2016 Arnold Classic Results – Kai Greene wins

Kai Greene was losing going into the evening round and Cedric McMillan was in the lead. The two flip-flopped in the evening round and it was Kai that came out on top.

2016 Arnold Classic Results
1. Kai Greene
2. Cedric McMillan
3. Josh Lenartowicz
4. Justin Compton
5. Branch Warren
6. Juan Morel
7. Maxx Charles
8. Evan Centopani
9. Lukas Wyler
10. Cody Montgomery
11. Johnnie Jackson
12. Toney Freeman

Jessica Mone’s Road to The Arnold… Live in the Moment

We are days away from the Arnold Classic and that has had me reflecting quite a bit on my competitive career. My 31st bday is creeping up on me (March 7th!… I will, however, accept early birthday presents at the Arnold 😉 ha!

jessica mone blog

I realized that in May it will be the 10 year anniversary of when I first stepped on stage! I’ve included pics from that first show below.

My first show was the prestigious Pittsburgh Pro/Am. Yes, that would be Mr. Jim Manion’s show! Talk about pressure! Lol. As you can see I was too busy freaking out being star struck taking pics backstage! There I am with my awesome trainer Mike Davies, my good friend Misty who I credit for getting me into competing, Michelle Adams (who I met attending my very first MD bootcamp weekend), THEE Dexter Jackson, Kelly Ryan and the absolutely gorgeous inside and out Elaine Goodlad! Elaine has become a friend and has done my makeup for shows and shoots over the years.

I ended up placing 10th at my first show, but I didn’t care… I was hooked!

I went on to win the overall at the next two shows, turned pro and made my pro debut at the Pittsburgh Pro placing 3rd in Figure! Talk about coming full circle!

I feel so incredibly blessed to have been a part of this industry for 10 years! I wouldn’t change a thing about my career in this industry. The good, the bad and the downright ugly. I claim it all!

If we don’t get so caught up in the wins and losses I’m sure each and every one of us can tell stories about how we have grown and learned throughout the competitive process.

Make sure you live in the moment, enjoy yourself and let it all soak in… Because in the blink of an eye 10 years will pass and it won’t matter which show you won or lost. It will be the memories and milestones that truly stick with you! I promise.

So as I step on the Bikini International stage I will have a huge smile on my face… Remembering that timid 21 year old girl first discovering one of her passions in life… And I will be thankful for the lessons and blessings I have received throughout my career.

God bless and thank y’all for following my “Road To The Arnold”!

@jessfit on Twitter.

jessica mone competing

Bethany Cisternino’s Road to The Fitness International

Bethany Cisternino is one of the top Fitness pros in the IFBB Pro League. She’s a threat for the top spots in every competition she enters and the 2014 Fitness International is no different. She was third at the 2013 event and has her sights set on the top spot. She’s been faced with the challenges that Mother Nature has brought to the East Coast with the ridiculous amounts of snow. Bethany hasn’t let that get in her way staying the course and coming in on top of her game.

Bethany Cisternino

She’s not only prepping for the show but also a teacher and coaches indoor track and gymnastics. The Bridgewater bad ass checks in with an update with just days to go until the big dance in Columbus.

Hey there hardbody peeps! We are a few short days away from the 2014 Ms. Fitness International and I am ready to rock! I’d like to share a few things I’ve found very important and critical to my prep this year (other than training).

I am at the Acura dealership because I hit a monster pot-hole and blew out my right front tire. AWESOME. No, not awesome. The snow and ice has been relentless this winter. I don’t think I have had a full week of school since before Christmas! One benefit from the cold weather and canceled classes… more sleep. I’ve had a chance to catch up on a lot of sleep and has allowed my body more time to recover.

Sleep is key. It is the time when your mind and muscles finally rest, recover, and grow. It can also be a huge factor in weight loss. I typically average 5 hours of sleep during the week. However, this prep I have made an effort to get at least 6 1/2 or 7 during the week. The weekends I never set an alarm. I listen to my body and let it get up when it wants to. If you are interested in benefits of sleep check out sleepfoundation.org for more information.

Every prep I learn something new about myself. This prep, I have learned to look at my training, dieting, and hard work as a celebration. I’ve tried not to complain about cardio or dieting. My leg is not being amputated and pizza will be still be served after March 1st. Everybody trains hard. Everybody has obstacles and challenges. Nothing about being an IFBB competitor is easy. Stop complaining and celebrate it.

“Yup. That’s right. That’s me. Check me out. Look what I can do.”

I’ve learned it’s ok to be proud. This does not mean post everything on Instagram. I don’t need you to “like” my picture for satisfaction or justification. Yes, we all tend to post pictures for fans and followers, but I have made an effort to internalize my efforts.

I’m talking about self-worth and self-pride.

In less than a week that’s exactly what I’m going to do. Win or lose (hopefully win) I look forward to celebrating with my friends, fans, and fitness sisters.

I may even do a dance!

When asked what kind of dance Bethany will do she said, “My dance will definitely include some form of fist pump — I’m from NJ.” But of course. LOL!

2014 Bikini International Preview, Poll and Predictions

The 2014 Bikini International showcases a competitive field and you’d have better luck picking the lotto numbers than correctly predicting the top ten in exact order. The line-up has defending champion India Paulino in it along with Bikini Olympians Nathalia Melo and Ashley Kaltwasser. Rookie Janet Layug has caught the attention of fans online and hopes to do the same with the judges in her pro debut. Seasoned vets like Amanda Latona, Yeshaira Robles and Justine Munro will be looking to get into the top spots as well. Don’t count out third place at the Olympia, Stacey Alexander who came on strong at the end of 2013.

2014 bikini international

If history repeats itself, we’ll see a new Bikini International champion. Nicole Nagrani won the inaugural event and Sonia Gonzales took top honors the second time around. India Paulino edged out Nathalia Melo for the win last year. Read the skinny on all the competitors at Bodybuilding.com. The preview breaks down each competitor and what we might expect from the women next week in Ohio. One woman to watch who isn’t getting any attention but should is Margret Gnarr. She is Iceland’s only IFBB Pro and not only that but she’s a blackbelt in Taekwondo. Keep your eye on her, she’s good.

Cast your vote for who you think will win the 2014 Bikini International. The event takes place in Columbus, Ohio with the prejudging on Saturday, March 1, 2014 at 2pm and the finals to follow later that night. For tickets visit arnoldsportsfestival.com.


2014 Arnold Competitors Lists & Early Show Preview

One of the few IFBB events that are by invite only has become one of the most prestigious events of the year. The 26th Annual Arnold Classic will be held Feb. 28 – March 1, 2014. New this year will be the Arnold Classic 212 division. Absent from the line-up will be the Ms. International. The fields in the Fitness, Figure and Bikini International contests are some of the strongest you’ll see all year.

arnold competitors
Leading the way in Fitness is defending champion, Tanji Johnson. She’ll look to fend off top contenders like Oksana Grishina and Bethany Cisternino. One of Canada’s brightest Fitness Stars, Myriam Capes will also be back looking to take top honors. The all-time winningest fitness pro, Adela Garcia will not be in the line-up for the second year in a row.

Nicole Wilkins is back after sitting out the Figure International. She’ll look to reclaim the title currently held by Candice Keene. Look for Keene and Wilkins to be your front-runners in the event. Heather Dees, Camala Rodriquez and Ann Titone will also be strong contenders for the top five. Keep an eye on newcomers Alicia Coates who won her first two pro shows and the NPC National Figure Champ, Elissa Martis. Fan favorites, Larissa Reis and Ava Cowan will look to get back into the top spots. Mallory Haldeman and Erin Stern both finished in the top six last year however opted out of the show this year.

The leading ladies from the Bikini Olympia will be on stage in Columbus and good luck trying to predict who will win this one. Ashley Kaltwasser was tenth at this show last year but finished the year the new Olympia champion. Yeshaira Robles and Stacey Alexander had their best finishes in Vegas by going second and third and will look to be in the mix again at this event. Juliana Daniell has one the the most athletic physiques and returns to the stage after sitting out last year. Look for her to mix things up in the top spots. Courtney King will make a run at the top five in her Arnold debut. The champ, India Paulino is back to defend her title but as you can see will have her work cut out for her to hold onto the crown. Nathalia Melo is on the path to redemption after finishing second here last year and going the year without a win. Look for her to be at her all-time best. Amanda Latona will try to shake things up in the top spots along with seasoned vet Jessica Mone (formerly Paxson). Janet Layug will be making her pro debut and talk about jumping into the deep end of the pro pool. Will see if she sinks or swims with this line-up. Of course you can’t count out Canada’s Justine Munro who has come into her own the last year and a half.

If you’re a gambler, don’t bet on Bikini. The only sure thing is that you’ll lose trying to predict the top spots in order on that one.

The Men’s line up is stacked this year with Shawn “Flexatron” Rhoden, Victor Martinez, Brandon Curry, Roelly Winklaar, Dennis Wolf and others. The 212 Arnold Classic will likely end up being a duel between Olympia champ Flex Lewis and runner-up David Henry. Jose Raymond will look to get back into the top spots after finishing the season on a low note.

Congratulations to all who were selected and best of luck in your prep. It’s never easy dieting through the holidays and in the winter months but the sacrifice will be worth it if you’re the one shaking Arnold’s hand after a victory.

Fitness International (15)
Michelle Blank
Myriam Capes
Bethany Cisternino
Regiane DaSilva
Allison Ethier
Ryall Graber
Oksana Grishina
Amanda Hatfield
Tanji Johnson
Whitney Jones
Babette Mulford
Danielle Ruban
Kizzy Vaines
Trish Warren
Melinda Szabo

Figure International (17)
Kati Alander
Dana Ambrose
Alicia Coates
Ava Cowan
Heather Dees
Amanda Doherty
Allison Frahn
Candice Keene
Candice Lewis
Elissa Martis
Larissa Reis
Camala Rodriguez-McClure
Giadi Simari
Gennifer Strobo
Ann Titone
Natalie Waples
Nicole Wilkins

Bikini International (16)
Noy Alexander
Stacey Alexander
Jennifer Andrews
Juliana Daniell
Margret Gnarr
Ashley Kaltwasser
Courtney King
Amanda Latona
Janet Layug
Nathalia Melo
Jessica Mone
Justine Munro
India Paulino
Yeshaira Robles
Anna Starodubtseva
Anna Virmajoki

Arnold Classic (13)
Evan Centopani
Brandon Curry
Toney Freeman
Cedric MacMillan
Victor Martinez
Edward Nunn
Ben Pakulski
Shawn Rhoden
Fred Smalls
Branch Warren
Roelly Winklaar
Dennis Wolf
Hidetada Yamagish

Arnold Classic 212 (10)
Aaron Clark
Charles Dixon
David Henry
Richard “Tricky” Jackson
James “Flex” Lewis
Stan McQuay
Jose Raymond
Marco Rivera
Angel Rangel Vargas
Quincy Winklaar

The events will take place at Veteran Memorial and the Greater Columbus Convention Center in Columbus, Ohio. Visit www.ticketmaster.com/arnold or 800-745-3000 for ticket information.VIP Ticket Packages and individual event tickets are available. Daily EXPO tickets are available for $10 in advance (plus service charge) or $15 at the door of all Arnold Sports Festival venues. Children 10 and under free.

Follow us on twitter with current updates and when mentioning the 2014 Arnold use the hashtag #asf2014. Check out @arnoldsports on twitter as well.

2013 Fitness International Preview

For the past three years, Adela Garcia has been in the winner’s circle at the Fitness International but won’t be back to defend her title. Last year’s runner-up, Camala Rodriquez, has made the switch to Figure, and top-contender Myriam Capes was forced to withdraw due to injury. You remove those top finishers and you’re looking at a huge opportunity for others to make a name for themselves.

Oksana has momentum on her side coming off her best season ever in 2012. Bethany Wagner has the physique to win and with an ever improving routine has the chance to take the top spot. Add in the return of Trish Warren and veteran Tanji Johsnon along with the other women and we’ve got a showdown.

Read the preview of all the Fitness International competitors on Bodybuilding.com.


