Contest Prep First Steps – IDFA

Contest Prep – First Steps

Izabela Minnes IDFA and FEFA Judge

“When we make a decision to compete, we strive to visualize ourselves onstage looking trim, muscular and glamorous. We hear that we need to embark on a “contest prep” which entails hard work and a restrictive diet.  We even read somewhere in a magazine that we should hire a coach…but who? Where?


A couple of years ago I met Maria, a lovely girl who was referred to me for posing sessions and a suit.  As we sat down to discuss what she needed, she shared with me that she was having a hard time with the contest prep.  She was tired all the time and wasn’t getting the results she envisioned….she was losing the hard-earned muscle and hanging on to the little fat that she carried on her petit frame.  Naturally, I asked her if she had a coach, to which she responded, yes. My curiosity prompted me to inquire further about her diet. To my horror, I found out that her “coach” had her on a diet of cucumbers, egg whites and chicken!

It doesn’t take an expert to see that this diet was very dangerous and could seriously compromise Maria’s health, let alone, “producing” the healthy and athletic physique she was hoping for.  It turned out that Maria’s “coach” was a fellow gym goer who had competed in the past himself, and whose credentials Maria did not check before entrusting her dreams and health to him.  

The message I’m trying to convey here is:

– Do your research; make sure that the potential coach has proper credentials (i.e. nutrition courses, successful competition career, references, etc.)

– Ask what kind of services you are going to receive. These should include a menu plan designed specifically for your individual needs, a bi-weekly, then closer to the show, weekly revaluation accompanied by appropriate changes to the meal plan.

– Make sure that he or she will be available to you on a daily basis to help you deal with the ups and downs of contest prep.

– And finally, ask if your coach will accompany you to the show to support you backstage and during judging.

This is your dream, your body and your health…you don’t want jeopardize all of this by choosing your support team carelessly!”

Izabela Minnes
Izabela creates glamorous competition suits and is available for posing, contest prep, and coaching. Read Izabela’s bio to learn more about her. 

For inquiries, write to Izabela here at or: