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The Incredible Hulk

I've not been head to head with a Superhero before...

This weekend I travelled to Exeter and took up residence at the Corn Exchange. This was the designated battlefield for me to take on 'The Hulk' at the Hulk Armageddon South West IBFA championships. The general idea was that this was a warm-up show for the second half of this year's calendar. Some warm up it turned out to be. The standard of all the athletes was incredible. I loved every moment.

My adventure started by catching the 1.30am ferry to the mainland from the Isle of Wight – not an easy task in the first place. Once in Exeter, I had to find somewhere to do my first check-in of the day, so a very unsuspecting night porter at The Leonardo Hotel was coerced into letting me use a well lit corridor for me to take my clothes off (well most of them) and be photographed. It was all very light-hearted and another friend was found. What a great guy Ray was. We then finally arrived at the venue and it was fantastic – a great stage and you could immediately tell that everyone involved was a real bodybuilding fan.

For some unknown reason I decided to enter 4 classes. Over 35 Bikini, Open Bikini, Over 40 Toned Bikini and Over 40 Ladies Athlete. It was all going really well until we got to the final class. I wouldn’t say it was a mistake, but when the judges asked me to do a pose that I had never done in my life before, I got nervous. They asked me to pull a front double bicep. This is not a bikini pose and I didn’t have a clue. Very much wanting to run into the corner of the stage and hide, I chose the opposite and did my very best attempt of that particular pose. I breathed a sigh of relief only to find that they wanted me to do it again and again! I'm a great advocate of stepping out of my comfort zone, so I simply practised what I preach and gave it my best shot. And as per always when you do such a thing, the outcome is nowhere near as bad as you think. This resulted in me missing out on the win by one point only. Considering the winner was a true Figure Athlete, I am really pleased with this result.

So, I went head to head with The Hulk and came away with a gold, two silvers and a bronze. What an amazing day and I will certainly compete with the IBFA again.

Love Pearly xx

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