Ever find yourself scrolling through Instagram and see girls (and some guys) post their physique updates? #7weeksout #preplife You admire their abs, their glutes, and sometimes discover new muscles on the human body that you didn’t even know existed? Well, I’m here to tell you that competing is HARD. Way harder than anyone makes it look on Instagram. You cannot expect to eat chicken and broccoli for a week and be ready to step on stage. If you’re considering stepping on stage, here are a few things you need to know and consider before purchasing your itsy bitsy teeny weeny little sparkly bikini... (for $500+) Yes, you read that right.
Why are you doing this?
First, you must establish your purpose for competing. If your main purpose is to win, then you are not ready. There are so many uncontrollable factors and it’s completely out of your hands. Everyone on stage looks incredible, everyone dieted and everyone did their cardio. You cannot stomp your feet if you don’t win, because you don’t know what the judges’ preferences are until the show is over, and all of the winners have been chosen. You have to set your own goals and worry about yourself so no matter the outcome, you can say that you worked your ass off (literally) and that you’ve done everything you were told leading up to that day. If you go in to win, and you don’t, you’re going to hate the sport and never truly understand the deeper meaning behind competing.
Hire a coach.
Do not ask your trainer at the gym to coach you for a show, and do not ask someone who has competed to coach you either. Do your research, and hire a coach that has experience in training competitors. The training and meal plans are different than the average person looking to shed a few pounds, and the days leading up to your show involve some serious diet changes (and changes in your water intake). It’s a science. I don’t know how they do it, but they just get it. Everyone is different, and everyone’s body reacts differently to specific routines and diets. With an experienced coach, they will guide you from start to finish, making the process much easier for you. When coach tells you to do something, you do it. If your coach wants you to eat fish for breakfast, YOU. DO. IT. There’s a method behind their madness.
Posing. Is. EVERYTHING.
I thought getting posing lessons would be a waste of money but I’m here to tell you, DEFINITELY DO IT. Or at least one session. You don’t realize how awkward your routine is until you’re in your bikini and heels, in front of the giant mirror pretending you’re on stage. The posing and routine is usually one of the most ignored aspects of stage preparation, but it can make or break you. Your routine will be tailored depending on your shape and will be sure to highlight your best assets. If you naturally have a wide mid-section, there’s a way to make your waist non-existent. Certain stances can make your quads look wider than they really are, or point your heels differently and voila, you can make your hamstrings POP. You’ll also get a behind the scenes run through of the competition… what happens when your class is called up, how to properly wait on the side to be called on, how you walk onto the stage, your routine, where to go once your routine is done, what your best pose is (which you’ll use while standing on stage waiting for the other competitors to do their thang). It seems overwhelming, but it really isn’t bad. It’s actually quite simple. But definitely practice your posing!
This sport ain’t cheap.
It’s good to get an idea of how much your competition will cost before you begin. I knew it was going to be expensive before I did my first show, but at the time, I didn’t know if that would be my first and last show. I ended up loving the sport, and here I am… 3 years later and 5 shows under my belt! Here’s a breakdown of about how much your show will cost you. (NOT INCLUDING SUPPLEMENTS + YOUR GROCERIES!)
This is your life now.
Wake up, cardio. Eat your meals, train. After training, more cardio. Shower, bed, repeat. I said it once and I’ll say it again. You. Have. To. Want. It. Especially seeing the money you are putting into this; you better learn to take the training and diet seriously. “Oh, it’s just 1 slice of pizza, that won’t do anything. It’s only 1 cookie… I have 2 more months until my show.” You’re paying a lot of money to be told what you need to do to become stage ready, so I advise that you suck it up, and just do it. J There will be times that you don’t want to wake up early to do fasted cardio (me every morning). There will be days where you’re sick of eating egg whites and grilled chicken every day (also me). And there will definitely be days that you just don’t have the motivation that you had the first day you started your plan. But that’s okay! Remind yourself why you’re doing this. And think of the day you’ll be on stage, in the best shape you’ve ever been in, all glammed up and ready to rock!
How’s your support system?
So you started your plan, eating super healthy perfectly measured meals, and carrying your gallon jug of water around the gym. When you get deep into this new routine, you’ll start to see who is really there for you, and who just can’t wait for you to be done with this. I’ve experienced a little bit of both. Of course, your coach will be there for you every step of the way. But it’s important that your friends, family and significant other understand what you’re about to do for the next couple of months, and any negativity is not going to help you. To be honest, there will be days where your patience and energy will be low, and the last thing you need is someone commenting on your meal, or reminding you that “you’re always in the gym!”
Competing comes with a roller coaster of emotions. But by the end, you’ll be so proud of all the accomplishments you’ve made, you will be surprised to see just how dedicated you can be, and how far you’re able to push yourself. This sport comes with physical challenges, but there are mental challenges as well. But with the right mindset and an awesome support system, you will conquer the stage! This sport was so far out of my comfort zone but looking back, I am so glad I decided to give it a shot. I’ve learned so much about myself and this lifestyle, and I hope this article helped any fit chicks (or bros) who are considering competing.
If you are in the New York/New Jersey area and need recommendations on coaching, hair/makeup peeps, affordable suits, questions on where to get shoes, jewelry, etc. please comment below!
Nobody likes long Instagram captions, so I thought what better way to share my thoughts and experiences! I'm beginning my blogging journey and plan on sharing everything fitness and fun with you all.
Hello everyone!! My name is Nicole Settecasi, I'm 26 years old and I have passion for health and fitness. My goal is to help as many people as possible achieve the personal fitness goals and live a happy healthy lifestyle! I am so excited to help make a difference in your life. Choose a plan today and see major changes!
GALLERY OF SUCCESS