Hi Everyone -
I flew out on Wednesday to make sure I would recover from the travel – 2 flights, and a total travel time of around 12 hours. I always prep all my food in advance, and travel with my staples – chicken, sweet potato, a vegetable (cooked of course as the border won’t let you take vegetables or fruit), and nuts. Water is always the biggest issue as at the airport it is expensive, and you have to get so much in order to get through the amount of time you will be traveling.
The drive to the airport was uneventful which was great. I arrived at the airport with plenty of time to spare, and got myself organized. I flew from Burlington, VT to NY, then off to LA. During my time in NY I did receive some news, which I am still processing and not really sure how to digest. It was unexpected and I will just have to work through this issue, and the process will be ongoing.
After arriving in LA, I decided to stay up a bit later in order to acclimate to the time zone. Therefore, off to the grocery store. I am always amazed at the portion sizes in the US. They are just HUGE. Everything is bigger! I can see why people have a hard time saying no.I did make a good find – pickles in mini packages – very convenient. I wish we had these in Canada.
After my grocery shopping excursion back the hotel to get unpacked and settled. Luckily we are staying at a hotel which has a microwave, and fridge in the room so we did not have to request these items. After traveling all day, shopping, and some news, I headed to bed. I was pretty beat.
On Thursday, I shot with Harry Grigsby of LHGFX Photography. We have been meaning to shoot for some time, and finally our schedules aligned.
Santa Monica pier is right by my hotel, so we popped down their for a bit. The second location was a gym. You never really realize how hard it is to shoot in 2 locations until you do it. Much of the time is spent on the lighting. Some might think this is very glamourous, but it is not. I did take a few pics of the day, but as with anything once you get going it goes pretty quickly. I really need someone just to follow me around with a video camera in order to show you what actually happens. I am hoping a few good pictures of the shoot.
Loved working with Harry as it is more of collaboration, and give and take. I work well under those conditions.
After the shoot, I went to get my nails done. This is my favourite thing to do in California as there is a nail salon on every corner. One hour later, and a bit of shopping at the Third Street Promenade – and I was off to tanning. Ah, tanning. This process. What can I say about tanning? A necessary evil. I was excited to see my muscles pop, however, afterwards you are just uncomfortable, sightly sticky, and get stinkier as the day or show goes on.
Friday came too quickly. Not much on the schedule today, other than tanning and resting. I did take a walk to Whole Foods as we don’t have that where I live, and the experience is always interesting. I love the variety they present at this store, however the one here in Santa Monica is on the small scale compared to ones I have been to in NY city, so I was a little disappointed. The morning was quite uneventful, so I managed to get some work done. The rest of the day was spent on more tanning, and resting until the athlete meeting at 8pm.The athlete meeting was quick.
Dropped in, got my number, found out where to be, and when, and that was it. Back to my room to rest, eat, and get ready for show time!
Saturday morning, I got up early. Not on purpose but still being on East coast time, I tried to stay in bed as long as I could but eventually I just had to get up. My makeup artist – Liza MacWali arrived around 7:30 to get me ready for the day. She is someone I had worked with years ago, and even for the Bodyspace Bodybuilding contest, and she always does amazing work. Today was no different.
It is amazing what a little hair and makeup can do. We had to be at the show for around noon, so after 2 hours of makeup and another 30 mins of tanning I was off to the show.
The Flex Pro was very well organized, and it was evident when you first walked backstage to the athlete area. Those involved knew exactly where we should be, and directed us accordingly.
The backstage area for the girls was equipped with those extras that we all need, mirrors, outlets, beverages, weight area, and a section for the tanning crew. The whole area was carpeted and I initially thought this to be a bit awkward, but later loved it. It is so funny how long it takes you to prepare for these shows and how short the time it to actually show off your hard work. It took me all morning to get ready – and only about 5-10mins on stage to have it all be over. Prejudging went quickly – 2 rounds of callouts, and then it was over. Back to the hotel to eat, rest, and wait to get to the venue for 5pm to warmup for the night show.
At 5pm we went to warmup to test out the stage. It had carpet on it which I found to be odd.
I likened it to me doing my routine at home in my living room, so it felt familiar and comfortable. The carpet was a blessing in disguise. It absorbed a lot of the pain one would feel during the routine, than a hard work or plastic floor. I loved it.
My routine went perfectly and I could not have done better. I got Fred from the production crew to take this quick picture after the show. I was full of energy and tried to complete every movement without cutting anything off. I was proud of myself.
After that, we took the time we had to get dressed for the confirmation round in physique. All the bodybuilders had to go and do their individual routines, so we knew we had time to hang out and chat. Therefore I had time to fool around, and take some fun backstage shots. Here they are – on my fanpage.
The whole weekend was great and I could not have asked for a better showing. I placed 9th overall – 7th in routine and 10th in physique. Here is a link to the full results. Considering all the amazing girls at the show this is respectable. I am hoping for a similar finish at the Arnold this year. Fingers crossed.
Up next is the 2012 Arnold Classic Fitness International- my favourite event of the year. I will be competing as well as at the Lone Star Nutrition booth on Saturday and Sunday. I will be tweeting over the time of the event, so make sure are following me – www.twitter.com/AllisonEthier.
It will go by very quickly and I want to be present in every moment to remember it fully. I have a hard time remembering yesterday so I will be taking pictures, and video as I want to be able to remember the journey and the experience. I know my time is limited, and I won’t be competing forever.
Until next update – for the 2012 Arnold Classic. (#asf2012)
As I post this I am on my way to LA for the 2012 Flex Pro. This was shot in 2 parts – one a week ago, and then some video footage that I did back in the beginning of prep. Since I do all the edits, I am learning in the ins and outs of my computer more each time to bring you a better vlog, and picture quality. Would love to hear what you would like to see. Although I have oodles of ideas, I welcome others.
I will be filming on and off over the weekend in LA in order to savour these moments, and share them with you.
I have decided on the third show – THE St. Louis Pro – I will be attending. Great potential for information on how to maintain your shape between shows without burning yourself out.