Monthly Archives: March 2010

Getting Lean: The final 4 weeks

I always try to stress to competitors how important it is to push even harder the last 4 weeks before a figure competition. These weeks are the hardest because your body fat is low and your body is fighting to keep from losing more fat. But the pounds you lose during the final weeks can have a dramatic effect on your overall appearance… as opposed to early on when a pound or two didn’t even register when looking in the mirror.

This is the time when many competitors plateau and make very little improvement. It’s easy to just “stay the Figure Judgingcourse” …thinking that somehow you will continue to improve. This, of course, is the wrong attitude – what you must do is work harder, more often… and keep your diet tight. Having this attitude can be the difference between winning and losing – or the difference between looking like you belong onstage… or looking like you don’t.

Sometimes when a competitor complains why they can’t do this or do that, I tell them: “Get over yourself” …not to be a jerk, but the competitors you will go up against are probably training hard while you are coming up with reasons not to train. Whether it’s doing cardio before the kids get up in the morning, running on your lunch break or working out after everyone has gone to sleep – you just do what you gotta do.

When your body fat is low and you are low on carbs and energy, the diet becomes very difficult your mind starts to think:

  1. “why is this so hard?”
  2. “why am I doing this?”
  3. I have not lost a pound this week (…so shouldn’t I just quit? …or have that piece of cake?)

This is your subconscious mind trying to justify you quitting, or eating your son’s birthday cake that’s in the fridge…. or maybe participating in the office party next Friday, going out drinking with friends or any number of other temptations you will surely face …everyday! Only the strong survive in this sport.

Tips to keep you focused during the final weeks:

  1. focus on how good you will feel getting onstage in good shape win or lose. You will have done something many women have talked about ….but very few have accomplished.
  2. remember that your competition is probably training hard and not cheating
  3. refuse to make excuses: If I had a nickle for everytime I heard: “It’s harder for me because… I have kids, I’m in school or… I don’t live near a gym or… i work full time etc. etc. etc… there are a thousand excuses. It’s hard for everybody…. each person has things going on in their lives, whether its a full-time job, kids, or a spouse who is unsupportive. Just get over yourself and do it… like Jennifer (aka ‘applejack’) did below.

figure competitorfigure Posing