Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Stop the Abuse-Remembering Amanda Savell

I posted this on Siouxcountry, and now I'm posting it here on FitGems.
For those that don't know, today is Amanda Savell's birthday. We all know the story of how she lost her life. For those that want to read my tribute to her, click here to read.

Bodysport's Ana Tigre wrote this deep yet truthful piece on Bodysport:

While some may be surprised, many will not be to learn that incidence of abusive relationships among women involved in the fitness industry and fit and attractive women is alarmingly higher than the national average. Women in our industry are being abused at a very high rate by spouses, boyfriends, trainers, and family members at an alarming rate.

Today is IFBB Figure Pro Amanda Savel's birthday and she should be able to celebrate it with her family and friends. Tragically she is no longer with us to celebrate because she was brutally murdered by her controlling and abusive boyfriend David Jacobs. A guy she obviously never thought would take her life and a guy she clearly didn’t see that she needed to protect herself from.

Many times we don’t even realize, or want to admit to ourselves or anyone else that we are in an abusive relationship. Abusive relationships don't only strip away your self-esteem, your dignity and your confidence, in many cases it will take away your life. Today we remember and miss a great athlete and champion. A beautiful and kind woman, daughter and friend, simply because she was not able to get herself out of a bad situation.
If you find yourself in an abusive relationship please understand it doesn’t have to be that way. Women escape to a safer and better life every day and there are armies of people out there that deal with it professionally every day and are there to help you. If you know deep inside you need that help then take it and get out before it is too late.

You may be in an abusive relationship if he or she:

* Is jealous or possessive toward you.
* (Jealousy is the primary symptom of abusive relationships; it is also a core component of Sexual Addictions and Love Addiction.)
* Tries to control you by being very bossy or demanding.
* Tries to isolate you by demanding you cut off social contacts and friendships.
* Is violent and / or loses his or her temper quickly.
* Pressures you sexually, demands sexual activities you are not comfortable with.
* Abuses drugs or alcohol.
* Claims you are responsible for his or her emotional state. (This is a core diagnostic criteria for Codependency.)
* Blames you when he or she mistreats you.
* Has a history of bad relationships.
* Your family and friends have warned you about the person or told you that they are concerned for your safety or emotional well being.
* You frequently worry about how he or she will react to things you say or do.
* Makes "jokes" that shame, humiliate, demean or embarrass you, weather privately or around family and friends.
* Your partner grew up witnessing an abusive parental relationship, and/or was abused as a child.
* Your partner "rages" when they feel hurt, shame, fear or loss of control.
* Both parties in abusive relationships may develop or progress in drug or alcohol dependence in a (dysfunctional) attempt to cope with the pain.
* You leave and then return to your partner repeatedly, against the advice of your friends, family and loved ones.
* You have trouble ending the relationship, even though you know inside it's the right thing to do.

Does the person you are with...

* Constantly keep track of your time?
* Act jealous and possessive?
* Accuse you of being unfaithful or flirting?
* Discourage your relationships with friends and family?
* Prevent or discourage you from working, interacting with friends or attending school?
* Constantly criticize or belittle you?
* Control all finances and force you to account for what you spend? (Reasonable cooperative budgeting excepted.)
* Humiliate you in front of others? (Including "jokes" at your expense.)
* Destroy or take your personal property or sentimental items?
* Have affairs?
* Threaten to hurt you, your children or pets? Threaten to use a weapon?
* Push, hit, slap, punch, kick, or bite you or your children?
* Force you to have sex against your will, or demand sexual acts you are uncomfortable with?

If these questions have caused some concern in your mind or upset you in any way you may want to talk to someone. Don’t wait. Abuse follows an escalating cycle, but it never gets better and not matter what you may feel at times, it’s not your fault. No one no matter who you are or what you think you have done has the right to abuse you.


By Ana Tigre
Fashion Designer
Professional Stylist

Source: http://www.bodysport.com/joomla/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=256:stop-the-abuse-remembering-amanda-savell&catid=85:features

To all the ladies reading this, if there's only one thing you pay attend to from me, let it be this: don't let ANY man abuse you. It's not worth it. If you're in one of those relationships, get out. Get help. Go to friends. You're athletes, tough as nails, no doubt about it, but you're women also. No, I'm NOT saying you're weaker than men...absoultely not. By saying you're women, I mean that you should be respected and treated like a woman is supposed to be treated. Believe it or not, there are real men out there. Should you find a real man, make sure he treats you right.

