The sport of bodybuilding depends on its participants to be consistent in three major facets of the lifestyle: training, eating and sleeping. You have to train to induce hypertrophy, you have to eat to support that growth and you have to sleep for it all to come to fruition. Sounds pretty simple right? Well, most people love to sleep so that's not a problem. After that, the gym has become like a second home for many and the love for training is so strong that most probably have to make themselves leave the gym, so we've got that one covered fairly easily too. Finally there's food and who doesn't like to eat right? We all do but that's not the issue here. The issue is being strong willed enough to stick to your diet and eat the same foods at the same times week after week because of the power in this purpose. It's not easy to stay on track with a diet and temptation and indulgence has gotten the better of all of us at one point or another. However, you have to do your best to stick with the nutritional plan that you're working with to see the end results. Here are two ways to help you with this.
If you're at the beginning of your dieting phase, whether it be to get huge or to get shredded, the road ahead will look very long and wishing the time away may enter your thoughts sooner than expected. A sixteen to twenty week prep is a long time, especially so when there's no variance to what you're eating other than a little more or a little less of the same foods here and there. Psychologically this can be very tough to handle so you have to do something to help yourself out. I like the idea of setting milestones all along the way. A milestone is a checkpoint where after you've accomplished something, you reward yourself in some way. For example, people always say if you can just make it to the three week point in your diet without messing up, you're well on your way to seeing great results. If that's how you think too, then after that three week milestone, reward yourself with a new pair of Mindset shoes from Heyday footwear. The motivation to succeed within the milestone parameters you set for yourself might just be enough to get you to your finish line. The point here is if a reward system is what's going to keep you on track with your diet, then give the milestones approach a try.
Pay Attention to your Competition
You've probably heard bodybuilders say that when prepping for a show, they don't pay any attention to the other competitors and are just focused on being the best that they can be. That's great and all, but what happens if you go into a competition thinking you're good to go only to take a look at the other competitors once you get to the venue and realize you've got no business stepping on stage with them? Just because you think you're at your best doesn't mean you're going to be the best. I believe the more information you have, the better you can be in your approach simply because you know what you're going to be up against. Seeing the current conditioning of your fellow competitors and following their progress all through the prep should be a huge catalyst for you sticking with your diet. No one wants to feel like they're behind in their prep and with social media making it possible now to actually see and follow the people you'll be in competition with, I highly doubt you'll ever think you can have a cheat meal and it'll be fine when the person you're going to be standing next to on stage is already shredded at 8 weeks out. Use that competitive edge you possess and make it a competition from week to week to see who can make the most progress in that time and straying from your diet will be the last thing you think about doing.
There are of course many other things you can do for yourself to stay on track with your eating such as imbedding planned cheat meals within your diet or watching movies to keep your mind off food or any other activity that will fill up the time between meals. You just have to do whatever works best for you and setting milestones and being informed could just end up working very well for. At the very least, you'll have a new pair of Heydays and few more people to follow.
Author: Dana Bushell
AST Sports Science sponsored athlete/writer, sponsored by Schiek Sports Inc.