I’m an athlete. I’m a coach. I bleed bedazzled bikinis, heavy weights, and spray tans; I’m a bikini competitor.
Whether I’m competing or coaching, my days are filled with common questions…”Can I eat this?” “How many ounces is that?” or even “I glue my suit to what?”
This may seem odd, if you don’t live and breathe bodybuilding land, but to me it’s just a Monday and I love it!
I’ve competed and coached for years, and with so many things to worry about; from suits, to tans, to carb loading…..it can be easy for things to fall through the cracks during the competition journey.
This isn’t a post on how to train for a show; that’s what your coach is for. It isn’t even a blog about what to do on show day. This is the article on what not to forget that no one tells you.
4 things you shouldn’t forget while training for a show:
Live in the moment; but don’t forget to write it down. Since my very first show, I’ve kept a journal of every week of my program. It’s never been about writing a Pulitzer here, it’s just a running log of diet, training, mental and physical weakness and strengths I felt each week.
At first it was therapy, training for my second show, it was like a road map written about my wins and losses! Don’t underestimate the chaos of a prep while you’re in it! Having it written down was so helpful for me to reflect and learn from my past. Some days I logged every bite taken, rep lifted, and cuss word spoken; other days I just wrote “Got it done”…..It’s great to look back when I needed motivation or just direction.
Document your work. I’m not just talking progress pictures here, although they’re great motivation to look back on! But actually, show your work in the best light possible: professional.
Most athletes just rely on some snaps from the stage, but actually taking the time to set up a professional shoot will not only give you amazing pictures to keep and promote yourself, but it’s a great way to celebrate your accomplishment.
I suggest shooting the day after your show, when you’re still stage lean and muscles are full from that coveted post show meal.
Start looking for recognized, professional photographers in your area. Look at their work and reach out; trust me photographers love working with fitness athletes!
Vacation: just don’t. Should competing consume every second of every day of your life? No. Should you set yourself up for success? Yes.
That includes keeping you as stress free as possible. Traveling can put massive strain on your nutrition, water retention, training, and well sanity; and that’s when you’re not prepping for a show.
Bottom line? If it’s not absolutely necessary, save it for the post show life.
Prepare for the post. Your coach should already have a post-show nutrition and training plan set in place for you; I’m talking about post show life. The life that doesn’t revolve around weights sets, carb timing, and posing practice; your REAL life.
The week after a show can come at a complete relief for some athletes and complete confusion for others. “What do I do now?” is usually on every competitors mind.
Whether you’ve picked your next show or taking a long break, give yourself some mental and physical time to let the “show life” breathe. Go on the vacation, catch up with friends, show the ones who supported your during the journey with so much needed TLC; it will help you and the ones around you.
I strongly suggest though not taking too much R&R after a show; both in lifestyle and training routine. With the correct reverse diet and training, most of your results you worked so hard for will stay, but still keep challenging yourself!
I personally use “post show” to set new goals I couldn’t do while training; enter a obstacle race, focus on new training techniques, basically stay in the game until you decide what’s the next step for you!
Work..Hard Lift. Heavy Live.Blessed