Fitness & Equipment Guides > What Does it Take to Look like Fitness Cover Models?

What Does it Take to Look like Fitness Cover Models?

18th Oct 19

Time, Money, and Photoshop. Usually.

Fitness cover models are everywhere in everyday life. Whether you see them on magazines, Tv adverts, websites or social media, they are literally everywhere. That’s not too big a problem most of the time. People aspire to be fitter or have a better physique, and these people have obviously done that successfully. Good for them. The problem? How they got there, and the unrealistic expectations that they set for you, especially trying to become one.

We’d love to say that these people are all full time working, family orientated people that find a few spare hours in their week to go to the gym or workout from home, and that these are the results that will get you, but sadly, that’s not the case.

In reality, these people almost always have a few things that 99% of us just don’t have, and chances are, we won’t get them, either. In this article, we’re looking at what those things are, how they’re used, and why they make things almost impossible for you to recreate for yourself.

Let’s take a look:

Want to move fast? Jump to the right section below.


man lifting dumbbells

First up on the list here is time. It’s always vital to find time to exercise in your busy life, no matter who you are. That’s something we will absolutely always argue. Fitness is vital to your health, and we recommend it as much as possible. We’re just putting that out there.

The issue with fitness cover models, however, is how much of it they have and can dedicate to their fitness. When you become a fitness cover model, you’re paid for doing it. That means it’s your job. You are literally being paid to keep in that shape. There’re rarely other work commitments, and there’s almost always time to make sure you’re spending hours and hours on your physique. It makes sense.

Whether they’re social media influencers getting paid for sponsorships and product review, or they’re real-life PT’s or fitness cover models, they can dedicate huge portions of their day to getting the best workout possible. If you have a 9-5 desk job, for example, that’s probably just not something you can do in a way that’s healthy and sustainable.

Always keep that in mind. You’re only human, and there’s more to life than tirelessly working out to look like a cover star.


woman lifting barbell and weights

Next up on the list is effort. Workouts take up a lot of it, as well as your time. Even if you do manage to find a spare 30 minutes in your daily life, that doesn’t mean you’re always dying to put that into the gym. These people are able to do that, though.

Fitness cover models are doing this as their job, full time. That means they don’t always have to make ends meet in other ways or sacrifice their free time to make sure that they’re getting in some good exercise for the sake of their health. Good for them for being in that position, it’s awesome, but that doesn’t mean the same applies to you.

On top of that, they’re able to do work outside of their workouts too. There’s new information out there every single day and keeping on top of it as well as looking after mental health, other commitments and making sure that enjoying life is a priority isn’t an easy thing to do. These people have the time to make sure they’re on the ball 24/7 and can plan their life around their workouts with all of the time that can be made available. We’re not saying it’s easy for them either, but it’s doable.

This is their life and their work. You need to remember that before you aspire to look like them.


man training with a personal trainer

Another significant aspect that needs to be stated here when we’re talking about people on the cover of magazines is how they are able to look that good. Of course, they put in the hours and found the time in their lives to get in that shape, and that really truly is admirable. It’s incredibly difficult to keep up that motivation even when you do have the time, and it’s incredible.

One thing that a lot of people, especially actors and Hollywood stars, being in awesome shape have in common is that they have money. They can afford the best PT’s in the world, the best diet plans in the world, and the best facilities or equipment as well.

That isn’t the reason they look in as great shape as they often do, but it certainly gives them a huge advantage that we often don’t have.

A Photographer + Photoshop

woman being  photographed on the beach

The last thing we’ll look at in the cocktail that makes a fitness cover model and why it’s so unrealistic to achieve is how they are shown to you. We don’t mean that it’s a picture and they look different in real life, but a lot of time went into that particular shot.

Fitness magazines and advertisements have professionals on hand to make sure that things look as incredible as possible so that you can see how successful they’ve been in their fitness. On top of that, a lot of work goes on behind the scenes too. One of the biggest ways that this happens is through photoshop. These people can be airbrushed, sharpened, and more defined than they ever could be before.

Even on top of that, a lot of the time, these people do drastic things to their body like dehydrating and starving themselves to ensure they look as vascular or toned as physically possible. Not only is that incredibly bad for your health, but it’s also short term too. Don’t believe everything you see (even though they’re still usually ripped, and again, good for them for achieving it!).

The Takeaway

It might feel a little like we’re against fitness cover models in this article, but we have to say, we’re not. For the people who are making fitness into their livelihood, good for them. They made their passion and their fitness their life. That’s an awesome thing to be able to do if that’s what you want.

All we are saying don’t aspire to look as good as they might, because it’s often for all the wrong reasons. It’s just not possible to have the resources that they do. That includes everything from the time and effort through to the money and photoshoots. It’s not always real, and what is real is just not attainable for most people.

Your fitness is yours, and it needs to be healthy, sustainable, and more than anything, long term. Fad diets and new fitness plans come and go, but actually being healthy is much, much more than that. Make sure that you don’t forget it.

For a range of ways to be fitter, healthier and do it more safely, check out some of the other resources at

man doing lunges

Before beginning any exercise or nutrition program, consult your physician, doctor or other professional. This is especially important for individuals over the age of 35 or persons with pre-existing health problems. assumes no responsibility for personal injury or property damage sustained using our advice.

If you experience dizziness, nausea, chest pain, or any other abnormal symptoms, stop the workout at once and consult a physician or doctor immediately.