In my last ‘Time Capsule' interview I featured an article I did with Bev Francis revolving around the 1987 Ms Olympia. That same year I also did an interview with Bev which covered her time in power lifting and her switch to the sport of bodybuilding. So, without further ado, here is my interview from ‘Strength Athlete' magazine in its entirety...
Leigh, you've been writing for bodybuilding magazines, websites and nutritional supplement companies since 1985. You've basically followed the sport and brought it to the world through your writing for over 2 decades. What is your take on the way the sport has progressed through the years? At what point in time and in light of what major occurrence did you foresee the sport going down a road that would ultimately lead to its demise?
TP: Tell us about yourself Sheila. What do you do for a living? Where do you live and how long have you been competing?
SB: Well after about 13 yrs of being a hard laborer, it seemed life sort of forced me to go on my own. Which was fine for I needed to be confident within my bodybuilding career-- to learn, to be on my own, to build business relationships in which that learning never stops. For now, it's internet business; I do work for Eric Davis of HARD CULTURE. It's a clothing line that I do a lot of the fitness designs. I'm also a spokesmodel at trade shows as well as one of his main clothing models.
Now that we are well into the 2009 contest schedule, I thought it would be interesting to travel back in time to the year 1987 when I interviewed Bev Francis following that year's Ms Olympia contest. This contest turned out to be very challenging for Bev; however, being a true champion, she not only meet the challenge head on, she went on to place a very respectable third in a great lineup. Here's her story, which begins with a look at her preparation for that year's show....
When she was 20 years old, she decided, on a whim, to spend one day in LA with some Sorority sisters. Their plan was to get tickets to The Price Is Right game show. Before she left, she jokingly told her friends and family that she was going to "meet Bob Barker and win a car!" So they sat in line all day and never made it in to the show. Apparently everyone gets tickets, but only the first 300 people in line actually get in to the show. They were so disappointed, they all decided to stay another night, cram seven girls into one cheap (we're talking college students) motel room, and get in line the next morning at 5AM.
We like to bring you the most intriguing stories we can about exceptional women athletes. This story about Tonya Todd is about as intriguing as they get, and I imagine, pretty damn motivating.
Check this out, imagine your trainer tells you to enter two totally unrelated contests that take place on the same day and are run simultaneously. That's right; at the same time. I know, sounds crazy but just stick with me here... The goal is to get ready for a Strongwoman contest that requires both endurance and strength while also prepping for a physique contest. You need to be lean, tight, hard, feminine, beautifully coiffed, carb-depleted, energized, strong, and focused. . . all at the same time! And did I say strong
The use of anabolic steroids by female bodybuilders is an issue which sparks controversy in media circles and a degree of secrecy in the world of bodybuilding. Ask any male competitor what drugs he uses on and off season and you will usually get a fairly honest response (some are even prone to exaggeration!). On the other hand, steroid use in the female bodybuilding world is still shrouded, to some extent, in a veil of secrecy. Few women will open up (except possibly to their closest friends) and reveal exactly which anabolic substances they're using.
Welcome to the first in a series where I will be turning the spotlight on some of our amazing female readers. The first lady to take center stage is Melissa Di Bernardo who did her first show back in June 2005 as an INBF competitor.Melissa is the first to admit that she ‘sucked' at her first attempt but, she was quick to step up her game, getting back on stage in October of the same year and scooping up the overall titles in both figure and bodybuilding at the INBF Natural NY Championships
Reproductive function is a significant health concern for both male and female athletes and, for those who use anabolic steroids, the concern becomes even greater. Whilst men may experience changes in libido and natural testosterone production, the effect training, dieting and anabolic steroid use has on the female body is immediately noticed via changes in the menstrual cycle. In fact, many female athletes report menstrual irregularities or amenorrhea (the absence of periods for 3-12 months). There are several reasons for this disruption in the normal menstrual cycle, the most frequent cause being a dysfunction at the hypothalamic level - often referred to as functional hypothalamic amenorrhea.
Beautiful women with beautiful bodies are not too hard to come by in this biz. Their prevalence is such that we have come to expect scintillating examples of the female form at every turn. Be it the Arnold or Olympia expos, national level bodybuilding contests, or various trade shows that support our industry, it's a foregone conclusion that you will be stumbling over more mad hot women than any other place on Earth.