Monday, March 30, 2009

Song of the Week-50 Cent"Get Up"

Sorry about not having a Song of the Week last week. Been pretty busy as of late. But now that things are back to normal ( normal as it CAN get for me. LOL..), it's time to pick out a song for this week.

This week, I chose 50 Cent's "Get Up". This song is definitely one to do during cardio or weight-training, and is the perfect song to get down to as competition time draws near, and you need that extra motivation to keep on going.


Saturday, March 28, 2009

A Meeting of the (FitGems) Minds

A while back, I interviewed NPC Figure Competitor Jenn Jackson, who has supported the FitGems Nation since day one. She represents the future of the IFBB, in my honest opinion. I was hoping one day, we would meet face-to-face. Apparently, fate came a-knocking on my door this weekend, cause guess who I met...

(Jenn-12 wks out from Jr. Nationals)

Words can't express how beautiful she is in person. I kid you not.

Good grief, we talked about a LOT of stuff, including things I didn't fully understand until I heard it from someone who's a part of this industry. Some of us fans seem to take the ladies for granted, and don't truly understand what they go through on a daily basis to maintain their bodies and be able to present themselves. We both had things we are currently working on, and we were able to help each other out. You'll hear and see more about it in the weeks ahead.

In addition to being a beautiful person on the inside and out, she can be pretty hilarious. As she was showing me her up-and-coming website (which is a project I'm taking up), she noticed that the mousepad at the hotel business center had the apperance of a cookie. When you're dieting for a show (which she is, as she's getting ready for this year's Jr. Nationals 12 weeks from now), a cookie is the last thing you want to see. As a curiotisy of the hotel, they give cookies. She took the cookies, and immediately gave them to her boyfriend to put in his bag.

Oh yeah, sorry guys, she's taken! HAHAHA!!! I got to actually talk to Tom this time. I've seen him play college basketball a couple of times, and all I can say is this guy is going places should he become a pro. He's cool as well and is very supportive of Jenn. Every competitor needs some kind of support system, whether it be a site, or people coming to their shows and cheering them on, or fans just coming to them and telling them "Thanks for all you're doing. You're an inspiration to many people." I wish them both nothing but the best and a good, long relationship.

(Jenn and Tom)

As mentioned so much was talked about and discussed from nutrition, the difference of posing sexy and skanky, why flexing in figure really isn't neccesary, and her praises to many of her friends of this business. She evened talked a tad about one of her workouts she's currently doing to prepare for the Jr. Nationals. I could go on and on and on, but all I have to say it, as of this weekend, I have a completely newfound respect for every woman who dedicated their lives to this industry. I've always had respect for it, but now meeting someone who's involved in it, I respect it now more than ever before.

I had planned to do a small video interview, but my batteries went dead on me, and my backup battereis were no count. Gotta love technology, right?! LOL. Instead I sent her the questions I was going to ask for the video and she sent me the following answers:

1. Name and profession: Jenn Jackson, National Level NPC Figure Competitor Profession: GSM
2. One unknown fact about you: I'm a HUGE basketball fan :)
3. What you're getting ready for: Jr. Nationals.. 12 weeks out :)
4. Your thoughts on community sites (such as Siouxcountry and FitGems Nation for instance): I think it's great what the community sites are doing for the sport. To have such classy and professional sites for a womens sport such as ours is really wonderful. The fitness industry is growing more and more all the time, yet still a small nitch group. The sites almost provide a sort of "home away from home". A comfortable place to go where other people understand what it is you do every day :)
5. Future Goals: Oh my..To become an IFBB Pro of course :)

They said your first experience is the best. All I can say is thank you to Jenn and Tom for a visit that I will never forget. You made my weekend. Get that pro card, Jenn!!! :-)

(The FitGems PosterGirl (Jenn) and the FitGems Founder (that's me) FINALLY meet)

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Help Bring Pro Women's Bodybuilding Back to Tampa

The economy has not been kind to the world as of late, and the world of muscle is no exception. The Tampa Pro Women's Bodybuilding show has been canceled for this year, leaving the number of women's bodybuilding shows to just 2 pro shows, if they want to qualify for the Olympia. That's it. As fans, supporters, and fellow competitors, we've got to unite as one and show the people that we care.

