The Competition is over, now what? Having an Exit Plan You have spent several months preparing to step on stage and compete in a fitness show. You have maintained a very strict diet as well as adhering to a strenuous training plan.
You stepped on stage looking better your best. You felt that deep satisfaction knowing what you went through to get there. You have done something that many will not because they lack the strength or ability to be disciplined. The show is over, now what? Sure go out treat yourself to a victory meal and don’t track your macros for a few days.
With those things being said, you went into your competition with a plan, you also need to have an exit plan as well. Here are a few other tips that can help your transition from show prep.
#1 Take some time off! Mini Vacation from the gym.
I recommend staying away from the gym for a good 3-7 days. Again you have been training and pushing your body for several months, your body need some time to recover. Some light cardio won’t hurt you, but staying away from the gym is just as much as a mental vacation as well.
#2 Get back on a meal plan right away
Sure you could wing things for a week or two but if you are like me, a cheat meal turns into a cheat week and I turn into a sugar crack head and all the sudden I am up 30 lbs. and you wouldn’t be able to tell a week ago I was just in a fitness competition.
Get onto your laptop, pull out a piece of paper, whatever you prefer and write down what your new meal plan. Slowly increasing your caloric intake from where you were going into the show. This is not a new concept and is refereed to as reverse dieting. If you were low carb dieting going in, slowly increase your carbohydrate intake over the next month. For example each week increasing your carb intake by 20-50 grams depending on what your intake was going into the show.
#3 Get back onto a training plan
Depending on what your goals are, develop a new plan that is aligned with your goals. For me it’s summer and I want to maintain some leanness so I will continue to perform cardio as well as super sets. I also want to build some muscle and prepare to bulk in the winter so I will incorporate some heavy sets using compound movements.
#4 Keep your water intake up
I know post show I eat some pretty yummy things that are very high in sodium. I immediately begin to retain water around my midsection accompanied with my Kankles. Keeping your water intake up is good all year around and in this case helps you to flush some of that sodium water weight that came on.
Yes there is life post show, and the goal has not changed, you still want to feel good about the way you look, you still want to feel healthy, you still want to enjoy the journey. Remember this is a lifestyle, not simply a moment where you peaked on stage and now you can go back to old bad habits, you have wired too hard to get to where you are at.