The most problematic behavior a competitor can engage in, in my opinion, is perpetually competing. We’ve all seen people compete year after year to do a little bit better but then make a sharp decrease. They only learn to live their life through the lens of a prep and a very short offseason which creates a whole host of problems. Maybe you’ve seen this at your gym, or with one of your friends. Or maybe, this person is you. I know I personally competed far too frequently for far too long.
The notion that the Bikini division is “attainable” and “easier” creates a large part of this problem. When bikini first started, that was understandable. Even when I turned pro in 2014, bikini was lean and muscular, but nowhere near the size and shape that we see now. Part of this is genetics. More people doing shows means more people with better genetics doing shows. Those are facts and since this is a physique sport, if someone naturally has better muscle insertions, they will win more times than not. But regardless of the higher stakes and broader competition, the standards are so much higher now. No longer can bikini girls compete year-round if they’re looking to make improvements. Getting super lean can indeed make you look more muscular, but after a point, no amount of leanness or time spent on stage will improve your placings.
Make no mistake, other divisions (for both males and females) have competitors who perpetually compete. I am not here to downplay that, so please read this advice through the lens of whatever division you compete in. However, in my coaching experience I have seen more bikini competitors perpetually compete and run themselves into the ground than other divisions.