Competition journal 17 weeks out

Hey guys,

Now that it's 2017, we made a lot of plans for this year. One of them is that I want to compete at my first bodybuilding contest on the 29th of April!

After more than 2 years of bodybuilding, I finally feel confident enough to go on stage. I hope that this experience will be a life altering one, as I not only will transform physically but mentally as well.

Since this is my first competition, everything from my diet to my training routine is trial and error. And here's the fun part: I will share everything with you. I will share with you how it really feels to be stage-lean and what obstacles I'll have to fight on my way to the finish.

WHY I'M DOING THIS

In the past few weeks I told my friends and family about my intention and they all asked why. Most of them know the competitions just from the TV and don't really know what it really means to compete.

They just think of the bodybuilding cliché - "pumped and dumb, brown coloured people showing their muscles in weird poses, after not drinking anything for two days."

And yes, I may want to show them, that this cliché is wrong and that it's way more than just the few minutes on the stage. It's months of hard work and discipline.

For me bodybuilding is not just a nice hobby. It's a lifestyle. A lifestyle with which I've grown in a way I could've never imagined. Success in bodybuilding means not just lifting more weight than yesterday. It demands that eating habits, training routines and sleep patterns are all tailored in order to get a 'perfect' physique. All without the use of steroids and the like.

What's most fascinating to me: The success depends on my own decisions and actions. Nothing more and nothing less.

This is the week where I start my contest prep. Follow me on this journey and see with what kinds of challenges I have to deal with.

HOW I START

I'm starting by cutting my calories down to 1600 cals per day. This is about 20% below my maintenance. In this way, I start leaning out while still maintaining most of my muscle mass, which is one of the most important things. My current weight is 61kg and I'm a vegetarian.

Depending on how slow/fast I'm losing weight I'll decrease/increase my calories on a weekly basis.

Currently I'm going to the gym 7 times a week.

My current training plan is:
  • Monday: Active recovery/cardio
  • Tuesday: Back (high volume)
  • Wednesday: Legs (high volume)
  • Thursday: Arms/Shoulders (high volume)
  • Friday: Back (high weight)
  • Saturday: Legs (high weight)
  • Sunday: Arms/Chest (high weight)

So no "real" cardio in the beginning, just weight lifting to keep muscle mass the same and the metabolism working and only some very light walking on Mondays for active recovery (30m-45m).

If you have any tips and tricks for me or want to talk with me about your experience when you competed the first time, please let me know at Instagram or Twitter.

Support me by using the Hashtag #SupportSarah2017 on Instagram and Twitter. Thanks!

Cheers, Sarah.

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