Water Depletion for Males
What is Water Depletion?
Your body fat storage should be low enough that you are already rocking a six-pack. Your six-pack doesn’t need to pop but all six abdominals should be clearly visible in the mirror while flexing. If they are not, continue to eat clean and keep hitting the gym. Revisit doing a water depletion when you are actually ready.
There is a difference between being out of shape, being in shape aka beach body, and having a physique ready for competition.
Retaining fluid between the skin and muscles can keep a competitor from taking home a prize given that excess water can hide the definition of the muscles and make the competitor appear smooth vs ripped. The competitor with the best overall physique will be sure to have the advantage.
Once you have reached required body fat levels, a water depletion can begin 1-2 weeks out of an event depending on the athlete and/or what their coach advises. There are different types of coaches. You might have a coach that does not believe in water depletion at all for fear of muscles appearing flat on stage. Another coach might believe a sharp drop in water is much more effective in getting chiseled because they figure the body is smart and believes the body will retain water as soon as it senses dehydration. A different coach might believe in gradual water depletion. Everyone coach is unique and every athlete is distinct. It is important to figure out what works best for you. A good idea would be to do a prep several weeks before a show so that you can play with which method works best for you. Experimenting a week before the competition is not a good idea.
Below are examples for a sharp drop in water depletion and a gradual drop in water during peak week.