In a weird way it felt like my wedding morning except there was a tiny bikini swapped out for a pretty white dress… and my husband was already my husband and he woke up next to me. ;) The pre-judging was at Noon and we needed to be at the event center by 11am, so I got up a bit before 8 to make sure I had plenty of time to get ready and relax. What I love about this INBF show is they are smaller than many and the show started a lot later, allowing us athletes to actually sleep a bit and avoid a 4am wakeup call!
Here’s what my morning looked like: Coffee (whew!), rice cakes, egg whites for breakfast. I then headed to the bathroom and applied two top coats of Pro Tan bikini bronze with a little round mitt that was included. I bought this on amazon and it was so easy to apply! I just buffed it on (like waxing a car) a little bit at a time and loved how it dried evenly and wasn’t sticky.
This stuff WASHES OFF so don’t wash your hands, splash your body or get anything wet after you put it on! It looked really great and I was digging my dark tan. The show tan sponsors even commented on it and said the color looked really amazing. I think I might have even convinced them to switch products! ;)
After I applied my tan, I did my own makeup and curled my hair. I opted to do this myself instead of hiring someone because I love doing my own hair and makeup – it’s not really something that stresses me out and actually find it quite relaxing!
I packed my day bag (rolling suitcase) for the venue with a whole load of stuff – lots of “emergency” items like safety pins, tide pen and the like for every scenario that could come up. Better safe than sorry!
Pre-judging was a hurry up and wait situation. I basically waited around for a couple of hours until I got the 20 minute warning for my category – Bikini Open Tall. At that point, I went into the weight room, got a little upper body pump going and got lined up behind stage. I was set up as the first person to walk out…talk about nerve wracking!!
I was so nervous because I had no idea what to expect. I actually don’t usually get stage fright. I love public speaking and don’t mind being in front of a crowd…but this was different! I was about to walk out and be judged on my physique… SLIGHTLY different situation!
We walked out in a line and the second the stage lights hit me I busted out my big smile and suddenly felt a wave of confidence over me. First up were our T-walks so one by one, we did our individual posing routines for the judges and then got back in line until each one of us had come out. From there, the head judge asked us to come forward for the comparison round…the scary part!
He kept having us do quarter turns and would ask us to switch spots so he could compare people next to one another. I was already on the end and was hoping he’d switch me closer to the middle, which is typically a good sign. Sure enough, I switched spots…and right when I thought I was in a good place, he switched me back to the end! I was so upset! By the time the head judge was done with us we were dripping sweat from the hot lights and flexing. Streaks of wet spray tan were dripping down my back…it was so gross!
I finished pre-judging really bummed out and thinking I had gotten last place. Typically, by the end of pre-judging they pretty much know what place everyone received but they don’t reveal the winners until the night show. The few hours in between pre-judging and the night show I was cranky AS HELL. Lol Can’t lie! I thought I had done poorly, was HANGRY and so freaking thirsty. I just wanted my beer but had to be good until the night show was over.
We went to lunch – I had steak and veggies – bought some donuts to have the second the show was over and I took a little nap in the car. I think that was the best thing for me.
We headed back to the venue at 4:30 since the night show started at 5 and I got to do it all over again. At this point I was so over it. But, I started to perk up a bit before we went back on stage. I realized that this was the FUN part and remembered Andrew was going to live stream my evening performance on my Facebook and my friends would be watching. I got really pumped all of the sudden!
Back on the stage we went and this time it was much shorter than the first. I felt a buzz of energy and got so excited I kind of biffed my t-walk routine because my mind started to wander. Oops! Oh well, at least I nailed it the first time. We went back into the comparison round and this time, the head judge didn’t move me anywhere. I was stuck on the end thinking I got 5th or 6th place (of 6 competitors.)
My goal going into this was just getting BETTER than last place. That’s all!
He started calling out placements and named off 5th place. Only top 5 were recognized, which sucks because that means one person would have to walk off with nothing. 5th place…was not me. Did that mean I got 6th?? Damn!
I think I stopped breathing for a second as he said, “4th place…”
That second lasted forEVER!
…”4th place goes to Vanessa Christopher!”
WOOOOO!! I was so excited! Even better than I had hoped. I proudly stepped up the front line to claim my top 5 spot. We took our pictures together and did a little curtsy waive before I headed off stage. I was so happy!
First thing when I got off stage. Sweats, wine and donuts!
I met up with Andrew outside and we headed out for a night on the town. The plan was to head back to the hotel room to shower off that spray tan and grab a tasty burger and beer at Steamworks Brewery. We didn’t get that far though because we drove by several breweries on the way to the hotel and I just HAD to stop. Ya, I totally wore my medal into the tasting room. Whatever, judge me if you want…. ;)
I have to say, that burger I had later was the BEST ever! I even got cheese on it! :O It was worth the wait.