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A day in the life.

Pearly Bodybuilding is a small but committed team. We all have a common belief and with Pearly at our helm we all work tirelessly to reach our goal using Bodybuilding as our vehicle to inspire more people to improve their health, wellness, fitness and lifestyle.


With that in mind I want to give you a factual account of what happens on a show day. Pearly's recollection of events will be completely different to mine. She has a different job to do.

It's my job to try and ensure that the day goes smoothly. Keep Pearly safe, focused and as much as possible, relaxed. Have I ever succeeded?  Not 100%, but everyday is a school day and we learn from everything we do. And I know I have done a pretty good job when, at the end of the day, Pearly asks "What have you done today?" Well usually, quite a lot!

All of the competitions take place on the mainland UK. So for us Isle of Wight folk, our day starts with a ferry in the middle of the night. This is a real pain and it also adds two hours to our already long day. Pearl has won her Pro Card in her first season.  This is pretty much unheard of and along with that success, it adds a big expectation. The Pro Show at York University this weekend (1 Oct 2023) was the first at this level for Pearly, so there was a different mood in the camp – excitement, pressure, and nerves all came into play, and this makes my job harder.

So this is how the trip went.

It's the middle of the night as we get off the ferry in Southampton – thankfully Pearly falls asleep in the car. Not only does this mean that I can have my own music playing but it means that Pearly is relaxed. At around 6am we attempt a check in. This is where we take photographs to ensure her condition. On show day this will happen at least three times but the day's running order meant that Pearly didn’t step on stage till early evening, so we did four check-ins. Now, this is not as easy as it sounds. We have been known to sweet talk or even bribe hotels and food establishments for a well lit area that might be a bit secluded for the photos  If we fail though, our beloved leader strips to her bikini, pulls her heels on an poses in a services car park or even at the side of the road!

Once at the venue I always sweep the place for essentials; a well lit area, the stage, backstage, pump up area, hairdressing, make up and so-on. This is when Pearly will have her first of four or five meals of the day, normally consisting of chicken, greens a small amount of water, pink salt and sweet potato. We will have hopefully received the running order for stage times. I have to then plan the hair, tanning and make up so that it all runs smoothly.

It doesn’t always go to my plan though, often delays get in the way. This used to completely frustrate me but now we are so fluid that we can adapt. I work back from the show running order to make sure we are ready. Pearly likes an hour to pump up before stage. Below was Sunday's plan


8.45 First Meal

9.00 Registration

9.30 Meal Two

10.00 Athletes Meeting

10.30 Top Coat Tanning

11.30 Check in

12.00 Meal three

13.00 Hair and Make Up

15.00 Bikini On and Glaze

15.30 Check in

16.00 Interview

17.00 Last meal and fluids

17.30 Pump up Backstage  

18.30 Stage


When I write this down it looks so simple. But it all goes out the window when we don’t go on stage till an hour later than scheduled. This means, to hold Pearly’s condition, a little more food may be required, some more fluids maybe and perhaps a longer pump up. The timing is very strategic and its interesting to be back stage and see how different athletes approach it.

Pearly, luckily, has an incredible metabolism and can hold her condition well. But we have seen other athletes take on too much fluid, eat too much sweet stuff or even completely lose the plot and just binge, resulting in them going on stage in a suboptimal condition. This is so hard to see, especially when they have dieted for 20 weeks, to get in that stage shape. What a crazy sport, it can so easy to throw it away at the last minute. Usually by this time Pearly is so deep into the zone that a bomb could go off and It wouldn’t affect her.

She then gets called into her line up. It's now when you see me running from backstage to the auditorium, to the left had side of the stage. Don’t ask me why, it's always been the left, and it will remain that way. I now take on a different role – my job now is to be the loudest person in the crowd – but believe it or not I am still coaching. We use certain buzzwords that mean smile, tighten up, keep moving etc, but in general, I'm making sure that Pearly is supported in the most primal way and I'm proud to say that I have never been out-voiced. I just feel that if Pearly has put all the effort in, it's the least that I can do as her coach to make her feel supported whilst on stage.

The final part of my day is to carry the hardware that we have won (hopefully), get told off for being too loud, and get my athlete home safely. I wouldn’t change it for the world.

Pura Vida

Coach Coco

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