Post Arnold; What To Do Now?
I’m not gonna get into my thoughts on the Arnold or the day of the Arnold exactly because I wrote about it pretty extensively in my column in next months FLEX Magazine.
This blog is about post show and finding your way again after the lights go out and your left holding a bag of brownie bites. It’s a weird thing that happens after a show. For 16 weeks I was go go, go, tanning, gym, groceries, cooking, training and cardio. My days were completely filled with work and when I wasn’t prepping for the show I was busy getting my apparel line set up or finishing off Ebooks.
Prepping for a show really brings the best out of you and for me its really the most productive time of the year. Its actually a welcome change from the lazy offseason where I feel sluggish, lazy and lethargic.
The minute the show ends, all of that changes though. Its almost a little depressing fro me to be honest. After the Arnold I went out for dinner with the fam to Mitchell’s Steakhouse. It was a nice time and if you’re wondering the first thing I ate after the show; Lobster Mac n’ Cheese, Lamb Chops, Wedge Salad and Cherry Cheesecake. Other than the nice meal and the good laughs with Family and Friends, that’s it. What do I do now?
Back to the hotel room, packing all my stuff, all the while reflecting on the placing that I didn’t want that I just got a couple hours ago, which now seems like an eternity ago. Empty out the fridge of all the prep food, pack up all the clothes and get ready for a long photo shoot the next day.
The next day I shoot for 4 hours, then break for a few hours then shoot for four more hours. All in all the day is about 14hrs long and in that time I have to maintain a happy, professional demeanor even though all I can think about is the outcome from the day before. After a while the shoot begins to make me feel better, the photogs are getting good shots and sponsors are happy, it almost makes up for the poor outcome the day before. The shots they’re taking almost make you feel worth it again as an athlete when just a few hours earlier you were contemplating what to do with yourself.
It’s a confusing time right after a show. All I can do is stay as professional as possible and make sure that my employers are happy with something I am providing them and try and make up for the placing no one expected.
Throughout the following week after the Arnold my mind kept messing with me. For one, I couldn’t leave the gym. I couldn’t relax, I took Monday off and Tuesday I was back in the gym, cardio in the AM and weights later in the day. This continues the whole week and I don’t miss any bodyparts. That felt good but I kept asking myself why? I didn’t know what I was doing, was I doing another show? Was I just trying to pass the time?
I know one thing for sure, I was definitely trying to make sure I didn’t get up to 300lbs in a week. I had to workout because I couldn’t stop eating. Everyday I would get through about 3-4 meals and be doing good and then the nighttime would roll around and here comes the binge. You name it and I ate it in the week following the Arnold.
Doritos, Ben & Jerry’s, Pizza Hut, McDonalds, Cookies, Cake, Pasta, Chili, Sushi, it doesn’t matter what it is, I know I got it in somewhere in that week. The nice thing is, it actually made me sick of eating. By the end of the first week after the Arnold, I was ready to go back on my contest diet and actually have picked out a couple shows I might want to do.
As I type this I’m on a plane right now with my wife on the way to Mexico to relax and regroup. She had it pretty hard through this contest diet and since it is her Bday I figured why not hook up a nice trip for us. This is it though. We are going away, we’re going to relax and have a great time and when I get back, I’m back to the grind. You guys will see me onstage soon and I’m looking forward to making up for the ASC. There is nothing left to hold me back. I feel like my weak points are brought up, I have the size I need to hang with the top guys, the only thing left to do is walk on at 100% and let my physique speak for itself.
Sacrifice Wihtout Regret.
Fouad ‘Hoss’ Abiad