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 Post subject: Female bodybuilding questions I need answers to!
PostPosted: Tue Sep 20, 2011 12:58 am 
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Some random bodybuilding questions...if anyone can answer any of them please respond... I haven't found answers to these in any of the research I've done.

1. What percentage body fat should a female aim for if she is to compete in Figure competition? What percentage for Bodybuilding competition?

2. How does a girl choose what category to compete in? I have no dance/gymnastic flexibilty so fitness is out...bikini doesn't suit my personality....I might be ok in Figure but I have no breasts and possibly too much muscle definition in areas (do they mark down for small breast size? It seems implants are the norm) My personality and work ethic leans toward bodybuilding but once cut I'd probably be 110lbs 5 ft 7 which I think is too thin...or is it?

3. How long can a person stay optimally cut for? Is it detrimental to stay in peak condition for too long before going back to a bulking phase?

4. Does anyone know at what body fat % a woman loses her period? I would like that very much! Is it safe to stay at that level indefinitely?

5. How long until you know if you've reached your best shape with a current workout routine? Do you stay with it a month and then make changes if not satisfied? 6 weeks? 6 months?

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 Post subject: Re: Female bodybuilding questions I need answers to!
PostPosted: Tue Sep 20, 2011 6:54 am 
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I definitely have the same questions as you...hope you get some answers.

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 Post subject: Re: Female bodybuilding questions I need answers to!
PostPosted: Wed Sep 21, 2011 9:52 pm 
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Me too! :?


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 Post subject: Re: Female bodybuilding questions I need answers to!
PostPosted: Wed Sep 21, 2011 10:15 pm 
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1. What percentage body fat should a female aim for if she is to compete in Figure competition? What percentage for Bodybuilding competition?

For IFBB bikini you'll probably want 10% BF. If you are too shredded you look too muscular. Lots of girls in bikini are pretty strong but they stay around 10% BF and do very well in bikini. For Bodybuilding you obviously drop below that, people do different things during the week before competition to get to a pretty low unnatural %BF. You are looking at like 4-5% BF and only for competition. It is kind of unhealthy.


2. How does a girl choose what category to compete in? I have no dance/gymnastic flexibilty so fitness is out...bikini doesn't suit my personality....I might be ok in Figure but I have no breasts and possibly too much muscle definition in areas (do they mark down for small breast size? It seems implants are the norm) My personality and work ethic leans toward bodybuilding but once cut I'd probably be 110lbs 5 ft 7 which I think is too thin...or is it?

My only advice here is LOOK AT GIRLS. Look at the top 10 for all the categories. You'll know which girls you look like and which ones you could never be let it be height, or boobs, or anything. You know yourself. Pick the one you are gonna kick ass in.


3. How long can a person stay optimally cut for? Is it detrimental to stay in peak condition for too long before going back to a bulking phase?

You need enough fat surrounding your organs or it could be extremely dangerous. Very low %BF should only be obtained for competition day or a specific event. For most girls again 9-10% is going to be your perfect bikini body. Then you will probably want to get down to 5% right before competition. I would try to find some articles geared strictly towards women. There are pros in the men side of things that can get down to 3-4% and its extremely dangerous. I would recommend staying around 9-10% and gaining lean muscle mass.


4. Does anyone know at what body fat % a woman loses her period? I would like that very much! Is it safe to stay at that level indefinitely?

its called amenorrhea. Look it up! There is no magic number... and i guess if you are okay with the side effects, sure? No experience there.


5. How long until you know if you've reached your best shape with a current workout routine? Do you stay with it a month and then make changes if not satisfied? 6 weeks? 6 months?

My honest answer here. There is only contraction of the muscle. How you chose to contract the muscle is entirely up to you, and I can tell you there is NO difference. For people with long arms, Dumbbell Flies normally see very good gains, because it contracts the chest much better. For people with shorter arms, the chest is easy to isolate and Bench and Dumbbell Press work just fine. See what I'm saying? Try everything, where YOU see the gains, thats what you stick too.


Good luck to all of you!


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 Post subject: Re: Female bodybuilding questions I need answers to!
PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2011 6:56 am 
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Wow 4% body fat is extremely intimidating... I never realized that body fat was one of the main differences between BB and figure!

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 Post subject: Re: Female bodybuilding questions I need answers to!
PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2011 12:08 pm 
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xllx, your numbers seem a bit low, but I could be off. Men are usually in the 3-5% range, so I would imagine women would be 6-8%, but I have never checked this.

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 Post subject: Re: Female bodybuilding questions I need answers to!
PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2011 12:40 pm 
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Yeah, I thought they seemed low to me.