To the men, don't mistreat a woman. Just don't! Women were not made to be put on this earth to be sex toys or abuse and made slaves out of. If a woman pisses you off for something, just walk away. Don't retaliate, don't get even. Just let it go. It's not worth it at the end.

Being in a relationship can do wonders...just remember, you have one "you". Don't let abuse ways of the opposite sex take that away from you.

Monday, January 25, 2010

The NEW Bodysport.com

12 years ago, Terry Goodlad had a dream and created Bodysport. With the help, support, and friendship of many people such as Ana Tigre, Kevin Myles, Liza Hughes, and many, MANY others, Bodysport has grown and developed into one of the best fitness news sites around for fans and competitors of fitness, figure, and bikini. But now, Bodysport has evolved into something bigger than just a fitness news site. It's not a women's fitness online magazine. More content, more contest footage, more opportunities, same positive Bodysport attitude and respect.

Here's what Terry mentioned in regards to the new site:

The off-season is a time for everyone to make improvements and we are no exception. This year begins the 12th year Bodysport.com has been online and times have certainly changed since that day we first went online yet as much as things are different, our enthusiasm for sharing the news and so much more is still the same or even stronger.

This is the new look for Bodysport.com. We are not just a fitness news site any longer. We are an online Women’s Fitness Magazine and while this initial launch presents the bare minimum of content right now, it won’t remain this way for long. Expect daily updates and often times we will have frequent updates throughout the day.

Some cool things you will find on Bodysport:

* The Weather module. If you want your local weather or weather for any place you may travel to or are simply curious about just type in the name of the city and click go.
* Twitter News. We follow the tweets of many of the fitness industry’s top stars as well as many women’s magazines and will be posting our own breaking news tweets as well as re-tweeting others that you need to know about. This will be an on-going activity all day long so check back often.
* Competitors Section. While we want to meet the needs of all women interested in the fitness lifestyle we also want to meet the needs of those women who compete. Articles, videos, and interviews will be posted daily throughout the site so let us know what you want to see and what interests you most.
* You can search keywords now to find articles you may be interested in. On the bottom of each page is a search box. Type in a name, a topic, anything of interest and if its on the site a list of articles related to your search appear.
* Popular articles. Found on the home page this module displays the articles being viewed most frequently.
* Log in. You are not required to Log in to View Bodysport.com at this point but member registration will be required later on to view the site.
* Share links. If you have a personal website you want us to post on our links page then send us an email bodysportads@me.com This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

I hope you enjoy the new site and I want to thank you for your loyalty to Bodysport.com.

It's awesome to see this already great site evolve into something like this. Despite Bodysport existing for a little over a decade, I have a feeling this is only the beginning for the site and its creators.

Visit the NEW Bodysport at http://www.bodysport.com.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Sports After Dark (Siouxcountry's Premier Radio Show)

If you can recall a while back, Siouxcountry had a radio show called Sports After Dark. It was created by Eryn Strickland (Pumpin’ Iron Eryn) and her co host, Allison Moyer (Miss Allifit), produced by Musclepapa John (or MPJ for short), and had some of the top names as guests. This happened, and that happened, and Sports After Dark disappeared for a bit. But they returned in full force this past Monday in a BIG way, by having one of the newest IFBB Figure pros, Ann Titone, as their first guest on their first show since the revival.

It's a great listen, as Ann talks about her incredible road to an IFBB Pro card, recovering from her surgery, and the amount of pizza she can eat in one setting. I'm dead serious when I say...make some room in your computer/iPod/MP3 player and listen to and download the Sports After Dark shows. You will not be disappointed.

Click on the link below listen to their interview with Ann Titone. To save it, right click it and go to "save target as".

MP3 Audio Link

To give you a heads up on next week, Gina Aliotti will be their next guest, so expect another big show. :) I think there will be a new show every Monday night. You can get all the updates on SportsAfterDark by the following links:

Sports After Dark main site
and, of course, Siouxcountry. :)

Sunday, January 17, 2010

New Elite: Lori Steele

Lori Steele is to women's bodybuilding what Johnnie Jackson is to men's bodybuilding. Not the biggest, but DEFINITELY the strongest. Lori might just possibly be the strongest female bodybuilder in the IFBB today. She's had quite a ride becoming an IFBB Pro.

