Drying Out for a contest
Coming into a contest really dry and hard is a tricky business, which everyone
seems to do differently. I will tell you what has worked for me and subsequently
others but first let me relate to you a couple of mistakes that I have made in
the past so that you will not go down the same route.
My first mistake I made a few years ago competing as a middle-weight (I'm now a
heavyweight!). My diet and training had gone really well and my condition was
spot on. I made the fatal mistake of listening to too many people and nearly
messed myself up "big time". From 5 days out I started Aldactone, a small dose
at first and slowly building up each day. The show was on a Sunday and I cut my
Water on the Friday morning duh! I only sipped distilled Water when I really
had to. The day before the show I only drank half a pint of distilled Water
throughout the whole day. Now the original plan had been to enter the show as a
light-heavy but my weight was coming down fast so I decided to enter as a
middle-weight. During the middle of the night before the show I was still
slightly over the required weight. I decided to go down to the gym and have an
hour on the sun bed. Now what normally happens to you on the sun bed? Yes you get
brown but you also sweat. Not me this time, the bed was bone dry after an hour
but did it click that anything was wrong? No. I went to bed that night with 3
jumpers on to "sweat" off some more weight.
The day of the show came. I weighed in a good 4-5 lbs under the limit. I won the
middleweights and came 3rd overall. So nothing went wrong, you did well I hear
people saying. Plenty went wrong but not till after the show.
Remember when I said that I didn't sweat on the sun bed? Well, I didn't sweat at
all during the contest. Not during the pre-judging or the show and the stage
lights were really hot! I was completely dry. After the night show I started to
loose my voice, not from a sore throat but because my voice-box was so
dehydrated. I had the usual celebratory things after the show food and lots of
it. Big mistake! The next day I started to hold Water in my chest, of all
places. If I pressed my fingers into my chest you could actually hear it crunch!
By 2 days after the show I had gained over 50lbs, all of it Water. My legs were
the same width from my hips to my feet from the Water retention. My wife
couldn???t sleep at night because she could hear all the Water rattling around in
my lungs and was afraid I would stop breathing. Action had to be taken. Quickly.
I got some mild herbal Water tablets, got back on my diet and started to drink
plenty of Water again. The Water went within a few days and my health was saved.
Did I learn? Did I hell!
The next year I decided to enter again. Dieting and training went well, as
before. 1 week out from the show I was a full 30lbs heavier than the previous
year. Granted, my condition was not as good as the previous year but I was hard,
full and huge! A win was on the cards. I decided to try Aldactone again in the
hope of achieving a better condition. I told you I didn't learn. I started the
Aldactone 4 days out and built up as before. This time I skipped the distilled
Water and cut all fluids the night before the show. The result? I was 15 lbs
lighter but looked like shit. I had a couple of extra cuts but had completely
washed my upper body out, which is where I needed it. That's the trouble with
diuretics they pull Water from every everywhere, including muscle and you tend
to flatten out, in my case a lot. I didn't experience the problems I had after
the last show but I only placed 3rd in my class, in short I ****ed up!
I decided to enter the same show the following year and vowed to win not only my
class but the overall also. This I did and my preparation the last week helped
tremendously. Obviously the dieting and training I had done for the 14 weeks
before were also major factors but that is for another article.
So what did I do this time that was different to the previous 2 years? Most
importantly I stayed away from diuretics and just manipulated my Water intake.
Sounds simple doesn't it? It is. During the last few weeks of my diet I was
drinking 15 liters of Water. Yes, you read that right 15. If you try this never
be too far from a toilet as you will want to use it about every 15 minutes and
sleep becomes a thing of the past. Vitamin C had been in the order of 5-6 grams
per day but during the last 7 days this was doubled. My diet now consisted
entirely of turkey and broccoli very dry. The show was on a Saturday, on the
Thursday before I reduced my Water intake to 8 liters and the day before reduced
to 6 liters up until 6pm. After 6pm? No Water! I only wet my mouth when I had
to. Nolvadex intake was slowly increased each day until the actual contest.
What were the results of all these simple things? A rock hard, ripped, totally
I have subsequently tried the same procedure in other shows, as have others that
I have coached. In short, it works. Try it.
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