My name is Jackie and I’m an MD-PhD student and an active NQ NPC bikini competitor.  It feels like I’ve been in prep forever, but it’s only been a year and a half since I first began my journey into bikini competitions.  I had used sports as an outlet to keep myself sane during medical school – in 2012-2014, I played roller derby, and in 2015, I trained for (and completed) a marathon.  I also did some weightlifting on the side, making the mistake of following StrongLifts 5×5 exclusively and doing nothing else.

Even though I was proud of my body for being able to do all of those things, I was still deeply dissatisfied with how I looked.  I’ve always been skinny, but I’ve never had rippling abs or shapely curves.  Years of intense cardio and a carb heavy diet did nothing to change my skinny-fat body type.  I resolved to myself – if I wanted to look like a fitness model, I should train like one as well.

I began my first prep in May 2016 and competed twice – once in September at the Fort Wayne Flex, and a second time in October at the NPC All Star Championships (photos were never posted).  I was happy with placing 3rd in Open and 5th in Novice at Fort Wayne, but horribly disappointed at being in the last call-outs at All Stars.  I took a long off season and planned on competing in October 2017, but had to pull out of the show I had planned because I wasn’t going to be lean enough in time.  I have big plans for 2018, and I’m coming back to the stage better than ever.

Since May 2016, I have learned so much about this process through lots of trial and error.  I hope to share my journey with you as I prepare for my 2018 season, showing you the gritty realities of bikini competition prep, as well as sharing some resources (both scientific and practical) that helped me.  A lot of this stuff may be a bit rudimentary – and I’m not proclaiming to be an expert on any of this – but I hope to put out content that I wish I saw when I first started.  This blog is intended to be a free, unbiased resource for competitors of all divisions, with a special focus on the Bikini division.