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The most important thing in peak week is gaining more muscle, and going hard at the gym to the last day
The truth is that your bikini competition prep is basically done the week before the competition. Your last week, as we call it peak week, is nothing more than a recovery week. The main goal is to lose inflammation in the body. So, forget about hard-core training. Of course, exercises will vary from person to person, based on the look, muscle mass and leanness. The usual and most common approach is to start your week with bigger muscle groups, like legs and glutes, then the back and, on the last day arms, and shoulders. Sometimes your coach will do 3 days of full-body workouts, with lighter weight. And sometimes your routine will not change at all.

The more cardio you do in a peak week the better.
The truth is that every coach does it differently, in the ideal world you would not do any cardio going to the peak week, but it is extremely rare. Cardio is just like lifting weights, it will depend on your look. Usually, your coach will reduce cardio as you get closer to the competing day, so each day you will do less and less. There are exceptions, so listen to your coach and follow instructions.

Water manipulation is a must.
Nowadays there is not so much water manipulation as it used to be. At my first competition, I depleted my water, going from a gallon on Sunday to 0.5L on Friday before the show. Drinking water is important to feed the muscle, and not look depleted. When we eat carbs, they need water to be absorbed, if we don’t have water then carbs won’t absorb, and we will look flat on stage. So now, most coaches will keep athletes drinking water til Fridays before show day. They might use dandelion pills or something stronger like X-Pell to deplete the body of water, but it is not as drastic as it used to be.

And the most important thing, keep your spirits high, nourish your mindset with positivity and be proud of your accomplishments. Don’t look at or compare yourself to others, because it is a battle between you and you.

A carb load on Saturday morning before the show will make your muscles pop better. MYTH.
It is super important to understand digestion and its timing. Our bodies need about 24 to 72 hours to digest food, so if you eat pancakes and burgers on a show day, you will only enlarge your waistline because the food you consumed won’t be properly digested yet. Carb loading usually occurs at the beginning of the peak week. The last day to carb load would be mid-day Friday. After that timeline, we are pretty much done.

It is a good idea to introduce a new food for the peak week.
Our bodies in a peak week are very sensitive. It is important to stay away from all new foods. You would think switching from asparagus to broccoli or brussels sprouts is not a big deal, but in reality, it is. Asparagus helps with dehydration, it digests fast and it is noninvasive to the body. Brussels will make your stomach bloated and most likely will put you in discomfort. New foods not only might cause digestion issues but also can be a reason for unwanted water retention. If we discover the topic further, it is not easy to get rid of the water retention, and it usually takes the body up to eight days.

What is Peak Week?
It is a “Fine Tuning” of the body. Making sure the physique looks the best it can be. The focus of a Peak Week is to rest, reduce inflammation, and avoid stress. Theoretically, if your prep went the way it should, your body would be stage-ready before peak week. Peak week must:

  • Decrease the intensity of the workouts to reduce the inflammation of the body.
  • Keep food the same, to avoid all digestion, or water retention issues.
  • Maintain a good skin look, so exfoliating and hydration are very important because they will affect how the tan will absorb on the day of the show.
  • Do a facial, do a manicure/pedicure, and use this time to take care of yourself to look the best on stage.
  • Rest and recover a lot, take naps if you must and sleep a full 8 hours per night.
  • Try Epson salt bath to reduce inflammation.
  • Keep drinking your water.

And the most important thing, keep your spirits high, nourish your mindset with positivity and be proud of your accomplishments. Don’t look at or compare yourself to others, because it is a battle between you and you. And you know you did the best you could to be at this point.

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Jagoda is a health coach and bikini PRO competitor. She works at the gym as a Fitness Manager. She is also a mommy, former lifeguard, and snowboarding enthusiast. Jagoda obsessed with sports and physical fitness. She enjoys pushing herself to the limits by achieving more and more every day. Jagoda believes everyone has the ability to change if you only believe in yourself.

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