While I had been training my clients for the 2014 BCABBA Western Canadians, I decided that I wanted to compete as well. I made my decision 100% at 5 weeks out. I competed in the figure category, and I decided to do this all on my own and not stress about it and bust every bodybuilding competition myth out there because frankly I am sick of the shit that happens in the competition world! And I will tell you why right now.
After years of being under a coach's wing, I had to reverse diet myself because my metabolism was shot. Living off 1000 calories was a bad decision, and I didn't realize the negative toll that it would take on my body. It was wrong for me to take this advice and I knew in the back of my mind that I shouldn't be listening. I remember sitting in my ex-coach's seminar with a few other girls, and him explaining if you want to be 90 pounds on stage, you have to eat 900 calories. WTF! I also remember him telling me that I need to be 95lbs on stage if I want to place top 3. What's with these magical numbers? NO ONE GIVES A SHIT ABOUT YOUR WEIGHT ON STAGE. It's the whole package people: symmetry, leaness, suit, hair, stage presence.
After my competitions were over, as soon as I looked at a carb, I gained weight.
IT IS NOT NORMAL TO GAIN 10-20 POUNDS IMMEDIATELY AFTER A COMPETITION!
Leaning out can happen in a smarter way that does not include eating little calories and hours of cardio, which can be very harmful to your body. Who wants to do 2 hours of cardio per day anyways? Frankly I have better things to do. Some of these competitors eat as little as 500 calories per day! How does a person even function? Eating such low calories can seriously damage your thyroid, and women who don't get their period during contest prep are most likely going through hormonal changes which is not normal.
Water loading and taking a bunch of diuretics is not good for anyone, in fact this method can completely interfere with the body’s natural homeostasis of fluid and electrolyte balance, and can disrupt multiple body processes. This can screw up your kidneys and heart people! Throughout the history of bodybuilding competitions, there have been several deaths and multiple hospitalizations, and I have known a few people that have had to be hospitalized after their competitions. Including some people in my town.
I haven't competed for a few years because I wanted my body to be healthy before I decided to. This time around, I felt like I could do this without sacrificing health through ridiculous bodybuilding practises.
This was my plan at 5 weeks before the competition:
HIIT cardio no more than 20 minutes 5x per week
One workout per day
Cut calories slightly(I went from 1800 calories per day to 1700)
No stressing or obsessing
My end result? Top 5
In reality, I could have given myself more time to lean out, and next time I will, but I went into this competition feeling great about what I achieved, feeling energized and not hungry and not over trained. I felt fit and healthy on stage and I look exactly the same right now as I did on stage, all because I didn't starve myself and I didn't do all the crazy stuff at the end. I'm still looking lean and eating lots. How could that not make a person happy?
- Angelique K