A quick search suggests that top female bodybuilders aim for 6-10% fat for competitions, while fitness/figure competitors aim for more like 9-15%. Menstruation stops below around 12%. I don't think it's a wise idea to stay below that level for any significant periods of time as there are health risks to being below essential fat levels.

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 Post subject: Re: Female bodybuilding questions I need answers to!
PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2011 1:06 pm 
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FormicaLinoleum wrote:
Yeah, I thought they seemed low to me.

A quick search suggests that top female bodybuilders aim for 6-10% fat for competitions, while fitness/figure competitors aim for more like 9-15%. Menstruation stops below around 12%. I don't think it's a wise idea to stay below that level for any significant periods of time as there are health risks to being below essential fat levels.



Once again, every woman is different. Here's a perfect example of a raw food athlete - consistently stays at 10% BF and obviously has Menstruation.

http://www.simplyshredded.com/hardbody- ... d-com.html


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 Post subject: Re: Female bodybuilding questions I need answers to!
PostPosted: Fri Sep 23, 2011 11:57 pm 
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wow this is such great information! Thanks!
I currently am about 11% body fat (not putting any effort into that...I'm just naturally thin and I think I could drop to a much lower body fat....once upon a time being anorexic and I still have the ability for sticking to a ridiculous miserable diet and exercising like crazy)
I'm going to watch my first competition next weekend so will definitely look at the women in different categories and pray I don't look like the bikini girls!

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 Post subject: Re: Female bodybuilding questions I need answers to!
PostPosted: Tue Oct 04, 2011 8:42 am 
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xllx wrote:
FormicaLinoleum wrote:
Yeah, I thought they seemed low to me.

A quick search suggests that top female bodybuilders aim for 6-10% fat for competitions, while fitness/figure competitors aim for more like 9-15%. Menstruation stops below around 12%. I don't think it's a wise idea to stay below that level for any significant periods of time as there are health risks to being below essential fat levels.



Once again, every woman is different. Here's a perfect example of a raw food athlete - consistently stays at 10% BF and obviously has Menstruation.

http://www.simplyshredded.com/hardbody- ... d-com.html

Well, of course--every human is slightly different. I clearly didn't mean that every single woman in the world would stop menstruating as soon as they are 11.999% body fat. Numbers like these are averages. Though I'm not sure why it's obvious she menstruates--did she say somewhere she does?

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 Post subject: Re: Female bodybuilding questions I need answers to!
PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2011 1:17 am 
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ok well I watched the competition....sadly I'm a bikini girl - but they were incredibly ditzy blonde bimbo's and I would NEVER be caught spreading my legs for the judges...so with some fine tuning figure would be easy for me...almost not enough challenge though...and the poses are too easy.

I think the lower body fat numbers are probably correct.... I'm already 11% and look bikini - and I have some fat on my butt still, I can see that a pro female would drop to 4 or 5% but that it wouldn't be sustainable to stay that low.

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 Post subject: Re: Female bodybuilding questions I need answers to!
PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 5:47 am 
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I was just reading an article today about Raechelle Chase, which is an IFBB Figure Pro (but she isn't vegan. She just competed in the Olympia and was the first female figure competitor from NZ to gain entry to it). She said her bodyfat is 8% on competition day, and stays between 10 to 12% in the off season. Obviously, figure girls are more shredded and have a bit more muscle than women competing in the bikini division.

For physique, a couple of former pros in NZ were about 3 to 4% on competition day, but like Raechelle, about 10% in the off season. As for menstruation, a former world champion (from NZ again!) has said she still menstruated when her body fat was at competition level (3 to 4%). So obviously the amount of lean mass also plays a part. Plus most bodybuilders consume fat in their diets, so the body at least has something to make the appropriate hormones from.


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 Post subject: Re: Female bodybuilding questions I need answers to!
PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 9:17 am 
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Most of the questions you posed will have to be answered by you. Trial and tribulation will give you your answers.

Do what works for your body type and lifestyle.

Shoot for what you would like to do in competition, and when it is 2 weeks before, then decide (crossing over it is called, and you might have to pay a little more $ to crossover from one category to another, but it is worth it). Of course practice all the poses for each category so you are prepared - just in case.

Do not worry about menses. If you happen to miss one period due to a comp, you will not harm yourself (the body is made to protect itself that way). I have stayed comp ready for a whole summer, and had only missed one period. It was a challenge to stay comp ready for 3 whole months, but it was my 3rd year doing it and I was peaking my best that summer. I would increase the calories for a week or so after a comp, but then back onto my maintenance diet, and then 2 weeks before the comp it was comp prep diet again.

