself what you want, what your goals are and if your going to let your food addiction take over and continue to make excuses for you….

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  • I don’t have motivation or I cant seem to get going:  yea it can be a little hard finding that one thing to get your butt kicked into gear, there are days when I don’t want to get out of bed and go to the gym, not even gonna lie, but then I realize what I’ve promised myself, what I’ve worked so hard for and how far I’ve come and I refuse to let the negative thoughts in mind take over and tell me otherwise. Plus I know deep down I will feel better if I just go do it instead of doing what again? Oh yeah making excuses not to go.

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  • Your young, I’m older it will be harder for me… you know what I have to say about that BLAH BLAH BLAH.. quit your bullshit. If you actually did some research, you’d come to find out that exercise is actually really good for older people (you should see how many grandpas and grandmas I have at my gym!!) How is it good you may ask? Well to start off, it helps with things like flexibility and muscle loss, along with preventing things like osteoporosis, arthritis, diabetes and soo much more. Plus the people I usually hear this from are like 40 years old… your not 90.. but if you were, I’d tell you the same damn thing. Yeah sure your metabolism slows as you age yes, but that doesn’t mean give up or don’t even try.

excuse 4

  • If I deprive myself of this __”enter favorite food here”____ I’ll just eat more, or binge on it later. ….. ok so let me get this right…. you’re already planning on failing? Or are you just saying that so you can have your favorite fast food meal? This one hits home for me because I personally said this to myself ALL the time. When you actually read that sentence over again you start to realize how silly that sounds, your making a choice to eat whatever it is you want, its not like its a sacrifice, its not going to kill you to give up that Cold Stone or Taco Bell… your making it sound like its going to be the end of the world if you don’t get some junk food in your system. lol. Sure, hae a small treat, but no you don’t need one everyday, nor every week..

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  • I don’t want to go alone : Understandable, but who said you had to? See if your spouse will go with you, or even a friend who may be in the same boat… or even find that friend who DOES go to the gym all the time and see if you can go with them, they will probably be flattered and show you some great workouts to do to start out with. The buddy system is always nice because it keeps you going, it pushes you to go when you don’t want to. I know when I was going with a friend when I first started it helped because there were so many days when I didn’t want to go, but knowing in the back of my mind knowing she was going to be waiting for me there .. I didn’t want to A. let her down or bail on her… and B. knowing she had the same general goal, and she was doing it.. that means I could do it to …damnit!

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  • I’m too fat – ummm did you just hear the words that came out of your mouth? FIRST and foremost YOUARE NOT FAT- YOU HAVE FAT… you also have hair, are you hair? You also have eyelashes, and fingernails, and toes… are you any of those things? Nope! Your a real person with real feelings and a soul, you have insecurities, and accomplishments, and everything in between. So… first things first, stop calling yourself “fat” because you’re not making it any better by calling yourself names are you? Are you accomplishing anything by that? Honestly… … Next, just like the whole age excuse, having extra baggage isn’t an excuse to give up either. Sure it will be harder, but if it was easy everyone would be doing it. Start slow (depending how overweight you are).. things like walking (even if its to the end of the block and back) is going to better than doing nothing. Once you stop the self loathing, pity parties and possibly some self hate (sad to say)… decide to dig deep and realize where your at today, and how you’ve gotten to where you’re at. That’s when you’re going to either realize its time for a change or your going to just continue to be in the same rut you’ve been in for the past however many years. You have to make the decision and you have to change… you have to find that inner strength.

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  • I don’t know what I’m doing, or I feel like I look stupid : …..there comes a time where you just have to say screw everyone else lol… you have every right to be working out as the next person. Sure they may be skinnier, or fitter, or hell they may even be bigger than you. . . . EVERYONE has a right to make themselves a better version of themselves. I personally know the feeling of being intimidated by the gym, when I first started out I had a free week pass at 24 hour…and I hated it.. I hated the looks I got because I felt like the “fat” girl at the gym,  I hated all the mirrors everywhere staring at me reminding me of what I had let myself become. But in all honesty, I realize now that all those feelings I was having were more of my insecurities with myself. I seriously doubt that the fit girl running her little ass off cared if I was there, much less that I couldn’t keep up with her. Now! With that being said, I’m actually one of the fitter people at my gym now (amazing feeling when your realize that!!!) When I go to the gym, I see all kinds of people, and I have friends there too… I have a few younger girls that have just started off, and a couple old dudes with their knee high socks lol, but the point is, everyone is different, and everyone has different goals. You have to get it out of your mind that everything is a competition at the gym. I don’t care if the girl next to me is running slower or even faster, she’s at a different level and she has different goals. Same thing with the buff dude lifting weights… I will lift what I can lift and if it doesn’t measure up to your 50lbs dumbbells … well like I said before… screw you…. I’m here for me not you. < that’s the mindset you need.

