The 2014 Olympia Weekend has come and gone, along with the myriad predictions made by handicappers amateur and professional that dot the media landscape before the show. It's like one of those How-Much-Do-You-Know-About (fill in the blank) quizzes your Facebook friends are getting 100 percent on, except no one gets scored—and no one is called to account for not getting it right. My own picks in the women's divisions were immortalized on the "The Fitness View," on September 10, and in the October ’14 Iron Man. Plus, I ’fessed up to some things during our live Olympia play-by-play on Friday night—with Dave Palumbo, Chris Aceto and Lonnie Teper—at RxMuscle.com, so I can't hide.
The question: What's the difference between a women's bodybuilding physique and a women's physique body? The answer recalls a famous Supreme Court quote about pornography: I can’t exactly define it, “but I know it when I see it."
The fortunes of so-called smaller women bodybuilders have been inconsistent over the years. Juliette Bergmann's reign in the early 2000s, in which she won the lightweight title at the Olympia three times and beat Iris Kyle for the overall in 2001, is a notable exception, but it's been a while since a smaller flexer made it into the top five at the O.
The months of April and May brought an astonishingly fine set of champs and almost champs in the women's physique sports. With shows in multiple cities almost every weekend, it's sometimes tough to remember last week's golden girl or promising newcomer. Here are a few who caught my eye this spring from the hundreds of promising contenders who hit the stage. See if you don't agree that they're worth keeping on your radar as the 2014 Olympia season rolls on.
The Ruthless Report 20
Meandering Through Memory Lane
I was searching my photo files for a shot of Scotty Peckham, who passed away just before Christmas, and before you could say, ‘Cheese!’ I was so deep into back-in-the-day, I almost forgot what I was looking for. Scott was the nice guy who married Monica Brant about a decade ago, and I’ll come back to his story in a bit.
The Ruthless Report 19
Ms. O and the Outlaw: A Pair of Movers and Shakers
Two very different enterprising ladies have my attention this month. One is a rising bikini star; the other is Ms. Olympia. What could these two women—poles apart in terms of physique development—possibly have in common (besides the gym, of course)? For one thing they've both got spunk, a.k.a. grit, moxie, determination. For another, they don't let grass grow under their feet. Let's start with the newcomer.
The Ruthless Report 18: A Room With a Fitness View… and More
Rx Muscle honcho Dave Palumbo is a cool guy as well as a man of action. When he got the idea to put on a Webcast of a women's roundtable TV show last summer, he didn't mess around. Before you could say Barbara Walters, "The Fitness View" was making its debut live from a Las Vegas hotel suite during Olympia Weekend. Happily, my long time contest-wrap partners, Carolyn Bryant and Nancy DiNino, and I got to be part of fitness-Webcast history, along with our two new friends, supplement maker Liz Gaspari and Nancy Noreman.
WPD to the O—In Their Own Words, Part 2
More interviews with top challengers for the first Olympia Women’s Physique Showdown, set for next weekend in Las Vegas. This time out: Karina Nascimento, Toni West and Tamee Marie.