The Basics to the Final week of Prep

There are many different ways to prep for a BodyBuilding show some work some don’t but the basics will always remain the same, Many great Bodybuilders don’t just rock up and get that final week perfect they come to the best method that suits them through trial and error, i would advise many to use the basic plan below then to look at what needs to change for their individual needs moving forward.

 

There are 3 distinct phases to the last week these are:

Carb depletion

Carb load

Water manipulation

 

Carb Depletion: 3-4 days

The theory here is to deplete all glycogen from the muscles by lowering the daily Carb amount; I use 50% of the amount of carbs I eat on a low Carb day although I would never advise to go lower than 50g of carbs a day ask anyone how they feel in this stage and they will tell you they feel flat, fat and weak like a deflated balloon to me this is exactly how you should feel. Protein and fats are kept the same all this is in preparation for the next stage Carb Loading.

 

Carb Loading: 2-3 days

After Carb depleting the muscles will be flat and hungry for glycogen this comes in the form of carbs, because of the state of your muscles you can load more carbs than you would normally eat without fear of holding water or gaining fat.

I use double the amount of carbs I would normally eat on my high Carb day, spread the carbs through the day normally eating 6-8 meals the normal type of carbs used for this stage are:

  • Oats
  • Sweet potatoes/Yams
  • White potatoes
  • Rice cakes
  • Basmati rice
  • Bananas

Because of all the Carbs taken in over these 2-3 days the normal practice is to lower both fats and protein, i would half both Protein and Fats.

 

Water Manipulation: 7-10 days

This part of the last week takes up all of the last week and in itself has 2 parts

  • Super compensation
  • Restriction

Approx a week out from the show you accustom your body to drink a high amount of water this will help your body to get rid of bad water this in its self is a form of diuretic as the body will be forced to expel large amounts of water the normal amounts are 6-10L every day.

The second part to this is to restrict the water now some will lower the water as they Carb up others will lower the water 24hrs before the show, I prefer to go with the latter option as carbs need water to be shuttled into the muscle so I see no point in restricting it whilst carbing up. So I stop all water at 6.00pm the night before the show because y

you have accustomed your body to expel large amounts of water it will continue to do so over the next 24hrs with no water coming in then the water it will expel will be water from under the skin.

Note: I do not do sodium loading as this can go very wrong my advice would not to try this unless you know your body and how it reacts.

 

Putting it all together:

Now this is the hard part making a plan and sticking to it, I will use numbers that I have used recently for one of my athletes the show is on a Saturday.

7 days out: Saturday

Increase Water to 8L

Last leg workout

Lower Carbs from 300g to 150g

Cardio 90 min on treadmill

Protein and fats remain same

2g VitC

 

6 days out: Sunday

Depleting workout 50 reps per bodypart

Water at 8L

Carbs at 150g

Cardio 90 min on treadmill

Protein and fats remain same

VitC 3g

 

5 days out: Monday

Depleting workout 50 reps per bodypart

Water at 8L

Carbs Lowered to 75g

Cardio 90 min on treadmill

Protein and fats remain same

VitC 4g

 

4 days out: Tuesday

Depleting workout 50 reps per bodypart

Water at 8L

Carbs at 75g

Cardio 90 min on treadmill

Protein and fats remain same

VitC 5g

 

3 days out: Wednesday

Depleting workout 50 reps per bodypart

Water at 8L

Carbs at 900g

Protein and fats lowered by 50%

VitC 6g

 

2 days out: Thursday

Water at 8L

Carbs at 900g

Protein and fats same a s Wednesday

VitC 7g

 

1 day out: Friday

Water at 8L no water after 6.00pm

Carbs at 500g this is dropped slightly depending on how full/flat you are at this point

Protein and fats same as Thursday

VitC 8g

 

Show day:

Sip water before pre-judging no more than 1L

Have a high fat breakfast my favorite is 6 beef sausages

You should be full by now so just munch on rice cakes/bananas/peanut butter through the morning.

After prejudging eat a high Carb/fat meal like steak and chips with a desert have a drink but DO NOT drink gallons…….

 

By the time show day has come around you have done all the hard work so relax and enjoy the day……

This plan is only a base guide there are many different ways to do the final week the key is to find out which plan is best for you.