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Competing in a Physique Show…

With more and more of my clients pushing the boundaries of their goals by deciding to put their hard earned physiques up against others to be judged, I want to share my thoughts on the best time to consider competing.

Bodybuilders are judged on the amount of muscle they carry, how lean they are, their stage presence, and how they compare to their competition on stage. Whether you’re in Physique, Figure, or Bikini category the criteria for judging is the same.

I receive a lot of private messages from women expressing their desire to compete on stage. On my last post, I clearly stated that I am picking the show dates for my clients and I do this based on how much lean muscle they currently carry and how much subcutaneous body fat we need to shed for Contest Prep to showcase a winning physique. I rarely agree with a new client and their decision to choose a show before they thoroughly analyze where they are from a physique standpoint and before assessing some of their weaker body parts as it pertains to competing. Presentation and overall balance is key!

That being said, many Level 1 competitors have years of training experience so competition can be fierce. Having an athletic frame with lean muscle tissue PRIOR to dieting is the ideal time to consider competing. I see so many Level 1 competitors in Bikini division just looking plain ol’ skinny and I am not a fan of that look at all. Competing on stage should resonate a look of FITNESS and HEALTH. Not just a pretty, skinny girl…looking hungry. And thirsty. In a bikini.

You can’t build and diet at the same time.

Anyway…looking back on some old client photos I stumbled upon TEAM STRONG GIRLS Nicole B. and her first photo shoot with me. As a competitive CrossFit athlete, Nicole clearly has the base in place to easily get up on stage (look at where she’s starting from!!!), however, she wanted to compete in Figure category where the women hold a little more muscle so we devised a game plan for building and she has made tremendous strides with her deltoids, back, and legs (more photos to follow). Her contest prep begins soon and I can’t wait for her debut on stage!

As a coach, nothing excites me more than working with a client that has a lot of tools ready to do battle. Even better, working with a client that has the drive and intensity like Nicole makes this process even easier.

Competing – Build a solid foundation of muscle first. Then diet. Then buy your bikini and stripper shoes.


This entry was posted in: Uncategorized


My name Jennifer Van Barneveld-Pe and this is a collection of my experiences through blogging on balancing the life of a Fitness Expert/Nutritionist and brand new Mommy.

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