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  • I had a busy/ crappy/ amazing day, I deserve a treat! : sure a treat once in a while is ok, but don’t let it always get the best of you. And you don’t always have to reward yourself with food either. Get a cute new outfit, or go get a pedicure… there are plenty of other ways to reward yourself than food. Think of what it took to get here, don’t sabotage it with a gigantic ice cream cone… Along with that, if you had a crappy day, its just going to be filled with guilt after you eat what your craving anyways… Done let your goal slip away because of frustration or anger.

 

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My Current Meal and Supplement Plan (Fitness Comp Prep)

A lot of people have been asking what my diet looks like, what I eat, when I eat and how they can get their metabolism running faster… the key is to eat super clean foods every 3 hours so your body doesn’t even have a chance to feel hungry. I also focus more on counting my macronutrients (protein, carb, fiber and fat) more than my calories..

meal prep

… so here it is!

I always make sure I drink 8oz water right when I  wake up.

Supplements at waking:

  • 200-300 mg caffeine (or a pre-workout, depending on my mood)
  • 500-1000 mg Green Tea Extract
  • 1-2 g Acetyl-L-Carnitine
  • 1000 mg White Kidney Bean Carb Intercept

Meal 1: (don’t wait more than 30 min to eat after you wake up)

  • 1/2 cup Steel Cut oats prepared with water.
  • Splash of almond milk
  • 1/2 banana cut up inside it for sweetness
  • sprinkle of cinnamon =)

***This is usually the time of day I workout (around 60-90 min)***

Meal 2: (Post-workout)

  • 1 scoop protein powder of choice. Mixed with 10 oz unsweetened Almond milk. 1 scoop glutamine powder, 1 scoop greens, 1 scoop carbohydrate blend, and 1 scoop BCAA’s.
  • With other 1/2 of banana.

Supplements :

  • 1 Multi-vitamin
  • 1-2 g L-Carnitine
  • 1000 mg White Kidney Bean Carb Intercept

Meal 3:

  • Medium size salad with 2oz grilled chicken/shrimp or turkey (usually cut into chunks)
  • 1 cup brown rice or quinoa. (or 1/2 baked sweet potato)
  • 10 almonds.

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Supplements :

  • 200-300 mg caffeine
  • 500-1000 mg Green Tea Extract
  • 1-2 g Acetyl-L- Carnitine

Meal 4:

  •  1 scoop protein powder of choice. Mixed with 10 oz unsweetened Almond milk. 1 scoop glutamine powder, 1 scoop greens, and 1 scoop BCAA’s.
  •   1/4 avocado
  • 1 cup of  carrots or 3 celery sticks (or both haha)

Meal5:

  • 3oz Grilled Salmon/Tilapia (seasoned with Ms. Dash – no salt)
  • 10 spears of Asparagus
  • As big of a dinner salad as I want! …. (Dressings I use are all oil based – usually Newman’s own or Annie’s Brand.) about 2tbsp. I also add salsa sometimes too (its healthier than dressings…)

Supplements:

  • 2-3 g CLA
  • 2-3 g Fish oil

Meal 6:

  • 1 scoop protein powder of choice. Mixed with 10 oz unsweetened Almond milk. 1 scoop glutamine powder, 1 scoop greens, and 1 scoop BCAA’s.
  • 1/2 cup nuts or seeds (almonds, cashews, pecans, pumpkin, sunflower)

Supplements before bed:

  • 2-3 g CLA
  • 2-3 g Fish Oil
  • 2-3 g Glutamine

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WATER WATER WATER ALL DAY!!!!!! DRINK UP

**The supplements and meal plan that I’m on is geared towards my goals for preparing for the fitness competition. I’m not stating that people should take these supplements because everyone is different and have different goals. This is just what I do one a every day basis and it works for me. **

Pros and Cons of Cleanses and Detox

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So for some reason everyone goes straight towards cleanses at the beginning of the year, wanting to “jump start ” that weight loss or lifestyle change. Whether you want to choose something the celebrities are doing, (ie. Beyoncé and her Master cleanse), a juice cleanse, pill form, raw food cleanse… the list goes on and on… I would do your own research as to what you personally think YOU can commit to because nothing is worse than feeling like you HAVE to do something, and then in return hating it while your doing it.

