With summer already here, now is the time to get fit, look tight in a bikini and strut your stuff.
While there are many fitness swimsuit and bikini competitions that happen during the summer, one of the fastest-growing and most popular ones today is the IFBB.
IFBB or the International Federation of Bodybuilding & Fitness, is an international professional sports governing body for bodybuilding and fitness. Founded by brothers Ben and Joe Weider in Montreal in 1946, the IFBB has seen its popularity grow globally to the point of holding more than 2,500 competitions such as the Mens World Bodybuilding and World Classic Bodybuilding Championships, the IFBB World Fitness Championships.
Due to the rise of international fitness bikini contests, the IFBB has seemingly cornered the market in marketing bodybuilding divisions such as bikini and figure back in 1992, and has ever since seen it grow into a steady global phenomenon, with one of the most popular being the bikini division. According to the JMS Reports’ article, “The rise of bikini competitors: Female bodybuilders in San Diego are breaking the ‘meathead’ stereotypes” by Megan Looney, the bikini division will only continue to rise in popularity.
“The bikini division has received positive and negative reactions from fitness industry professionals since it was added in 2010. San Diego Certified Personal Trainer Spencer Aiken says the bikini division has exploded in popularity over the past few years because the industry carefully chose specific words to target the female demographic.
The average cost breakdown for a NPC bikini or figure competition.
“The bikini division has taken off because of marketing and the use of the term ‘bikini’,” Aiken said. “[The IFBB] is playing on the psyche of females to achieve a skinny body instead of promoting fitness.”
The bikini division has been a major draw for both aspiring athletes and spectators, accounting for roughly 50 percent of the total competitors at recent San Diego contests. For the competitors, the price of an award-winning body is high. Personal trainers, nutritionists and accessories can run close to $3,000.
However, female competitors say they spend the time and money because they feel empowered, strong and sexy after training for a competition.”
Due to this, the world of bikini modeling has seen the rise of the likes of Jelena Abbou, Mindi Smith, Natalia Muntean, Jamie Eason and Alicia Marie, has helped inspire and empower women all around the world to pump some iron and be proud of who they are.
Another high-profile IFBB bikini model that many already know—and need to need to more about—is the smoking-hot Gigi Amurao.
Amurao, a New York City-area native is an accomplished bikini competitor, certified personal trainer, online fitness coach, NPC Judge who is a Team ALLMAX athlete and Buff Bikini endorser, has strutted her stuff in some of the biggest and best IFBB competitions to date, and thanks to her stunning physique and exotic looks, is a champion on and off the catwalk.
Below are a series of questions in which we discuss the hottest fitness and diet trends, staying motivated and what it takes to get in shape this season.
Name: Gigi Amurao
Age: u know never to ask a woman her age 🙂 lol
Height: short 5’3″
Birthplace: New York
R.C. What brands have you modeled for? Which one do you enjoy modeling for the most?
G.A. “AllMax, Dick’s sporting good, Verizon, I’ve done so many big and small.”
R.C. Where has been the best and your favorite place to shoot?
G.A. “Hmm, anywhere that’s away from home is good. But I really loved shooting in Cali up in the Hollywood Hills.”
R.C. What is the most exciting aspect of IFBB fitness modeling?
G.A. “Everything is exciting you meet new people, you get to compete and visit all these different states or countries and the best part is if fitness is what you love then you get to do all that and enjoy it too”
R.C. With summer coming up soon, what are some of the fitness and workout trends that you have noticed?
G.A. “I hate following trends, they never work…. Nothing beats traditional diet and exercise. But lately I see juice cleanses as something everyone is trying it’s big here in NY where I live along with Soulcycle.”
R.C. Describe your workout regimen?
G.A. “Well for the most part I always do my training session then followed by a session of cardio. I strength train 5 days a week and some form of cardiovascular exercise 6 days a week.
I’m always staying active:)”
R.C. What can men and women do to get in better shape for the summer?
G.A. “Well for starters they can start with their diet. If you can’t get that under control then no matter how much you workout or do cardio you won’t see the results that you’re looking for. Diet is key!”
R.C. Within the industry, who is your inspiration?
G.A. “To be honest, I find inspiration in every one I meet. Each person has a story that fuels my motivation and inspires me. So I don’t have a specific person that inspires me but I love being able to gain knowledge from so many smart, and passionate people”
R.C. What first inspired you to go into fitness bikini modeling?
G.A. “I’ve always been that little girl that loves to entertain. From a young age, I was always smiling for a camera. Growing up, I never said that I wanted to be a fitness model it was just something that came across my way so I went with it.”
R.C. What are your future goals and dreams?
G.A. “Well, I do know that I will be in the fitness industry. I would love to open my own training studio coaching and training others and helping them reach their fitness goals. Besides career goals I definitely look to one day have a family, 2 dogs and a white Pickett fence and the whole nine yards haha :)”
R.C. Outside of modeling, what are your hobbies?
G.A. “I love to travel. I have been to over 30 cities around the world. My goal is to hit 60 cities by the time I’m 40 and I know I’ll get that done. Besides that, I do enjoy relaxing with friends, catching a movie or dinner. As long as I’m in good company I’ll do anything!”
G.A. “I’m a New Yorker…NY GIANTS of course! I follow football more than any other sport :)”
R.C. What are your favorite cities to travel to?
G.A. “Well, I try not to travel to any city more than 2x ….I always want to experience something new but I love Athens and Prague it’s so beautiful “
R.C. What advice would you give to women aspiring to get into the fitness bikini body building business?
G.A. “I absolutely 100% believe that with hard work and dedication you can do anything as long as you put your mind to it. With the right guidance your possibilities are endless, so if competing is your passion or a goal of yours go do it!!
But realize that this sport is not for everyone and it takes a strong mental person to handle the ups and downs of the journey, so if you’re ready pursue it with all that you have but remember you do this for you and only you.”
Editor’s Note: Special thanks to Ms. Gigi Amurao during the interview.