by Christian Garcia
Last year was my first year ever competing in bodybuilding. I was new to the sport. Everything was foreign to me. It was slightly overwhelming. But this past off-season, and now on-season, has been different so far. Although I gained more fluff than anticipated this past off-season, I have trusted the system and my coach this year (I trusted her last year too). Anyway, this being my second year, I have a little more insight on what I should be expecting. I survived last year’s contest prep and I will surely survive this year’s contest prep too.
About eleven weeks out from the competition now, the training regimen (mostly cardio and nutrition) has been changing like crazy. Thankfully, my coach has granted me the luxuries of enjoying my off-season foods during this on-season. Sure, the portions are smaller. And sure, I’m still hungry sometimes, but it’s all part of the sport. Some foods I still get to enjoy are cereal, fruit, pizza, burgers, bread- basically, carbs. Something that is really different this year than last year is the carb cycling. This method is not new in any regard, but it is to me. In conjunction to the additional cardio, I have been leaning out quickly without losing much muscle (brain included, because we all know how our sanity wears thin during prep) with carb cycling. Also, I always have something to look forward to- high-carb days. A handful of my teammates, and test subjects of Dani Taylor, my coach, are probably all doing this. We all get high-carb days and we all sure as hell make the most of them because they’re awesome. The second best day after high-carb days are the days after high-carb days because we are loaded with carbs, so that means we get to lift all the weights.
I’m not really sure where I am going with this post, but what I wanted to get at is that this process seems to get easier the more years you do it. You begin to know what to expect from contest prep and you can prepare yourself better as you go along. I write this as if I have years under my belt, but this second year has already been easier than my first. Hopefully, my body will get the hang of this as I continue to diet flexibly and my metabolism can keep up with what I am eating. If you don’t know about flexible dieting, VeganProteins.com has a cool podcast about it you can listen to (http://www.veganproteins.com/muscles-by-brussels-radio-episode-3-clean-eating-vs-flexible-dieting-for-vegans/).
Anyway, that’s where I am right now. I’ll have a recipe for you all for the next blog post I write up. Until then, keep on keeping on with your training, if you’re training.