Siouxcountry has
once again showed why they are true innovators of female muscle support by starting a fund for the show's promoter, Tim Gardner. He needs $12,000 by December to bring back women's pro bodybuilding to Tampa 2010. As of this writing, Siouxcountry members have donated $1850 to the fund. Yours truly will be donating to the cause over the year as well. Click on the donate button below to donate to the cause and help keep women's bodybuilding alive in not only Tampa but the entire industry as well.

This same button will also be on the blog for the remainer of the year as well as the FitGems Nation website.

If you would rather donate to Tim himself, go to

Let's help a fellow member out and give what we can. Thanks in advance, everyone!

Monday, March 16, 2009

FitGems FitMom Contest

Are you a fit mother? Do you know of a fit mother? Enter the first annual FitGems FitMom Contest!

The FitGems Nation attempts its best to honor all women who do whatever it takes to maintain and develop incredible physiques and be role models for those that want to be in shape. However, imagine doing all of that...and being a mother at the same time! That takes unbelievable dedication.

That's why this Mother's Day, The FitGems Nation is hosting an (hopefully) annual contest to give back to the mothers of this industry, by giving away at least $100 to a deserving mother. It's our way of saying "Thank You" for being an inspiration to moms everywhere. Note the amount will vary depending on who will be involved, but no less than $100 will be awarded.

The prize money can be used however you please. You can put it towards a future competition, buy diapers, put it towards food, clothing for you and your family, put it towards a vacation, pay gas, your children's education,it doesn't matter.

You can nominate yourself or nominate any mother in the industry. In order to enter, you must provide a pic of yourself and explain in short essay 50 words (more or less), why you consider yourself a fit mother and what it means to be a fit mother involved in the industry. Click here for all the rules.

Send your name, email, entry essay, and recent photo of yourself to Please put FITMOM 2009 for the Subject line of the paper. If you would like to get involved in this as a sponsor, send me an email, with the subject line having FITMOM SPONSOR.

Entries must be submitted by May 2nd at midnight Eastern time. The winner will be decided by members of the FitGems Nation site and a selcet few from the industry during the week of May 3rd-9th.The winner will be announced on Mothers Day (May 10). and the winner will be awarded during that week.

Good luck to all the participants!

Song of the Week-Killswtich Engage "This Fire Burns"

Another week, another song. This one is from Killswitch Engage. This song is yet another badass song here. For you WWE fans, this is CM Punk's theme.


Tuesday, March 10, 2009

My 2009 Ms. International Review (Iris Reclaims Her Throne)

With a different hairstyle and a more streamlined look yet with unrivaled conditioning, Iris Floyd Kyle redeemed herself from last year's fiasco as she won her fourth Ms. International championship. The minute she step on stage during prejudging, there was no denying that she would go on to win the event, and sure enough, she did. Debi Laszewski came in at an all-time best, placing in the runner-up spot. With this move, she has put herself in a spot to be one serious contender for a major title. Last year's champion, Yaxeni Oriquen-Garcia placed third this year. Heather Armbrust showed that you can't keep a good woman down, as she placed fourth after a disappointing finish in last year's Olympia. Dayana Cadeau's combination of muscle and grace was enough for her to get a fifth-place finish. Betty Adkins would wind up winning sixth place, proving her recent success was no fluke. All six are now eligible to compete for the Ms. Olympia title in September.

Now for the rest of the competitors:

I personally thought Isabelle Turell had a great Arnold debut and could have easily been top-six material. Just a little more time, and she will definitely be a top contender, without question. Cathy and Dr. Dena looked pretty good as well. Maria Gomez may have placed last, but there may have not been a thicker competitor on stage. She has a LOT of muscle mass, but I thought she carried it well.

What are your thoughts about this year's Miss International? Share your thoughts (good or bad), questions, concerns, and rants below.

Monday, March 9, 2009

My 2009 Fitness International Review (Jen Hen is Queen Hen...A-Gain!)