2013 Figure International Preview

Nicole Wilkins has won Figure International for the last three years. Now that she’s out of the competition, the stage is set for a new queen of fitness. Who will it be? Three-time Figure International Champion Nicole Wilkins has decided to sit out this year’s competition at the Arnold Classic. That means the door is open for one of the 18 competitors lined up to take her place. The obvious favorite, at least on paper, is Erin Stern; but Candice Keene is nipping at her heels. There’s also a crew of newcomers determined to make their presence known.

Read the breakdown of the Figure International on Bodybuilding.com. Cast your vote for you who would like to see win the 2013 Figure International.

For more information on the Arnold Sports Festival visit www.arnoldsportsfestival.com and use #ASF2013 in all your coverage on twitter.

Candice Keene’s Pre-show Practices

Leading contender for the Figure International crown, Candice Keene shares some of her tips to stay sane during contest prep. She shares her current book of choice, iPad app for visualization and more. Read what Candice is doing in the final days before heading to Columbus for the Arnold Sports Festival.


Hey All!

Another week down, another week to go! This point in the “last leg” of prep is very crucial, not only physical but mental as well. As we all know, the closer the show the lower the carbs go… aka brain fog and zombified Lol. Since I have a tendency to forget what I need to do at times, I have been Mind Mapping what I need to get done going into the show. Mind Mapping is awesome! It helps me organize and break down my tasks for school and prep, etc. It is a powerful visual thinking tool to keep the mind organized, free from becoming overwhelmed, and lessen that brain fog!

For those of you iPad owners, there is an app called iThoughts. This also helps with visualizing goals and planning ahead.

Speaking of visualizing, another thing I do before each show is create a vision board. Even though I have the imagery in my head, the actual practice and engagement of taking part in the vision board creation is very powerful. By looking through magazine clipping, quotes etc., your mind is allowed to be “set free” and you become creative with it. The purpose of vision boards or goal writing is to “put it out there.” I believe by putting it out there, it will come back to you.

Another important thing I do before shows is positive self-talk practice imagery, or visualization… Super Important!! So those are a few of my preshow practices I like to do to keep on track and to keep my head right! Remember, the mind is a powerful tool…be sure to use it right and to your advantage!

A week from today I will be in C-Bus!!

Until Next time!! Xo CK

Follow Candice on twitter at @candicekeene, Instagram @candicekeene and like her facebook page. Check out her competition photos on Bodybuilding.com. For more information on the Arnold Sports Festival visit www.arnoldsportsfestival.com and use #ASF2013 in all your tweets.

Lead image courtesy of Candice Keene.

– See more of her Hardbody Road to The Arnold blogs at at: http://www.hardbodynews.com/?s=keene#sthash.kWjvXgKZ.dpuf

Oksana Grishina’s Cooking Obsession

Oksana Grishina stops by one last time before the Fitness International. She’s about 10 days out from the Fitness International in Columbus, Ohio and apparently has food on the brain. Read what Oksana has been cooking up en route to her run at the Fitness crown.


Oksana Grishina – 2013 Fitness International Contender

Hi everyone!

It’s the week before the Arnold! Time is going so fast but, honestly, I can’t wait to get on the Arnold stage! I’ve already started packing my bags, lol. In this prep, I’ve learned a lot. First of all, from my best friend the “food Channel”. HA! I learned how to cook cheesecake, donuts, cakes (all different kinds), tiramisu, ice cream, homemade bread… the list goes on forever, haha. My friends tell me to please stop cooking, it’s too much and sometimes not tasty. Of course, I can’t taste my own cooking, so I can’t tell if it’s any good. I guess they’re trying to be still polite with me.

I love how my body changes with every workout! It’s so great that my body appreciates all of my hard work! I have 4 more performance workouts and it’s important now to be safe. I spend a lot of time to warm up my body well, so I have less risk of injury! Close to the contest I don’t have any day or night time. I eat and workout around the clock, using all 24 hours. I sleep whenever I need to and anywhere I want to, lol.

Again, I want to thank all my fans for their support through this prep! You know how much I appreciate it! See you on the Arnold stage, and also make sure to stop by the SAN booth on Saturday and Sunday. I’ll be there all day long. Don’t forget to bring some tasty food for me, lol.


IFBB Fitness Pro

Follow Oksana on twitter at @OksanaGrishina and like her Facebook page.

For more information on the Arnold Sports Festival visit www.arnoldsportsfestival.com and use #ASF2013 in all your tweets.

Read Oksana’s previous blog entries.

Trish Warren’s Hardbody Mom Workout

Hardbody momma, Trish Warren gives us an update on her busy life en route to her return to the Fitness stage. Trish juggles being a wife, mom and business owner while preparing for one of the biggest competitions of the year. She shares how she includes her adorable daughter into her workouts. Trish shares a few workout photos where baby Faith goes along for the ride and appears to be having a blast.


With less than 2 weeks to show time, I can honestly say that this has been one heck of an amazing journey! I’ve enjoyed every moment of this with my daughter Faith who just turned 1! It’s hard to believe that our normal mornings of watching news and having coffee have turned into watching cartoons and catering to a 1 yr. old!

My comeback will be very memorable to me as I realize that I’ve had to compromise on so many things. For instance I have a hard time just going to the gym to grab a normal workout! Faith gladly makes herself part of my training time! If I want to ensure a successful session, I have to keep Faith entertained and out of the way of the other gym members. This is a typical training day with Faith.

First we start with ball squats, and yes I said ‘WE”. Faith and I will do 50 reps. Next it’s on to single leg lunge with a back kick. I will do 15 a leg. Remember I have to get as creative as I can to keep Faith from being bored with the same movements.

We will then go on to single leg stiff leg deadlifts, I will do 15 a leg really concentrating on perfect form. Faith actually helps me stay balanced during this exercise. From there we will go into 25 a leg side lunges, and finish with 30 body squats going as deep as I can go. I will go through this routine 3-4 times total depending on how well Faith is holding up!

After workout, we both grab a healthy lunch and then it’s on to our hour of cardio. I love to run, and Faith loves being outside, so it’s a match made in heaven! The weather has been beautiful here in Texas which makes for a pleasant afternoon outing! Faith usually gets her 30 minute beauty nap in during our run, so by the time we make it home, she’s all rested and re-energized and I am doing my best to drag myself in and grab a cold piece of chicken before I pass out!

This is the time that Branch gets to keep his princess entertained, so I can tend to our logistics business, it’s pretty funny watching him push her around the house on her Barbie car! Oh yes she has him wrapped around her little finger! This has not been a “normal” contest prep, but it has been good for me! I am stoked about being back and can’t wait to see how the weekend unfolds. Thanks for following my journey and I will see you in Columbus.

Until Next Time,

Love Life and God Bless!
Trish Warren


Check out Trish’s contest photos and competition history. Follow her on twitter @trishwarren and on facebook. For more information on the Arnold Sports Festival visit www.arnoldsportsfestival.com and use #ASF2013 in all your tweets.

Photos courtesy of Trish Warren for HardbodyNews.

Jessica Paxson – Confessions of a Hardbody

Cover model and IFBB Bikini Pro, Jessica Paxson checks in with just over one week to go until the Bikini International takes place in Columbus, Ohio. Jessica says, “I have not been training for the Bikini International.” Find out what she’s talking about in her Hardbody Road to The Arnold blog.
Jessica Paxson – 2013 Bikini International Contender
I think my ‘Road to the Arnold’ blog should be titled, “Confessions of a Hardbody”. That has definitely been my ongoing theme, so I thought I would end my final blog with the biggest confession of all.

Here it goes… for the past few months, I have not been training for the Bikini International. I am sure I have a lot of explaining to do, so I will start typing.

As 2012 came to a close, I decided sit down and write out my 2013 prayers and goals. I really do not like the whole “New Years Resolution” thing. One of my goals was to get in the best shape of my life for the Arnold Classic. As I contemplated my goals a little more,  I began to think about the fact that I would be turning 30 March 7th, a week after the Arnold. So many thoughts and emotions were running through me and I became very convicted. I scratched out “get in the best shape of my life for the Arnold Classic” and wrote “be the healthiest inside and out I have ever been (mentally, physically, emotionally, and spiritually) when I turn 30”.

Of course that still meant I wanted to train the hardest I ever have and step on stage at my best for the Bikini International..but this time, I truly would be doing it for me! My goal was to train for life, not a show. As I am about to compete in my third Arnold classic, I can honestly say, I have never felt better.  I am in the best place I have ever been in my walk with Christ and I am truly filled with joy and purpose like never before, which I know is key to everything else in life falling into place.

I have enjoyed my training, pushing it to levels I never have, my diet was spot on, and I changed things up with an awesome holistic approach that has my body functioning on higher levels and feeling amazing.  I didn’t go through this prep tired and drained. I had energy and a new purpose to help push me. I see so many women that are competing that kill themselves with training, diet, and cardio. Doing so many things that are incredibly harmful to their bodies…and for what?! A few minutes on stage?, a magazine cover?, a trophy?!.

Let me tell you, the stage lights will soon fade, the magazines will pick another cover model, and that trophy that means so much to you will collect dust. You only have one body and once chance to live a healthy life! Take the time to reevaluate your priorities for your training and competing, it is so very worth it!

This time when I step on stage I will truly feel that I have already won. I will walk out on that prestigious stage with my head held high and feeling so thankful and grateful to God for all of my many blessings…and hopefully I will look good doing it ;), ha!.  This experience will make celebrating this milestone birthday with my amazing fiance, family  and friends just a little more sweet :).

Thank you for letting me share my journey to the Arnold with y’all! All the best and God bless!


Follow Jessica on twitter at @JessFit.

For more information on the Arnold Sports Festival visit www.arnoldsportsfestival.com and use #ASF2013 in all your tweets.

2013 Arnold Amateur Competitor Lists

The 2013 Arnold Amateur competitor lists have been posted today and keeping with the continued trend, the bikini and figure division dominate the divisions. The other sad trend is the decrease in fitness numbers. Only 10 women have entered the amateur fitness division. Women’s bodybuilding sits around 20 competitors and the new women’s physique division is just over 30 total entrants. Many of the Bikini divisions have over thirty in each height class.

The Arnold Amateur is open to any Bodybuilding, Fitness or Figure athlete residing in the United States who is registered as a member of the National Physique Committee and has placed in the top five in an NPC National qualifying event; or the top international IFBB amateur competitors who are recommended by their respective national IFBB affiliates. The Master’s division is open to competitors 35 and over. There is no qualification needed for classic bodybuilding, bikini and men and women’s physique.

The 2013 Arnold Amateur NPC/IFBB International Men’s & Women’s Bodybuidling, Fitness, Figure, Figure Masters, Bikini & Men’s & Women’s Physique Championships will be held at Veterans Memorial and the Greater Columbus Convention Center.

Veterans Memorial
300 W. Broad St.
Columbus, OH 43215

Greater Columbus Convention Center
400 N. High St.
Columbus, Ohio 43215

Guests of competitors can purchase a general admission, all-day ticket for $25 in advance at ticketmaster.com/Arnold or at Veterans Memorial on Thursday, February 28, 2013 or Friday, March 1, 2013.