She spent her life as a competitve gymnasist. After that, she entered the world of female muscle as a figure competitor in 2005. She would compete in figure until 2007, where she made her switch to bodybuilding. But she goes beyond just bodybuilding. She is also a very accomplished powerlifter, setting and shattering records like crazy. According to her Facebook fan page, she's holding off her IFBB debut until 2011 at the New York Pro. This year, she's qualified to compete at the 2010 USA Powerlifting Nationals in Cleveland, Ohio, so she'll be focused on powerlifting for 2010, and will enter the IFBB competition rankings the next year. The FitGems Nation wishes her the best in powerlifting and bodybuilding, and everything else in between! :)

If you have Facebook, become a fan of Lori.

Two FitChats Set for February

Major announcement from the FitGems Nation:

Two HUGE FitChats are being set for next month, with one of them replacing the earlier FitChat that was set to take place earlier this month. On that, I apologize for the postponement on that event. BOTH FitChats will go on as scheduled, regardless if there's one person or 100 people logged in when this happens.

The first FitChat in February will be the 1st Annual FitGems Awards show! It's going to be a special event that will honor the best of the 2009 competitive season and those that will pave the way into 2010 and beyond. This event will take place on February 5th at 4PM Eastern/3PM Central with a pre-show at 3:30 Eastern/2:30 Central at the FitChat page on FitGems Nation. Speaking of that, don't forget to vote! You have until February 1st at Noon (Eastern Time) to vote for your favorites!

On February 26, exactly one week before the 2010 Arnold, there will be a 2010 Arnold prechat. This FitChat will take the place of the previous on that was supposed to have happened earlier this month.   We'll talk about predictions, who will shine bright, how well the current Olympia champions will fare in the Arnold, who will have a breakout performance, which pro debuts will be the most impressive, thoughts on why IFBB Pro Bikini will NOT debut at the Arnold, etc. Just like the FitGems award, this will also be on the FitGems Nation FitChat page, and this will begin at 4PM Central/3PM Central.

Hope you join us for these two huge FitChats!

Friday, January 15, 2010

Notice to All IFBB Fitness Pros

This was posted today, and news was broken first by Issac and Sioux, so I'd thought I'd pass this along as well to all IFBB Fitness Pros. Read the notice below from the IFBB office. I expect consequences should this not be taken seriously:

Source: http://www.ifbbpro.com/news/ifbb-pro-advisory-notice-011510/

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Aksana Avenue

If you are a fan of IFBB Figure Pro Zivile Raudoniene, aka Aksana in FCW, then you're in luck. Aksanians (or fans of Aksana) now have a site dedicated to one of the newest FCW stars called Aksana Avenue. Aksana Avenue is your destination for all things Aksana! Here is where you will get updates and looks at the FCW Diva on the rise and possible future WWE Diva. It's also the place where you can take a look back at her previous career (being an IFBB figure competitor) and get up-to-date news on the Lithuanian beauty. Let's support one of our own as she looks to make it to the mainstream! :)

To view the site, go to http://aksanaavenue.blogspot.com.

Friday, January 8, 2010

The Fit Bod Talk Show, with your hosts, Jack and Ann Titone!

If you've been following the NPC Figure scene for a while, and are just now following IFBB Figure, chances are you've heard of Ann Titone. Ann and her hubby Jack are among the coolest fit couple you'll ever met. They run a business together (Fitness America -Midwest), help sponsor Siouxcountry, and in 2009, Ann realized her dream of becoming an IFBB Figure Pro.

Now the Titones are venturing into the Youtube world, as they have a new talk show called The Fit-Bod Talk Show. It's a talk show where the Titones talk to members of the fitness industry. Here's the first episode below, with IFBB Pro Dena Westerfield, who will be competing in the Phoenix Pro and Ms. International (this is part one of a two-part interview).

It's a down-to-earth type of interview. I think this is how the entire show will be, which is a plus.The internet really is the place to go for new content on whatever you need, and with sites like Youtube, it's free publicity. I would bookmark this page and YouTube channel. Definitely worth your time to view and check out.

Monday, January 4, 2010

A Fitting Review-"Promoting Women"

I found this blog at Siouxcountry, and thought I'd share this with you. It's a blog called "Promoting Women". Jason Adams is the blogger, and from what I know about him, is clearly a cool guy. He loves bodybuilding, fitness, and MMA, and just like many others, he's trying his best to promote the female muscle industry in a positive way.

