Setting Yourself Up For A Successful Contest Prep Featuring Danni Bosworth
Whilst many people think preparation for a show starts at week one of a diet, they couldn’t be more wrong. There is so much more to consider when you’re wanting to step on stage if you want to bring your best whilst keeping your mental and physical health intact.
So, what you should you make sure you have nailed before you pick a show date and embark upon the fat loss phase of contest prep?
Make sure you have a good relationship with food.
If you suffer with a questionable relationship with food before starting a contest prep, it is more likely than not only going to get worse. Dieting for a show is an extreme as you are pushing your body to places it doesn’t want to go, and therefore more often than not you have to take relatively extreme measures to get there during the dog end of prep.
I would recommend anyone who has doubts about their relationship with food addresses their problems well before thinking about entering a fat loss phase with the end goal of competing.
In some cases, contest prep can make people feel as if they have everything under control but post show everything often goes a little tits up after freedom is reintroduced and you no longer have the pressure of a show date looming over you. Prep itself can often mask underlying issues which will come back to bite you if they aren’t addressed beforehand.
Ensure you are financially stable.
Bodybuilding is a very expensive sport. You can easily spend thousands on a contest prep from start to finish taking into account your bikini, hair, makeup, heels, tan, travel, accommodation etc. The list is endless, and luckily here at KOMPAK we have most of that all in one place for you...but the price of competing can still add up. Worrying about your finances during prep is only going to create a very stressful environment and make the process harder than it has to be. So make sure you’re in a good position financially beforehand!
Make sure you are physically healthy.
Prep can take its toll on your health if you aren’t sensible with your approach, but making sure your health is intact prior to starting a contest prep is one way to minimise any detriments to health!
I would make sure that prior to prep you...
Have good hormone health, a good sign of this is a regular menstrual cycle
Sleep well and consistently
Have your stress levels as low as possible
Maintain good gut health. It’s so important to have a healthy, well-functioning digestive system
Don’t have any injuries, as prep will most likely make them worse
Have a relatively high-calorie intake.
As the weeks go on and you approach your show, calories will get lower to ensure you are in a calorie deficit and therefore progressing with fat loss.
If before prep starts you are already on low food, you don’t have much room to manoeuvre. Ensuring food is high prior to starting prep will mean that you have more to pull from, and will give you a better chance of keeping your calorie intake a little higher than you would be able to if you don’t work your intake up beforehand.
Keeping your calorie intake as high as possible and not being extreme with every move you make is one way to ensure you stay as healthy and well-functioning as possible during prep. Do what's necessary to get stage lean yes, but be smart about it.
Make sure you have a good coach.
Make sure you’re working with a coach who you trust, and who you are confident is going to support you throughout the process and beyond whilst getting you to stage in the best position possible both physically and mentally.
I would advise working with your coach for a decent period of time prior to starting contest prep to set yourself up in the best position possible, and so that you know how they work and that they are the right coach for you.
If you are prepping yourself, it always helps to have an objective eye so make sure you have a good support network around you and that you can get honest, objective feedback on how you look when you need it.
Tell your friends and family what you are doing and why.
A lot of people don’t get what we do, but you’re not going to help them understand if you keep everyone around you in the dark about it.
Help them understand our sport, what it entails and what to expect from you. This will reduce the number of questions on your behaviours throughout prep and beyond, and make the process easier for both you and your loved ones as they will know the reasons why. Express what it means to you.
Ensure you have a decent amount of muscle tissue...if you don’t, go through an improvement season first.
Even bikini girls these days carry a good amount of muscle, and it’s easy to think you have more muscle than you actually do before you’ve been stage lean. If you want to stand a chance of doing well, I would advise focusing on hypertrophy for a good chunk of time before starting a contest prep. This is also a good sign you’re competing for the right reasons if you can be consistent with training and enjoy it without the pressure of a bodybuilding show!
I hope you were able to take something from the above, and that it helps you get to the stage with the best physique possible whilst keeping your mental and physical health intact and enjoying the process!
If you ever need to reach out you are always welcome to pop me an email on firstname.lastname@example.org
Enjoy, and I wish you all the best of luck!