Lightweght (10)
Laura Raquel Saccomani De Bordon (Paraguay)
Veronica Martinez Castillon (Mexico)
Kavva Elena (Greece)
Rosanne Harte (United Kingdom)
Rowena Marcaida (Singapore)
Braka Njegovec (Croatia)
Denise Nuckols (Fayetteville, N.C.)
Nidia Hermosilla Ocampos (Paraguay)
Jessica Pagsisihan (Edmonton, Canada)
Ana Paula da Silva (Brazil)

Heavyweight (8)
Maureen Donlevy Clary (Fort Mill, S.C.)
Shannon Doyle (Killeen, Texas)
Heidi Hegg (Anchorage, Alaska)
Joan Liew (Singapore)
Jill Lundy (Goodyear, Ariz.)
Kashma Siana Maharaj (U.S. Virgin Islands)
Nina Midling (Norway)
Matta Silvia (Italy)


Short Class (18)
Noemia Francisca de Abreu (Brazil)
Nicole Bly (DuBois, Penn.)
Erin Duggan (Avon, Conn.)
Kristina Dybdahi (Denmark)
Maria Vincenza Gioia (San Marino)
Teasha Hardy (Gahanna, Ohio)
Teresa Heron (Canada)
Lori McGraw (Mokena, Ill.)
Tiffany Mosely (Louisville, Ky.)
Isabela Oliveira (Brazil)
Maria Rita Penteado (Glen Head, N.Y.)
Laura Pfeiffer (Columbus, Ohio)
Rita Piko (Clifton, N.Y.)
Lada Plihalova (Czech Republic)
Floor Van Putten (Netherlands)
Evy Anita Rustad (Norway)
Danielle Alves Balbino da Silva (Brazil)
Anne-Marie Swisher (Roanoke, Va.)

Tall Class (12)
Alma Agic (Atlanta, Ga.)
Daniele da Cunha (Brazil)
Karen Dallas (Deerwood. Minn.)
Zsuzsanna Kellner (Hungary)
Maggie Kuhn (Hilliard, Ohio)
Jessica Link (Murfreesboro, Tenn.)
Charlene Maldonado (New Albany, Ohio)
Mande Martinez (Chatsworth, N.J.)
Bianca Antunes Nobrega (Brazil)
Mica Schneider (Westerville, Ohio)
Ida Sefland (Denmark)
Alicia Terrell (Coconut Creek, Fla.)

Class Unknown (2)
Adrey Lopunshanskiy (Azerbaijan)
Elena Shvetsova (Azerbaijan)


Fitness Short Class (7)
Chika Aluka (Round Rock, Texas)
Maria Grant (Edmonton, Canada)
Huang Saijun (Hong Kong)
Kim Scoffins (Canada)
Shannon Siemer (Effingham, Ill.)
Melinda Szabo (Hungary)
Toni Wheeler (Morehead, Ky.)

Fitness Tall Class (3)
Marta Aguiar (Uruguay)
LeNora Angles (Gahanna, Ohio)
Alevtyna Titarenko (Ukraine)


Figure A Class (8)
Christina Clausen (Lemont, Ill.)
April Dumouchel (Canada)
Katrina Kocielska (Canada)
Samantha Maycock (Dallas, Georgia)
Jill Pirchesky (Greensboro, N.C.)
Dawn Reichley (Dayton, Ohio)
Chie Terui (Homewood, Ill.)

Figure B Class (20)
Damariz Salazar Absalon (Mexico)
Stacey Adams (Wyomissing, Penn.)
Michelle Bailey (Trinidad & Tobago)
Heather Cobb (Grand Rapids, Mich.)
Michelle Davis (Ostrander, Ohio)
Gook Elina (Russia)
Trisha Fleischer (Scottsdale, Ariz.)
Danita Fry (Bahamas)
Viviana Evangelista Gimenez Guanes (Paraguay)
Alyssa Hawkins (Fayetteville, N.C.)
Nora Raquel Martinez Jara (Paraguay)
Simei Pimentel de Jesus (Brazil)
Evangelina Figueroa Loreto (Mexico)
Silvia Pavliskova (Slovakia)
Brittany Ramsey (Bolingbrook, Ill.)
Viviana Smerilli (Coral Springs, Fla.)
Mariane Tomita (Deerfield Beach, Fla.)
Tiffany Vann (Chicago, Ill.)
Bajana Vasiljevic (Serbia)
Sandra Tacza Zapata (Peru)

Figure C Class (24)
Simone Bonus (Canada)
Hyla Conrad (Corydon, Ind.)
Audreana Cornelissen (Wilmington, N.C.)
Cristina Menini (Italy)
Cristina Romano (Italy)
Angela Derzapf (Germany)
Etzel del Carmen Delgado Fernandez (Panama)
Mishanoe Frans (Curacao)
Zory Garasimcuk (Salem, Oregon)
Sara Heimisdottir (Iceland)
Eleni Kritikopoulou (Greece)
Autumn Massey (Morehead City, N.C.)
Alicia McDowell (Evansville, Ind.)
Bruna Miyagui (Brazil)
Filatova Olga (Russia)
Rachel Omolewu (Atlanta, Ga.)
Sharissa Perez (New Orleans, La.)
Emmanuela Pinus (Canada)
Asher Prior (Australia)
Radojkovic Snezana (Serbia)
Anna Szcotka (Poland)
Christina Watson (Xenia, Ohio)
Nikolayeva Yarslava (Russia)

Figure D Class (21)
Tamara Beckers (Canada)
Darci Campbell (Clintonville, Ohio)
Elena Cuzuioc (Italy)
Regina DeLaurentis (Mundalein, Ill.)
Elena Mishyrina (Russia)
Federica Ghezzi (Italy)
Danielle Ferreira (San Diego, Calif.)
Sophie Haddad (Dearborn Heights, Mich.)
Tiffany Hamilton (Olive Branch, Miss.)
Marsela Ilic (Serbia)
Veronica Kolyada (Elk Grove Village, Ill.)
Kristie Ott (Federal Way, Wash.)
Shannon Pointer (Semora. N.C.)
Teagan Posey (Middletown, Ohio)
Maira Susana Ramirez (Mexico)
Nina Ross (United Kingdom)
Freyja Siguroardotir (Iceland)
Cindy Steele (Memphis, Tenn.)
Ludmila Tavolaro (Brazil)
Ursula Valencia (Spring Valley, Calif.)
Philita Wheeler (Zanesville, Ohio)

Figure E Class (10)
Cindy Angulo (Phoeniz, Ariz.)
Vanessa Bailey (North Charleston, S.C.)
Lesley Barents (Netherlands)
Maria-Kristin Carroll (Mary Esther, Fla.)
Amanda Fletcher (Southlake, Texas)
Andrea Legradi (Hungary)
Meni Moskowski (Canada)
Viktoria Szilagyi (Miami, Fla.)
Yulia Ushakova (Russia)
Laurie Wojcik (Angola, N.Y.)

Figure F Class (10)
Tina Anderson (Canada)
Beata Antoninas (Canada)
Beckie Boddie (Las Vegas, Nevada)
Jennifer Bradford (Lexington, Ky.)
Julia Carlson (Wadlport, Ore.)
Viaura Centeno (Sarasota, Fla.)
Danielle Dam (Norwalk, Conn.)
Virginia Kinkel (Washington, D.C.)
Kimberly Lewis (Midlothian, Va.)
Rinnah Schmid (Australia)


Short Class (21)
Tracy Allen (Carlsbad, Calif.)
Mart del Amo (Spain)
Giordani Annamaria (Italy)
Ann Claiborne (Fountain, Colo.)
Jaqueline de la Torre Duenas (Mexico)
Veronica Gallego (Spain)
Wally Gravett (Ooltewah, Tenn.)
Tracy Grogg (West Jefferson, Ohio)
Amy Hearon (Edmond, Okla.)
Jennifer Hill (Sumter, S.C.)
Jodie Luther-Kofod (Savannah, Ga.)
Penny Lunkenheimer (Cato, N.Y.)
Angela Lynn Morales (Corbin, Ky.)
Susana Garcia Rivas (Mexico)
Dinah Salazar (Venezuela)
Jeanette Samuelson (Del Ray Beach, Fla.)
Melitta Simmons (Dublin, Ohio)
Luciane Viera (Brazil)
Rina Cardenas Zamudio (Mexico)

Medium Class (18)
Renee Black (Columbus, Ohio)
Roberta Bozzao (Italy)
Tomi Ann Butler (Jupiter, Fla.)
Lisa Callingham (Australia)
Timea Csotonyi (Canada)
Tena Donze (Pelham, Ala.)
Charlotte Exline (Carroll, Ohio)
Betty Jo Ganey (Bend, Ore.)
Melanie Gardner (Canada)
Kim Gramlich (Canada)
Josee Hammond (Canada)
Bren Lauver (Bernville, Pa.)
Yvonne Melendez (Grove City, Ohio)
Karina Rhode (Noblesville, Ind.)
Shelly Sayman (Gilbert, Ariz.)
Pamela Waugh (Columbus, Ohio)
Kristi Yarter (Kingsland, Texas)

Tall Class (9)
Martina Abukhal (Czech Republic)
Rosalind Alexander (Singapore)
Shannon Brown (Botkins, Ohio)
Teri Donald (New Brunswick, Canada)
Lauren Manning (Dublin, Ohio)
Keneese McNamer (Bolingbrook, Ill.)
Tye Pierpoint (Flower Mound, Texas)
Danielle Smith (Pickerington, Ohio)
Christina Splittgerber (Olathe, Kansas)


Bikini A Class (11)
Jessica Barth (South Jordan, Utah)
Brooke Bartlebaugh (Lorain, Ohio)
Elspeth Dana (Bellbrook, Ohio)
Andrea King (Tierra Verde, Fla.)
Michelle Inah King (Edina, Minn.)
Larissa Lira (Bartlett, Ill.)
Noura Matouk (Alcoa, Tenn.)
Caryn Paolini (Aurora, Ill.)
Jodi Rector (Rockport, W.V.)
Wany Reyes (Miami, Fla.)
Alma Villanueva (Sterling Heights, Mich.)
Lauren Wood (Gahanna, Ohio)

Bikini B Class (30)
Dyana Alexander (Winter Park, Fla.)
Anjali Antani (Naperville, Ill.)
Nataly Leticia Perez Banuelos (Mexico)
Mel Bors (Minneapolis, Minn.)
Maria Karina Constantino Durzo (Mexico)
J. Karina Escobar (Dublin, Ohio)
Maria Isabella Ferrari (Boca Raton, Fla.)
Eve Freeman (Salisbury, N.C.)
Mawy Lobato Gutierrez (Spain)
Michelle Holdsworth (Columbus, Ohio)
Kara Jennings (Auburn, Ind.)
Brandi Jordan (Lexington, Ky.)
Samantha Leete (Salt Lake City, Utah)
Jenna Carmen Lithgow (South Africa)
Heather Loucks (Michigan City, Ind.)
Elena Nadezhdina (Russia)
Elda Priscila Segovia Lujan (Mexico)
Jade Roxanne Mackinnon (New Zealand)
Caroline Mahar (Wilmington, N.C.)
Yurie Larisssa Hasegawa Cassio Maraccini (Brazil)
Branda Daniela Villalpando Perez (Mexico)
Noylan Dunn-Pulaski (Westerville, Ohio)
Chelah Ryan (Hopkins, Minn.)
Samantha Slaven (Rolling Meadows, Ill.)
Maricela Munoz Santacruz (Mexico)
Julia Souza (Orlando, Fla.)
Rodora Ferman Trinchera (Phillipines)
Jennifer Trotman (Santa Monica, Calif.)
April Wintle (Bethesda, Maryland)

Bikini C Class (40)
Gabrielle Ahmed (Canada)
Nadirah Baldwin (Chesapeake, Va.)
Nikolett Benedek (Hungary)
Lesley Bimonte (Marysville, Ohio)
Chanel Carter (Ashland, Ky.)
Yulia Shumakova-Catron (Singapore)
Nina Cash (Beavercreek, Ohio)
Heather Caster (Gladstone, Missouri)
Erin Flax (New Albany, Ohio)
Camry Gasio (Edmond, Oklahoma)
Martine Gauthier (Canada)
Andrea Gordon (Denver, Colo.)
Tracy Gramer (Atlanta, Ga.)
Kristina Grogan (Pickerington, Ohio)
Martina Hageli (Switzerland)
Beth Hagendorf (La Jolla, Calif.)
Hayleigh Hanna (Columbus, Ohio)
Shari Harrison (Canada)
Sarah Ingmanson (Henderson, Nev.)
Anne Johnson (Fayetteville, N.C.)
Pauline Marshall (Dayton, Ohio)
Tiffany Mast (Warren, Ohio)
Hannah McMahon (Hilliard, Ohio)
Krista Mobley (Indianapolis, Ind.)
Ann O’Keefe (Elkhart, Ind.)
Angelika Perez (Kansas City, Kan.)
Lian Price (Springfield, N.J.)
Valentina Guadalupe Parra Rivera (Mexico)
Visintainer Roberts (Italy)
Sara Rodriguez (Spain)
Julie Royer (Canada)
Crystal Rutherford (Columbus, Ohio)
Midori Rutledge (Canada)
Shadia Smidi (Columbus, Ohio)
Courtney Shanks (Hudson, Ohio)
Priscilla Smith (Arlington, Texas)
Natalie Neurouth Sosa (Mexico)
Sarah Vance (Cincinnati, Ohio)
Pricilla Verona (Miami, Fla.)
Beth Workman (United Kingdom)