Jenny Hendershott was on a personal do something she hasn't done since 2005: win the Fitness International. Wit her coming fresh off her 2008 Fitness Olympia victory, as well as Adela and Kim not competing, Jenny was the frontrunner to take it home. She did not disappoint, as she won this year's event with ease. Julie Palmer went on to finish at an all-time best, as she placed in the runner-up position. Tracey Greenwood, who was thought to be Jen Hen's biggest competition, ended up in third place. She was neck and neck with Jenny in terms of physique, but her routine might have been the difference maker for Tracey. Regaine proved that 2008 was no fluke, as she moved up from sixth place last year to fourth place this year, making her an even bigger contender for the Arnold and Olympia titles. Perhaps the biggest winner besides the champion herself would have to go to Tina Durkin, who finished fifth after having back surgery, which kept her out for the 2008 season. I saw the webcast and she was beside herself when she heard her name announced. For her, it was like winning the event. Rounding out the top six and the Olympia qualifications was Shannon Meteraud, who will be looking to return to the Fitness Olympia for the first time in quite some time.

Now, about the rest of the bunch...

I'm very quickly becoming a HUGE fan of The Black Mamba, Trish Warren. Her physique was amazing, and I enjoyed her routine a good deal. She could have easily been in the top six. Nicole Wilkins has a good fitness debut at the Arnold as well. Oksana had one unbelivable of my favorites of the entire show. I was surprised to see Tanji Johnson and Erin Riley placed out of the top ten, much less top six. One last thing...was it just me, or did Heidi Fletcher-Sullivan seemed just a tad
too soft this year? BTW, she ended up dead last. The Arnold is just not Heidi's contest, huh? Despite that, I still see her as a future elite star in fitness.

What are your thoughts about this year's Fitness International? Share your thoughts (good or bad), questions, concerns, and rants below.

Song of the Week-Innerpartysystem "Don't Stop"

Innerpartysystem's "Don't Stop"= Best.Cardio.Song.Ever. Period.

This song to me is beyond badass. Wonder if the WWE will use this for a future PPV? Hmm....


Sunday, March 8, 2009

My 2009 Figure International Review (Zivile is Figure's Newest Queen of Queens)

With Jennifer Gates bowing out of this year's Figure International, many people (including yours truly) had Gina Aliotti as a lock to repeat her reign as the Figure International Champion. However, the person who would wind up as champion would be Zivile Raudoniene. Yes, the same person that shocked the world at the Figure Olympia last year by placing third came into her very first Arnold and won it, sending a very clear message to the figure competitors that the soft look is the winning look, whether you like it or not. No, I'm not hating on Zivile whatsoever. I think she's a very beautiful woman, and I wish her nothing but success for her. Gina would end up with the runner-up position. Now she will have to fight off not only Jenn Gates, but also Zivile if she want to claim the one title that's missing in her collection: The Figure Olympia championship. Third place went to Amy Fry once again, who looked great and could have easily have been second. Fourth place went to someone who just glowed like crazy to me: Krystal Richardson. Her overall look and muscle flow made her jump from 10th place last year, all the way to 4th place this year. Felicia Romero, the person I dubbed the "Poster Girl" for the new figure guidelines, came into her first Arnold and finished in fifth place. Rounding out the top six was the very-clear fan favorite, Monica Brant. Everytime she showed up, prejudging and finals, she would get big cheers, and can you blame them? She's a legend. The new kids could learn a thing or two from Mo. All six of them are qualified for this year's Figure Olympia.

Now for various thoughts on the some of the rest of the competitors:

Heather Mae French pulled out the signature model pose, which is very cool, in my honest opinion. Erin Stern looked great in her pro debut, and I predict big things in her future. Juliana Malacarne came in smaller than she did last year, but still seemed too muscular according to her placement. I'm pretty suprised that Sonia got eight, as the Arnold is usually one of her best events. Overall, I thought the figure ladies looked absoulely fantastic, and they should all be proud of themselves. I wonder what the outcome would have been if Adela Garcia and Jennifer Gates were to have entered this contest? Hmm...

