The Do's & Don'ts of Entering "Off Season" Really Mean - NPC Bikini Heather Rickard

What does entering Off Season really mean? “The Do’s and Don’ts of Entering Off Season” Your prep has come to an end, your spray tan is wearing off and its starting to sink in you are entering your off season, what now? Many first time competitors and some veterans go about an off season entirely the wrong way. An off season does not mean eat everything in sight and slack on training. An off season or what I like to refer to it as an “improvement season” is a time where heatherrickard1you can continue to improve your physique. When you start your prep again your goal is to not start from ground zero.

I have seen it happen time and time again with athletes who have done 1,2,3 or even 4 shows in a season that completely lose themselves after a show, don’t let this happen to you! You have worked so hard to get your physique to where it is the last thing you want to do is back track.


Do enjoy quality time with your friends and family whom you have put on hold during your competition prep.

Do let yourself enjoy some post competition treats but do not go crazy.

Do try something different with your cardio/ training so you don’t become bored. Try a yoga class, kickboxing class, participate in a running event, or buy a few training sessions from a local trainer to try something new.

Do bring fruit and low-fat dairy back into your diet (in moderation).

Do try a juice cleanse or some sort of natural detox. We put our bodies through a lot during our competition season, and this will definitely help rejuvenate your body.

Do allow yourself one cheat meal a week but also do your best to keep it clean throughout the week , “clean” gains are much more beneficial than “dirty” gains.

Do pat yourself on the back! What we do is not easy! You made it! You have done something that many people do not have the drive or discipline to achieve what you have achieved.


Don’t binge it is only going to make you feel awful and put on extra weight that you worked so hard to get off.

Don’t drink alcohol it will put a damper on your physique and gains during the off season.

Don’t do anything drastic with your diet immediately after the show. Try reverse dieting or try slowly bringing in foods that you haven’t had in a while, do not introduce your body to a bunch of new foods all at once, you will be setting yourself up for disaster.

Don’t stop going to the gym. Your body has been accustomed to training for so long, if you completely stop going to the gym it can have a negative effect, this goes for cardio as well.

Don’t give up on your dreams! So you had a rough season, that’s ok, don’t beat yourself up over it! Use this time to improve your physique and work out the kinks for next season.

I hope you find these tips helpful, enjoy your off season/ improvement season!

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