Bikini D Class (45)
Charmaine Barden (Kenosha, Wisc.)
Emily Braker (Hixson, Tenn.)
Shannon Buflod (Mason, Ohio)
Iuliia Butova (Elmhurst, N.Y.)
Kristine Carr (Canada)
Kerry Champlin (Buffalo, N.Y.)
Denita Clark (Atlanta, Georgia)
Jessica Ellis (Hilliard, Ohio)
Svetlena Eregina (Russia)
Melanie Evans (Indianpolis, Ind.)
Brandie Farley (Columbus, Ohio)
Dorothy Fife (Colorado Springs, Colo.)
Sabrina Frank (Springfield, Ill.)
Amanda Gaudio (Delaware, Ohio)
Jessica Humphrey (Westchester, Ohio)
Alexis Huntermark (The Woodlands, Texas)
Yana Kashcheeva (Russia)
Tamara Keith (Virginia)
Victoria Kirsanova (Belarus)
Ashley Kurtenbach (Spearfish, S.D.)
Michelle LaCost (Colleyville, Texas)
Denisa Lipovska (Slovakia)
Amy McDermott (Pickerington, Ohio)
Jeana Mullins (Loma Linda, Calif.)
Natalia Nevskaia (Russia)
Lindsay Nutter (Columbus, Ohio)
Moriana Oliveira (Brazil)
Mary Joe Orbegoso (Glen Ellyn, Ill.)
Ashley Pfaff (Las Vegas, Nev.)
Cindy Van Empel Popowich (Canada)
Miroslava Reese (Las Vegas, Nev.)
Sarah Reinitz (Redondo Beach, Calif.)
Monika Rosenbergerova (Slovakia)
Nina Silic (Australia)
Jane Spalding (Bayonne, N.J.)
Chelsea-Iyeesha Tapanainen (Canada)
Paola Terry (Anchorage, Alaska)
Heather Tierney (Henderson, Nev.)
Ekaterina Usmanova (Russia)
Jessica Valencia (Chelsea, Ala.)
Timea Varga (Hungary)
Olga Viazmetinova (Ukraine)
Brittany Walker (Dublin, Ohio)
Sarah Walraven (Bay City, Mich.)
Nancy Young (Ann Arbor, Mich.)

Bikini E Class (32)
Samantha Bossert (Columbus, Ohio)
Courtney Busby (Parkville, Missouri)
Liz Calabaro (Watchung, N.J.)
Laura Carstenson (Castle Rock, Colo.)
Rita Catolino (Canada)
Maxine Chaikouang (Chicago, Ill.)
Alesia Chuchkevich (Canton, Ga.)
Michele Cicalese (Millington, N.J.)
Jennifer Cullen (Fort Madison, Iowa)
Felicia Gelman (Shillington, Penn.)
Marcia Goncalves (Brazil)
Melissa Haywood (United Kingdom)
Vivian Hodges (Reynoldsburg, Ohio)
Cristianna Houghland (Ashburn, Va.)
Abby Huot (Bloomington, Minn.)
Hannade Ibrahim (Valparaiso, Ind.)
Noelle Joye (Las Vegas, Nev.)
Natalie Lynn Lichtenbert (Hoffman Estates, Nov.)
Natalia Lukashevich (Singapore)
Whitney Mialkowski (Jacksonville, N.C.)
Jessica Mullis (Mooresville, N.C.)
Sylvia Narvaez (Iceland)
Mayling Ng (Singapore)
Clara Paris (Sykesville, Md.)
Melissa Russell (Uniontown, Ohio)
Camila Santos (Amesbury, Mass.)
Jaclyn Scott (Fayetteville, N.C.)
Clarissa Spear (Corpus Christi, Texas)
Olga Svyrydova (Wayne, Penn.)
Meaghan Terzis (Canada)
Celeste Vannoy (Beaumont, Texas)
Josiane Weber (Brazil)

Bikini F Class (30)
Jovana Aleksic (Serbia)
Aeryon Ashlie (Canada)
Ashley Barnhart (Columbus, Ohio)
Hali Berger (Huron, Ohio)
Luana Blaszczyk (Spring, Texas)
Kelsey Byers (Magnolia, Texas)
Elaine Codilla (Tracy, Calif.)
Angel Denman (Chicago, Ill.)
Brooke Hall (Jacksonville, Fla.)
Kathrin Hollman (Germany)
Christine Hronec (Wilmington, Del.)
Stefanie Krohn (Franklin, Ky.)
Jana Majernikova (Slovakia)
Camilla Maybee (Colorado Springs, Colo.)
Meghan McGee (Manhattan, Kansas)
Tressia Murphy (Canada)
Egle Eller-Nabi (Estonia)
Kornelia Nagy (Hungary)
Sybil Nasser (Boise, Idaho)
Amy Bella Orzechowski (Erie, Penn.)
Cara Ovis (Albuquerque, N.M.)
Belinda Risreski (Australia)
Alexandra Roane (Bowie, Maryland)
Jessica Roe (Dallas, Texas)
Richardene A.W. Shelton (Atlanta, Georgia)
Anna Starodubtseva (Russia)
Robyn Stone (Canada)
Chelsey Walton (Columbus, Ohio)

Visit http://arnoldamateur.com/competitors/ to see the men’s list and more information on the show. Use #asf2013 for all your tweets related to the Arnold Sports weekend.


Bodybuilding.com to Air Free 2013 Arnold Classic Webcast

Bodybuilding.com will provide free, live coverage of the 2013 Arnold Classic online. Webcast includes stage events, commentary, backstage interviews and more.


Bodybuilding.com To Air Free, Exclusive 2013 Arnold Classic Webcast
Boise, ID – February 7, 2013 – It’s already being called one of the most anticipated events in the history of bodybuilding and fitness. Arnold Schwarzenegger, star of the new film “The Last Stand,” is bringing his annual Arnold Sports Festival back to Columbus, Ohio, the weekend of February 28-March 3, 2013. Under the direction of promoter Jim Lorimer, about 175,000 visitors are expected to see 18,000 athletes compete in more than 45 different sports and events!

For those who can’t make the trip to Columbus, Bodybuilding.com will once again present a series of exclusive LIVE webcasts on Friday and Saturday, covering the Arnold Classic Bodybuilding Championship, along with the Ms. International, Fitness International, Figure International & Bikini International events.

Bodybuilding.com 2013 Arnold Classic Webcast

Don’t miss the FREE 2013 Arnold Classic Webcast, brought to you exclusively by Bodybuilding.com, Cellucor, MusclePharm & Optimum Nutrition!

Returning to call the action are veteran hosts Dan Solomon, IFBB Pro Bodybuilder Bob Cicherillo, and Physique Coach Dr. Layne Norton. Providing insights and commentary for the women’s events will be Fitness Coach & IFBB Fitness Pro Carla Sanchez and the 2011 Ms. Figure Olympia & 2012 Figure International Champion Nicole Wilkins.

All eyes will be on Dexter Jackson as he looks to tie Flex Wheeler’s record of four Arnold Classic Titles. Iris Kyle, Erin Stern and Nicole Nagrani will also return, attempting to re-claim their spot in Arnold’s coveted winner’s circle.

Event Schedule
Presented by Cellucor, Optimum Nutrition and MusclePharm, the webcast coverage begins, exclusively at Bodybuilding.com, on Friday at 7 p.m. ET with the Ms. International, Fitness International and Figure International Finals, preceded 10 minutes prior by commentary on the women’s prejudging rounds from earlier that day. (Video-On-Demand footage from the Friday women’s prejudging events will also be available as soon as feasible.)

On Saturday at 2 p.m. ET, be sure to return to Bodybuilding.com for the exclusive LIVE coverage of the Arnold Classic and Bikini International Prejudging rounds.

Finally, the main event consisting of the Arnold Classic & Bikini International Finals, plus special coverage of the Arnold Strongman Finals, goes live Saturday at 7 p.m. ET, preceded 30 minutes earlier by a special backstage Pre-Show Exclusive. The Post-Show Report from backstage at Veteran’s Memorial Auditorium follows the main event, featuring unique interviews and the presentation of the Arnold Classic Webcast Fan’s Choice Award.

Webcast Start Times
Friday, March 1, 2013, 6:50 p.m. (U.S. Eastern Time)
Women’s Pre-Show and Ms. Int’l, Fitness Int’l & Figure Int’l Finals

Saturday, March 2, 2013, 2:00 p.m. (U.S. Eastern Time)
Arnold Classic & Bikini Int’l Prejudging

Saturday, March 2, 2013, 6:30 p.m. (U.S. Eastern Time)
Men’s Pre-Show and Arnold Classic & Bikini Int’l Finals

To learn more about Bodybuilding.com‘s expanded coverage of this year’s Arnold Sports Festival, visit: http://www.bodybuilding.com/arnold

Bodybuilding.com offers more than 13,000+ health & fitness supplements and accessories to help more than 10 million people every month achieve their health, fitness and appearance goals, as well as more than 35,000 pages of FREE information, including more than 20,000 articles and videos, expert online trainers, and new content added daily!

For more information: http://www.bodybuilding.com.

Aleisha Hart’s Vision To Success

Canadian IFBB Figure Pro Aleisha Hart will be competing in her first Figure International. She’s coming off a trip to the Olympia and has her sights set on making her presence known in Columbus. Aleisha shares her top four tips to staying focused and creating her vision to success.



Well here I am a few weeks away from my first Arnold Classic IFBB Pro Figure. WOW~ what an honour to be 1 of 15 pros selected to be a part of this event.  What a great way to kick start another pro season! After having a phenomenal 2012 season and getting to finish on that Olympia stage ~ I couldn’t ask for more!!

It has definitely been a quick turnaround time after only 8 weeks into my off season, but getting this invite has truly set the pace for my journey to the Arnold. Creating the vision and being in that right mind set has always been priority for me, especially to be able to push myself to that next level and to keep myself in the zone. To be honest, it was a struggle starting out after the holidays with such a short down time, but my passion for this sport, wanting it so badly and the pure excitement of this invite has me determined beyond belief. Once in a lifetime opportunity at hand again~ FEELING BLESSED! Here I am weeks away from another amazing experience and feeling energized as things are coming together nicely. Big thanks to coach Jack Titone for his guidance, his belief in me, and for his no sugar tolerance and cracking the whip!!! Thx moose!!! My friends, family and hubby Sean are my biggest supporters, it is truly the best feeling in the world having the ones you love the most behind you every step of the way. xo

I have realized that be a successful athlete you truly “NEED” to create that tunnel vision focus and having a strong belief when aiming for any goal. The mind becomes the most powerful tool when wanting to achieve and succeed at anything.  Being able to compete at this caliber has been an honor and is my biggest accomplishment to date~ but at the end of the day the real competition comes from within yourself. Learning to mind the mind, pushing passed your limits and making anything possible is the true test of self-determination. Feeling your best, looking your best, training your hardest, sticking to the plan 100%, not giving into those weak moments and not allowing any hiccups to get in the way… these are some key points that keep me at the top of my game and always coming in a true winner!

Here are 4 tools I like to use to help me stay focused and not lose site on my goal: Try adding them to your goal plan whether it is a smaller goal or something over the top…plan of action is a must!!!

• CREATING MY VISION BOARD – Creating a vision board helps me to visualize my end goals more clearly, which inevitably inspires me to take consistent action and keeping pushing for top success. It also serves to remind me of my goals every day and why I do what I do!!

