Official Blog of Allison Ethier

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Sherbrooke, Quebec, Canada
Official blog of Allison Ethier NSCA Personal Trainer, ISSN Sport Nutrition, Educator & Mom

08 February 2010

26 days to the Arnold!

"Success is liking yourself, liking what you do, and liking how you do it."
Maya Angelou

The countdown has officially begun. There is less than 24 days to the Arnold (on my calendar anyways), and I have begun to feel the pressure. The pressure to get everything ready. My body, my costume, my routine, my suit (ok, I delegate that one - but the pressure for it to arrive before I leave), my posing and of course my head. I have to get my head ready for this event. To be able to calm my nerves or fears when the time comes to preform. This is my biggest goal every time I compete. To do the best that I can under the pressure. Basically to be perfect under the pressure. That way what ever the outcome I can accept there is no more that I can do. The physique round does not scare me the way the routine round does. I wonder how the figure girls feel? Or the bodybuilders? Is it the same kind of pressure to do well for themselves?

I have struggled over the years with perfectionism, and how I can try to have things be 'just ok' at times. As a mom, this was easier for me to handle. As an athlete - much harder. I can control the outcome or at least try to by being my very best. But when you compete against the very best, sometimes you get a rude awakening. I hope for the Arnold that I am at my best, so that I can leave feeling satisfied with my experience. I have wanted this experience for so long now....that it sometimes does not feel like it is going to happen. That someone is going to come along and say - oops we made a mistake you are not actually on the list. Where does this voice of insecurity come from? Each day I do try to make the most of my time at the gym, with my meals, and routine practice so that I know that I am doing all I can to be at my personal best. There are times when I wonder if it is all enough; is it all worth it? Do other girls go through these similar emotions when in the throws of contest prep?

I am happy to be seeing changes in my body. I had a changed a few things in my personal life and was concerning that my body would not respond like it used it - but I was wrong. It did, and is responding, and I am on track for the show. I was considering the Phoenix show, but knew that traveling twice in a month for my family was a bit much. Any more than once a month, is really hard, and besides, I miss home too much. So my decision to only focus on the Arnold was because I am going to a Mike Davies camp this weekend. It is just the big push I need to lead me to the Arnold. I loved my experience last time. I couldn't walk for a week. I am in better shape now, but somehow I am not sure if I will be pain free. I am basically there for a butt kicking, and well he tends to kick everything - legs, arms, back, shoulders.....

My routine practice is going well, although it is hard. How come I have done this for all these years, and never viewed it as 'hard'? Everyone else told me it was hard, but now, 11 years later, I realize - yes, it is hard. Maybe it is the twinges of pain I feel every now and again. Or the getting back into the gymnastics that hurts temporarily as my body becomes adjusted to the pounding. But wow, you really feel alive when your whole body is sore.

I finally have some costume ideas, and am hoping that everything will come together on the day of the event.

The Arnold is going to be a busy weekend - I will be competing on Friday during the expo, and Friday night at the Veteran's Memorial. Then on Saturday at the booth & Party with the Pros, and then on Sunday at the

I would love to meet you, so make sure you stop by. The line is always quite long, as we do give away a lot of product, so you will have to be patient.

There are times when you want to quit - I think it is around this point. When you get to around 3 weeks out, and you see changes happen daily, but still the time feels slow. Maybe it is low motivation, or else it could be that I am just hungry. Not crazy eat my arm off hungry; just it is cold outside, I am in comfy clothes, and I really would like to be eating comfort food.

Training is going well. I am still working with Erik Ledin - of He is a great sources of information for me and I value his knowledge tremendously. I love having someone who knows that much more than me. It is very inspiring.

After coming back from LA for the Fit Expo, I realized how much I really just love the industry. I love being at shows (always have), love seeing all the fit bodies, it motivates me to stay in shape. Once a month is good. To be reminded to try to do better at your workouts, maybe push a little more.

Training others has always been on my mind, and well, there is no better time like the present to do that. So for the next little while, I will be researching much about a career in personal training and nutrition. I have already looked into doing my nutrition degree, but since it has been more than 5 years since I have been in University I am looking at a full 4 years - and a 2 hour drive to get there. Not really an option for someone with a family, and well, 2 other careers on the go. So for now, I will be preparing for a nutrition certification, and keeping up my CEUs for my NSCA-CPT certification which I have had since 2007. It will be a lot of work, but I am thrilled to be learning more in a subject area that I love - training & dieting.

I think life is trying to send me a message, and really I have to listen. There are moments when you have to make a choice. I remember my University professor giving me an assignment that I did not quite understand what he wanted. After much discussion, and some meetings I handed in an assignment that I though is what he wanted ( really smart students sometimes are not smart, just smart at figuring out what the teacher wants).
He calls me into his office and told me that I could do the assignment over (it took about 10 hours), or take a pass. He then told me that maybe because of my fitness, I should make a choice - to do teaching or do fitness. I told him I told him that I did not understand what he wanted, and would take the pass. I also added that I felt as though I could do both. Since 2001 I have done both, teaching and fitness. However, recently there have been many incidents that are making me believe that I should be choosing just fitness.

My mac laptop provided by the school crashed recently - everything from the last 4 years was gone. Assignments, tests, some marks, attendances - any thing and everything a teacher would make up and save. We teachers are closet pack rats. We save everything.

There are other things that have happened that I really won't get into, but man.....could life be screaming at me any louder?



Brit-Man said...

I'm sure you'll be fine with everything.


:-) :-).


Samantha said...

I know that you can handle everything you do as long as you have perseverance..I like your goal!!Good luck to you..
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