This last weekend on April 28th I competed in the 2012 NPC Charlotte Cup at the Blake Hotel in downtown Charlotte, NC.  It was a phenomenal experience all around and I had a fantastic time.

Abs heading into pre-judging

Pre-judging went well and I was pleased with how I looked going in – I certainly would have liked to have been a bit leaner, but I felt reasonably dry and was able to pump up sufficiently.  The issue ended up being the time between pre-judging and the finals – I thought I could get away with just a little extra fluid and it didn’t work – I was flat as a board at the finals and was unable to get a pump going, no matter how hard I tried.  Lesson learned.

2nd place middleweight

After the finals I was in a hurry to get something to eat, but when Lee Haney has a booth at your show, you take the time to stop and talk to the man.  He was as gracious and kind as you could possibly hope for and we had a great talk.

Me with 8x Mr. Olympia Lee Haney

Every show – whether you’re competing or just watching – is a motivating experience.  Seeing what other people are up to, getting the chance to make some friends, and making new plans for the future is all standard fare.  These are competitions after all, but we should always remember to embrace your fellow competitors for who they are – like-minded people in a sub-culture where we would be well suited to stick together and support one another.

Next up for me?  A few months of hard off-season training, a week vacation in Puerto Rico, and 12 weeks of prep to get ready for the Elite Muscle Classic on November 3rd.  Who’s with me?

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