New Brunswick, NJ
As an avid lifter, I decided to compete in an amateur bodybuilding competition to showcase my hard work and appreciation for the sport.
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In natural competitions the competitors are drug tested. The percentage probably depends on the level of the show. National shows and larger competitions have more competitors and higher stakes. Some competitors have sponsors and endorsement deals so it is imperative for them to do well and steroids might give them that extra edge.
Everyone has their own motivation to compete in the sport. I would imagine it is the same reasons a male would. Simply because a woman bodybuilds doesn't necessarily de-feminize them. There are, however, other categories that females can participate besides bodybuilding at most shows that might be considered more 'lady like'. These are the figure, as well as, bikini competitions. The figure competitions are classed by height, not by weight.
Yes, it’s important to utilize supplements to gain maximum results. Protein shakes are commonly used, as well as different amino acids (such as Branch Chain Amino Acids BCAA's), fish oils, glutamine and fat burners.
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Pre-contest workouts consist of two gym sessions a day. The first is a cardio session lasting 30 mins to an hour, depending on how close to competition day it is. This is done first thing in the morning on an empty stomach to burn the most fat. The second afternoon workout consists of the actual weightlifting. The cardio sessions were 7 days a week while the lifting sessions consisted of 5-6 days a week. During the "off-season" is the time where you want to grow and put on quality lean muscle mass. It's not as important to keep up on the cardio. I'll do one gym session 5x a week. Making sure to allow for rest periods for your muscles to grow.
I began lifting in college as a hobby to stay fit. I was overweight as an adolescent and decided to change my habits so I was not an overweight unhealthy adult.
Days before the competition is usually when you’re feeling your worst physically. The joke is that the worse you feel, the better you look. The day before the competition you do not work out. Your diet is strict to deplete your body of water. It is necessary to dehydrate your muscles to create the striations and definition for your muscles. Usually you carbohydrate-load this day so your muscles fill out. However, you do not eat rice because it is made with water or drink any liquids. Some competitors will go to steam rooms or saunas to sweat out as much water as possible. Others might use diuretics.
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