• CREATE MILESTONES – If you just set one huge goal, sometimes it can be discouraging – especially when you don’t achieve it after a short while. Some people may give up or even procrastinate on their goals altogether. I think it is important and helpful to break one big goal into smaller goals, this allows you to be consistent with reaching and always working towards something. It truly helps me to achieve anything I put my mind to!!

• TRACK YOUR RESULTS – It’s important for me to track the results of what I do which allows me to continue aiming for something more~ achieving higher results. Tracking is my connection to my end goal, this will let me know whether I’m on track or off track, ahead of the game or behind ~ which in turn lets me know whether to tweak my actions or to step it up a notch.

•  KNOW YOUR “WHY” – Be passionate about your “WHY” when you have a goal!! If you keep giving up on your goals halfway, perhaps you were never serious about them to begin with. For me, if I’m really serious about a goal, I will never give up on it – I keep hammering away, regardless of the obstacles and struggles. Nothing comes easy, but in the end it is always worth it. Allow yourself to be in the uncomfortable zone and learn to enjoy it. Have your “why” close to heart and why your goal is important to you. Have a strong belief in everything you do!!! Be passionate about this and have it mean something big ~ this way you will never give up on yourself and the reason why you are on this journey in the first place.

Train hard ~ stay focused & dream big! Wish me luck at the Arnold.


Follow Aleisha on twitter at @aleishafitness and like her facebook page. Check out her competition photos and history on Bodybuilding.com. For more information on the Arnold Sports Festival visit www.arnoldsportsfestival.com and use #ASF2013 in all your tweets.

‘The Ugly Truth’ – Nicole Duncan’s Hardbody Road to the Arnold

Nicole Duncan checks en route to the Arnold stage. She’s a bit hard on herself, which we can all be at times especially when prepping for a competition. Give Nicole a shout out and let her know you don’t think she sucks (her words not ours).


The Ugly Truth

Nicole Duncan, 2013 Fitness International Contender
It’s just 23 days from the Arnold and I can hardly breathe. I have been going through the motions hit or miss and it’s really bad. I’ve let stress and emotion derail my training so much that I’m barely holding on by a thread. When these off course paths occur, I’m left wondering where the time went. It’s not like I’m binging on food or sweets. I’m just at a standstill… literally.

Where did the time go? I get home drained mentally and physically with a ton of things still left to do including laundry, grocery shopping, food prepping, work, routine choreography & practice. I am up to my ears in tasks but they are just not getting done. Skipping meals, lacking water, missing supplements, choosing work & clients over my training, not getting up on time for myself and not making time for myself, the cycle has steadily taken a nose dive. I have no one to blame but myself.

I just would like to apologize to the readers of HardbodyNews.com for my lack of posts and encouragement. I suck. It’s just that simple. I know that I will rise from this at some point. God & cardio are about the only things that make me feel better (usually as a combo). Much love and respect to all competitors who hold down jobs and families and so much more. You are the true champions.

Fitfully Yours,
Nicole Duncan

Follow Nicole on twitter at @fitnicinc, like her Facebook page and visit her website www.fitnicole.com. Check out Nicole’s competition photos here. For more information on the Arnold Sports Festival visit www.arnoldsportsfestival.com and use #ASF2013 in all your tweets.

Jessica Paxson Fitness Confessions – Hardbody Road to The Arnold

Jessica Paxson checks in to give us the latest on her road to the Arnold. Jessica talks about ditching excuses and instead of just looking like she’s in shape, she really is in shape. Jessica is just a few weeks out from the Bikini International in Columbus, Ohio.


Jessica Paxson – 2013 Bikini International Contender

“Don’t just look like you’re in shape, BE in shape!!!!”. Ah, I can still hear the words of my trainer Mike Davies being yelled at me as he would put a going through one of his brutal boot camp workouts. I have to confess, it’s been a long time since I have trained with that motto in mind. I started out in this industry as a fresh faced 21 year old. I came from a competitive dance, cheerleading, and gymnastics background. I was up for and ready for the challenge of training hard and busting my butt to get in shape for shows and challenging myself with new and different training styles. I think somewhere along the way I got lazy.

Of course you cannot be that lazy to get your body in shape for a show, but I stopped really challenging myself with my training, and kind of lost that excitement and passion I had when I trained in the gym. Don’t get me wrong, I pushed myself and had great workouts, but it just wasn’t the same. I would attempt a few boot camp style workouts and my joints would hurt, I would be winded and pissed off I wasn’t at the top of my game anymore. So, I never stayed consistent with it.

After getting tired of making excuses, I am happy to say… I don’t just look like I’m in shape, I AM in shape! I have added one boot camp class a week (starting with two this week) and my training has changed to more giant sets, plyos, and circuit style workouts. I pushed through the aches and pains, and I feel GREAT! I am loving the challenge and I have that fire and passion back! I love the group of women (and sometimes men) that take my fiance and I’s boot camp class. We all have a love hate relationship with the class and push and encourage each other. It’s a total rush! If you are a competitor, you know that show prep can get draining and repetitive. So, challenge yourself! Do something different with your training and enjoy the process! Nobody is making you do this and what is the point of getting stage ready if you are miserable while doing it?!

Happy training to y’all! Stay fit and God bless!


*If you live in or around the Centerville Ohio area, join Blair Mone and I for a boot camp class Thursdays at 7pm and Saturdays at 11:30 am at Club 51 Fitness (51 E. Spring Valley Pike Centerville Ohio 45458). Email me at jessicapaxson77@hotmail.com for details!

Follow Jessica on twitter at @JessFit.

For more information on the Arnold Sports Festival visit www.arnoldsportsfestival.com and use #ASF2013 in all your tweets.

Ryall’s Road to the Arnold – Amping Up

IFBB Fitness Pro Ryall Vasani stops by to give us an update on her Fitness International prep. We’re under one month out from the big show in Columbus, Ohio.  Read what Ryall’s up do and her hardbody state of mind.


Ryall Vasani – 2013 Fitness International Contender
Hi Hardbody fans! Anticipation is indeed building with less than 4 weeks to go until the Arnold Classic… I’m starting to feel excited now!

I had a very productive week in the gym. I’m still focused on building a wider back, fuller delts and calves and adding more volume to my outer quads. I’m very goal motivated – I’m go back to the drawing board after each competition to re-evaluate the feedback I received from my coaches, judges and fellow competitors. I use a training journal daily to keep me focused, on track and motivated to lift heavier than the week before. I’m currently consuming around 1800 calories/day and feeling really good with the fuel I have for the amount of training I’m doing. My last competition was just December 8th and since then I’ve stayed on track with my nutrition and training. It truly has become my lifestyle as I enjoy how I look and feel when I eat healthy. This has made ‘dieting for competition’ easier as I go – the more I live it the more it becomes a greater part of me and the less extreme my diet has to be for my preps. By staying in shape and not adding more than 5Lbs of body fat to my physique in the off-season works really well for me. Not to say I don’t enjoy the odd treat because OH YES I DO… I have a guilt-free indulgence when I feel I need it (usually every couple of weeks), however I’m very focused on keeping these moments in moderation and getting right back on track. Plus the more body fat I have the harder my routine practices are. It’s like flipping around with a permanent weight vest!

The past week my primary training focus has definitely been amping up the intensity of my routine. I find the endurance component is always my greatest challenge. 2 minutes straight of go-time – flipping, pushups, strength moves and holds (and doing them all with a smile!) taxes the cardiovascular system like nothing else. So in addition to skill training and routine practices (which happens 5 days/week) I’ve been doing 4 sessions/week of interval training with a variety of work to rest ratios to hit all three energy systems. I’ve also added an endurance drill after every routine practice and I’m telling you this is really hard to do AFTER a full routine session! There have been days I can barely finish these drills and I’m crawling across the floor in a pool of sweat to get it done – which is when I remind myself that if it was easy everyone would do it. I don’t believe you have to be better than everybody else. But I do believe you have to better than you ever thought you could be.

Here’s a clip from today’s crazy endurance drill.

Thanks for reading and for following my Road to The Arnold.



Check out Ryall’s website and give her facebook page a “like”. You can see her competition photos on bodybuilding.com. For more information on the Arnold Sports Festival visit www.arnoldsportsfestival.com and use #ASF2013 in all your tweets.

Photo courtesy of Ryall Vasani.

Soft Tissue Therapy & Active Stretching a Staple for Fitness Pro Bethany Cisternino

One of the leading ladies in the IFBB Pro Fitness divisions, Bethany Cisternino checks in with and update on how she trains and what she implements to avoid pain. She says, “there is no secret or magic diet that works for everyone” and no we couldn’t agree more. Bethany is under 5 weeks out from the Fitness International in Columbus, Ohio.


Bethany Cisternino – 2013 Fitness International Contender
What’s up hardbodies?! I hope you had a productive week. I am within 5 weeks of Fitness International and it’s time to step it up a notch. Weight training and routine training definitely get more intense and there is no room for self – doubt or excuses.

There is no secret or magic diet that works for everyone. After years of competing and manipulating my diet and training regimen I believe I have a good grip on what works and does not work for me. What works for me might not work for anyone else. I do a 12 week prep slowly incorporating cardio, then I add in routine training 6 weeks out, and I weight train hard and heavy all the way through my diet up until the week of my show.

After 18 years of gymnastics, and in my 7th year of fitness, my body cannot handle too much routine training. As I get older my muscles get sore faster, my joints ache more, so I cannot train like I used to. At most I practice my routine 3-4 times a week, most of my conditioning comes from weight training and traditional cardio. While I have learned to train “smarter”, I have also learned there are people that specialize in muscle and joint management who can also help me. I want to be able to walk when I’m 50!

Soft tissue therapy and active stretching have become a staple in my training. Soft tissue therapy is considered a neuromuscular therapy. Soft tissue therapy (STM) techniques are designed to influence musculature, connective tissues, and the nervous system. STM has many benefits (relaxation is one) but for athletes who are constantly stressing their tissues, muscles, and metabolism, STM could be a great path for your body. STM can help muscle function and balance by releasing tension allowing the muscles to relax and regain their strength so muscle pairs work in harmony. STM can also increase blood flow to an area which increases the rate of supply of nutrients and removal of waste and possibly the substances that cause pain.

If you have any questions about soft tissue manipulation, tweet or direct message @Meridian_sports or @Shulim25. David at Meridian Sports has been a huge part of my training and every day health!

Have a “hardbody” week! Message me on twitter @Bfitness80 and help me decide what body part to talk about next week!
For more information on the Arnold Sports Festival visit www.arnoldsportsfestival.com and use #ASF2013 in all your tweets.

Fitness Pro Ryall Vasani Road to The Arnold

Ryall Vasani was born and raised in Canada but now calls Barbados home. She’s working on a new fitness routine for her first trip to the Arnold. Ryall shares how she went from placing last to becoming a top contender in every show she enters. Find out more about hardbody fitness pro, Ryall Vasani.




Ryall Vasani – 2013 Fitness International Contender

Hi Hardbody! It’s Ryall Vasani here bringing you my news as I prep for my first-ever Arnold Classic.

A Little Bit about Me:
I was born and raised in Alberta, Canada but now, this transplanted Canadian girl, call the sandy beaches of Barbados home. In 2007, I competed in my first fitness competition (I was living in Bermuda at the time working as a Dental Hygienist) and won both the Bermuda National Championships and the Central America and Caribbean Championships to qualify for my pro status that same year. And so the dream began!

Reflecting on my 2011 Season:

I had just come off my most exciting season to date. I took 10 months off after 2010 to rest and put on some muscle. My season started in Sept 2011 and I competed in five competitions between that time and December. My results were greater than I had ever imagined…I had finally found the right team of coaches and found my own balance with training to make a difference in where I had been placing in previous years. The highlight was indeed finishing 7th at the 2012 Olympia. It was magic. It was my first competition that I truly soaked up every moment (I am typically a bundle of nerves!) and enjoyed the actual experience of performing. My last competition in Miami ended on a high note with a win in the physique round and an overall 3rd place finish.

