Thinking About Entering A Competition?

Everyone hits a plateau. When this happens it does make us loose the motivation we started with and think to our selves is it all worth it? When this happens don't loose heart and you will get through it.
I'm sure a lot of people who have been on this site have thought about entering a competition at one time or another.

In May there was a local competition and I was told I could do well in it (with a bit of work). When I saw the other bodybuilders from the last competition, I thought the lighting and fake tan made them looked bigger, but they made me feel like a five year old girl.

From that day forward, I went straight onto and also got Arnold's "Encyclopedia of Modern Bodybuilding", which has great advice for preparation for and during the contest.

Symmetry: Why It Is Important, & How To Achieve It! Symmetry: Why It Is Important, & How To Achieve It!
Developing a symmetrical physique entails focusing on all muscle groups equally through the employment of a variety of exercises. In bodybuilding, the emphasis should be placed on developing a balanced physique.
[ Click here to learn more. ]

I was told symmetry is very important, as it's of no use to have a huge chest but tiny arms. This is when I looked in the mirror, and as I played tennis I noticed that my right bicep and forearm was much larger than my left.

This was my first problem that I had, and it was very noticeable... I also knew that bodybuilders have to do it, but I was not at all keen on shaving all my body hair off, as it just made me feel like a teenage girl worried about her appearance rather than a bodybuilder.

My main problem, however, (which is crucial to determine a bodybuilder's success) was supplements. As I have epilepsy, I knew that I could not take certain supplements which could help me greatly throughout the bulking and dieting stages, but luckily none of the supplements so far have I not been allowed to take.


Everyone hits a plateau at some point. I have actually just hit one, and another competitor who's doing the same competition as me said he's seen gains everywhere but in his legs, which he also hates working.

What's A Plateau?
A level of attainment or achievement in weight loss or bodybuilding where one gets "stuck in a rut", barring further progress or noticable results. As obvious as it may seem, if you continue to do the same thing, you will continue to get the same results. Click here for tips on breaking through plateaus.

When this happens, it does make us lose the motivation we started with and makes us think to ourselves, "is it all worth it?" When this happens, however, don't lose heart, and you will get through it.

When you're up there wearing practically nothing, this was also a very big concern that perhaps watching me up in a front row would be a hot blonde babe and she might cause me to get a stiffy...

Anyway, there is no room for error, and to impress the judges completely you can't leave a single muscle out. This means even calves - now I know you're all groaning!

"...a hot blonde babe and she might
cause me to get a stiffy..."

Contest Prep

There are several ways you can remove your hair. For example, you can use a hair remover, wax, shave, etc. Test different methods out a few months before the competition, because, for example, some people might get a rash when using hair remover, which you don't want to find out you are one of them on the day of the competition!

There are also different types of tanning products available, and depending on your skin tone some can make you look better than others.

Looking in Arnold's Encyclopedia, I noticed several pointers when getting ready for a competition that I think would be really useful when I enter my next one. He mentions tactics and other ways you can get an edge over your opposition. Some of these included:

Pick A Routine To Suit Your Physique

    This means don't go all out on the mass shots if your body type is not solid like Dorian Yates, for example. When posing, you want to try and show the judges all your best shots and try and avoid your weaknesses as much as possible.

Learn Poses From An Experienced Competitor

    There are bound to be people in your gym who have competed before, so get as much information from them as you can and get them to teach you the different poses. If there is no one in your gym who has competed, you can get videos demonstrating all the different required poses.

Practice Poses

    When you are on stage, you will need to hold a pose for a number of minutes sometimes. If you don't practice posing, you will probably not have the endurance to pose properly throughout the show. As the show comes nearer, you should start practicing longer.

You Need Confidence

    Remember, you are going to be up there wearing practically nothing. You need a fair amount of confidence to do this. If you are not sure how confident you are, try doing your routine in front of friends and family and see how your confidence holds out. Obviously, it won't be as bad as on stage, but it will give you an idea of how you would cope on stage.

Pick Your Music Carefully

    Try listening to different types of music and not just the style you like. Go through different songs with people in your gym to see their opinions of them.

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    Hope this helps!

John Lemare