Six contests in a year is hardwork for any athlete but for Marian bodybuilding is a labour of love. And I think from all accounts all the Super Girls (including myself) have loved having Marian as part of the team inspiring us with her hard training and no nonsense attitude.

Marian had competed in Sept and Oct 05 and Wellington in May 06 but as she had moved to Wellington earlier this year she decided to try another trainer (moi!) to see if she could make changes to her figure with a different training and eating approach.

Over the 12 weeks of her Super Body plan, we've managed to fine tune and 'pump up' Marian's awesome structure and improved on her overall muscle mass. While Marian couldn't do cardio, she committed to training hard in the gym and concentrated on her posing to squeeze every striation out of her muscles. We kept her protein intake high while timing her carbohydrates earlier in the day and immediately after training so she had the energy to recover. This, plus L- Glutamine, BCAAs and protein powder were crucial to keep Marian in positive nitrogen balance. As Marian had intentions of competing in 3 shows in 4 weeks, it was important that she was given plenty of calories during that time and with constant 'tweaks', we were able to keep all her muscle to present a lean full figure in her contests.

The culmination of all Marian's discipline came at the NABBA Wellington Champs (in which she placed 2nd against fellow Super Girl Tash Trlin), then winning the NZFBB South Island Champs then her last hurrah at the NZFBB Wellington Champs where she was up against Tash again and was 3rd in the Sen Fig o35 class.

Throughout all her comps, Marian was gorgeous. She was immaculately groomed and a picture of grace and athletism on stage. She proudly and confidently displayed her lean muscle which she'd worked so hard for, a factor not missed by the judges when she was twice awarded the Best routine award at 2 different shows.

Marian, you're one awesome strongwilled lady! Thanks for teaching us the true meaning of willpower. While you maybe in Aus, you'll still be in our hearts (and our email list!) and we'll be thinking of you when pre contest approaches.

Go Super Girl, all the best in Aus!

And now a few words from Marian on her Massive Year

What a 'ride' it's been over the past 12 months or so. I've competed 6 times during that period and have learned so much, met so many awesome people and had loads of fun. Each competition has had it challenges and rewards for me. Needing to work around my Chronic Pain Condition means constantly finding ways to train more efficiently and learning to adapt competition preparation to suit how I'm feeling at the time. So many people ask me why I compete when the odds seem to be stacked against me at times. I'm always initially surprised as I don't see or dwell on the negative side. Whether I compete or not I'm going to have adversity so why not use it to motivate me. I've found keeping a positive attitude to be the key to success.

Your mind is one of your most powerful tools in training and dieting. It's good to put as much effort into training your mind as you do in training your body. I spend time visualising things like …. my training routines, being successful and calm on stage, how I want to look in the future, enjoying healthy food and how I want to improve how I prepare it, I even visualise my muscles recovering and growing. Prior to a comp is a great time to visualise yourself doing your routine over and over. I have to spend as much time resting as I do training, due to poor muscle recovery and Chronic Fatigue, so I use these 'down times' to do my meditation and visualising.
If you visualise positive things happening in your life, I find they happen more often than not. I've read as many books on positive thinking as I have about training. Surround yourself with as many positive people as you
can as this shared energy is empowering. Having a wonderful, positive, supportive family has also enabled
me to achieve my goals. Their belief in me helps me stay focused.

Marian (centre) winning the Sen Fig o35 class at NZFBB South Island Champs

It's also been great to have made contact with other 'Super Girls' both here in Wellington and via the email. They're a really positive, kick-butt group of girls. It's been an honour to watch these girls compete and to see them do so well. One of the absolute highlights for me came on the night of the NZFBB Wellington Champs. Unbeknown to me, Wellington Super Girl Tash had organised a little surprise birthday celebration for me for immediately after the comp. It was so special and incredibly touching. It must have been quite a sight for the audience to come out at intermission to find a little party of girls sitting cross legged in the foyer of the Wellington Opera House, chowing down on the most delectable choc brownies and to-die-for caramel slice (renamed vascular slice) while toasting each other with bubbly. My family was also invited to 'tuck in' much to the delight of my teenage girls. The other support that meant a lot to me came from our very own "Sarah Says". Never a week went by where she didn't phone or come and join me for a coffee or a nice walk (with Ruby and Bilbo her gorgeous dogs) in her favourite cemetery where all her friends live. I'll miss you girls so much when I go back to live in Australia in December. Thanks for your friendship and support!

A big lesson I've learned over this competition season is that post-comp planning is just as important as pre-comp planning, especially if you want to continue to look good, feel good and / or compete up ahead. I've set myself new goals for training, dieting and future competing to keep me focused and to stop post-comp 'blues' from setting in … or worse … post comp food binging!! I find if I'm not proactive about this planning I can end up feeling a bit lost. Having a diary or journal is a great way to jot down goals, ideas, possible competition dates, recipes and positives affirmations etc.

The last three comps I've been following Lisa's Super Body Programme and have found that together we have been able to find some keys to me looking better on competition day. It's great to have someone to advise you and offer suggestions when things begin to plateau or to get an experienced eye to look at photos to see if you're on track or not. I find I'm not always objective about the way I look so it's essential to get that 2nd opinion from someone you trust. Working with the complications of my Chronic Pain Condition Lisa was able to adapt my diet and exercise to suit how my body was feeling and looking.

We found tactics like using higher fat (good omega oils) and / or calorie cycling to boost my metabolism which was critical considering I don't do cardio. Everyone needs a different approach to their last critical week prior to a comp. In the past I have done a carb deplete and then a load. Lisa chose a different approach for me and was able to tweak the amount of carbs, fat and protein I needed according to what I looked like without the need to take out carbs altogether (which can be quite energy zapping). It was great to be able to draw on Lisa's experience to try a completely new approach which I think was successful. I'm really happy with how I looked and that makes me feel great. Thanks for your support Lisa!


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