LOOKING ON WHEN YOU ARE OFF
Competing shouldn’t be something someone just jumps into without doing research and planning, so make sure you have a game plan for after the competition too.
Taking the time to plan your off-season will ensure a better prep for your next time on stage.
Here are 5 things to help you do that.
DO NOT BINGE
Have a reward meal post show. You definitely earned it, but continuing it for a week or more will cause major problems. People can gain 20 pounds plus in a week. Doing this causes stress on your heart, your lungs and even on your limbs.
A good coach will work with you to come up with a reverse diet plan to transition into maintenance calories. Typically adding around 100 calories a week to a competitor’s existing plan is the best way to do this. It is quite possible to eat triple a persons body weight in carbohydrates in their off-season when they reverse diet properly.
OFF-SEASON AND CARDIO
If you were doing an hour cardio while at the end of your prep, simply taper it off. Slash 10 minutes each session.
OFF-SEASON AND ALCOHOL
Adding alcohol to your diet post show can be a deadly cocktail when mixed with dehydration and an electrolyte imbalance. Increase your water at this point, not alcohol.
WORK ON YOUR WEAK AREAS
It is probable that during prep you haven’t exactly had the strength or even desire to try new exercises or programs. Being carb depleted usually brings a little shift to your workout so now is the time to try new programs and exercises. Any weak areas hit them twice a week.
LOOK LIKE A COMPETITOR ON AND OFF-SEASON
For most females a 10-15 pound weight gain is typical. Another way of figuring it out is to be about 10-12% of your stage weight. You can absolutely have some foods that would not usually fit in your macros during prep, and waiting about 10 to 14 days between those foods will help your prep for your next show much easier.
Just like you had planned for and during your prep, going into off-season with a plan is a must. It will keep you focused and motivated to bring an improved YOU to the stage season after season.
For an even more detailed article on reverse dieting read, “3 reasons why reverse dieting is dumb (do this instead)”
Tammy Patnode is an IFBB pro physique competitor and NPC judge. She is a certified personal trainer and sports nutritionist. She offers contest prep, general training and weight loss programs for men and women that are customized for each client.
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