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6 Essentials For Surviving Peak Week

How to prep for perfection with @laineybopster.

6 Essentials For Surviving Peak Week

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Known by her 57,000 Instagram fans as @laineybopster, Lainey Keogh is in the heat of peak week. Hear from Lainey just three days before traveling down to London (from her home in Ireland) for the 2015 World Beauty Fitness and Fashion PRO*AM competition.

Lainey's 20-week training period leading up to the show kicks into high gear, like it will for most other competitors, seven days before taking the stage: peak week. 

TYPICAL WEEK                     PEAK WEEK

Weight: 126               VS        Weight: 106

Fat %: 25-26                         Fat %: 10-11

Even if you’re not competing, instead just looking to put the finishing touches on that perfect physique, you can learn a lot from Lainey’s experience. You may love it, hate it, love to hate it, but you’ve gotta survive it. Here are Lainey’s six tips for getting through peak week unscathed.

1. Netflix And Cardio

“Netflix has been almost a training partner; it’s helped get me through SO MUCH cardio at home! And a great tool for cardio at home, or even on the road, is a simple stepping machine. Small, portable, and it works… even better while watching Netflix! Movies are great for resting, too, and you’ll need a LOT of that. Regardless if how long you’ve been training, peak week or not, you’re going to be exhausted. You need sleep! 6:30 p.m. hits and I’m already tired. And I wake up at 7 a.m., so it’s not like I’m up super early and training. I usually train around brunch time during peak week. Don’t be surprised when you start taking an extra two or three steps at the supermarket just so you can use the automatic door… that door is there for you!”

2. Food Porn

“Seriously, I spend a LOT of time looking at food online or in the supermarket… foods that I want to eat. I really, really WANT to eat them… but I can’t! Diet is pretty strict, and it lasts the full week leading up to competition. Eat smart with your food… like, if you have a Pop-Tart, there goes half your macros for the day! Lower carbs during the last few days, a total three-day depletion, then load the night before. The key to that is quick digestion. I like rice cakes, white potatoes, rice… simple carbs. Once peak week is over, though… I know how I’m celebrating!”

3. Cheat Clean

“While I can’t eat everything I want, Quest Bars are a great daily snack (Cookie Dough and S’mores flavors!), which never throws me off my strict macros diet. I have one a day during peak week. And I’m obsessed with their protein powders! My trainer had actually stopped drinking protein shakes in general, until he tried Quest. I even made some chicken with the peanut butter flavor… it was like pad Thai!”

4. Do Go Chasing Waterfalls

“I know probably a majority of people cut water, but it’s really this simple: if you want to flush water, you need to drink water. Help yourself out by drinking dandelion root tea, which reduces water retention. And eat asparagus! It’s a natural diuretic. Don’t use drugs to artificially flush it out. Your body will sense that and react, however it deems necessary. And NO sodium loading! I did once… worst day of my life... all I could think about was water! I felt so much better after drinking some! Meanwhile, there are girls passing out backstage from dehydration. If you’re worried about a little bit of water-weight throwing you off, well… maybe the rest of your prep wasn’t all that good. Really, you haven’t cheated… at all? Creatine is water retentive, I know, and some people cycle off… but I never do, even during competition.”'

5. Pump It Up

“Don’t think of peak week as a recovery week, but don’t go all out, either. You don’t want to be inflamed. I work out every day, but all upper body. Train for a pump, not for total muscle failure. I do a circuit series, two moves per body part, and reduce cardio. With all the walking around we typically do, then standing around on stage, I actually don’t do legs at all during peak week. My last leg workout is the Sunday before a Saturday competition. Resistance bands can give you the exact type of workout you need, particularly this week, and especially with their portability on the road. And I definitely work out the night before!”

6 Essentials For Surviving Peak Week

6. Buddy System

“Toward the end of training, even before you hit peak week, things get tough. You’ll probably start to doubt yourself. You know your body has to be at a certain stage and that you can always do better, which can weigh you down pretty quickly. Having a training partner, gym buddy, anyone at all with you as part of a support system… will help keep you focused and to stay positive. But to that same point… just know that if you’re not ready to go a week before competition, you won’t be ready in time.”

For more of Lainey's peak week tips, check out her latest video!

 

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