Twenty-four year-old Lauren Forziati from Falmouth Ma, began training for the Organization of Competitive Bodybuilders Spirit of America Competition over three months ago. This is her first body building competition. Already physically fit, Lauren set out to prove she could learn the self-discipline and build the strength to compete. Lauren speaks to her mother, and despite concerns from her family, Lauren has adopted an extreme lifestyle which includes a limited diet, and an extensive exercise and supplement regime.
Lauren takes several supplements and vitamins throughout the day, including estrogens blockers to help regulate insulin, increase metabolism, and burn fat.
Lauren eats a meal of egg whites and asparagus, a diuretic. At this point in her training, Lauren has not consumed carbohydrates in five days and is consuming about a thousand calories a day. Eating every three hours, four to five times a day, helps maintain her metabolism.
While she is unsatisfied with the appearance of her legs and thighs, Lauren is satisfied of her abs. Rubbing a lotion onto her abs before heading to the gym helps stimulate the area to promote fat burning.
Depending on the day, Lauren's workout can consists of 60 to 90 minutes of cardio, with the hope of burning around 800 calories.
Lauren's extreme lifestyle leaves her aching, exhausted, and sleep deprived.
To look and feel her best for the judges, Lauren receives a manicure and pedicure before the competition.
Lauren is given a professional spray tan in her bathroom. The tan creates the appearance of better muscle definition and overall health- qualities the judges will be looking for during the competition.
Lauren speaks with her sister, Kristen, about nutrition and the supplements she has been ingesting. Skeptical, Kristen doesn't quite understand her sister's goals and strict lifestyle, but wants to learn to eat better and live a healthier lifestyle.
On the day of the competition, Lauren's friend and assistant, Jessa English- a past-winner of the competition, makes last-minute adjustments to Lauren's wardrobe and rubs tanning lotion on Lauren backstage.
Just moments from walking out on stage, Lauren squeezes in a last-minute workout to tighten her body and feature her muscle definition.
Assistants Jessa English and Jereff Eladey scrutinize Lauren for any flaws and last-minute adjustments to her wardrobe.
Lauren and other females competitors gather backstage before facing the judges. Today is the culminate of months of training and hardwork.
While on stage, Lauren and the women are asked to strike different poses, rotating and flexing to show different angles and perspectives of their bodies.
Judges examine the contestants for symmetry, definition, and figure, as shouts of support erupt from the audience.
While this is Lauren's first competition, many of the women have competed and won during previous judging. Lauren is concerned her figure is too large and muscular compared to the other women.
After the judging, Lauren's family, friends, and her boyfriend, Chris Landers-Cauley, join Lauren backstage to congratulate her. She feel positive about her performance and thinks she will do well.
Lauren reacts after not placing and coming in last in the competition. Heartbroken, Lauren feels like she let her family and friends down, dragging them through months of mood swings and a strict training schedule.
After not placing in the competition, Lauren leaves with her family, who persuaded her to put aside her disappointment and go out to celebrate her hard work.
Lauren celebrates the end of long, strenuous months of training, diet restrictions, and body image debates. It's the first time she's had "real" food in over three months. While Lauren did not place in any category and placed last in the "figure novice short" category, she gained the physical and mental discipline, and strength she strived for, as well as the respect and admiration of her friends and family. While the efforts of the last three months didn't not win her a trophy, Lauren lives a healthier lifestyle. She has not decided if she wants to continue to compete.