What are your thoughts about this year's Figure International? Share your thoughts (good or bad), questions, concerns, and rants below.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

My Quick Arnold Predictions

I'm in the process of going into more detail about who I chose and why on the FitGems Nation website, but for's my predictions for the top six in each of the female divisions:

Ms. International

1. Iris Kyle

2. Yaxeni Oriquen-Garcia

3. Betty Atkins

4. Dayana Cadeau

5. Betty Pariso

6. Isabelle Turell-Stampler

WILDCARD: Heather (Policky) Armburst

Fitness International

1. Jenny Hendershott

2. Tracey Greenwood

3. Julie Palmer

4. Tanji Johnson

5. Regiane Da Silva

6. Erin Riley

WILDCARD: Oksana Grishina

Figure International

1. Gina Aliotti

2. Amy Fry

3. Zivile Raudoniene

4. Adela Garcia

5. Erin Stern

6. Kristal Richardson

WILDCARD: Sonia (Adcock) Gonzales

As soon as I'm done with the detailed predictions, I'll post them here. Again, these are just my OPINIONS, meaning that they probably won't happen. If they do, I'll be
extremely lucky.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Song of the Week-Saliva "Hunt You Down"

I've been thinking about it and decided that I'm going to post a video of a song that I think would be great for anyone to have on their iPod/MP3 playlist during a workout. I'll choose a new song each Monday.

I'll kick is off with Saliva's Hunt You Down. I heard this during WWE No Way Out, and considered this song bad-ass. This is definitely one that I would do when you're doing heavy cardio or intense weight-training.

So what do you think? What other suggestions do you have? Leave me a comment below on songs you listen to while working out.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Good luck to everyone this weekend!'s just about here. The Arnold Classic is just days away, and for the ladies, this will be the official kickoff of the competition season. If you're not in the least bit excited about this contest, then you're probably halfway in a coma. Many interested scenarios will be taking place in Columbus, Ohio this weekend.

For Ms. International, Yaxeni will be looking to defend her title and rewrite her name in the history books, and Iris will look to avenge her controversial loss last year. Like a true champion, Iris came back strong later on in the year and won her fourth Ms. Olympia title, and Betty Viana-Adkins emerged as a serious threat to a major title when she placed second at the O. Something's gotta give.

The Fitness International will see a new champion crown, as Kim Scheideler (2007-2008 Champion) has retired from competition, leaving a new champion to be crowned. Jenny Hendershott has emerged as the one to beat, as she will be in front of her home crowd. However, there are those such as Julie Palmer and Tracey Greenwood, who had their best years to date last year. Tanji and Regaine have been itching to be among the top three, and others such as Heidi and Mindi have made major strides over the last couple of years. If there's any place for someone to step up, it will be the fitness division.

The Figure International will also be one to watch, as Gina Aliotti (defending champion) is an odds-on favorite to repeat as champion, with the 2008 Figure Olympia Champion Jennifer Gates bowing out of the competition. For those that are keeping score, this contest will be just about one year ago that the new figure guidelines, so this will make it the first time the figure guidelines will take place at the Arnold. Judging by the physiques that were judged, will Gina repeat? She does have something big going for her, both Jenny Lynn and Mary Lado (the other Figure International Champions) have won back-to-back Arnold. But with Zivele, Felicia, Adela, Monica, Juliana and Erin (among others) competitng, this won't be an easy feat.

Look for my predictions on the pros sometime Tuesday.

The Arnold Amateur will see up-and coming stars compete, as well as the debut of the much anticipated bikini division. There's been a lot of talk about this division, both good and bad. This weekend, all the talk (or most of it anyways) will be put to rest as we see what bodies are presented on stage and what bodies get judges.
All in all, this is one Arnold that is a can't-miss event. Unfortunatley for me, yours truly won't be able to attend the show, so the webcast will have to do. To everyone that is going to the show, have fun, be safe, meet some new friends, and make this a trip you will never forget.

Side note: Thanks to everyone that voted on the American Gladiator poll. I asked Would YOU like to see American Gladiators back? 43% said yes with some major modifications (I wholeheartely agree), 31% would rather not and stick with the ESPN Classics, and 25% of you said yes.

This month's question is After a year in effect, do you consider the new figure guidelines a success or failure? I know I was going to post on this earlier; I will sometime after the Arnold.
To everyone competing this weekend...BEST OF LUCK TO ALL OF YOU!!!!!!!!!