Have you ever wondered how bodybuilders look so great during competition? Certainly, they’ve worked hard to get where they are, but it takes more than just eating nutritious foods and getting in a regular workout to build a physique worthy of gold medals. It also involves doing something that they refer to as “cutting and dieting,” putting them in prime physical shape for effectively beating out their competitors.
As Nic Hale describes in Cutting Down and Leaning Up!, following this type of strict diet regimen is as much mental as it is physical. It involves having the determination to push past your food cravings as well as having the drive and accountability to keep track of the macronutrients—the protein, carbs, and fat—that you consume.
When getting ready for competition, Hale suggests that you cut your carbohydrate and protein intake down to 2 grams for every kilogram of your body weight. In other words, if you weigh 200 pounds, then you want to eat 180 grams each of carbs and proteins daily (200 pounds = 90 kg x 2 = 180 gr). This will provide you the nutrients you need while helping you shed any excess fat that you may be carrying.
Regarding your fat intake, you want to lower that as well, sticking to healthy fats like nuts, seeds, eggs, and salmon. Hale recommends keeping the total amount somewhere around 15 percent of your total caloric intake, or roughly around 50-60 grams.
Another dietary consideration involves keeping your sodium intake to a minimum, especially the week prior to competing. This keeps your body from retaining water, helping you look leaner as a result.
Follow this cutting and dieting regimen for 6 to 8 weeks pre-competition and you will have the best physique possible when the big day arrives.
If you’ve competed before, what are some tips that you can provide others who are about to compete for their first time? Comment below and help them achieve the best body they can!