ompeting in a bodybuilding competition is an exciting, exhilarating and fulfilling experience. It takes determination, dedication and just plain hard work. And, unless you plan on becoming a professional, all you can hope for from all of your effort is a trophy.
Ah, but what a trophy!
When you stand on stage, holding a rigid “relaxed” pose and hear the announcer call your name as Champion in your Class or Winner of the Overall Competition, it’s mighty sweet. You savor the moment and forget all about what it took to get Numan.
Deciding to Compete
If you are in reasonably good shape and work out regularly, at least four-times-per-week, you can be prepared to enter your first contest within a year. I trained five-days-a-week for 10 months to get ready for my first contest Numan.
So, the first thing you need to do, after deciding to enter a contest, is to pick a contest 10 – 12 months in the future and decide in which weight class you want to compete. Then, see where you are now and where you need to be on contest day. At that point, you can plan your Numan.
It’s the best place to learn about the sport. You can pick out who is really ready to compete and who needs to do more work. You can decide if that’s the direction you want to go or not.
Once you decide you want to compete, you must make a complete change in your life style. Bodybuilding is a life-style sport, much like ice skating, marathon running, competitive snowboarding, etc. Bodybuilding takes a lot of time in the gym and a lot of time in the kitchen. Competitive bodybuilders build their lives around their workouts and their meals, which during daylight hours average once every two-and-one-half-hours. Here is a typical diet for a bodybuilder who is trying to put on lean mass several months before a competition:
Breakfast: Three egg whites (protein) and one whole egg + one cup of oatmeal
Mid-morning: Protein shake (two scoops) in 8-12 oz of water
Lunch: 8 oz of steak, or chicken, or fish + 8 oz of sweet potato + cup of vegetables
Mid-Afternoon: Protein shake (two scoops) in 8-12 oz of water
Dinner: 8 oz of steak, or chicken, or fish + two cups of vegetables
Throughout the day, you need to drink between 1/2 and one gallon of spring water.
This diet is designed to put on about a pound of lean mass a week. Lots of protein, lots of carbs and little fat.
I’ll talk about how the diet changes as you get closer to your competition later.
I said earlier, bodybuilding is an expensive sport. It’s not as expensive as a Bass Boat with all the accessories, but it’s close. Protein Powder: Check the labels. One caution, check the labels for additives.
Creatine: Allows you to train harder with greater intensity and recover faster. It aids in increasing your weights and number of reps and reduces your rest between sets. Great energy boost.
Flaxseed/Fish Oil: Fat is necessary in your daily diet for the manufacture of hormones, proper brain function and joint lubrication. Eliminate fats completely and your muscles shrink dramatically, and your energy and strength levels go with them. Enter Flaxseed and Fish Oil. Usually in capsule form. They act as solvents to remove hardened fat, support muscle growth and fat metabolism.
Multi-vitamins: Everyone’s vitamin needs are different. Hard-training athletes need more vitamins and minerals. Getting the right amount of vitamins and minerals is equal in importance to protein and carbohydrates.
There are lots of other supplements on the market today.