9 Days

As I lay in bed late last night, trying to fall asleep and desperately wishing that my toe wasn’t quite so numb, I realized that I have had a difficult time visualizing my performance for this competition. In the months leading up to April’s competition, I was constantly picturing myself making each lift and going through each step. I’m not sure whether or not the visualizing actually helped me on the platform, but there was something reassuring in the process of mentally laying out the day. I actually like to visualize a lot of things, although usually I’m content to save that for super non-important things like creating the ending to a cliff-hanger dream or expanding my vision of the Star Wars universe. This is often how I fall asleep…creating story boards in my imagination. This is also how I came to realize that I’m struggling to visualize my upcoming competition, because I couldn’t fall asleep last night and every effort I made to send myself to dreamland via competition visualization resulted in nothing more than still laying in bed, wide awake and vision-less.

I am not panicking. Not yet anyway. I can kind of, sort of visualize my deadlifts, but I cannot wait to see what I can pull. Will it be the 300 pounds that my husband predicts? Maybe, maybe not…but, whatever the final result, I think I’m still going to be pleased as punch. Bench press? I want to visualize this, but it’s quite hazy. Perhaps I’ll see things differently after tomorrow’s last heavy bench day. The squat? This is probably the one lift that I really, like desperately, want to visualize, and I’m coming up blank. Remember yesterday’s blog post where I said that I’m choosing to trust my trainer? Yeah, that isn’t always as easy as it sounds! It is a choice that I have to make repeatedly. It was easy to trust him yesterday, but today, even though I really do trust him, my confidence is shaky. As I sit here in a respectable measure of pain and discomfort, because sitting makes my hip hurt, I have to wonder if this hip pain is playing with my confidence more than I might want to admit.

This hip issue doesn’t seem to bother me in the gym or while training. This is a pain-in-the-ass, numbness in the big toe while sitting or laying down kind of issue. But pain can play with our minds, right? So sure, I can squat without this hip pain causing me any physical difficulties, but what if my subconscious runs wild with its own assumptions about what my hip can or cannot do? I don’t think I have ever struggled with my depth as much as I have recently. If anything, I used to run the risk of squatting too low, but Michael has had to tell me to go lower a fair number of times over the past few weeks. There isn’t any pain in the squat, but I wonder if my brain is throwing me off and causing me to doubt myself. I need to get out of my head, or get my head out of my hip! Or something.

Tomorrow is a new day. The odds are good that I will sleep much better tonight, at least I sure hope so! A tired Angela tends to become a cranky Angela awfully quick. I am looking forward to the last heavy bench, and I am glad that we will practice that squat technique, too. Practice makes better, and I appreciate the reminder that I can do this.

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