My 2011 season was the first season I realized that I’m not just competing to win, I’m competing because it’s a huge part of the person that I’ve become. The other realization I had last season was how powerful our minds are in helping us to achieve our goals. This was the first year I believed, in my mind, that I could be a champion. Having faith in myself, working harder than I’ve ever worked before and keeping a positive attitude every day (not just at competitions) were key factors for me being the best ‘me’ ever. Win, lose or draw – I showed up with a positive attitude and brought my best. You can’t quit if you lose (I placed last in a competition in 2010) – you’ve got to pick yourself up, dust yourself off and set a plan for the next event.


My Prep for the 2013 Arnold:
I am beyond excited, honored and so thankful to be competing in the 25th Anniversary Arnold Classic. My preparation is in full swing as I’ve just returned from a productive weekend training session in Miami with my choreographer Renzo. I’m working very hard on a shiny, new routine with improved skills and a lot of energy. I also spent a week in November in Spokane, WA training hand balancing with Steve Atlas. This year I’ve restructured my training to include more skill, endurance and routine work, as this was my weaker area last year. I want people to remember my routines, to see how much fun I’m having up there and for my performance to leave them smiling and saying WOW!

As for my physique, my coach Tad Inoue has my body on track and I’m feeling really well at this time (on days when I get enough sleep!). I was delighted to receive some positive feedback about my physique last season, so now I’m working on fine tuning some areas and bringing an improved package to the stage. This is a really nice change from always needing more muscle and spending 5 days/week on heavy lifting sessions!

My greatest challenge right now is trying to balance my nutrition and fitness consulting business with a full time competition schedule. Some days I feel like a hamster on a wheel and it’s all I can do to hold on. I really love my clients and my work as helping others achieve success has been the greatest part of my success. I never want to give this up, so I’ve had to slow down a bit – I’m not really Wonder Woman! I’m learning what I can handle as I go. I’m also realizing that the illusive word ‘balance’ is very difficult to achieve in this sport. I know my challenges are small compared to many and I keep this in mind every day when I wake up. Attitude is everything!

With less than 5 weeks to go until the big show I couldn’t be more excited. I love to compete and I love pushing myself to be the best I can be every day. I am living my dream. For me I’ve already won!

Thank you so much for reading and for all of your support.

With love AND lunges,

Check out Ryall’s website and give her facebook page a “like”. You can see her competition photos on bodybuilding.com. For more information on the Arnold Sports Festival visit www.arnoldsportsfestival.com and use #ASF2013 in all your tweets.

Photo courtesy of Ryall Vasani.


Fiona Harris “No Regrets” – Hardbody Road to The Arnold

Last year this time, Canadian Fitness Competitor Fiona Harris was preparing for the Arnold Amateur competition. This year, she’ll be heading to Columbus once again however it will be as an IFBB Pro. Fiona made an immediate impact in the top spots in 2012 and went from amateur to Olympia competitor all in her rookie year. She joins us in her journey to the Fitness International. Check out what Fiona has to say in what was a whirlwind rookie year and why she lives by the motto, “no regrets”.


Fiona Harris, 2013 Fitness International Contender

Wow, what a difference a year can make. This time last year I was prepping to compete as an amateur at the Arnold Classic and this year I will step on stage as an IFBB Pro. To say these past 12 months have been a whirlwind would be an understatement. I’ve been extremely blessed and provided with opportunities many competitive fitness/figure athletes would only dream of. Since earning my IFBB pro card at the IFBB World Championship Qualifier in April 2012, it has been an amazing ride of back to back shows taking me to new and amazing places.

One week after earning my pro card, I stepped on stage for my debut at the Pittsburgh Pro Show.  There was definitely some fear and trepidation in joining the pro circuit so quickly, but my coaches had all the confidence in the world in me. And thank goodness they did! I walked away from my first pro show with a 3rd place finish and a bucket full of confidence. Following another 3rd place finish at the Toronto Pro Show in June, I solidified enough points to compete at prestigious Olympia. This had only been a distant dream six months earlier and now I would be having the opportunity to stand on stage with the top fitness competitors in the world.  And what an amazing experience it was.  It truly lived up to my every expectation!

Two weeks following the Olympia, I once again boarded the plane, this time to compete at the Arnold Europe in Madrid, Spain. Having the opportunity to travel to such a beautiful country and compete in the sport I love so much was another fantastic opportunity. As if four shows in six months weren’t enough, I decided to stay the course and compete in two more shows, the Fort Lauderdale Cup and Miami Pro, in order to try and earn points for the 2013 Olympia.  With the new qualifying system, each fitness competitor is anxious to solidify their spot for the coveted event. My approach is to do everything I can possibly do to make that happen, so that if the chips don’t fall in my favor, I can honestly look myself in the eye and know I had no regrets! That is and will continue to always be my philosophy in life – “No Regrets”.  Train as hard as I can, give 110% effort in and out of the gym, show my passion and love for my sport and be proud of what I accomplish each time I step on stage.

Everyone always comments on how hard I train, how much I compete, how dedicated I am to the sport. And they ask me why I put myself through it? My answer is simple – I love it!  It is a privilege to compete with the best in the world in a sport that requires such self-discipline, focus, hard work and athleticism. I am as focused and determined as ever for the upcoming Fitness International.  To be 1 of 10 fitness competitors provided with the opportunity to step onto the Fitness International stage is a privilege in itself.  I plan to continue training as hard as possible to bring the best physique and routine I possibly can, so that I know I can step off that stage at the end of the day and say I had “No Regrets”.

Fiona Harris

Follow Fiona on twitter at @fionaharrisfit, like her Facebook page and visit her website www.fionaharrisfitness.com. Check out Fiona’s competition photos here. For more information on the Arnold Sports Festival visit www.arnoldsportsfestival.com and use #ASF2013 in all your tweets.

Lead image courtesy of fionaharrisfitness.com

Nicole Duncan “Keeping It Real” – Hardbody Road to The Arnold

Nicole Duncan is a veteran to the Fitness scene and will be making her fourth appearance at the Arnold Sports Festival. She has some of the best gymnastic moves in the IFBB Pro League and is know for her high flying routines. You can always count on Nicole to mix in some dance moves and get the crowd excited with her routines. The former NFL cheerleader joins us en route to the Fitness International. She chats about the Fitness sisterhood, what it’s like to prepare for a show during the winter months and more.


Nicole Duncan, 2013 Fitness International Contender

Keeping It Real
Nicole Duncan here, checking in from Oxford, GA. I actually grew up here and my neighbors have horses in their yard. There are cows, guard llamas, goats and even chickens at various yards in either direction with in a 5 mile radius. This is home where I was born and raised. Everyone here knows me as the “Atlanta Falcons Cheerleader” but most have no idea what a fitness competitor is. They think Olympics when I say Olympia. I got my pro card in 2006 and have been competing in competitions since 2002.  This will be my 4th appearance at the Arnold and I am truly honored to be representing such a unique and exhilarating division. The fitness girls share a bond like no other. It’s a true sisterhood of hardcore, hardbody women both amateur and pro. You have to be a bad ass to do fitness – I’m just saying.

Prepping for the Arnold is never easy.  My body and health does all sorts of wacky things during the winter months. I can’t recall ever getting ready for this show and not being sick. Oddly enough, embracing that and accepting the challenge has made prep just a little more bearable. I’ve somewhat changed my mindset as well. Six years ago when I started prepping for my first pro show, my only focus was winning. Now, I have quite a few goals in mind that keep me motivated.

1.  Focusing on Being the Best Me – This industry ain’t no joke (pardon my grammar).  If you get so focused on winning it will chew you up and spit you out. There are politics in everything but who cares! When I finish my career as a fitness competitor, no one will remember exactly where I placed and when, but they will remember my routines, how much fun I was back stage & that I hung in there and improved year after year. I started competing because it was fun and allowed me to express myself in a unique and rewarding way. Fitness is the fountain of youth. Competing keeps me young & healthy. And if I look like I’m having a blast during my routines, it’s because I AM!

2. Maintaining My Professional Career – Competing can be a full time job. In the past I’ve put everything on the back burner during competition time. I’ve recently been hired to work at a new fitness club in my area plus I continue to coach gymnastics & choreograph routines for fitness competitors. This time I’m working around the clock to keep my business and finances in check, working smarter so that my foundation is set.  It’s right back to work when the show is over. I’m getting older and realizing that I want other things in life too! It’s time to put my big girl panties on and set a foundation for my future.

3. Keeping IFBB Fitness Alive! – I got into this because of competitors like Nicole Rollolazo, Jenn Hendershot and Carol Semple. They had the skill and the personality and totally put on show for the crowd. I hope to encourage other women to go for their dreams and compete in fitness regardless of where the trend may go. I coach young gymnasts, dancers & cheerleaders. I hope that one day they will have this avenue to continue their skills as healthy adults. Fitness has totally shaped my life. I’d be sad if that option wasn’t available for others.

So, there you have it.  It’s been quite a tough week but God is good and I will manage.

Fitfully Yours,
Nicole Duncan

Follow Nicole on twitter at @fitnicinc, like her Facebook page and visit her website www.fitnicole.com. Check out Nicole’s competition photos here. For more information on the Arnold Sports Festival visit www.arnoldsportsfestival.com and use #ASF2013 in all your tweets.

Candice Lewis’ Hardbody Road to The Arnold

Candice Lewis is coming off one of the best years of any IFBB Pro. She made history by winning five shows in 2012, a record that she now shares with Erin Stern and Nicole Wilkins. Candice has her sights set on the Figure International title and working hard in Arizona to reach the top spot. Candice opens up about being a little freaked out and what she’s working on en route to her first trip to the Arnold stage.



Candice Lewis -  2013 Figure International Contender
My name is Candice Lewis and I am a proud native of Chandler, Arizona. The last few years have been exciting times since the 2011 Jr. Nationals, where I won overall Figure Title. This will be my first trip to The Arnold Classic. It is such an honor and dream come true of mine to be invited to such a prestigious event. The excitement is driving me crazy!

I have been working my butt off from the start of my pro debut in October 2011 to December 2012. I have competed in a total of 10 shows so I’ve been a busy lady. If someone would’ve said “you’re going to diet all year long and like it”, I probably would have complained and confessed that I needed to have my daily fix of froyo and cupcakes to survive. With hard work and having a BIG dream, I’ve  manage to win five pro shows, making history along with Erin Stern and Nicole Wilkins. Wow, freaking amazing!!!! Not many people have the opportunity in their life to achieve their goals and to inspire others. That’s what motivates and drives me.

My Arnold prep is completely different from any other show I’ve done which makes me a little uneasy. Ok-ok, I’m freaking out but in a good way only because I trust my trainer Damian Segovia 120%! He is proven and knows his stuff. The only person that needs work is me. I call this chapter in my show prep, me vs me. The first me is the physical me and she is on point. The second me is my state of mind. She is a work in progress but we’re getting there, slowly but surely, baby steps. I’m looking forward to this prep and being the best I can possibly be. I have to know and believe with all my heart that I will be a contender on the Arnold stage as long as I put in the work! Even after five pro wins, finding my confidence is my biggest challenge but deep down I know that confidence come from hard work, sacrifice and dedication. If I can incorporate this in my prep, I know I will step on stage and look my best and that’s what it’s all about!

Thanks for reading. In my Arnold voice “I’ll be back!”… Next week

Candice Lewis

Follow Candice on twitter @icandylewis and become a fan on Facebook. Check out some of her contest photos here. For more information on the Arnold Sports Festival visit www.arnoldsportsfestival.com and use #ASF2013 in all your tweets.


Meal Preparation Tips from Fit Mom Yeshaira Robles

Yeshaira Robles shares her tips to preparing meals and making sure she stays on track with her busy schedule. Check out what her day is like with work, working out, being a mom and preparing for the Bikini International. Yeshaira also shares some fun photos of herself with Mr. Olympia, Jay Cutler. You can’t help but cheer for her every time you see her smile.


