The logistical pitfalls of competing

by | Apr 23, 2012 | Bodybuilding, Contest Prep | 0 comments

I love my parents, don’t get me wrong.  They are awesome and have done absolutely everything for me that they could possible be expected to, and then some.  When I moved across the country from Oregon to Asheville, it was probably a bit of a shock to them as it was my first time ‘moving away’, though both of my older brothers had done so previously (and come back since as well).

That being said, they just finished making my life incredibly difficult for the past week.  More accurately, I’m making my own life difficult and they happen to be caught in the middle of it.  They were in town visiting Asheville for the first time, here for a week – leaving Saturday the 21st, when I was exactly 7 days out from the Charlotte Cup.

Asheville, if you haven’t been, is known for great food.  Hard enough to resist the temptation to go out to any of our fantastic local places on a regular day, but when you throw in visitors from the other side of the country who want to see what we have to offer, you have to show them.  If there’s one city in the area more famous for food than Asheville, it’s Charleston.  Did I mention we spent 3 days there as well?

This is a pain in the ass for someone who is 2 weeks out from a show.

It is entirely my fault.  I picked the Charlotte Cup late last year and had suggested that mom and dad visit sometime in mid-April.  When I put 2 and 2 together and realized there may be a slight scheduling issue, I put it out of my mind just long enough to forget about it for several days, meaning to ask if they could come in May or something along those lines.  When I finally had it in my head to call them and straighten out the conflict, I looked in my inbox to see the perfectly-timed “we just booked our flight for April” e-mail.


I had just dug myself a big hole and had a few options on how to deal with it.

  • Option 1 – pick a different show.  While surely the easiest way out, I was determined that I did not want to do this.  I was happy with the show I’d picked, others were going to be later than I liked, and the location was near-ideal.
  • Option 2 – tank the 7-14 day out period while mom and dad were in town, eating what I liked and having a good time.  Look like shit on stage as a result (I was already behind where I’d like to be in my prep anyway).  For obvious reasons, I decided against this.
  • Option 3 – stay on the diet while my parents in town, and stay focused on the show.  The hardest option, so naturally this is what I picked.

As bodybuilders, we don’t shy away from a challenge.  I am determined to do 2 things while my parents are here:  stay on my diet, and have a great time with them, showing them around the area.  Our culture reveres food as a focal point of social meetings and gatherings, but the people are the most important part.  As long as I’m with them, it doesn’t matter if I’m eating a burger and fries or a plain chicken salad with my own dressing from home (properly measured out, of course).

And how did it go?  If I’m being honest, I’d give myself an 8/10 for the week.  I stuck largely to salads; intentionally keeping carbs lower than usual, leaving room for an occasional slip-up.  I’m not much of an IIFYM guy, but for this week that was the prevailing theory and if I were to judge my efforts based on daily macronutrient intake alone, everything was spot on.

In the end I didn’t lose or gain anything on the scale while they were here.  While it would have been a great week to make some additional progress on my way to the stage, I had a great time with mom and dad and was able to enjoy the week without being completely miserable or falling behind in my prep.

I’d call that a success.  On to peak week – 5 days out!