Trust me I’ve done my fair share of cleanses, I did the Master cleanse as mentioned above and not only was it not very tasty,  I felt tiered, down, angry, hungry and had constant headaches … did I lose weight? yeah a little, but it wasn’t worth all the pain I was having for those few pounds… It reminded me of those commercials you see on TV when they’re advertising a new pharmaceutical drug…  “you may have allllllllll of these side effects” …haha. I remember finally eating some chicken and veggies afterwards and feeling so much better. Which is why I often question whether I need to cleanse or not. Now before I get into some pros and cons, I do know that your body is made to actually cleanse itself. How awesome is that, right?! … And without going into an anatomy lesson…I do believe that cleansing your body with food (REAL FOOD) .. none of this lean cuisine or roman noodle crap.. I’m talking veggies, fruits, lean meats.. your body will take care of the rest. If you put the wrong fuel in your car, it wont run right? Well your body is the same way. Put processed food, sugar and things its not genetically inclined to recognize as “food” its not going to really know what to do with it, how to process it to your advantage and probably wont make you feel as good as some fresh veggies would. That being said, yes health food can be a bit expensive.. But if I can last a week and have enough self-control on stupid cayenne pepper lemonade, I can last a week and have enough self-control to cleanse my body the healthy way. Along with most cleanses is a “diet” they recommend, and that diet usually is pretty clean =) so some find it easier to have it laid out for them too… so that could be a benefit.

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OK on to the pros and cons!!!

PROS –

  • Some people feel its easier for a “fresh start” towards a diet, they feel cleansed of toxins and junk food they’ve been eating so that they have the ability to start.
  • Some people also need that little beacon of hope with losing a few pounds to feel like they are on the right track too… with cleanses, they eliminate a lot of water weight too… But it gives them that motivation and momentum they need to step in the right direction towards a lifestyle change.
  • Usually with cleanses they have a recommended diet, usually consisting of clean foods, this can re-set your taste buds and making veggies and fruits tastier. (love this aspect… I used to hate things like onion, grapefruit, and mango…now I love them)
  • With cleanses or even clean eating, it introduces the idea of repetition and simplicity. You know what’s “allowed and not allowed” and it makes it easier for some to sick to their diet when they create a pattern of what to eat and when.. and then hopefully it slowly starts to become a habit.
  • Rids toxins and junk in the body and can make you feel lighter, skin may clear up and mental fog may be gone.
  • can help you feel refreshed.

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CONS-

  • They can get a bit pricey depending on which ones you want to do
  • They can make your grumpy, antsy, or even feel like crap if you do not consume enough calories while on the cleanse or do a fast.
  • Cleanses can be awesome for fighting cravings … or they can be the doom of it all. If your feel like your depriving yourself (A. its probably not the right cleanse for you ….) you’ll be more inclined to binge, making the cleanse pointless.
  • Many detox diets can have very few calories to them which will yes, make you lose weight, but in return mess up your metabolism and actually cause you to gain  weight after your done with the cleanse.

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So in conclusion, you know your body better than anyone else. If you like the ideal of structure and find that easier, Id say go for it. If you’ve done some in the past and hated every minute of it and possibly didn’t feel any better at the end…. then I think you may want to try something else. I personally prefer ones that are pill based so then you still get to fuel your body with food, not feel hungry and still get to cleanse your body.

Simple tips to help you lose weight

  • You have to be ready. (mentally, physically and emotionally) – Once you decide you want something more than you’re afraid of it is when the magic happens. You have to have a plan and a sense of determination. You cant just “want” it, you have to live it.. its not about a diet, or a quick fix it truly is a lifestyle change. You have to be willing to step out of your comfort zone and put yourself in the uncomfortable.  But I am here to tell you, once that light switch comes on, you know, and never turn it off. Get a friend or a spouse to do it with you, this makes it easier and you two can keep each other on track. And always be prepared for some temptations as well as comments from others …because they do and WILL happen.