Yeshaira Robles, 2013 Bikini International Contender

Wow what a week!! My body is starting to feel back to normal, I love all the sore muscles. I trained every day last week Sun-Thurs Holllaaa. I did my cardio and kept my food semi-clean. It usually takes me a week to get back in action, so by the 2nd week its on. I’m starting to have the crazy competition dreams: no tanner on, my hair a mess, missing my shoes etc Ha.

I like to prepare all my meals for the week on my day off, that way I don’t have to worry about getting a meal in when I have a busy schedule. My suggestions to you guys is to cook everything in one shot: chicken, fish, sweet potatoes, rice etc.

• Weigh them out and put them in small baggies
• Take your meals for each day and put them in a large freezer bag and freeze them
• The night before take out one bag and put in the refrigerator, that way it thaws out over-night

I always cook my breakfast in the morning :)  (can’t eat frozen eggs and oatmeal lol)

This is how I start my day when I’m not working:
* morning cardio on an empty stomach.
* breakfast and get my daughter ready for school.
* back home to sleep for 2 hours
* eat my 2nd meal
* gym time weights and 2nd cardio
* house duties and answer emails
* pick my daughter up from school. We always go for ice cream or a cupcake. (if I’m dieting I don’t have any, If I’m not dieting I do)
* homework, playtime, dinner and movie of choice then bed time for her
* my alone time, I like to watch TV

Every day it changes around because I also work full-time.

yeshaira2Yeshaira with Mr. Olympia, Jay Cutler while pregnant & after getting her abs back.


Last week I wrote about how I gained 67 pounds during my pregnancy. I was huge.  I was determined to go back to my normal weight it didn’t happen as fast as I thought it would, but I made sure that I was consistent each day. Some moms out there find it difficult to drop weight and it all comes from within. You have to want it. People called it baby weight, no it wasn’t baby weight because the baby came out and I was still heavy!

If there are any new moms out there reading this never give up! Trust me, anything is possible, and I’ve made so many of my dreams come true. I’m sure you can too..Always remember that it’s not going to happen overnight, in a week or in a month. But it will Happen!

Ladies feel free to email me if you have any questions 🙂 yeshaira@gmail.com.

Until Next Time,

Train hard and Rock on!

Follow Yeshaira on twitter at @yeshaira and like her Facebook page. For more information on the Arnold Sports Festival visit www.arnoldsportsfestival.com and use #ASF2013 in all your tweets.


Candice “Trini” John’s Road To The Arnold

Candice John joins us in her journey to the 2013 Figure International. Candice has steadily risen in the pro league ranks and has positioned herself to be a contender in her first Arnold appearance. She’s the first IFBB Figure Pro from the Caribbean and had to make her own path to the top. Candice hasn’t always been in the top spots though. She shares how she found her inner confidence and writing down goals has helped her take things to another level


Candice John – 2013 Fitgure International Contender

Hi Hardbody readers, my name is Candice John, better known on the competitive circuit as “Trini”. I’m from the Caribbean island of Trinidad and I’ve been competing as an IFBB pro figure athlete for 7 years. This will be my very first time competing at the Arnold, so it seems fitting that my topic of discussion is ‘Allow Yourself to Dream’. It sounds cliche, right?? Well, I am living proof that one must dream big and set goals, even if they might sound crazy to others. I got my IFBB pro card from the Caribbean and Central-American Championship. As the first IFBB figure pro from the Caribbean, there was no road map for me to follow.

Let’s just say I had a very challenging start to my pro career. It was only within the last couple years that I began to understand what it really took to compete on this level.

Last year was a great competitive season for me. Three years ago, I wrote down two goals. One was to win a pro show and the other was to get a placing at the Olympia. Do you know what was extra special about my first pro win? Two years earlier I competed at the same show, the Pittsburgh Pro, and did not place. Yup, those two letters (NP), short for “not placed”, were placed next to my name at the bottom of the list of competitors who actually got a numerical placing. I felt like I got a one way ticket to an emotional abyss. I felt extremely disappointed. I was so confused. My biggest question was, “why should I continue if I’m not good enough to even get a placing at a pro show?” But, there is one thing I can truly say about myself… I have a CRAZY fighter spirit. Seemingly unreachable goals serve as great motivation for me.

In 2012, I knew I wanted an opportunity to compete in the Figure International, so what did I do? I acted as if I was already invited. I had not even sent in my request, but I started prepping as though I had already been selected. Faith and belief in myself were always followed by action. But, to be honest, there is often a time lag before I actually get the ball rolling. I once heard that courage is not the absence of fear, but the management of fear. I had to first get the inner confidence, so I consulted with my coach and she told me “Hell yeah, go for it!”

I have to act on my beliefs in order for my dreams to materialize. In 2010, after my result in Pittsburgh, I re-calibrated my emotions and got crazier. I actually booked a ticket to Las Vegas to compete at the Olympia which I had not even qualified for. It so happened that I failed to qualify for Olympia that year. But, delays are not denials! I eventually qualified in 2011 by placing second at the Toronto Pro Show.

Stay on the grind
I cannot allow myself to be distracted by the noise from naysayers. I know where I’m at, and I’m still not close to where I want to be, but I know I must be the one working while others sleep. It has always been like that for me, at least. A true story is that at the stroke of midnight on New Year’s Day, my parents called me to wish me Happy New Year and I was on my stepper training. I knew I wanted to bring in the New Year exactly how I wanted the rest of the year to continue… productive and on my grind. Now mind you, let’s be honest, all this doesn’t guarantee a top placing, but it set a work ethic and spirit inside me that brings me closer to realizing my dreams.

Till next week. See you guys.

Candice “Trini” John

For more information on the Arnold Sports Festival visit www.arnoldsportsfestival.com and use #ASF2013 in all your tweets.

Inaugural Arnold Classic Champion Rich Gaspari To Receive Lifetime Achievement Award

Inaugural Champion Rich Gaspari To Receive Lifetime Achievement Award
The Arnold Classic will celebrate its 25th Anniversary during the 2013 Arnold Sports Festival by honoring all former past winners of the men’s professional bodybuilding championships named in honor of Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, the sport’s greatest champion.


Four-time winner Flex Wheeler, three-time champion Jay Cutler and 2001 champ Ronnie Coleman will headline the former Arnold Classic champions who will return to the Veterans Memorial stage on Saturday, March 2. Also returning will be two-time winners Kevin Levrone, Kai Greene and Branch Warren, inaugural champion Rich Gaspari, and Mike Ashley, Shawn Ray, Vince Taylor, Michael Francois, Nasser El Sonbaty and Victor Martinez.

Rich Gaspari, who won the inaugural Arnold Classic in 1989, will be honored with the 2013 Lifetime Achievement Award during the 25th Anniversary Celebration.

Dexter Jackson, who won the Arnold Classic, in 2005, 2006 and 2008, will try to tie Wheeler’s record of four wins at the 2013 Arnold Classic. He is the only former champion in the 2013 field and will be making his 14th appearance in the Arnold Classic.

“We look forward to welcoming all of our great Arnold Classic champions back to Columbus for our 25th Anniversary,” said Jim Lorimer, who co-founded the Arnold Classic with Schwarzenegger in 1989. “The Arnold Classic has grown over the years into one of our sport’s most prestigious events, and was the catalyst for the Arnold Sports Festival – the nation’s largest multi-sport festival.”

Fourteen men have combined to win the previous 24 Arnold Classic titles. Wheeler (four), Cutler (three), Jackson (three), Levrone, Greene and Warren (two each) have accounted for 16 of the 24 titles.

In addition to appearing at the Arnold Classic on Saturday night, all previous Arnold champs will also attend the Arnold Champions & Legends Sunday Morning Showcase on Sunday, March 3 at the Hilton Columbus Downtown. Gov. Schwarzenegger and Arnold Classic, Ms. International, Fitness International, Figure International and Bikini International champions crowned on the weekend will also attend. Bob Cicherello will moderate the program.

The Arnold Classic has grown over the years to include five IFBB Professional League Divisions. In addition the Arnold Classic (professional men’s bodybuilding) and the Ms. International (women’s professional bodybuilding), which also debuted in 1989, the Arnold Classic Weekend also features the Fitness International (founded in 1994), Figure International (2003) and the Bikini International (2011).

The 2013 Arnold Classic and Bikini International Prejudging and Finals will be held Saturday, March 2, 2013 at Veterans Memorial. Ms. International, Fitness International and Bikini International Prejudging and Finals will be held on Friday, March 1, 2013.

The Arnold Classic is the premier event of the Arnold Sports Festival, held annually the first weekend in March in Columbus, Ohio. The Arnold Sports Festival features 18,000 athletes from 80 nations compete in 45 sports and events. Gov. Schwarzenegger attends each year and appears at each event.

2013 Lifetime Achievement Award
Rich Gaspari, who won the inaugural Arnold Classic in 1989, will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award at Arnold Classic on Saturday, March 2 at Veterans Memorial.

In addition to winning the first Arnold Classic, Gaspari’s past titles also include Mr. America (now known as the NPC Nationals), Mr. Universe, Professional Mr. World and three-time runner-up at the Mr. Olympia.

Over the past 15 years, Gaspari has developed a brand of supplements under the Gaspari Nutrition brand into one of the most formidable and popular lines in the world. Gaspari’s determination and love for the sport of bodybuilding has helped his successfully transition from a competitive bodybuilder into an active CEO who tours the globe teaching fitness to others and supporting the sports of professional and amateur bodybuilding.

The Arnold Classic Lifetime Achievement Award was established in 2000 to honor the industry’s legends for their contributions to the world of health and fitness. Previous winners include: Joe Weider (2000), Reg Park (2001), Jim Lorimer (2002), Frank Zane (2003), Bill Pearl (2004), Jack LaLanne (2005), Lee Haney (2006), Cory Everson (2007), Ben Weider (2008), Franco Columbu (2009), Sylvester Stallone (2010), Lou Ferrigno (2011) and Robert Kennedy (2012)

Tickets are available through Ticketmaster at www.ticketmaster.com/arnold or 800-745-3000.

Media Contacts:
Brent LaLonde
Arnold Sports Festival


Matt Lorz
Lorz Commnications



2013 Rockstar Bikini Contest

The 2013 Rockstar Bikini Contest is being held once again and the deadline is quickly approaching. The winner of this competition will receive quite the prize package. See the details below on how to enter and get a chance at being on the cover of a magazine. The event is held in conjunction with the 2013 Arnold Sports Festival in Columbus, Ohio.


The Official World’s Leading Online Bikini Contest of the Arnold Sports Festival, Rock Star Bikini℠ presented by Muscular Development and FitnessRX is looking for the next generation of fitness superstars. This contest has drawn hundreds of competitors from across the world. Each competitor will enter the online contest and submit their photos in a bikini front and back shoot. (Deadline 1/31/2013) Rock Star Bikini Contest℠ will choose 12 finalists, as chosen by its celebrity panel of judges representing entertainment, bodybuilding, and the fan. The winner will be announced at 2013 Arnold Amateur Bikini Championships.

Our team creates winners and provides our superstars with an awesome experience and maximum exposure to over 50,000 media outlets, interviews, magazine covers, press releases, modeling agencies, red carpet events and much more to advance their career.


Grand Prize
– $16,000 Prize Package
Cover of Muscular Development or FitnessRX
Multiple page spread in either magazine
Photo & Lunch w/Arnold Schwarzenegger
Professional Photo Shoot
RSB Swimwear Bikini
Keepsake Flowers
Gift Bags
Two VIP Passes to Arnold Party with The Pros
Arnold classic tickets and recognition on stage Saturday night
Limo Access to Private events, Kick off and after parties

Betancourt Nutrition 6 month sponsorship deal for the winner that includes:
• 6 months of free promotions, through pictures & videos provided by athlete, then edited and promoted by us
• $200 wholesale monthly allowance of supplements
• Paid IFBB dues for 1 year- estimated $200
• Advertising Campaign (online & possibly print)
• Free Betancourt gear
• *Possible Booth/Event work (promo work is subject to area)

RIO2LA Clothing Co.
Official $1,000.00 Clothing Sponsor to the Overall Winner!

