Experiencing your best health and body also means growing and using your mind regularly, not just your body.
We observe many athletes go from event to event to event, and we just don’t agree with this philosophy, nor do we believe the human body does naturally either to function at optimal metabolic health and balance.
When I finished up my last NPC figure national level competition naturally in fall 2011, I felt very out of balance being disconnected from my mind & intellectual pursuits for that 1.5 years of work to achieve our physical goal & compete at the best of my ability as a natural athlete at that level.
So I made the decision that put my overall emotional, mental & physical wellness first, and decided to take time off, and I’m still taking time off.
That is just one of the reasons why, for now, I’ve chosen not to return to competing yet as my current goals are further expansion of my education, E3 Energy Evolved mission, getting back in balance with my mind & natural healing of my neurological condition which I’ve been working at now 22 years which involves both physical & mental aspects related to brain health.
We cannot be constantly focused only on the external physical aspects of our body.
This is not coming from a place of balance, true wellness, and fully experiencing ourselves. Our minds and bodies are intimately connected and always affecting each other, and working together. Often athletes come off a competition wondering why they fall into a tailspin of depression and “emotional lack syndrome” we call it.
- It’s because typically the nutrition approach done to get leaner for competition & body transformation is lacking, outdated & too generalized, where it needs to be customized to each person uniquely and implement integrative health concepts to keep their internal systems safe and balanced through the comp prep metabolic push. Everyone for example thinks HIIT training is how to do cardio for everyone- this not so, even on a path to getting your leanest naturally. Everyone in body transformation thinks they need to consume asparagus and fish for 1-2 weeks to get lean, also not so, and dangerous for your elimination and detoxification systems. The fact that their program uses poor nutrition & fitness protocols that don’t consider and preserve all internal systemic function & bio-individual nature of the human body, leads to internal imbalances that yield problems with the digestive tract and other areas of metabolic health that are connected to the brain and also effect emotional & mental health. You cannot disconnect the physical from the mind. They work hand in hand, and generate one anothers experience. If you’re given a competition program that puts different systems of the body internally in a dangerous and/or depleted state, you create mental & emotional consequence, along with the physical.
- The physical focus to prepare for a competitive athletic event is utterly narrow and intense, it is truly something only the most balanced mind (yes, mind, not body) can handle and get out the other side unscathed. This is because you have to learn to maintain emotional and mental health, which you shut out so many pieces out of your life on that path to your physical peak, and these pieces you shut out also lead to optimal wellness, including other activities that generate connectedness with other people, spiritual health, mental balance. When you remove these things from your life for quite some time, your heart and mind cannot NOT be affected, unless you are highly in tune as an athlete to all these pieces going on at the same time, and how to rebalance them safely as you come out of competition. We’ve not met anyone who speaks of athletic competition prep this same way although we hope too shortly as we begin to connect with more of our e3ee peers at industry events and conferences, or views it the same philosophically as far as human body wellness. We need more leaders and coaching professionals in the competitive athletic world that not only believe this form of integrative health philosophy, but know how to create, implement and teach it to other athletes and fitness professionals.
- If you’re using the competitive process to derive all your internal belief and confidence about yourself, and cannot have a personal identity that survives without the presence of athletic competition in your life to be able to take some time off, then you can’t be a stable spirit at all times despite the conditioning of your body, which is a very dangerous emotional & mental place to stack your cards on. If you’re this person, in our professional opinion you should take time off from competing or perhaps leave the sport altogether, and focus working on your inner peace and gratitude for all areas human body, developing all your unique gifts, and accepting your spiritual beauty that exists and is constant no matter the physical conditioning of your body.
This is why we are not proponents of going from competition to competition to competition as an athlete, also considering the mental health, emotional, and internal metabolic imbalances and damage that can and often does cause.
Being about natural human body health is a multi-faceted process, and knowing there is much more to human body health & wellness, than simply managing what the outside of a body looks like, and leaving all of the rest of its systemic function out of the picture in our choices & our lifestyle.
And you won’t do that forever without consequence of health & body imbalance.
Author: Heather Dubé, HHC, AADP, ACSM CWC, NASM CPT, NC Cand. & BA Psychology, is a Functional Nutrition Practitioner, US National-Level Natural NPC Figure Bodybuilding Competitor & Contributing Expert Magazine Writer with 24 years experience, and Co-Founder of the e3 Energy Evolved™ System.
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