Last Sunday my big day finally came - I did it and I am still buzzing as I sit here typing!
Before I went on stage I met the other 12 girls competing in my category. Most were first timers like me and were equally as nervous but buzzing with excitement. We all pumped up together back stage, had our tans checked and did some last minute posing practice. Although we were all competing against each other it didn't feel like that at all, it felt more like we were all in it together, they were all incredibly friendly and not bitchy as you might imagine.
It was 9:30pm by the time we got on stage and although it was a long day, by this point I was running on adrenaline. As we walked out on stage, I had my game face on and I was ready to smash it. This was the moment I had been working so hard for. I was feeling awesome and looking awesome - to be honest I could barely believe it was my body that was in! I tried to remember everything I had learned about posing and presentation but of course in the heat of the moment I didn't get everything 100% as I'd practiced. I did manage to keep smiling the whole time though which is really important to the judges. And I tried to give myself a bit of character but adopting a slightly cheeky persona. I felt really confident and comparing my physique to the others girls I really felt like I had a fighting chance at doing well.
We were on stage for about 15 minutes in total, with the judges taking us through our quarter turns (front pose, left side, back and right side) and also doing some free posing. It felt like a reeeeaaally long time so it was quite hard to keep all my muscles really tight as I started to get tired after a while. I could see Oli and Christian in the crowd which was great as I could hear them shouting and supporting me. Christian was shouting out cues to me and luckily he was close enough for me to hear. ''Squeeze your glutes'' 'Squeeze your legs'' ''Keep moving''!
I had a bit of trouble during the quarter turns as I couldn't quite hear the judges properly as they were asking us to rotate, so I was a bit slower than the others changing between poses. Apparently this isn't always a bad thing as it draws attention to you?! I also had a hard time walking in my shoes like I’d rehearsed as the stage lights were so bright I was getting hot so my feet were getting sweaty and slipping around in my shoes. Other than that though I felt pretty comfortable with my performance.
After the judges had finished doing their comparisons, they announced the 3 girls who were to go through to the final and do their t-walks for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place. I was really hoping to get in to the top 3 and get to show off my t-walk, but unfortunately I didn't get placed. Immediately I felt completed deflated that I didn't make the top 3 and realised just how bad I wanted it. I genuinely tried my best though and put everything in to it, so no regrets. As soon as I saw Oli and Christian afterwards they were buzzing with excitement and reassured me that I'd smashed it and they couldn't believe I didn't get placed. This made me feel much better but of course they are going to be slightly biased!! It made me realised just how competitive I am and I may regret saying this but watch this space because I will be back and I'm going to do better. I feel until I get a prize, I've got unfinished business!
In the car on the way home it started to sink in just what an achievement I had made that evening and how incredibly proud of myself I was. It was damn hard work getting myself ready for this competition and not many people have got the determination to do it or the balls to get on stage almost naked!! So I feel hugely proud of myself and am so glad I did. When I started my training I never thought I could get my body to look this way, but anyone can do it, it just takes determination, commitment and a lot of hard work.
So here's the all important before and after pics to reflect on my progress over the last few months: