The idea of this post came from a friend I used to work with, as an ambulance dispatcher. She wanted to know:
In Jan I set on a mission to lose a ton of weight, I have been successful and lost 60lbs. I like the changes in my body and wanted more, so I have been working with a trainer. I was wondering how much if you don’t mind it costs to do a fitness show? and if you did it yourself or worked with a trainer and how often you trained with a trainer. Im just curious, I’d like to see where I can take my body!
A simple answer to her question would have been: very.
But it got me thinking, and to be honest thinking about the costs over the years had me sweating.
Nonetheless, here goes….
When I entered my first show in 2007, I had no idea what I was doing in the gym. “The boy” mentioned there was a trainer at our gym (Ana Blazanin) that had done bodybuilding competitions in the past, and bought me some personal training sessions with her.
The beautiful Ana Blazanin taught me how to pose, present myself on stage, put me in contact with her nutritionist, George Tardik, and sports therapist. I had a team in place, and got to work.
My first figure suit was very basic, but I was still blown away by the price: $175. Boy, was I in for a shock.
Clear 5″ heels: $55
Tanning: $150 (professionally spray tanned), $40 (do-it-yourself) I’ll post reviews of self-tanners soon!
Competition Fees: $100 (membership) + $80-$150 per class
Sports therapy: A LOT! Thankfully I have great benefits!
My second show was in 2009. I needed a new suit. So, I looked online hoping I could find someone in the U.S. that would make a custom suit for me at a fraction of the cost – suits with bling run anywhere from $500-$1000+ – I found a girl that would make me one for around $250. That should have had alarm bells ringing. I paid a deposit of $200, and never heard from her again. With 2 weeks to go until showtime I thought I was doomed. I was so upset that this beast of a woman had ripped me off that I considered hanging my clear heels for good. Then I found Berns, the creator at Passion Fruit Designs.
As I moved through the years, I went with an online trainer, Eric Ledin. He was great, but expensive: approximately $275/month, back then. He took care of my meals and training. Unfortunately his rates went up at the same time I bought a house. I thought I could take what I had learned so far and fill in the rest. I had to give him up.
I continued my training, but I wasn’t 100% committed. I wasn’t sure where I wanted to go with it, or if I even wanted to show again. But there was that small detail of that elusive 1st place.
As I prepared for July’s competition, this year, I found Amer “The Hammer” online. He helped me through my final month of show prep, with meals and workouts. He was always quick to reply to my emails, and happily answered my thousands of questions. I owe my 1st place and pro card to him.
Online trainers are great, but I also needed someone that I could check in with for personal training sessions. After the July show, I enlisted Mindi O’Brien and her husband Dennis Bietler. Mindi keeps my workouts fresh and tough, Dennis is in charge of fueling my muscles. I have seen some great results so far, but really it’s down to me to get my butt to the gym and push myself through my workouts. I’m pretty tough on myself, and my police training certainly plays a part when I feel life whimping out in the gym.
So, yes. I most definitely recommend a trainer. And, if you don’t know much about nutrition, you need someone to help guide you. I truly believe that success is 70% what you eat, 30% physical work.
I just bought a new suit for the next series of shows I’m competing in:
- OPA Open Provincial Qualifier, in Windsor on October 6th
- OPA KW Octoberfest Classic, in Kitchener October 13th
- IDFA World Championships & Pro Universe, in Mississauga on November 3rd.
There are alternatives to shelling out a ton of dough for a new suit, make it yourself.
I’ll post links and instructions in the coming days.