Here's link to his introduction, done by Jason himself:


I recommend bookmarking his blog and passing this on to others. If you would like to have an interview conducted by him, email Jason at elway78@netzero.com.We're only 4 days into the new year, but don't be surprised if this blog gets nominated for the 2010 FitGems Awards! :)

Tracey Greenwood out of 2010 Fitness International

For fans of women's fitness, I've got some bad news for you. Top fitness competitor Tracey Greenwood has withdrawn from the 2010 Fitness International due to injury. This news was posted on the Arnold Sports website and Twitter this morning.

Tracey has developed a big fanbase with her crowd-pleasing routines, and one of the most complete physiques in the industry. Her departure could possibly leave someone new to break into the top six. I know Tracey has got to be bummed about this, as many call her one of the best to never hold one of the big ones (Fitness International and Fitness Olympia). Hopefully that will change soon. Unfortunately, that won't be the case at this year's Arnold.

I'm not sure of what injury is right now. Hopefully Tracey herself or someone else will fill us in on that later on this week.

We at FitGems Nation wish a speedy and safe recovery for you, Tracey!!! :)

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Poll Results for December 2009 and New Poll for January 2010

On the final month of 2009, I asked you Who do you think will have a better career in pro wrestling? In one of the most active and closest polls ever on this site,56% of you said it will be Zivile Raudoniene in WWE, while 43% of you said it will be Kristal Lashley (Marshall) in TNA. Time will tell if either or both of them have great success in their respective companies.

Now, for the first poll of 2010..Which division will stand out the best in the NPC and IFBB in 2010? By stand out, I'm talking about participation, involvement, stars it will create, etc. A good deal happened in 2009 that can help make a valid case for any of the divisions in 2010.

New Elite: Monica Mark-Escalante

Monica Mark-Escalente has been someone who many people (including yours truly) viewed as a future IFBB Figure Pro ever since she won the 2007 Ironman Figure overall title. She would go on to compete 5 more times prior to her breakout year in 2009. She placed in the top ten in each competition she was in during her time in the NPC.

In 2009, she would redefined her physique for a somewhat softer look than what she had the last couple of years. The changes worked, as she won not only her class but the overall title at the 2009 Team Universe, thus earning her pro card and a chance to compete with the biggest names in figure, including her idol, Monica Brant. She will get her chance to show the world what she's capable of at the 2010 Figure International at the 2010 Arnold Sports Festival. Monica can correct me if I'm wrong on this, but I've heard throut the grapevile that this figure competitor is one strong female. I think I read on one website that she can carry around 120lb dumbells (I'm not kidding). Strong yet beautiful...what more can you ask for?! With her impressive resume in the NPC, expect Mrs. Escalente to make a "Mark" in the IFBB Figure division.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

2009 FitGems Awards (Vote for your favorites!!)

Thanks to you, here are the nominations for 2009 FitGems Awards. You can vote once everyday until February 1st at Noon Eastern Time (when voting will close):

Pro Female Bodybuilder of the Year
Iris Kyle
Heather Armbrust
Lisa Aukland
Betty Pariso
Debi Laszewski

Pro Figure Competitor of the Year
Nicole Wilkins-Lee
Zivile Raudoniene
Krissy Chin
Erin Stern
Heather Mae French

Pro Fitness Competitor of the Year
Tanji Johnson
Adela Garcia
Tracey Greenwood
Shannon Meteraud
Tina Durkin

Amateur Female Bodybuilder of the Year
Margaret Negrete
Holly Geerson
Suzanne Germano
Elizabeth Schneider
Theresa Hendricks

Amateur Figure Competitor of the Year
Tiffany Procopio
Mandy Henderson
Nicole Coleman
Andrea Lyons
Debra Lavette

Amateur Fitness Competitor of the Year
Kayde Puckett
Victoria Larvie
Ariel Khdar
Lena Squarciafico
Stacy Wright

Amateur Bikini Competitor of the Year
Kimberly Castle
Melissa Grady
Rebecca Staggs
Ali Sonoma
Debra Dunn

Breakout Pro Female Bodybuilder of the Year
Betty Adkins
Gale Frankie
Heather Armbrust
Debi Laszewski
Kristy Hawkins

Breakout Pro Figure Competitor of the Year
Ava Cowan
Andrea Watson
Mindi Smith
Kristal Richardson
Krissy Chin

Breakout Pro Fitness Competitor of the Year
Kayde Puckett
Trish Warren
Nicole Duncan
Myriam Capes
Nita Marquez

