Alexandra Soder - Physique Competitor

Alexandra: I was encouraged by some friends and acquaintances to start competing. Inspiration came from Sweden's only current fitness journal Body magazine and some of the Swedish fitness profiles. But I had always thought I was too old and didn't have a body that was not good enough on the fitness scene. I haven't been training for so long, but my body responded well to the training and got attention of others who knew of the bodybuilding world. After a few inspirations from other competing moms I decided to accept the challenge and stood in 2010 on the stage of the country's biggest competition with 25 participants in my Body Figure class. Came 3rd and after that done other competitions with good results.

I try to keep a decent diet during the week off season. On the weekends I allow myself to cross the borders and live a normal life with family. I drink wine with dinner every now and then, eat desserts if I want to. On-season on the other hand I stay strict! Then I follow my diet carefully, I nearly weigh everything I eat and keep times for intake. I feel, however, best to get a refill day once a week and make sure to keep it within limits so as not to pull on me too high water retention which in turn stresses me up mentally. My off season diet on working days contains the usual lean protein such as chicken, meat, white fish and pork and sometimes a healthy portion of salmon. Oatmeal for breakfast with hazelnuts and milk. I drink coffee at least 3 cups a day. I try to avoid lactose and gluten so there are not much dairy or wheat/barley/rye in my diet. Iím not afraid of fat, but keep to fat such as coconut oil, olive oil, flaxseed oil and avocado. Carbs: mostly rice and potatoes. Letís say I keep around 2000 kcal/day.

On season I eat about the same as my working day off season diet. But I do measure more thoroughly and keep the intake lower according to the plan and keep low carbs but eat loads of broccoli, zucchini and other green vegetables. I control the quantity of my intake with the amount of the carbs as the diet and progresses to the competition day. I prefer not to get lower than 1300 kcal/day at the lowest, but if necessary I go around 1000kcal/day.

LCHF didn't work for me. High fat intake and too little carbohydrates meant I didn't have enough energy to train and thereby lost the desire to do my training. The result also came way too slow so in combination with that I could not manage what I was supposed to do, it was probably the worst I've tried. That had to be followed up with a crash panic diet.

I must honestly say that I do not use much supplements besides BCAA, Zinc, Magnesium, B6 and casein protein. I've tried carnitine but stopped during my diet and noticed that there was not any difference in the outcome, but achieved my competition shape anyway.

My training during the on-season relates primarily to maintain the muscles in my diet. Otherwise, during my off-season, it's about overcome up weaknesses in order to be as thorough as possible in my symmetry. Right now I practice basic training with higher weights such as deadlifts, squats of various kinds and rowing where my weaknesses are my legs and the depth of my back. I don't do much cardio. Off season that would be when I travel sometimes to my work on bike. And on season I try to minimize the cardio training to interval running 3-4 times/week. But only if I need to.

My future plans are to expand my business Alexcellent fitness consulting to be working more toward companies who need help with health promotion for their employees. But the nearest future I will continue competing in October on the Swedish championship in Women's Physique and hopefully improved myself since last competition (May 2014).

Alexandra Soder
IG: @alexandra_soder

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