Wrapping up a Journey, Beginning Anew
By Jillian Teta
So, I am coming in to the final stretch of making my long-awaited IFPA pro debut, something I have been working towards since winning my pro card last June. These last few days before stepping on stage are always an intensive period of reflection and “buckling down”.
I really enjoy learning about the human brain, about how we think, why some are happier than others, why others never seem satisfied, etc, etc…Recently I was reading a paper on happiness. In our largely hedonistic society, happiness is defined (by society) as things going your way most of the time and you having a string of pleasant experiences happen to you, one after another.
What neuroscience has been sketching out for quite some time now is that happiness has much less to do with what happens to you and more to do about your state of mind. How you process things and relate to them internally – and move on from them – are greater determinants to happiness than external influences. The new car, the promotion, diving into a plate of cupcakes, even the first place trophy are great, yet their satisfaction wears off sooner or later as we are looking for the next thing to “make” us happy.
Anyway, a passage in this paper really caught my attention. When one is focused on and working towards a goal, the greatest happiness and even satisfaction comes right before the completion of that goal; before you are totally sure that you are going to be able to pull it off and succeed.
Plugging along these last couple of days – I realize: “I have no idea if I will be able to pull this off”. Through my low-carb fatigue and haze, feeling tired of eating blended fish and veggies every 2 hours and pining for trail mix and bacon, I feel an enormous build up of anticipation. It is actually quite exciting. “WILL I be able to pull this off?” Still not sure, but ready to try. It’s what I’ve been training for, with the whole JillFit family, for almost a year.
This is that fine edge where the anticipation of the event feels more exciting than the event itself. Geez, I’ll be on stage for probably 5 minutes. But this part? Thinking about it, visualizing it? I have time to enjoy this part. And according to my brain chemistry, this is the sweet spot. Where I’m not sure how it will all go down.
Yes, I feel ready. And yes, I feel that I will be bringing my best physique yet. And so will more than a dozen other women, all of whom have been training hard as well, and many of whom are seasoned pros. I have great respect for all of the mental, emotional and physical time and energy that goes into getting ready for a show like this, and it will be an honor and a privilege to get on stage with women that I admire and am inspired by.
So I blogged when I started my contest diet, and posted my stats. Here I am at the close-to-the-end of it, and I’ll post again. At last weigh-in, I was 123lbs, 11% body fat, and my waist was 22 ¼ inches. I will be posting my show pics when I have them. Thank you to all, near and far, for your public and private words of encouragement. It means more to me than you know! Now if only I can remember where I put my water bottle…. :)