New Year has come and gone and we are about halfway through February already. A big hurdle is looming. Valentine’s day, the day of love, the day where we go out with our loved ones and celebrate another day, week, month or year of togetherness and love. It is also the day that the training and diet regime flies out the window and we indulge in chocolates from morning to noon. Don’t get me wrong, nothing wrong with some chocolate love, a nice bottle of wine with a fine meal and some dessert. The problem does come in when we overindulge in not just one meal but the entire day and sometimes, just because Valentine’s Day is on a Sunday this year, we will start celebrating on Friday night already. This will quickly break the bank with excessive calories consumed and a real struggle to find a treadmill on Monday morning with everybody feeling guilty.

This is where a transformation contest is so powerful. It is where you know that if you eat that dessert or drink that glass of wine you will be in trouble with yourself, your measurements, the scale, the photo that you took or anything else that keeps you on the straight and narrow. It is the “It is now or never” attitude, a specific date that you set yourself and your social support that will pull you through a nutritional landmine and it will get you safely to the other side.

What is it about transformation contests that are so powerful?

Answer this question first. Did you transform your body the way you wanted last year, or did you swop the weight bench for the comfort of the couch? Before you get angry with yourself, don’t. It is time to get the necessary tools to help you do that transformation.

Take a picture:

Don’t go all overboard and stand in a dark corner, push out your stomach as far as you can and puff your cheeks up so you look like an alien. Be honest with yourself and take the picture in the same room, under the same amount of lighting with a natural pose every time. Be aware that a picture will help you say no to that dessert or doughnut but don’t expect to see miracle changes every week. Over a good couple of weeks, you will see dramatic changes from the first photo to the most recent, so stick it out.

Measure yourself:

You don’t have to go do the full calliper assessment. All you need is all the general circumference measurements, neck, chest, waist, hips, thigh, calf and arm. Don’t let your mind play tricks with you, telling you that you are not losing (girls) or that your muscles are shrinking (Guys) take the measurements and let the data speak for itself.


Critical information:

 This is where the really important stuff comes in. What to eat? What training program to use? When to eat? Can I still have a cheat meal? Gather this information before you start. You cannot expect to be successful if you start but you are unsure of 90% of what you need to do. This is not about shooting from the hip. It is about calculating decisions to set you up for success.

Social support:

Tell everybody that cares about you what you are going to do. This will help them understand why you are passing on the pizza at the office. If you really have a good and understanding support base, they will not put a box of chocolate brownies in front of you just to see how long you are going to last before you give in. Most of us will give in and then we will feel really bad afterwards. Your social support will motivate you during the not so good days (they are going to be there) and will praise you through the good days.

To use supplements or not

 This is a personal choice. If you are on the road a lot and travel frequently, this might not be a bad choice. Don’t go a buy everything that the store rep offers you. This will cost you an arm and a leg so stick to the basics, a good whey protein and maybe a glutamine for recovery. You can go all natural and get your protein and carbs from natural sources like fresh fruit and nuts and of course good quality meat, fish or poultry and big helpings of vegetables, preferably green vegetables.

Do these basics right and you will be well on your way to reach your goals.

Next time we will look a little deeper into transformation guides.