Common Problems Female Bodybuilders Have with Significant Others

Female Bodybuilding.  #GirlsWhoLift.  Yes, you’re doing this for you, but whether you acknowledge it or not your husband/wife/boyfriend/girlfriend can really have an impact on how well you do during pre-judging.  He can be the supportive, loving swole mate you know him to be, or he can be a passive aggressive pain in the butt during the twelve weeks leading up to your competition.

You are not training in a vacuum; your partner is looking forward to the end of show prep almost as much as you are.  With this in mind, here are…

5 Common Problems Female Bodybuilders have with Significant Others (and some solutions too!)

  1. Can’t you just eat normal?  Some friends I know have had boyfriend problems due to the meal plan.  During show prep you don’t drink alcohol or eat processed foods, so it can be hard to go out every weekend with friends when you can’t eat anything on the menu.  Your boyfriend might have loved the concept of you training to look hot in a bikini, but once the reality of the required lifestyle changes impacted his own life, suddenly your whole “bodybuilding thing” becomes a drag.
    Ground turkey asparagus: yuck!
    Ground turkey asparagus: yuck!

    Simple Solutions:  A) Throw a party at your house where you can cook up some clean food along with the “normal” food. B) When you go to a restaurant, order a cocktail so you seem like one of the crowd and let your mate drink it for you (win/win). C) Meet up with friends at non-food places like a park, museum or a lake.  You don’t have to have a beer and chips to have a good time, you know.

  2. There’s a reason why “lousy” is in the word jealousy.  Other friends of mine had to deal with an insecure/jealous partner.  Screaming matches ensued.  But look at your partner’s side. In fairness, unless they’ve just finished their own show the day before your competition, it’s easy to be intimated at a show.  Think about it:  all these ripped people with six pack abs are walking around in bathing suits looking awesome.  It’s tough feeling confident when you’re one of the few people in the room carrying some extra pounds.
    Men's Overall Winner - 2012 Texas Shredder Classic
    Men’s Overall Winner – 2012 Texas Shredder Classic

    Simple Solutions:  A) Tell him all the reasons why you love him and are attracted to him.  B) Make the post-show weekend all about him.  Go to his favorite restaurant, do things he enjoys doing.

  3. “You look too muscular for me.” This is a tricky subject in my house.  My husband has stated loud and clear that he doesn’t want me to have bigger muscles than him because he finds that unfeminine.  Yes, ‘I am woman hear me roar,’ but if my husband is no longer attracted to me how is that a good thing? Likewise, if my husband decided to grow one of those crazy Duck Dynasty beards I’d have to send him to the couch.  Attraction works both ways.
    Photo credit: ION Studios
    Photo credit: ION Studios

    Simple Solutions:  A) Show him pictures of women who are strong and look feminine at the same time, so he knows the traits are not mutually exclusive.  B) Encourage him to go to the gym.  If he feels stronger he won’t be as put off by your muscles.

  4. Strangers in the Night.  Everything about show prep seems manageable until that last month.  Then you become the invisible woman because you live at the gym.  Strength training, cardio, posing classes, spray on tans, etc., etc.  And when you are home you’re prepping food or flexing in front of a mirror.
    Exercise breakdown - 2nd competition
    Exercise breakdown – 2nd competition

    Simple Solutions:  A) Ask him if he would like to be involved in what you’re doing.  Practice your poses for him.  Ask if he’d like to join you on the treadmill for a sweat session.  B) Remind him that this is a temporary situation and you’ll have more time to hang out in a few weeks. (And then follow through and have a date night.)

  5. You can wear underwear twice, right?  If you are working, raising a family and training for a bodybuilding competition, something’s gotta give.  Know what goes out the window during my show prep?  Laundry.

    Simple Solutions:  A) Ask your man for help.  Tell him what a supportive rock star he is for helping with the chores so you can take a nap because you’re carb-depleted and sore.  If flattery doesn’t work, try bribery.  Or extortion.  Do whatever it takes to get a nap.  B) Thank him profusely.

If your mate is supportive, like mine, give him a BIG SHOUT OUT.  Because behind every great female bodybuilder is an even better person willing to put up with her asparagus pee.

My husband at the Arnold Classic expo
My husband at the Arnold Classic expo

Lisa 😉

Lisa Traugott is a Mom’s Choice Award winning writer, fitness blogger, wife and mom of two.  Her book, “She’s Losing It!”  is available at Resolution Front Cover.4837209 (c) 2015 Lisa Traugott. All rights reserved. No portion of this blog, including any text, photographs, video, and artwork, may be reproduced or copied without written permission.

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