Bikini contest preparation usually requires tons of focus and dedication. Most first-time competitors find themselves overwhelmed with all the things they are required to do, to bring your best package on stage. You can find most info related to bikini contest prep online, however I find there are a few important details that are often missed. In today’s post, I would like to give you 9 most important things for you to know, before planning your first bikini contest.

9 Things You Must Know Before Entering Your Very First Bikini Contest

Are you doing it for the right reasons?
Before deciding to fully invest yourself in bikini contest prep, think about the reason you want to compete. The demands of preparing to a competition are not for the weak of heart. With the growing trend of competing in bikini, physique, figure, and bodybuilding, many competitors step on stage with good intentions, but for the wrong reasons.
The top reasons that are red flags that you aren’t doing it for the right motivation include:
• To get attention/adoration from others (or insta famous)
• Because others around you are doing it
• Because someone told you that you should
• You want to look like “insert model or celeb here
Go watch a competition and analyze how you feel. Do you get a rush watching the stage? That might be a sign it is the right motivation for you. Be motivated to get on stage for the right reasons, such as self-improvement, embracing the challenge, and pushing your training.

Choosing the right coach
No matter how many competitions you prep for, you should not go about it without some professional help guiding you in the right direction. Finding the perfect coach is like online dating, you must find one that is the best fit for you. Taking time to research multiple coaches and getting to know their coaching styles is key to making prep as bump-free as possible. Interview them like you would anyone you’re hiring for a job. Some competitors need more emotional support, while others prefer to work independently, and different coaches cater to different needs. Get a coach who knows what he or she is doing and has the credentials to reflect their experience. Don’t hesitate to ask about their education and experience, as well as bikini contest prep history.

Social Support
There will be days during your bikini contest training when even the most motivated will feel like giving up completely. The key is having a proper support system to give you perspective, motivate you and possibly give you a dose of tough love. Its vital to staying on track to keep a support system close throughout prep filled with friends, family, and fellow competitors to encourage you and help push you when you need it.

Daily Time Commitment
Many people, when considering preparing for a bikini contest or any fitness competition in general, only think about the time that they must spent in the gym training to get ready. Little do they realize that there are many other aspects beyond training that are required of you during prep. Allocating some time prepare and measure your meals, posing, cooking and even sleeping (you need to sleep at least 8 hours, so that you can recover from the intense training).

Sleep
Skimping on sleep is a no-go for prep. The reality is that your body will crave a minimum of 7/8+ hrs per night. Plus, your body will need the sleep to be able to properly burn fat and keep your metabolism humming. Devoting the time to sleep is vital to success. I wrote about the full list of benefits of proper sleep here.

Training & Posing
Training comes second in competition prep only to diet. I am sure I do not have to lecture you on the importance of your workouts. Bikini competitors need to be muscular while keeping their femininity (getting TOO muscular will be penalized by the judges). But, when you begin to cut your calories and diet down as competition day draws near, you need to make sure you have enough muscle on you so that you can afford to lose some while dieting and doing cardio. Merely going into the gym for 45min to an hour a day, doesn’t really cut it. Most sessions will be 2 hours long when you get cardio, weight training and stretching done. Not to mention posing practice. Those heels can be intimidating but the more you practice the more comfortable and graceful you will become on stage.

Meal Prep
Diet is the most important determinant in your success on stage in terms of your body. Good training is nothing without a good diet. Eating quality, clean, whole foods in the right proportions can make the difference from you doing well or not so well. Setting aside time to grocery shop each week and make bulk amounts of food are a must-do, if you have a regular life to live. Four to six meals a day can make for a lot of cooking and time in the kitchen if you do not meal prep.

Finances
I will be providing more details on this, in my next blog. But for now, here is a list of things to take in an account, when planning your bikini contest prep budget:

Expenses Before the Contest
• Coaching
• Food
• Supplements
• Posing coach
• Posing Suit
• Posing Heels

Expenses Day of the Contest
• Membership fee
• Entry fee
• Tanning
• Hair & make-up (make sure you are booking the right artist. I will be writing more on that in my next blogs)
• Nails
• Transportation (most contests will not be in your area, so plan your way there accordingly)
• Accommodation (athletes’ meeting is usually done, the night before the contest. You may want to book a hotel)
• Food
• Tickets for friends and family
• Stage shots & video critique
• Photoshoot

Success Requires Sacrifice
You will probably miss important events, sometimes even celebrations. You will need to push yourself when all you want to do is give up – no one can make this happen for you. You will have to pass up on parties, when you think that you might be tempted to go off your diet – and learning to be honest with yourself in this way is one of the most important parts of your training.

As a current competitor, I’m not trying to scare you out of competing, I am trying to get you to be realistic. And you don’t need to have it all together at the start. Competition prep is a learning process, and those qualities that will help you succeed are developed just like your muscles are. So, let’s get started then! For me, the challenge and structure of prep makes me feel fulfilled. Doing it for yourself is the piece often missed, but what you can accomplish if you set your mind to it can truly surprise you.

Need help with organizing for your first bikini contest? Check out our Competition Prep Packages here!

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