Peak week - the final week of a contest preparation

Peak week by Alica HEVEROVA. Read our article about the final week of a contest preparation!

What is a peak week? It’s that final step that should help you achieve maximum muscle definition and a shredded physique to bring the best package on the stage as possible.

If you took your prep seriously, sticked to your diet 24/7 and conscientiously worked your ass off in the gym for many many months or years, you don’t wanna ruin all of that effort by messing up last few days of a prep – cause damn, they are so important.
Everybody is different so there is no general pattern out there how to do it. Everyone is an individual live being and every competitor should have a trainer who will customize his/her prep exactly for the specific type of a competitors body . But i will try to briefly generalize the whole peak week as much as possible.

There are 3 key words in this week you need to know about:

  •  water shutdown
  •  carb load
  •  sodium matter

I just want to repeat again that everyone is different and there is no general pattern how to do this. What works for someone doesn’t have to work for another one. Also the final week, actually the whole prep depends on your current shape, type of your body etc. There are so many aspects that affect all of this. And now let’s get to the point. Let’s say that your competition is on Saturday. So how should these 5 days before Saturday look like? We are gonna decompose it day by day.

Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday:

  • 1. Diet ... These 3 days are hell. Key is to reduce carbohydrates and fats intake to the minimum. Intake of proteins should be on the other hand higher. We are talking about 2 grams of protein per 1kg of body weight. That should prevent catabolism of the body mass. Appropriate sources of proteins in this phase are chicken breasts, cod, tilapia, tuna, in smaller amounts also egg whites- but go easy on them ‘cause they contain a lot of sodium which is not recommended in this phase. Recommended vegetables are greens- lettuce, spinach and also cucumber.
  • 2. Supplementation ... You should leave out basically everything including protein shakes. Possibly you can drink BCAA, of course Vitamin C, multivitamins or multiminerals are also allowed.
  • 3. Fluids ... During these days you should increase your fluids intake to about 5 l per day. Amount of water is also very individual and depends on your common water intake. Best source of fluid is water! Tea is okay as well. You should avoid drinking coffee because it inhibits the ketosis - state of increased fat loss, which you don’t wanna degrade. Sparkling water is not the best choice either because of the high amount of sodium.
  • 4. Sodium ... Right now you have 2 options - much of a sodium or no sodium. Both of these are health risking situations but I still think that version with no sodium is less risky. High intake of sodium can cause kidney stones, high blood pressure etc. So obviously you can’t use any salt but you should also avoid food that contain sodium - eggs, seasonings, mentioned sparkling water, soda and also artificial sweeteners.
  • 5. Training ... You should focus on weight training with more reps and sets and high intensity workouts which exhaust remaining glycogen from muscles. Last legday should be on Sunday when you still have ‘’enough’’ carbs in your diet to kick off your training. In this phase I suppose you are rid of underskin fat so cardio wouldn’t make much sense anymore.

Thursday and Friday:

Thursday is something like a break point. Some competitors (mostly bodybuilders) start with carb loading today, but some (mostly bikinifitness competitors) continue during this day the same way like previous 3 days. This also depends on how your form looks like, how “big” or lean you are and so on. So you have to consider which group you belong to.

  • 1. Diet ... After three days without carbs your body, muscles, brain and organs literally crave for their load up. So wuaa, finally carbs! But don’t be too happy cause by carbs I mean only complex carbs – rice and oat flakes, nothing more. You can increase your intake to 5-10 g of carbs per 1kg of body weight. (It depends. Your intake is different when you are 48 kg bikinifitness competitor and different when you are big 110 kg bodybuilder of course). You eat practically only rice or oat flakes these 2 days. No fats, no proteins.
  • 2. Supplementation ... You can keep taking Vitamin C and also start using potassium (kalium) and Magnesium (agains cramps). Suitable supplementation are also diuretics or dandelion extract.
  • 3. Sodium ... Still out of use
  • 4. Fluids ... Some people cut off fluids already on Thursday some only on Friday (this case is especially for women so much safer). Which one to pick is again for your own consideration.
  • 5. Training ... On Thursday you can do some light workout but these 2 days you scan relax and focus only on posing practice! This form of a ‘’training’’ tone your body and contribute to maximal separation of muscles and muscle pump.

Sooo this is that famous peak week. I hope this article helped you at least a little. And what about the last expected day – day D? Stay tuned for article by Barbora LABUDOVA. Coming soon!

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