SOOOO You wanna date a fitness model, huh? When it comes to dating a fitness athlete, I don’t think that people know what they are getting into.
Granted, relationships are hard no matter WHAT industry you’re in, I know this, but THIS issue is close to my heart because well…. I’m in it.
I am one, and dating one.
I think that because the nature of the industry is to make yourself look as glamorous and healthy as possible at all times, and to basically sell yourself from a very superficial stand point, and attempt to make yourself look as famous/lean/perfect and almost completely photo shopped at all times, it’s quite deceiving. It seems like such a glamorous thing and it seems super cool, I understand that, but like most things in life there’s a dark side. Much like every other sport, take ballet for example… You do not see the dark side because we never talk about it. You don’t see the bandaged ballet feet and fractures, dedicating years to perfecting skills, dieting to be thin, stuff like that. You will never understand unless you’re in it and I think this applies to many other things. Dating any elite athlete from any sport or sporting background requires an understanding that YOU, the partner, will not always be first priority.
You might not even be second or fifth in line of importance. Some days you might not even go through their mind more than twice. They might only have 1-2 hours a week for you, they might even need to take several weeks to focus on something. You need to be OK with that. Dating anyone who is passionate or invested in ANY sport or even schooling, achieving a dream, or growing a business, it takes fully understanding that THEIR world does not revolve around you. I would say that someone in the peak of their career or studying to the extent that I’m describing, that maybe you shouldn’t BE in a relationship, but I can’t say that because I DID do that. I have had boyfriends even throughout some of the busiest times of my life. I think if you can establish ahead of time that you ARE going to be busy and lay out your terms in advance, then I think it’s a little easier for your partner to decide if they want to be involved in that kind of lifestyle or not. But the problem is that in the beginning of relationships, especially if you don’t know yourself that well, you think you are OK with being second, or third, on someone’s list… but then it gets harder, and you change your mind. And of course, people do change once you get to know them too. There’s a lot of factors obviously that coming to play for situations like these but I think it’s super important that if you are looking to date someone that is very busy and focussing on something almost 100% of the time, then you need to think about what that’s going to be like. So that’s why I am writing this.
In bodybuilding there are so many things that need to be done leading up to a competition that consume so much time, and they all are imperative. Every meal counts. Every cardio session counts, and every MINUTE of cardio counts. Every weights session counts, and if my performance or my diet or my workouts are negatively impacted by my partner, it won’t work. Yes, once in a while, but if it becomes a constant thing, it won’t work. Meal timing, meal preparation and cardio, weights and then for women we have to prepare for photo shoots, outfits, bikinis, shoes, we have to organize hair and make up and nails and tanning. Possibly bed tanning, some people even get their teeth whitened, botox, laser, physiotherapy, sports massages, blood tests, meal prepping for an hour every second night, getting our eyebrows and absolutely every hair on our body completely wax off or shaved off and I think that to date someone in the industry is hard especially if you don’t understand it, or at least try to understand, it’s going to cause a lot of problems for you both. It’s like that in ANY industry and any job at an elite or demanding. There’s no way. Most people in any career or running a business etc. will dedicate 8-15 hours a day to their cause or career. Bodybuilding is EVERY moment that you are awake. It’s on your mind/a pre-requisite from the minute you wake up, to the minute you go to sleep, AND even while you sleep your body is repairing itself. It’s ALWAYS working. If you’re not eating, you’re thinking about eating. If you’re not training, you’re planning when next to train. If you’re not grocery shopping, you probably need something. If you aren’t on social media or active on social media, you should be because you need to continue to keep the hype (this is for some people, not for all, but for some athletes with contracts and stuff you need to keep your following high and post often).
Trust. It’s also very difficult dating someone with a very large following on social media because the trust just has to be there already. You need to go into the relationship with an innate trust that is just there already, if you carry baggage from previous relationships, like being cheated on or whatever it may be, and you carry those issues into your new relationship 1 )That’s not fair in ANY relationship or situation, and 2) it won’t work well, or very long, because fighting about people liking your photos is actually ridiculous and exhausting. I know because I have been there, I am crazy from time to time, but I have ALSO been on the receiving end of the accusations. Someone I don’t even know and haven’t met likes my photo and I’m getting in trouble? Hells to the no. I don’t have time for that. I mean, I do now, but during prep time, no. Building trust from day one is super important. Daniel and I actually had an advantage when we first started dating because we started with long-distance, and in order to be in a long-distance relationship, you have to kind of just have this inherent trust in someone. And I have been in very hurtful situations and betrayed by exes before, so it was very hard for me. It’s not just trust, but just knowing that no matter what happens that you will be OK regardless of what the other person does, or doesn’t do. You WILL be okay regardless, you cannot control someone else actions. Establish your ground rules, let them establish theirs, and then try to not get worked up about things that the other person cannot control. Someone else acting a certain way, for example. You cannot control how someone acts to your partner, but you can establish YOUR ground rules and where YOUR lines are in how they are to react to the other persons actions, and you need to just trust that your partner will handle them as best they can. This is important, because sometimes people will handle things different to how YOU would handle things. As long as its handled, it shouldn’t matter. So, for example, if you are the type of person that will curve ANY opposite sex person messaging you in your inbox, then thats just how you are. You cannot expect everyone to curve people in the same way as you. Just trust that your partner IS doing their best, in their own way, to let people know that they are in a committed relationship, and if they aren’t, then thats a problem.
