Secret Sacrifices of Entrants in Bodybuilding Competitions

EMBEDDED in the body of every competitive bodybuilder you can see the signs of sacrifice. The grooves of their abdominals and their slab-like muscles tell a story of dedication and obsession, even of masochism.

Eight-time Mr Olympia Ronnie Coleman, who toured Australian recently, said bodybuilding takes "a tonne of sacrifice"."If you want to be the best in the world you have to be willing to give up so much to be that person," he said. So what are some of those sacrifices? What's the pain that leads to all that gain?

IF you want to get big, say goodbye to three standard meals in a day, variety in your diet, dessert, eating in restaurants or anything with flavour. Say hello to massive portions and/or waking up in the middle of the night to feed.

Ronnie Coleman is a good example. A typical meal is two whole BBQ chickens and half a kilogram of potatoes. "I eat chicken and rice, steak and baked potato. That's it,'' Coleman said. "I probably get in like five meals a day. Every now and then I get six."

Or have a look at Indian bodybuilder Mir Mohtesham Ali Khan, whose daily diet is reproduced on Wikipedia. It consists of 30 boiled eggs (without yolk), one kilo of chicken breasts, 12 oranges, 200 grams of green salad, one cup of sweet corn, 150 grams of oatmeal and two to four chapattis.

Closer to competition time, bodybuilders go even more hardcore, stripping back water intake in the days before events to get that "shredded" look.

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