By Tyler Stark
US Myprotein Writer
The Olympia weekend is finally upon us and if things have gone well, it’s where the competitors should be hitting their highest peak. Dieting and calories become even more restrictive, workouts have to become more intense and finding a sense of energy has to be pulled deep within you.
The majority reading this will have already done their research for pre-contest prep, but for those who plan to compete in a bodybuilding or physique competition in the future, this article will give you a great start on how to finish strong.
Contest Prep Diet
The biggest but yet most influential part of your last week of prep will without a doubt be the way you diet. You’ve restricted calories, maybe carb cycled and had a few cheat meals here and there, but now it’s time to buckle down. Zero cheat meals until time to carb up after weigh-ins means that you’ll be dragging energy wise throughout the week.
Carbs need to be at a bare minimum for you to drop those last 1 or 2 pounds to really get you show ready. Calories as a whole need to be coming down as well from weeks past and be in a deficit of around 300-400 this week.
To keep your body flushed of the bad, use natural diuretics like asparagus and leafy greens accompanied with drinking water like it’s going out of style. Not only will water help keep you energized but will also help fight hunger these next few days. Incorporate fiber into every meal to also stave off hunger pains. Being hungry can wait until you step off that stage.
Added Extras For Pre Competition Diet
Drinking plenty of water will help keep your kidneys functioning properly with maybe some added caffeine to your diet, as this could be your life saver. Supplements should contain natural caffeine boosters like guara and green tea extract. Black coffee is also a great option and more cost effective as well without some of the other additives and sugars some supplements may have.
Protein will also be your friend. Rather than grabbing a couple of quick protein bars like you normally would in the off season, opt for a isolate protein powder and a few almonds to help with digestion and keep protein levels high with an addition of the fats to keep testosterone levels up as well.
The day of weigh-ins will likely be the day before you actually step on stage. Once you hit your weight, it’s time to carb up and refill those glycogen stores to get the muscle bellies full again. Your vascularity will not go anywhere and opting for quick carbs that will fill you up like pizza, burgers, fries and milkshakes are all quite essential to how you look on stage to the judges.
Working out this last week will be absolutely horrific. Pumps will be way down with decreased carb intake and motivation will also take a hit. Surround yourself to keep you accountable and that will encourage you along the way will be incredibly helpful for you to make it to the finish line.
Grinding this week out will be essential but being smart about your lifting will help prevent injury. This is just a fine tune week anyway because you’re training and eating leading up to this is what makes you in the stage.
As you can see a lot goes into the last week leading up to show time, but in the end when you know you’ve worked your tail off the previous months and out everything you have into this one show. Keep the end goal in mind and kill this last week of training the next time you’re prepping for a show.