It’s even harder if you’re dating a fitness coach who gets progress pictures daily of half naked people. I think if I wasn’t a coach myself, it would be very difficult for me to be dating someone who is. We athletes get judged mainly by our appearance. Mainly. But on the whole, it’s got all kinds of people in it. It is very hard to understand but I think that’s because there is such a diverse amount of TYPES of people in it. For example there ARE girls who are in the industry just for attention and praise, and there ARE guys in the industry who do this just so they can look good and sleep around with a bunch of girls, of course there are, but there are also people in the industry who are completely misunderstood because they are nice people. They are deep individuals who are incredibly intelligent, and there are people who work very hard and who care about the well-being of others, and people who are in the industry just to help other people get into fitness, and lead healthier lives. So it really depends on who you’re dating and the kind of person YOU are. But it really does take a special kind of person to be with someone in this industry, and if you are not in the industry and you are dating someone who is a model or in otherwise then I take my hat off to you because I can understand how difficult it is.
So you’re not dating yet, but you want to be;
A good place to start is to get to know the person. Get to really know who they are and what their values are. Get to understand how they work, their reasons for doing things, why they do what they do when they do, then make a decision from there. If you already know that you’re the type of person who needs attention, 1) why? Figure that out first. 2) decide to change OR decide to just focus on yourself while letting your partner work on him or herself, and just take things extremely show until there’s more time to work on things. 3) Decide to wait for someone that fits your needs, and your requirements.
So, what about the athlete? How does the athlete contribute to the relationship? Of course I am not just saying that the partner must understand the athlete and dote on them, no.
As the athlete, YOU should understand that you need to go out of your way to make your partner feel loved and special and important. Little things matter. It’s the little things that matter ALWAYS. Like a quick voice note or text message in the morning saying that you’re thinking about them. THIS is just as important as UNDERSTANDING the athlete, THE ATHLETE needs to go out of their way and work just as hard. It’s not 50/50 in relationships, its 100/100. BOTH of you need to be working hard, and equally as hard. Try to understand that your partner is already sacrificing a lot. They maybe help you make your meals, leave you along when you need to be left alone, they understand that you need to be on social media all the time, they understand that you need to gym every day instead of going to a movie or dinner. Try to put yourself in their shoes sometimes. Show them how much you appreciate their understanding. Be thankful when they do things for you. Do the little things that make them happy, even if it means skipping your cheat meal and moving it to the date that is your anniversary, do that. Do little things for them! Be interested in their lives also. Set reminders on your phone to remember little things, like their family members birthdays, send flowers or something every so often, do something. Because even though you’re busy, THEY need to feel special. You need to remember that THEY are used to coming second or third or 15th to chicken breasts, so a small reminder that you appreciate them will go a long long LONG way.You kind of need to reassure each other ahead of time before things start becoming a problem. So for example, Daniel and I we show each other progress pics from clients all the time. And I observed how he looked at these progress pictures and it was always from the coaches point of view. I think I speak for all PROFESSIONAL online coaches when I say that None of us look at bodies in a sexual way anymore at all. I could literally be looking at the hottest man on earth and immediately I would be looking at his body and just thinking of all the improvements he could make. I would immediately think ‘oh he’s an ectomorph, cool’ or I would be thinking ‘weird he leans/limps to the left so maybe he hurt himself or he has a weak point’ or ‘he must have an injury’ etc etc. Same with women, and I think most professional male coaches could (and probably do) receive thong or even half naked selfie’s from their clients but if you’re not in the industry you are still sensitive to nudity and things like that. Nudity doesn’t phase us. I really wish more people understood that boobs and abs and bums… all of it. Nudity really doesn’t phase some of us in this industry anymore, so there’s nothing to worry about in that department. Dan could literally receive and has received half naked photos from clients/ friends of ours being like ‘help how do I lose 5 pounds or my stomach’ and we sit there and go ‘cmmmmmmm,…… well maybe she should think about adding in some cardio or cutting down on the dairy, and no more tequila on weekends’. And then that’s it. End of discussion. No fight, no comments, because this is something we established from day one that this is going to happen in our relationship. So, its a no-fight zone.
You DONT have to pick between a career and your partner. You DONT have to sacrifice success for a family. You DONT. But you do need to UNDERSTAND the relationship you’re getting into, and you need to look at it from both angles always. Put yourself in their shoes, and ask them to put themselves in yours sometimes. Some months you will have to put somethings on hold, sometimes your partner will need to put things on hold, but it can work, and it has to be a two way street. It’s going to be HARD. For both of you. Really, it is.
Daniel and I made so many sacrifices for each other to the point that I don’t think a lot of our family members or some friends even LIKE the sacrifices we had to make, but we did it for each other and I would never ever take back the sacrifices that I made and the things that I put on hold to make my relationship work. But could I maybe be in a different place in the industry or even in my life? Probably. But I made that judgement call, and I have no regrets.
Relationships are hard and I am by no means a relationship expert. All I know for certain is that I am in one and we are happy 95.3% of the time. I know that I am a fitness model and an online coach and so is my fiancé, and I know how hard we have to work at making everything work. It was so incredibly hard.
But I can tell you, it was worth it.