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As a competitor, we’re attracted to the stage. We dream of bringing our physiques to their best condition and showcasing our hard work amongst fellow competitors. For some of us, it’s a goal to work for and a reason to train. For others, it is a lifestyle, and our goals may be more significant than competing at local shows in front of our friends and family.

One of the greatest challenges within this lifestyle is maintaining a healthy balance with training, nutrition, occupation, family, and friends. The more extreme your goals are, the more you must be willing to sacrifice. Use your goals to determine when you’ll compete and what kind of shows you’ll enter.

Building out your game plan

When it comes to taking time off competition versus stepping on stage, keep a few things in mind:

  • If you’re driven to succeed, bring a better you, work hard, stick to the nutrition, training, and rest, you may find your strengths are greater than you thought. Some of your greatest workouts might be inside of that 12-week window before a show. During an “off-season” having this drive day in and day out may fall to complacency.
  • If you can handle stringing a few shows together over a short period, that is okay to a certain extent. If you compete in too many shows throughout 8, 12, or 16 weeks your body may not respond as well and coming in at your very best will become more difficult, not to mention exhausting.

When you decide to take some time off, don’t give yourself a vacation. Have specific goals, have a plan, execute that plan, and make adjustments as necessary. Based on how developed you are in building your physique, a competitor in their early 20’s could take two years off and achieve some tremendous growth. Do so with caution; however, as your competitive edge might not be as sharp if you drag out this building phase too long. An older competitor with more physical and muscular development might not gain as much during an extended building phase. Competing every 12-18 months might be more beneficial, like the fine-tuning aspects of coming in dry, full, and a solid posing routine may bring better results.

Tyler Gylland

My name is Tyler Gylland. I am 36 years old and a day one member of Metroflex Gym Fargo. My wife Kayla and I have 2 children, Bryce (9) and Chloe (6). I am the owner of TylersCut Tree Service, which has been in operation since 2012.