Breakout Amateur Female Bodybuilder of the Year
Sarah Hayes
Angie Robertson
Suzanne Germano
Theresa Hendricks
Amber DeFrancesco

Breakout Amateur Figure Competitor of the Year
Wendy Fortino
Mindi Smith
Monica Mark
Ava Cowan
Andrea Watson

Breakout Amateur Fitness Competitor of the Year
Venus Nguyen
Lena Squarciafico
Stacy Wright
Annette Perry
Kayde Puckett

Breakout Amateur Bikini Competitor of the Year
Ali Sonoma
Kimberly Castle
Venus Ramos
Jennifer Buckles
Melissa Grady

One to Watch in 2010
Pro Female Bodybuilders
Isabelle Turell
Diana Stanback
Beni Lopez
Heather Armbrust
Nicole Ball

Pro Figure Competitors
Andrea Watson
Ava Cowan
Ann Titone
Krissy Chin
Meriza DeGuzman

Pro Fitness Competitors
Kayde Puckett
Myriam Capes
Victoria Larvie
Trish Warren
Nicole Duncan

Pro Bikini Competitors
Kristal Marshall
Stacey Oster
Shelsea Montes
Kat Holmes
Monique Minton

Amateur Female Bodybuilders
Theresa Hendricks
Amber DeFrancesco
Suzanne Germano
Natalie Rae Ariel
Dana Richards

Amateur Figure Competitors
Wendy Fortino
Skye Fisher
Tori Truelove
Carla Gutierez
Laura Bailey

Amateur Fitness Competitors
Venus Nguyen
Lena Squarciafico
Stacy Wright
Annette Perry

Amateur Bikini Competitors
Sherrie Carnicle
Kimberly Castle
Venus Ramos
Rebecca Staggs
Jennifer Buckles

Female Physique Misc.
Competitor Who You Would Love to See Return To the Stage in 2010
Lisa Reed (fitness)
Mimi Jabalee (women’s bb)
Jenny Lynn (figure)
Davana Medina (figure)
Stacy Simons (fitness)

Female Competitor Site of the Year
Tracy Bodner (http://www.tracybodner.com/)
Trish Warren (http://www.trishwarrenfitness.com/)
Candice Houston (http://www.candicehouston.com/)
Natalie Rae Ariel (http://www.natalieraeariel.com/)
Monica Brant (http://www.monicabrant.com/)

NPC Show of the Year
North Americans
Emerald Cup
Jr. Nationals

IFBB Show of the Year
Ft. Lauderdale
Atlantic City
Europa Super Show

Female Physique Site of the Year (non-competitor) (NOTE: FitGems is NOT eligible due the fact that FitGems is running the contest)
FBB, Fitness, and Figure Admires

Photographer of the Year
Issac Hinds
Satio Photography
Dan Ray
MaryAnn Glascock

Blogger of the Year
Rebecca Staggs (A Mile in These Shoes) http://rebeccastaggs.blogspot.com/
Issac Hinds (Hardbody News) http://www.hardbody.com/news
Scott (Scott’s Corner for Women’s Bodybuilding) http://www.scottscornerforbodybuilding.com/
Julie Lohre (Julie’s Blogger) http://julielohre.blogspot.com/
Roman (Female Muscle Universe) http://femalemuscleuniverse.blogspot.com/

Supporter of the Year
Sioux (Jason Lan)
F.A. Harper (AirHarp)
Andy Vogel (Muscle Angels)
Issac Hinds (Lift Studios/Hardbody News)
Carl Burkins (dallas3)

Supplement Company of the Year
Optimum Nutrition
Gaspari Nutrition
MAN Sports
Custom Muscle/ NutritionMarket.com

It was not easy to narrow down the nominations. Here are the ways to vote.

1. Email your votes at admin@fitgemsnation.net (Put 2009 FitGems Awards in the subject line)
2. If you have Twitter, you can Twit your votes to http://twitter.com/fitgemsnation
3. If you're a member of the FitGems Nation site (http://www.fitgemsnation.net/), MySpace page (http://www.myspace.com/fitgemsnation), or Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=33407438502) , you can send me a private message (PM) with your nominations.
4. And...of course, you can leave a comment below with your votes.

Do you have to vote for ALL the categories?! It would be nice if you could, but I won't make you vote for everyone of them. These awards were created to honor the achievements of everyone that played a big part of this industy in 2009. You have until Feb. 1 at noon to vote, and the winners will be announced during the first week of February.