Summer of 2013 was truly a time to remember for the rest of my life. It was the first time I stopped doing what was easy and instead put in the extra time and effort into accomplishing a once-in-a-lifetime experience. The pageant became my life outside of work. I was dedicated and motivated. I was enjoying myself and proud of everything I was accomplishing. One of which was weight management. Having worked out everyday, I still wasn’t seeing quick results, but this time around, I had more help. Find out more about it here.
Moving on, my all-time favorite activities pre-China would have to be the two photo shoots – a city tour plus a studio/outdoor shoot. I got to collect a lot of great pictures, as you’ll see. Another interesting discovery was how noticeable a few extra pounds of fat look in picture. Though my weight didn’t shift, my % body fat dropped shockingly fast since going on my weight loss regime. I made a note of it here. I pulled the following information from a post I wrote back in July.
My % body fat was:
- 29% in February
- 27.5% in April
- 23% in June
Or you can just see for yourselves from these pictures taken in the beginning of June.
I tend to sleep in weekend mornings, but during the next 2 months, my designated waking hour ranges between 6AM to 8AM, but never into noon. This Saturday was no different, though I didn’t mind. I can’t sleep anyway from all the excitement. Makeup and hair began early but as always, I had to wait in line. My breakfast is of course a protein shake while a few girls ate juicy meat buns and cake – you know, one of those lucky girls who can eat whatever they want and never gain a pound.
By the time all 14 of us were done, it was 1PM – where did the morning go??? After some more waiting around (yes, we do a lot of that, talking about a waste of time), we finally begin the photo shoot at Imperial Studio where we had our makeover done earlier. We’re in our uniforms to begin with – the exact same one from semi-final: pink tank top and white tennis skirt. I talked briefly about the proper stance and this particular set of photos just show how bad I was at it in the beginning and how little I cared about being in stance later on when I’m exhausted. I also look very awkward a lot of times and did so for a while. It’s true. I really did need more practice in front of a mirror to get it right. That pose is NOT natural at all. Here’s one of my better, more natural looking ones.
The day of the shoot was sunny and hot. Summer was just beginning and I was loving every minute, except maybe when I had to wear a bodysuit, aka, qi pao that draped all the way down to my feet with slits going all the way up to my bottom cheeks. We also had to do a “MV” where we pretended to be mannequins that came alive. I have yet to see that video – I wonder if we sucked so much that they were too embarrassed for our sake to show it. Anyway, this was taken during the part where we were “wandering around aimlessly” having just turned into humans. Interesting concept, but none of us are very good at acting so I doubt it looked any convincing as the director had hoped.
Being in that AC’ed studio was fine, until we had to step out into the streets and sit on top of a tour bus to wave at people on the streets of Flushing. Some were nice and waved back, but mostly we were ignored or gawked at. I think my reaction would be to either feign ignorance or sneer condescendingly. Thankfully, there are much less skeptical people than me out there. The top of the bus was NOT fun. I felt like I was suffocating like a potato in a white wool bag. Luckily we got to sick on the inside as well, which was pretty fun with a bit of singing and cheering.
Our first destination was across the river from Manhattan where we got out to take pictures of the Brooklyn Bridge. So cliche! Yes, people stared at me as I walked in line with my fellow finalists in long sequinned qi pao. People also took pictures, I wonder where they’ve posted them. If you’ve seen similar pictures elsewhere, post them in the comment box below. I’m really interested in seeing what people thought of us.
After driving across the bridge, we ended up in Chinatown. Of course, how fitting to take pictures in qi pao in Chinatown. At some point during the shoot, I head my name being called out.
Muahaha, of course someone recognizes me. I feel like a celebrity. This moment of fame feels glorious. Yes, it’s me. Sure, I can give you my autograph. Glowing and smiling from ear to eat, my inner Marie can no longer contain herself.
Then I spot my roommate and my bubble gets busted. No matter, I still feel pretty awesome. As my roommate points at me, she turns around to tell her 2 friends about me. It was still a pretty good feeling. In hindsight, I’m sure I didn’t look nearly as good as I imagined myself to be in my head. Here’s a photo to prove it.
Luckily it was time to change outfits. We stop shortly to change and eat a sandwich. I was starving! What I don’t like is the fact we get fed unhealthy food. If the pageant is telling us we need to lose weight, why were they providing food that was high in fat and low in nutrition. The sandwich consist of white bread, egg, ham, mayo and a few specs of lettuce, basically everything I was avoiding. An apple would have been a better alternative. What was worse is the fact that this was our only source of food, who can say no when our stomach is growling and there’s nothing else to eat? Absolutely inexcusable trade-off and because it’s cheap and fast to obtain. Granted they had no obligation to feed us, but still…
Anyway, the afternoon’s outfit was much more comfortable and much less stuffy. Another cliche destination was South Street Seaport. At least it was cool by the river. More “MV” time – we strutted down the walkway like it was a runway. It was pretty cool I guess. Again, yet to see that music video…
Can you guess the next place? We’re traveling north. Yea, I was pretty exhausted at the point and on top of that, I was standing on vents. Unfortunately I didn’t feel like being a “professional” and making it look like I was effortlessly floating on air.
Last destination is? Central Park! Truth be told, this was pretty awesome. I’ve never ridden a buggy in NYC before so this was pretty fun for me, even though it lasted about 2 minutes. Talk about cheap, but I’m grateful.
By the way, I don’t know the name of this statue or why it’s famous. This picture is so un-pageant like, but it’s so me. I love fast cameras that can capture action shots like this one. I had to pretty much repeat it 3 times in 4 inch heels in front of a 3 feet drop. No, I wasn’t scared.
My long day finally ended on a high note. I was happy…