Laura Schmid - Bikini Competitor

I first decided to start competing in April 2015, after following many girls and watching their journey to the stage, I fell in love with the sport and knew I wanted to do the same someday. After lots of months of prayer and research I finally decided to go on and start prepping.

I follow the flexible dieting/If it fits your macros approach, so going from offseason to my pre-contest diet really just involved dropping carbs&fats. I like to follow a higher carb to fat ratio both offseason and on my competition diet, as I found that it works better with my body and I enjoy the volume you can get from carbs. My protein remains the same throughout offseason and prep, and I generally aim to keep it on the higher side of my protein requirements. My macro ratio looks something like this: 40% carbs/40% protein/ 20% fat. I usually look at how my body is responding to decide when and by how much calories should be decreased or increased, and it always changes during the process. Even during my cutting phase I sometimes increase calories to continue weight-loss when a plateau is reached.

I have previously followed a clean-eating approach, not for prep but when I first started my fitness journey. It failed miserably as I never had a good idea of the macros I was consuming, and the restriction of certain foods sometimes led to binge episodes.

My training consists of 6x a week lifting where I do 3 upper body splits (back&bis, chest&tris, shoulders) and 3 lower body splits (quads,hamstrings,glutes) and I also like to throw in some plyometrics when I'm cutting down. I like LISS cardio on the treadmill the most, as it doesn't put as much stress on my body as HIIT and it gives me time to catch up on youtube. During my cutting phase I try and keep my intensity lower than offseason and the workload consistent. I'm always extremely hungry after a very tough lifting session, and when there's a deficit in my calories my body has a very hard time recovering, often leading to injury and extreme exhaustion, so I prefer to keep my lifting sessions at a maintenance and focus on increasing intensity during offseason.

To be honest, since I was a little girl I always dreamt about being on stage. I unfortunately never had a talent in any performance art that would have allowed me to step on a stage, so when I found out about bikini fitness competitions I knew it would be perfect, as all that's needed to get onto stage is a tonne of hard work and persistence.

My first competition was such an amazing experience from check-ins the day before up until finals. I was exhausted during check-ins, so tired I was basically falling asleep waiting in line, but the atmosphere was amazing and I also got to have a really nice conversation with the woman doing my tanning, who is a figure competitor. She was very helpful and gave me all sorts of tips (like lots of wine before I go to bed, haha). The day of the competition went by so fast. The bikini division got called up 3rd or 4th if I remember correctly. While waiting all of the girls bonded and we had a really good time. I was lucky enough to step on stage with girls who I could call friends after that day. There was a real sense of support on the stage, (almost) every girl giving smiles of encouragement and support to each other as we got first call outs. I ended up getting first-callouts and I honestly didn't even realize it until I stepped off stage. It's such a blur when you're up there. Finals was such a blast! Being able to perform our single posing was so much fun. I ended placing 3rd and I was overwhelmed with emotions as I honestly just went into the show with zero expectations.

I'm planning on moving up from beach bikini/junior fitness bikini to fitness bikini. I'm taking a long offseason of 1 1/2 - 2 years, as I want to step on stage in the best condition I possibly can, hopefully qualify for Arnolds and get my pro-card.

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Instagram: ellafitness_

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