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  • Seriously…. no matter how much you workout…DIET IS THE KEY TO SUCCESS. – yes working out will help but if you really want to be fit, and feel fit and super healthy… diet is the answer. When you eat the way our bodies were designed to eat you’ll notice a ton of different things happening with your overall health. Not just weight loss but metabolism actually speeding up, the feeling of fullness before the plate in front of you is empty, maybe some inflammation is gone or starting to fade, more energy, better sleep, and the list just goes on. An easy way to make sure you are keeping track of your food and what your eating, is to keep a food journal.. Which I have  a link on how to do that here:Keep a Food Journal! – How to When you keep a small journal with you its easier to see where your successes are and where you can improve. Also, when you thin about food and what’s healthy and what’s not it can be a little hard if you don’t know what your looking for. My motto is … if it doesn’t come from the ground, grow on  a tree or isn’t relatively “natural” don’t eat it… Shop the outside of the supermarket, that’s where you’ll find your produce, lean meats, whole wheat breads, low fat dairy and this way your skipping going every isle that has the bad things that obviously DO NOT grow on trees .. (ahem… Cheetos) ….

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  • Get to know portion sizes!- So many people think portions are supposed to fill the whole plate. We go out to eat  at a restaurant and if the waiter brings us some “tiny” portion we automatically think…crap! I’m paying $15 bucks for this plate?! Whereas if they bring us a huge plate of food, we are satisfied because were getting our “moneys worth”. The sad thing is that we’ve grown so accustom to having these huge portions that now we don’t know what an actual portion is. Here is a quick reference guide to what portions are supposed to be. And next time you go out or even make your own plate, remember you don’t have to eat everything they give you, you can always take it with you =) hey… 2 meals for the price of one.. sure!!
  1. Your whole fist or a baseball = 1 cup (pasta, rice)
  2. Your palm or a deck of cards = 3oz (meat, fish, poultry)
  3. One big handful including some finger space = 1/4 cup (Nuts, Seeds)
  4. 2 small handfuls not including finger space – 1 0z (popcorn, pretzels, chips)
  5. Your thumb or a shot glass  = 2 tbsp. (nut butters, cheese slices)
  6. Tip of your thumb = 1 tsp.. (condiments, mayo, ketchup, sugar, honey etc.)
  7. And when it comes to fruits and veggies, always fill 1/2 of your plate with those (mainly veggies). 1/4 protein and 1/4 complex carbohydrate.

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  • Fruits and Veggies are your new best friend! – You can pretty much eat as much fruit and veggies as you want and loose weight.. plus they are full of nutrients, water, vitamins and minerals so they will actually keep you full! .. Now I know some of you are probably thinking ” I eat a salad and I’m still hungry!” … Now answer this, are your salads a legit salad.. like if you were to order a salad at a restaurant where it takes up the whole plate? or is it some dinky ass salad the size of a baseball and smothered with ranch dressing? haha. There is a difference between eating a side salad and then eating a SALAD… (this is the only time you are pretty much allowed to eat as much as your want, and not have to worry about portion control. ) When you make your salad make sure you have a mix of greens (preferably no iceberg since it is about 99% water), a lean protein added in like some chicken strips or black beans, as many veggies as you want, think COLOR! and a oil or vinegar based dressing. I do have another link here:The Salad Bar – Building a Kick-Ass Salad! =)  on  how to make a wonderful salad.

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  • DO NOT SKIP MEALS! – I swore if I hear that eating less will make you lose weight one more time I’m going to scream! You ideally want to eat every 4-5 hours to keep your engine running. when you skip meals or eat very little your body goes into starvation mode and stores the fat on your body because its saving it for when it will need it for other times you my not be eating. This messes up your metabolism and throws it out of whack confusing it and it tends to not work the way it was designed to work. (THIS IS HOW I GOT TO OVER 200LBS… don’t make the same mistake !!! please!)    But I do have good news, you can fix a slow metabolism by simple diet changes and eating a healthy diet. Annnd if you start working-out on top of those diet changes, it will speed up even more. Our bodies and humans in general weren’t made to sit at a desk or on the couch all day, we also weren’t designed to eat things like fake sugar and fillers and food colors.. we were meant to be active and eat things from the earth, things nature intended us to eat. I like to eat 6 smaller meals a day, this way I’m NEVER hungry, or “hangry” as my boyfriend likes to call it (hungry +angry = hangry) plus my metabolism soars when I eat this way =) just try it… but remember, those smaller portions should consist of veggies a complex carb and a lean protein…..

