So You Didn't Place at a National Show.

Team Universe was this past weekend with about 600 competitors between men and women's bodybuilding and physique, women's fitness, figure and bikini.
Just like any national show, the roster of events could be quite overwhelming and the days are long. It is very exhausting. You train your ass off to compete among the best of the best from all over the nation and then don't even place.
Let me tell you something - the other day my FB status read something in the lines of me not liking to make negative comments about anyone woman who is a competitor and her physique or how she looks on stage. Same for men. I try my hardest to not do this because I sure as hell don't want it done to me. I don't want to hear someone commenting and highlighting all my flaws. There's a huge difference between constructive criticism and useful feedback and just plain s**t talking.
As I was walking to and from my car I could spot tons of beautiful women and men...gorgeous really, from the lobby all the way out to the parking lot. But damn when you see these beautiful people complain and whine and down the next man/woman because they didn't place it gives me a feeling of ...well... UGLY!
2010 Atlantic States
Here's what I have to say about those who complain about their placing:
First of all, you should already know that this sport is subjective. How many times do we have to go over this? If you are not in it for yourself, and if you are not doing it because you already love it and think earning a pro card will suddenly change your life then quit now. As an athlete and competitor you should already be doing things to promote yourself and be a part of "something". A pro card should be the icing on the cake. There are tons of amateur athletes who are doing an excellent job at reaching the larger population, get endorsements, etc. without pro status. If it is a personal goal of yours to achieve, treat it like any other goal in life - it has its ups and downs and no one else is to blame or fault for it.
2010 Atlantic States
Second - it is a NATIONAL show.  All of the women and men train just as hard as you. At Team U there was a huge amount of people. Could you imagine how difficult it must have been to judge that show? I have test-judged a larger local show and I wanted to cry! Not the easiest thing. That means you really have to stand out!
Third - winning a smaller regional or local show is totally and completely different from placing at a national show. Regardless of your placing, you should be HONORED by the experience. It takes a tremendous amount of cojones and dedication to step on a stage, let alone a national one. Check your attitude before you go up there thinking you are owed something! BE GRATEFUL and BE GRACEFUL! Don't bad mouth the judges and your fellow athletes! Show SPORTSMANSHIP!
Four - cut the conspiracy theory crap - Bombshell this, Oddo's Angels that...if I were with one of them I bet I'd win/place higher...blah blah blah. Stop it. Stop it now. I have been competing for years and not been affiliated with either one of those teams yet I have placed and won shows. Those who belong to a particular team probably have coaches who have studied and KNOW what the judges want. Maybe, just maybe, their athletes place because of this. And's the kicker...not all of their athletes place! Yes, I do belong to a team this year, but my placings and improvements have been pretty consistent because I STUDY and pay attention to the sport.
Five - ASK for feedback and BE ABLE TO ACCEPT it. If you are a bit sensitive or hurt about your placing do NOT, I repeat, do NOT go up to a judge feeling like this and ask them to tell you why you didn't place higher. You will get upset. Wait a few days. Judges like to see IMPROVEMENTS once they give you feedback. Trust me on this...they pay very close attention to the changes you've made and they'll be looking for those improvements next time they see you on stage. They love this!
Having FUN backstage at the 2009 Atlantic States
That's my rambling. Stop the ugly attitudes and practice sportsmanship. Be a champion in your own way and feel honored that you, as a competitor, have the ability to do and be a part of something that most people are not. You are already special! Now get to work on the things you need to improve and celebrate the challenges you had to overcome to participate at Team Universe and HAVE FUN at your next show!


  1. GREAT POST!!!! Thanks for sharing! I have not yet competed but plan to this fall. This is one of the things that turns me off about this sport, but I love the accomplishments I have made and need to see it through a show.... If I place, that will be the cake for me....I really don't care for icing! And if I don't place. I'm still going to enjoy a piece of cake! ;)

  2. Wow i love this post. I am so new to this sport, but was just HONORED to step on my first national stage! I was in Bikini Class A and there was something that the judges saw in me that put me in first and leaving PItts w/a pro card--I could have never imagined, considering the whole pump up room was filled with GORGEOUS woman and I was very intimidated! It was my 3rd show (started competing in May), and i just am so blessed to be able to continue to push myself! Most people when they graduate and finish 4 years with the NCAA they are burnt I am blessed to still be active and ABLE haha thank God!
    I am all about the positivity so I love this post! I know every single girl on that stage was there for a I cannot even imagine how judges score!

    Rachelle -