Our sport is growing, and the number of people interested in fitness is increasing rapidly. It´s amazing to see what we can shape our bodies in to, and how dedication, pure willpower and determination can bring such great results. The strength one develops is something that will affect all areas of life.

Many people are fascinated by this extreme approach that allows us to develop our bodies into an esthetic piece of art. It is a demanding process that requires a certain kind of lifestyle, and it is certainly not for everyone.

In part 1 of this article I want to share some of the things I find most important for success in fitness. 

1. Do what you love – love what you do

It is so important to really love what you do! You have to be willing to put in hard work and make sacrifices to succeed. And that’s easier and a lot more fun to do when you do what you love and are passionate about. If you are miserable more than you are happy, this isn’t the sport for you.

2. Give it all you’ve got

If you want to win, there’s absolutely no way around hard work! You need to do your very best every single day.

“When I step on the stage, I need to know that I have done everything in my power to be the best possible version of me. No matter how things turn out, I know that I have done my very best in all areas – and that is a rewarding feeling. There is no way I´ll allow someone to beat me because I didn’t work hard enough. If someone beats me it is certainly not because of my lack of effort. You never want to fail because you didn’t work hard enough.” – Mette Stensland


Mette Stensland with her Figure gold medal outside Arnold Classic Europe 2014.

3. Focus on you

Don’t worry about anyone but yourself. Put all your energy and focus on you, and do everything in your power to be your best. Focus on yourself and what you can control.
Don’t create stress, insecurity or confusion by looking at what other people do, or how they look. (Seriously, if you do this then stay away from social media 😉 )

4. Do your research 

If you want to compete, do your research on everything involving competing in fitness. I still get amused by people who want to compete, but who has never even seen a show or followed a strict diet. Go see several shows, talk to other competitors about their experiences. Make sure you know what the lifestyle and journey is about, so that you are prepared and know what you are heading in to.

5. Trust your coach

Do your research and find a coach you really trust. The knowledge and approach your coach have will greatly impact your journey and health. There are many different approaches and if you listen to more than one person you will end up very confused. So make it easy for yourself and stick to the plan.

But also educate yourself and don’t follow anything blindly. There should be a reason why you do things a certain way, and a good coach should gladly answer any question you might have. Make sure your coach has sufficient  knowledge so you don’t risk getting health issues or metabolic burnout by pushing too hard in the wrong direction.


6. Love the journey

The journey is just as important as the end goal. Discover all the positive benefits of the sport; push yourself, make life lasting friendships, learn and get new knowledge, practice positive thinking, overcome challenges, show passion, enjoy your meals (yes, even cod eaten from a zip lock bag tastes amazing), work hard in the gym, see the results of your hard work and enjoy repeatedly winning over your so called «common sense».

7. Consistency is keyMuscle14-67-Edit-kopi

Be patient and trust that success comes from daily effort. Don’t be frustrated or impatient, just trust the process.

8. Don’t ever give up!

Embrace the challenges you face and know they are making you a stronger person and competitor. The mental, physical and emotional growth will be with you forever.

9. Visualize

This is a strong tool that will help you prepare for any obstacle, keeping your head cool. It will also help you to create a strong, winning mentality, prepare you for the show and help you make a great performance. You have to be in the right place mentally and believe in yourself to succeed.


10. Be fierce and fearless

Don’t fear failure, step out of your comfort zone, push yourself, show no fear and push your limits.

Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go. -T.S. Elliot



About The Author

Owner and founder of Optimize Personal Training. Personal Trainer, lifestyle coach and fitness coach. She has a long background in training and fitness, and is a successful IFBB figure/bodyfitness competitor. Nordic Overall Winner 2014, and an Official Better Bodies and Nordic Power athlete.