5tip5 Always keep nutrients in mind, think of how eating a certain food will make you feel after eating it … will you be disappointed? will it make your stomach hurt? will it make you have a sugar crash towards the afternoon? yes sure it will be tasty… but is it worth it? 10 min of a sugar high or realizing you don’t need to be putting that crap in your body. I think you’ll be more proud of yourself if you just say no thank you =)

Goal Setting 101

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Why set goals? Well setting goals and actually keeping yourself accountable to those goals are two different things. So we’re going to talk about some basics you should always be thinking about when setting specific goals and then, how to actually keep those goals until your reach it. And then you learn to set even more or higher goals as each goal becomes achievable. =)

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1. Why? think of why you want to achieve a specific goal. Your why should make you cry….. and not necessarily cry in a bad way, but it should bring you happiness. It should make you feel excited and maybe a little intimidated too. But you also need to learn to channel that fear or since of intimidation into fuel to drive you to complete whatever your goal is. I’m a list maker so I like to make lists of why I want to achieve a goal…. I know it sounds really weird and maybe stupid to some but when you actually sit down and write out like 10 reasons WHY you want to achieve something, it makes you more aware of where you’re at and what you still need to do to accomplish your goal. I like to dig deeper too, rather than just thinking of basic things most people think of first right away. Example: My fitness competition; yeah I could wright I want to be skinny and fit and feel good…. but that’s a pretty “basic” reason why people think of when you set a goal towards health and weight…. instead I dig deeper. One of my reasons is to prove to myself that I can loose weight/be fit and healthy without having to worry about calories, to not feel like I’m obsessed with what I put in my body and to be confident in my own skin. To prove that I can do this the “right way” and not feel like I’m starving myself of feel like I’m doing something harmful to my body. To feel like I wont have to “suck it in” in every picture I take and to not have that constant worry about if I look “chubby”. …….. ok, that was more than one reason … but ya’ll get the drift. Dig deep, find reasons that you are afraid to tell someone or maybe afraid to admit. (also, when you have a list, put it somewhere where you will see it on a regular basis, it will remind you and you’ll be more inclined to strive for your goal)

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2. Set large goals and then mini goals to achieve that larger goal. Basically as I wrote above, you don’t want to just write “lose weight” . Yes that can be your larger goal, but make smaller goals to get there too because if that’s your only goal, your probably going to get frustrated when you only lose 5 lbs and then give up. So with in that goal make a “loose 5 lbs by _____” date. Or a “be able to run a mile by the end of the month” . And the more in detail you get the easier it is to actually start to see that goal taking place (this is called visualization… ) Start to visualize what you want…. sounds crazy but it helps.

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3. Reward yourself and be proud of everything you HAVE accomplished. when you meet each mini goal, reward yourself (preferably not with food) but maybe go get a pedicure …or I like to buy workout clothes so ill go get a new sports bra or something… but keep it small. Also have a bigger goal for when you accomplish that BIG goal, have a BIGGER reward. (mine for when I’m done with the competition is to get my first tattoo =D ) ….. Also, say you don’t lose that 5lbs the first week but you lose a pant size or you just feel better health and energy wise, recognize that and always be proud of what you have accomplished. Keep pushing towards your goal and it will soon come. Patience is a virtue.

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4. Make your goals SMART… most of you probably know this… but here is what a SMART goal is:

  • S       Specific
  • M     Measurable
  • A     Attainable
  • R     Realistic
  • T     Time-bound

So obviously it has to be realistic, you cant make a goal to be 6’5 and be a famous basketball player when you’re 4’11… its just not going to happen. You have to have a goal in mind and a plan of how you want to achieve it and then you have to set a date because … sorry but how many people set a goal at the beginning of the year to “be healthier” and then they are good for about 2 weeks and then give up…. that’s because their goal wasn’t set into action with the SMART goal in mind and they didn’t make a “plan” … its all about the plan and path you make….

