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Contest Prep: BigStew's 20 Weeks To The 2008 BLNPA New England Natural (Part 8)

1 day out - I take a look in the mirror and am extremely excited. I know the tweaks I have done to my diet this week have worked out. Learn more right here as I describe my plan one day before the contest!

1 day out. I wake up at around 7:00AM. I take a look in the mirror and am extremely excited. I know the tweaks I have done to my diet this week have worked out. At that moment my muscle are full. I am holding very little water. Also I am extremely vascular.

I wake up my father who helps put on my contest tan. After getting this coat of tan on I will start my day of eating and relaxing. I need to do my best to keep my nerves and stress under control. The reason behind this is stress and being nervous makes your body release a catabolic hormone and will also make your body retain water. Both of these things are not something you want going into your contest.

Alex Stewart, One Day Out Alex Stewart, One Day Out
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Alex Stewart, One Day Out.


Nutrition wise I cut down on the amount of carbs I was having and also I switched from having simple carbs in the form of white rice to have more of a complex carb in the form of sweet potatoes. The reason behind lowering overall carb count and switching from a simple carb to a complex carb is that on Wednesday and Thursday my muscles glycogen was depleted from earlier in the week on Wednesday and Thursday my goal was to fill them back out a much as possible, which I did.

Simple carbs are the best way to drive glycogen quickly back into the muscles. Now that the muscle is stocked with glycogen I need more of a steady stream of glycogen being shuttled in the muscle. Complex carbs are better at driving glycogen into the muscle more slow and steady than simple carbs. So that is the reason behind the sweet potatoes instead of the white rice.

Post Workout Basics - Optimizing Glycogen!
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Post Workout Basics - Optimizing Glycogen!
When you workout, you deplete muscle glycogen. This primary fuel source needs to be increased after a workout to feed your muscles.
Christopher Mohr

I stuck with the Top Round Steak and Chicken both of which have done a great job keeping my muscles full.

Supplements stayed the same throughout the last few days. I know a lot of people like to use natural diuretics, but I am not a big believer in them. I think that if you plan your prep out perfectly and stick to it you can get as dry as needed.

I have seen too many people ruin all their hard work with diuretics. They are looking to come in a little drier and end up coming into the contest flat and unable to flex. Remember your muscles are more than 70% water. Without water in the muscles you will lose size and also the ability to contract (flex) the muscle. My take is, do your research on how to cut water and stay away from diuretics.

Water was sipped up until 1:00PM then was cut from the diet for the rest of the day. I only had very little sips later in the day to get down my supplements. As the hours went on in the day after 1:00PM I could see myself getting more grainy and dry. The conditioning was really coming out. It is an exciting process to experience.

Just Drink Water, Backstage At A Competition!
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Just Drink Water, Backstage At A Competition!
Several times a year, while covering contest, I have to deal with individuals who have pushed themselves too far.
Dr. David Ryan

At about 5:00PM when my father came home from work he helped me put on another coat of contest tan. He would put on another coat later that evening before I went to bed.

For my last meal of the day I would add ketchup to my steak. This drives some extra salt into my system which will help drive the water that is felt in my body into my muscles.

After my last meal I started my prep for the next day. I cooked all my food that I was going to eat during the day, which included:

I know a lot of people like to load up on the day of the contest with simple carbs and fats. They do this to fill out their muscles. I find with my body simple carbs make me fill out, but I lose some of my definition because of water retention.

I opt for a more complex carb to keep glycogen levels up and muscles full. The protein fat source helps keep me dry. It is critical that during your last few weeks of the contest prep, you check how your body looks after eating different meals. Be very critical of yourself and write down what you look like after eating different foods. This will help determine which foods are best for the final loading phase of your prep.

After I made all of my food I had to get all on my stuff I would need for the contest day, which include:

  • Extra Posing Trunks
  • 3 Copies of Posing Music, Always bring extra so if one breaks or is lost you have a back up. It is good to keep one with one of the people you are going to the contest with also as a final resort.
  • Dream Tan
  • Posing Oil
  • Rubber bands to pump up with
  • Towels to clean up
  • Rubber Gloves for the person putting on your dream tan and oil
  • Sandals so you are not walking around in your bare feet everywhere
  • Post Contest Food
  • Water bottles full of water
  • Head phones if music helps you relax
  • Camera or Video camera because you want to record the special day

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Here is a break down of the food I ate on the last day of the prep:

arrow Friday:

arrow Sleep:

Show Time

Contest Prep is over. It is SHOW TIME. All the hard work has come up to this one day. I am ready to rock the stage. In my next article I will talk about my contest day experience.