Bodybuilding Competition Check List

The following article was written by Rearden Metal

Have a Base Tan

If you are self tanning, be as dark as you can! If you’re getting spray tanned, just get a good medium/dark base.

Start Shaving with a Razor a Few Weeks Out

This way your skin doesn’t irritate, cause in-grown hairs or hold water from shaving right before the show. Get a good razor.


Use a pumice stone to remove dead skin at least once a week. Make sure that includes your feet, ankles, calves, hands and elbows.

Self Tanning

I like Pro Tan, but DON’T use the spongy wand thing they give you. Get 2 bottles of Pro Tan. Dump the first in a bowl you will never use to eat out of. Take a clean athletic sock and submerge in the liquid. Squeeze out excess and put on first coat either Thursday or Friday AM (for sat show). Let dry for a few hours. Then repeat. Let dry again. Take a shower that night but don’t scrub off the tan, just rinse.

Friday AM, re- apply a 3rd coat. Should be enough, might need one more. DO NOT do your face. Go up to your jawline. Hit your face only once before you leave for the show. Otherwise you’ll look like a mud face.

Things to Bring to the Venue

  • Flip Flops – There will be paper down, but still, the places aren’t clean. And you don’t want to have sneakers on
  • A total change of clothes for later. Dark clothes that you don’t care if they get tan on them
  • Wear your posing trunks, have warm up suit or sweats on over
  • A¬†cooler with enough space for about 4-6 meals. A duffel bag is okay if no cooler is available. You will want to have snacks there too so a pretty big bag is necessary.
  • Gatorade and/or Pedialyte. After the show, start SIPPING on one of these. DO NOT guzzle the fluids or you will be pregnant and in pain. Take it slow and re-hydrate steadily. DON’T go out drinking, save it for a few nights later
  • Dream tan bronzer- optional… with a little cotton pad this can be brushed on over the tan and has a less offensive shine than oil
  • Pam cooking spray. My personal choice. Spray whole body, gently rub in, cook self on pan
  • Cell phone charger and phone. A lot of time you will be sitting backstage waiting endlessly. People will be trying to tell you what’s up, if your phone dies you’ll just sit there for hours
  • A towel. One you really don’t care about. To lie on and to clean up with after.
  • Bar of soap- I like to wash my top layer off and wipe face clean after the show, before driving home

Day of Show Tips

  • Find a seat in front of auditorium near the stairs. You want to weigh in/register/check in ASAP so you’re not waiting in line standing for a long time, getting flatter than shit
  • Find a spot for your stuff backstage and carve out a nook where you can lay down
  • Do not fraternize, walking around and talking before prejudging. I know it’s one of the best moments of the whole thing is talking to others who have gone through this stuff like you have, and you make great friends this way. But you’re going to over-exert yourself and your body in it’s dehydrated, high stress state will not comply with you. You will hold water and be flat. Go lay down, wear your headphones and have a friend watch the expediter closely (VERY) to know when to be ready. Make friends and hang out after the show or if you’re at a show like ours where you have hours between AM and PM shows, join people for lunch and rest and bullshit then. LOT less stressful to talk and meet people after prejudging is over
  • Have meals prepped in case post pre judging you and coach believe you’ll look better without a burger/fries that everyone thinks is magic (and sometimes is)
  • Make lunch reservations in case you need that burger
  • Be a gentleman/lady and represent yourself and your team with class

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