Runner -Ups
Two VIP Passes to Arnold Party with The Pros
Arnold classic tickets and recognition on stage Saturday night
Limo Access to Private events, Kick off and after parties
RSB Swimwear Tees
Keepsake Flowers
Gift Bags
Opportunity to work as a booth girl at the 2013 Arnold Fitness EXPO

Click here to enter.

A “Typical” Day with Fitness Pro Bethany Cisternino – The Balancing Act

Bethany Cisternino has one of the top physiques in the Pro Fitness ranks and as her routines continue to improve so do her placings. She’s coming off a runner-up finish at the Ft. Lauderdale Cup at the end of 2012 and has positioned herself as a leading lady heading into the 2013 Fitness International. She joins us on her Hardbody Road to the Arnold and shares what a “typical day” is like. As you can see her day is anything but “typical” to most but she gets it done!



Bethany Cisternino – 2013 Fitness International Contender

Balancing Act
Hello Hardbodies! Happy New Year!
I can’t believe it is a short 7 weeks until I step on stage at the 25th Anniversary of the Arnold Classic! This will be my fourth appearance and it is still a huge honor and blessing to represent IFBB Pro Fitness. I remember competing in my first Fitness International feeling so lost and overwhelmed. It was so nerve racking to be up against the best and being judged by the best. To top it off (no pun intended) I had a costume malfunction and didn’t get to finish my routine! Needless to say I have improved in my performance at the Arnold and I have learned to focus that nervous energy into a fierce focus that has helped me in the gym and on the stage!

In 2012 I competed in five shows! I ended my season placing 6th at the Olympia and 2nd at the Fort Lauderdale Cup in October. In fitness the two-piece round counts for 1/3 and the routine round counts for 2/3 of the total score. My goal in the two-piece round this year is maintaining a fuller look and keeping the same conditioning I have in the past. Therefore, after my last competition I took a 6 week hiatus from the gym to let my mind and muscles recover. My goal in the routine round is to bring a faster more explosive routine that the audience can get into.  Sometimes the audience is so quiet during our routines; I hope I have picked a theme and songs the crowd will like!

Every year my biggest challenge is finding time to fit in all my training without becoming mean, short-tempered, emotional, and overly tired (I’m sure the list could go on). The Arnold is always the first week of March, which means I am teaching and full into coaching indoor track. Time is precious so I stick the same routine every day.

A typical Weekday (7 weeks out)

6:15am – alarm
7:00am – walk my dog Roxy
7:10am – leave for work
7:35am – school starts (I teach high school Biology, Anatomy, and Biomedical Science)
9:00am – meal 1
1:00pm – meal 2
3:00pm – track practice begins
5:15pm – home / meal 3
6:15pm – train and 55 min cardio
8:30pm – meal 4
9-11:30 – shower, lesson plans, grading, emails, tweet, instagram, laundry, prep meals, etc
11:30 – meal 5
12:00 – bed

Each week I look forward to sharing with you news about my training, my diet, and how I am achieving my goals for this year. Stay tuned for my experiences with massage therapy and ART as I incorporate those into my training!

Follow Bethany on twitter at @BFitness80. Check out her competition photos on Bodybuilding.com. For more information on the Arnold Sports Festival visit www.arnoldsportsfestival.com and use #ASF2013 in all your tweets.

Texas Tawna’s Road to The Arnold

Tawna Eubanks is a rising star in the IFBB Bikini division. She’s steadily moved up in the ranks and positioned herself as a contender in every show she enters. She joins us in our Hardbody Road to The Arnold coverage and shares a bit about herself. They say “everything is bigger in Texa”s and when you see Tawna on stage her smile and energy reinforces that. Follow what the first time Arnold competitor has to say en route to her first trip to the Bikini International stage.


Tawna Eubanks – 2013 Biini International Contender

Hey Y’all! Tawna Eubanks here!

First I have to warn you, I’m not much of a writer and this happens to be my very first blog…ever! So bare with me please!  If you couldn’t already tell from the first two words, I’m Texas born and currently residing in Dallas, TX. I was raised in Waco, Texas… no David Koresh was not my uncle. For whatever reason everyone seems to think that if you’re from Waco your related. Anyways!  I currently train clients of all shapes and sizes out of Metroflex Gym of Plano, and I really enjoy the work. I also keep a pretty busy schedule teaching bikini competitors to pose! Texas has a great group of competitors and it’s fun to give back to the sport and help all these girls make the most of their time on stage!

I’ve been competing right at 3 years. It was a passion from the get go! I grew up competing in beauty pageants, dance, ballet, cheer-leading; I LOVED being on stage and still do, it has always felt like second nature to me. Last year was actually my first time to go to the Arnold; I was working a booth for Muscle Nutrition. Little did I know that working a booth at the Arnold would be so INTENSE! GEEZE that’s a lot of people in one spot. It’s a really cool atmosphere and it’s always really fun to meet all the fitness fans and like minded people.  The expo is where I spent most my time but I was able to escape to the stage to watch the bikini prejudging and finals. What a great contest… from Men’s Bodybuilding, the Strongman and seeing Arnold is always inspiring. After a great experience inside Veterans Memorial I left pointing to the stage saying “Next year…”

So, here I am prepping for THE 2013 Bikini International Arnold Classic, and I am just tinkled pink! As my first year being on the Arnold stage I am really looking forward to soaking up the moment and taking it all in. Sometimes I get caught up in preparation, training, dieting, traveling and everything else to get ready for a show. I forget to take a step back and realize WHAT I am prepping for, WHERE am I at, WHO I’m next to! Ha! I’ve been working hard on keeping my diet clean and getting to the gym through the Holidays so that I could bring my best package for the Arnold. It wasn’t easy being home with the family where I have a mom AND a step mom who are both Betty Crocker’s. But I managed and I am very excited and super anxious to step out on that stage! It’s really such an honor to be invited to this show and I still can’t believe that I am going to be part of it!

My last show was the Sacramento Pro in November so I am still fresh off stage. This was my second year at the SAC show placing second (Thanks AMANDA love ya girl ;), and THAT was motivation enough for me to prepare for the Arnold. I always want to strive for better on and off stage. Being that the Arnold is the first show of the year and coming off of a top spot in my last show I am more than amped to prep! I am undder 7 weeks out, training 6 days a week and cardio 6 days a week. I am really glad to share with y’all my journey to the Arnold stage.

Taking it one day at time!

Follow Tawna on twitter at @TawnaEubanks and like her Facebook page. Check out her competition photos on Bodybuilding.com. For more information on the Arnold Sports Festival visit www.arnoldsportsfestival.com and use #ASF2013 in all your tweets.

Justine Munro Withdraws from the Bikini International

Canadian IFBB Bikini Pro, Justine Munro has withdrawn from the 2013 Bikini International. As the saying goes, when it rains it pours. Justine’s exit leaves the 2013 field to sixteen competitors. Last night Noemi Olah withdrew her name from the competition. Justine Munro was invited to the 2012 Arnold but never made it to the stage. Arnold Sports shared the confirmation, “Sad news: @JustineMunro has withdrawn from the 2013 Bikini International. #ASF2013” via twitter.

Justine responded via twitter this morning as to why she has withdrawn from the competition. She cites a personal choice regarding her job as the reason.


2013 Bikini International Competitors

Noy Alexander
Jennifer Andrews
Jamie Baird
Tiffany Boydston
Abbie Burrows
Lacey DeLuca Lieto
Tawna Eubanks
Ashley Kaltwasser
Lexi Kauffman
Nathalia Melo
Nicole Nagrani
India Paulino
Jessica Paxson
Yeshaira Robles
Marcela Tribin
Anna Virmajoki

For more information on the Arnold Sports Festival visit www.arnoldsportsfestival.com and use #ASF2013 in all your tweets.

Momma Mamba, Trish Warren Returns to the Fitness Stage

Trish Warren was at the top of her game in 2011. She had positioned herself as one of the top women in Fitness after years of putting in the work. Her routines drastically improved and her physique was on point. Then her and her husband Branch (2x Arnold Classic Bodybuilding Champion) received the most exciting news of their lives… They were expecting their first child.

Trish was kind enough to share her story and a few photos with us. She shares what few knew about her delivery until now. Join us in welcoming Trish back to the stage and enjoy her journey to the 2013 Fitness International. She’s a huge inspiration to women every where and proving that you can have children and still be fit and healthy.

trish-preggoTrish hit the gym during her pregnancy.

Trish Warren – 2013 Fitness International Contender

Happy New Year Hardbodies,

I’m back!!!! I was very excited to see my name on the Fitness International list again. I have mixed emotions about the Arnold this year, I am ecstatic to be on that stage again, yet bummed that I won’t be cheering my husband Branch on to his 3rd victory! The last time I stepped on stage was at the 2011 Fitness International where I placed my all-time best… 3rd! Shortly after I found out that I was pregnant, and Branch and I were so excited to finally become parents. Faith brings us so much joy and happiness, she completes our marriage! Tooter Maroo (Branch’s nickname for her) has been my sidekick since day one. I never let having a baby stop me from doing what I love, I just pack her up and bring her along! I don’t think she would have it any other way. She tries to dance, lunge, and squat with us, it is so stinking cute! It’s funny how a little 18 pounder can bring a smile to your face every time you look at her!


All that being said, I had a great pregnancy only gaining about 20 lbs. I continued to workout which I had hoped would make my delivery super easy. Let’s just say things didn’t go as planned. I wanted so badly to have a natural birth, but my body had other plans. I was 1 week past my due date and still not dilating. My doctor Rebecca Robert scheduled me to be induced and ordered me to arrive the night before for cervical treatments to help start the process. This was the second time I would go through this, the first time did not work and I went home for a few days before trying a much stronger treatment. When I woke I had dilated to a 2 and Dr. Robert immediately began the induction process.

I labored until 4:45 that afternoon and with every contraction Faith’s heartbeat dropped drastically, the nurses were getting very concerned which was beginning to stress Branch and I out as well. Dr Robert came in and told us that her umbilical cord was wrapped around her neck and she didn’t think she would make it much longer. At this point I was dilated to an 8 and still did not have an epidural, not because I didn’t want one, but they forgot about it with all the concern over Faith’s declining heart rate. Pain or no pain, I didn’t care what had to be done, I just wanted Faith to arrive safe. An emergency C-section was how I ended up bringing our little angel into the world. Branch barely had time to put on his scrubs before they began the process, it all happened so fast, but it was the right decision. I was later told that Faith would not be here if I had had her naturally! Life is truly a miracle from God! Now Faith is almost a year old, and I have somewhat snapped back to my pre-pregnancy self. I will admit that it hasn’t been as easy as I thought. My body went through the ringer a time or two and I am having to overcome a major surgery to step back on stage.

With only 7 weeks until the Arnold Classic, I can finally say that I am beginning to see my old self again. Everyday gives me more and more confidence that I will be as good or better than before. I continued to drill routine stuff in hopes to make it back on stage in 2012, but ultimately decided to hold off until this year. I have been competing now for 13 years, and the rest has been very good for me. I feel like my body is responding to dieting very well, and I am not having to kill myself with cardio! I am once again working with Dr. Mike Feulner, he is so knowledgeable in nutrition, and has helped me achieve my best physique to date. I am very happy how I am looking at this point, and would venture to say that I am ahead of schedule. He helped me with my pre and post pregnancy nutrition plan, which has been monumental to how my body has responded to contest dieting.

I have no expectations going into this contest. It took me a long time to work my way to the top, and I am doing everything in my power to make sure I am better than my last appearance. My goal is to prove that I still have what it takes to be a good pro, and to encourage women that nothing is impossible.

Until Next Time…

Love Life and God Bless,

Trish Warren

baby-weight-crunches1No Excuses! Faith goes to the gym with Trish. Momma making it fun for all!


Check out Trish’s contest photos and competition history. Follow her on twitter @trishwarren and on facebook. For more information on the Arnold Sports Festival visit www.arnoldsportsfestival.com and use #ASF2013 in all your tweets.


Disclaimer: Reader discretion advised, please consult your physician before beginning any exercise or diet program.