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5. Make your goals POSITIVE! when writing your goals…. don’t write “I don’t want to be fat” …. that’s in a negative context. Wright them in a positive one and say ” I’m going to be healthy and fit”. Same with the way you think as well, don’t think a goal is unattainable because in all honesty you pretty much can do anything you put your mind to if you set the right goals towards that direction. If a goal seems unattainable at the time (and believe me I’ve been there) that is why you set the “mini” goals to help it seem  like that goal isn’t to far fetched. When I was a size 14 did I ever think I would fit into a size 5? Hell no! HAHA it seemed like that was going to take forever and in all honesty seemed impossible at the time which can be overwhelming… That’s because my thinking was in the wrong mindset and I was only thinking of .. “omg, I’m fat and I need to lose weight” Once I changed my thinking and started focusing on how fitness made me feel … (which was happy and full of energy) that’s when the weight started dropping off… and once it starts going… man its like a high. You start to get excited and you want to keep going, and then someone comments and you get this giddy feeling and feeling of pride and accomplishment and it just keeps continuing so on and so forth. Its your job is to keep setting those goals to reach new goals once you have achieved one.

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6. The buddy system. Do you have a buddy with the same goal or maybe a similar one? If not, FIND ONE! They are the best! I have build a friendship with one girl in particular (whose name is Amanda ironically haha)  through this whole journey and I know that if I didn’t have her this goal would not be the same. She was a bigger girl too and we first just started going to the gym together.. just to help us stay accountable and not give up. But as we keep dropping weight that’s when we decided to do the fitness competition together… so were both striving for the same goal. We hold each other accountable, we bitch to each other when were sick of drinking protein shakes and we still have learned to laugh through the whole process. We have both talked about it being too hard and wanting to pull out of the whole thing. But we continue to look at the bigger picture and realize where we have came from. We continue to share when we have reached one of our “mini” goals and/or just something positive and exciting happening in our lives. Needless to say, find someone who has the same or similar goal and it will make it easier not only with keeping yourself accountable but find someone with that same positive attitude towards it that can pull you up when you may be a little down.

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and most important reason to be fit is (drumroll please! )

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=)

Now quit reading and go set some goals!!

Surviving the Holidays!

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So .. holidays is what got me a little last year when I was watching my weight. With Thanksgiving and Christmas around the corner, you’re bound to be around a few sweets and some “not-so-healthy” choices.  So I’m going to give ya a couple tips on how to survive the holidays when your either on a specific diet or just trying to watch your weight. =)

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Its all about having a plan!

  • Know what’s being served- whether that means a few extra workouts through the winter, or just smaller portions of you favorites, have a plan before you go into it blindsided. My aunts are super nice and they understand what I’m trying to accomplish so they do their best to have a few options I can have. I have even just randomly asked what they are planning to make so then if it doesn’t fit into my diet, I can bring something or have a plan for that. If your family gets offended that your not necessarily eating something they prepared, don’t take it personally. Your making these choices for your health, not theirs. Usually people will look at you weird the first time, but as you continue on, they just don’t ask anymore. …. and if its a huuuge ordeal, no offence to them, but that usually means they are insecure with their diet and eating habits and don’t like for others to make it obvious. . . . (which in all reality, you aren’t…. unless you telling your family how all that gravy on their turkey isn’t good for them….. which by the way DONT! .. if they want help, advice, or an opinion, they will ask you for them… otherwise keep some thoughts to yourself lol.)
  • Use a smaller plate- when you start dishing up your food, yes you can still have some of your favs, but first load up a plate of veggies, salad and fruits… then add the other stuff. Don’t over-do it on the other stuff either. But if you do this right, you should be pretty full already from your veggies and fruit. =)… Or skip the appetizers unless they are fruits and veggies.

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  • Eat slower and savor each bite – haha I have trouble with this one because I tend to devour foods, but if you actually sit there and focus on the foods, the texture and the taste, you’ll notice you fill up longer because your actually focusing on it instead of mindless eating. . . .
  • Offer to bring something– This way you’ll know there will be at least an healthy option there and you wont be completely screwed if there isn’t anything healthy. …
  • Remember the bottom line- yes, its the holidays, enjoy it. But don’t make it an excuses to eat everything in sight because your diet doesn’t start till New Years .. that’s just ridiculous…. Start now and you wont have such a hard time. Holidays / weight gain/ and New Years Resolutions do not need to go together. Sure you can have a goal for New Years to “loose some extra pounds” or “be healthier” but that was probably on your resolution last year… am I correct??? Don’t give up on this year just yet! =)

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