I will say, that when you are comp ready, that is the time to really figure out what works for your body, and what doesn't. Make mental notes of how your body reacts to everyday foods. If you will be doing comps for a couple of years, it is fun to experiment and find out what does and doesn't work for you. I remember eating something the day before the comp, and waking up flat. I was disappointed in myself at prejudging, but afterwards I experimented with drinking a gallon and more of water to see if I could flush out whatever was holding onto the water in my body. Sure enough, by the night time show, I was ripped again (won my division, but it was too late for overall!). I also found that after prejudging one time, I ate a whole quart of strawberries (fruit is not allowed during pre-comp diet) and my veins popped out all over! lasted for about 2 hours.....so an hour before the night time show I downed another pint of strawberries and this time vascularity was mine. Also intense heat can make me vascular while I am that hot (layed out in the sun tanning myself, but it was like 90 something. all the veins on my abs popped out. gross for the beach, but it would've been cool on stage). So fun to play around with the body!


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 Post subject: Re: Female bodybuilding questions I need answers to!
PostPosted: Thu Nov 10, 2011 9:24 pm 
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Hey, I did some research for female bodybuilding because my sister is fat and she has weight of 190 pounds and try to help her so this what I've found . Hope that this work to you because when my sister follow this tips their is a big result for her.

Muscle building tips for women:
1. Push yourself. While you don’t want to workout too much, you want to make sure you cannot do one more repetition in a set because you are too exhausted. You want it to burn (this feeling is lactic acid stimulating muscle growth) and want to make the next set harder to do.
2. With burn comes resistance, and with resistance comes stronger muscles and a more toned look. (more about training at Muscle and Strength)
3. Harness the big tree exercises. The big three exercises when you build muscles include the deadlift, squatting, and the bench press. They should always be included in your workout plan in some fashion as they build condition, strength, and bulkiness.
4. Workout a few times a week. You should workout at a minimum of 3 times a week – that should provide more than enough exercise required by your body to build muscles. If you’re more advanced at lifting weights and have done it for a while, you have the ability to attempt maybe one or two more sessions a week – alternatively, if you’re new, start with 2 a week. If you haven't got a workout, use one of these workouts.
5. Keep it balanced, but limited. You want to focus on both cardiovascular workouts like running and biking while you try to build muscles. However, if you never want to do both extremes at once – for example, training to run a marathon while still lifting 5 times a week. It is great to mix cardio and strength training, but just don’t push each to the max at the same time.
6. Eat well. Not only do this mean eating healthy, but you need to eat to be catered for your muscles to build and not deplete. If you’re cutting calories as part of a weight-loss regime, they will leave your muscle and you’ll be fighting to build them back up. If you are trying to lose weight at the same time as you’re building your muscles and are required to drop the amount of food you eat, make sure at the very least to keep your protein levels the same as before. You can work out how many calories you need on a daily basis by using a BMR calculator.
7. Measure body fat, not weight. If you are apart of a diet and weight loss regime and perform strength training, be sure to measure body fat – not your weight. If you’re actually gaining muscles, you will be gaining weight (pounds on the scale), even if you’re losing calories in other places on your body. Remember, weight does not equal size - it's about how you look in the mirror, not how much you weigh!
8. Carbohydrates are your friend. If you’re exercising and performing cardio and weight strengthening exercises everyday, your levels of glucose are being depleted. If you fail to fuel your body with a sufficient amount of protein, your body will begin to ravage your muscles to extract protein (for carbohydrates). It depends on how much you’re exercising, but you should consume anywhere from 2 to 3.5 grams of carbs for every pound of body weight you have daily.
9. Consume protein before and after workouts. Consume about 10 to 20 grams of protein less than an hour before training to help increase the muscle-building effect of training. This equals to about the same size as 1 or 2 glasses of milk. After your workout, have a whey protein shake. (facts about whey protein)
10. Try supplements. While the results vary for all individuals and should be taken only under the advice of a medical professional, creatine supplements may have the ability to enhance your training – making you workout harder and for longer period of times. This could lean to increased muscle growth. Additionally, recent research performed has demonstrated that a creatine supplement combined with proteins and carbohydrates may encourage muscle building.
11. Shoot for the stars, but it might take a while. It takes a long time to send a rocket shuttle into space and to complete a mission at NASA -- this analogy applies to your weight building efforts. You need to make sure to set systematic, reasonable goals for your muscle building program that you can track, progress, and meet overtime. It also needs to be said that genetic plays a role in building muscles – if your body wasn’t designed for a large frame, it’ll be harder to achieve.


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