How to look great at a pool party!

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15markWith all of the pool and beach time coming up, it might be of interest to find out how to do a last push to polish your physique.

Disclaimer: if you don’t look very good by June 20th, you won’t look great by July (there goes half the audience).

Basically there are three elements to consider:

Water
Carbs
Salt
Let’s start with water. Often internet gurus tell their clients to cut water for a drier physique. That is simply wrong. Here is why. The body maintains a 70 to 30% ratio between intra and extracellular water, meaning any water you cut will come out of the muscle, thereby creating a smaller, flatter version of you.
You also cannot store any carbs in the muscle or get a pump if you are dehydrated.

Very often. people think they are holding water when in reality they are simply not lean enough. If by some strange coincidence, you feel that you are carrying too much water, simply get a pump. The muscle will pull the water from the skin. Do not use any diuretics; those are medications that should be used by medical professionals only.

Carbs, aka glycogen, fill the muscle and bind water. Traditional protocols call for a complete depletion until two to three days before an event and then a massive carb load the day before. I no longer am that big of a fan of that method, simply because the weight and mood swings in the athlete are too great. Instead, I prefer a simple, linear increase where we start at 90% of your diet carb level on Monday and gradually go to 120% by Friday, if we have an event Saturday.

Salt is most likely the most misunderstood component of them all. Salt does neither blow you up, nor does it pull lots of water. Salt is needed to fill out the muscle and store carbs. You can guess where this is going… the traditional approach of restricting salt is also plain wrong. To summarize: if you restrict water and salt while carbing up, the carbs will sit in your stomach and small intestine, pulling water from the muscle. Result: you look like a spider with a big belly, skinny arms and legs, no abs. COOL! Ten weeks of dieting ruined.

If you keep drinking water, consume carbohydrates with sufficient amounts of sodium, your physique will fill out nicely and you’ll be a hit at the beach!
As for training, I would taper it off a little bit, as in two days before the big event, so your muscles have time to rest and look great.

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