Body building has moved from being a niche sport to a hugely popular lifestyle change. It is quite common these days to find a large percentage of people at the gym having already competed or else be preparing to compete in a fitness or body building competition of some level. It is no longer enough to simply get summer body ready.
While bodybuilding is open to all ages with many of the most successful being over thirty, it is now the younger generation who are leading the way in trying out this increasingly popular sport. Many of those who jump on board, however, are unaware of the sports tremendous social impact and cost.
Before you start have you stopped to consider how much a show may actually cost you?
We are often only quoted the cost to compete from our trainers and are unaware of the hidden costs that pop up along the way. From entry fees, trainers, increase in supplements, shoes, tans and travel the list goes on. It is not uncommon to hear from a competitor ‘I’m broke, I’ll do it after comp’.
While realising this can be gender and division specific, lets take a look at the costs.
|The Item||The cost||Notes|
|Bikini||$100-$1,200||For a simple bikini.
The themed wear rounds, however, are more expensive if you choose to compete in them. Your wings alone may cost $500, not to mention another bikini to match.
|Hair||$100||Hair on the day at a salon, or if you need a stylist to come to you.|
|Make-up||$80-$100||Make-up on the day typically requires an artist to come to you.|
|Waxing||$100||One of the few beauty requirements males also need.|
|Tan||$60||If you’re extra pale, (hello winter prep) you may need an extra coat. Typically $20 per coat.|
|Posing lessons||$20 per session||A vital requirement if you are new.
If you are part of a team, this cost may be covered.
Otherwise you’ll need to seek out pros in your local city and hire their time
|Diet (groceries)||Depending||Expect an increase of about 20 per cent in your regular weekly costs, if you’re already eating well.
If not, probably assume a good 50 per cent increase.
Comp prep requires protein in all meals. It is the most expensive component of a meal.
|Diet plan||$1,000+||You may pay outright or else pay an upfront fee of $1200 and then pay more as adjustments are made.
This service can often include skin fold testing and consultations, as well as 24 hour access to their service and expertise if you get your night time cravings and require some support.
|Skin folds/DEXA||$20-$60 each time||If you’re having these done outside of your trainer (if your trainer is online) you will also have to pay these.|
|Supplements||$60+ per month||$60 really only covers protein.
Let’s not forget about BCAAs, Glutamine, Creatine, ZMA, R Alpha Lipoic Acid, ALCAR, Test Boosters, Pre-Workouts – all of which are standard basics for a competition prep.
|Pedicure||$20-60||Not vital. You may be amazing at this yourself. But otherwise the price depends on where you go.|
|Manicure||$25-100||Nails are definitely a requirement.
Most competitors like to match their manicure to their bikini with glitter and French tips.
|Shoes||$100-$200||Specific shoes are an essential requirement.
You can also get second hand ones at around $100 online and on eBay.
|Jewelry||$20-$100||Depending where you shop will dictate your spending.|
|Entry fee||$150 per show||This price is quite standard among federations.
If you’re entering numerous divisions this can often incur an addition $50 fee per division.
|Membership fee||$150-$200||Some build this into your entry fee cost so it’s just one lump sum.
For others, however, this will be separate.
|Photo shoot/stage shots||$50+||Standard stage shots come at about $50 for a package deal through the hired photographer for the day.
Otherwise think $300+ if you’re adding a separate shoot to show off all of your hard work.
|Travel||$100+||This depends greatly on whether you’re travelling interstate for your event.
If you are consider the added cost of flights, car hire, taxis and accommodation.
|Gym membership||$50 per month||At a minimum of $50 per month. Though most will already have one.|
|Treats||$50+||As if you’re not going to buy the whole chocolate isle.|
Considering this realistically, if you hit the minimums everywhere, that’s approximately $2,000 for about 12 to 18 weeks of the year. While many of the costs are female and beauty based, men also typically eat a lot more protein and this is one of the most expensive components.
What this means is it pays to plan your choice to compete. Competing effects you both physically and mentally, as well as financially. Adding the stress of hidden costs to your comp prep definitely won’t help you. So be prepared and crunch the figures before you decide to compete.
Good luck to those looking to compete in 2017!