Halloween is Every Day for Female Bodybuilders

Dena Westerfield wants to suck your blood!

Dena Westerfield wants to suck your blood!

Every October 31 we celebrate a very odd holiday. People of all ages dress up in costumes, artistically carve up pumpkins, attend spooky themed parties and/or wander around their neighborhoods begging strangers to hand out candy.

No candy? No problem! Unless, of course, you don’t mind your house getting egged, toilet papered or surrounded by flaming piles of dog feces.

The concept of Halloween, according to experts in folklore, dates back to Celtic “pagan” traditions of welcoming in the harvest season. Halloween also might be rooted in Festival of the Dead-type traditions where people honor their dead relatives and usher them into the Afterlife. In the United States, a Catholic-inspired Cajun tradition began in the early days of North America to spend a nocturnal Mass at graveyards to bless the souls of the deceased.

Getting a creepy vibe already?

But today, let’s face it. Halloween is all about having a socially acceptable reason to dress up in silly costumes, watch scary movies and eat too much sugary candy. Plus, Halloween sort of officially kicks off the “holiday season” which includes Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s.

Some costumes range from the innocent to more “adult.” Some people will go as doctors, firefighters, kittens or Spider-Man; while other will choose the more family-friendly route and become a stripper, dominatrix or slutty nurse.

Whatever. Your choice of costume is your choice alone, as long as the company you work for doesn’t have any strict policies against publicly embarrassing yourself.

Now this is one Halloween party I'd like to attend! Here we have Annie Rivieccio, Aleesha Young and Alina Popa.

Now this is one Halloween party I’d like to attend! Here we have Annie Rivieccio, Aleesha Young and Alina Popa.

We dress up because it’s fun to pretend to be something we’re not, even if only temporarily. As kids, we wanted to be Superman and Wonder Woman. So if we dress up like them, isn’t that close enough to living out our dreams?

Perhaps, but there’s another reason why we dress up: to celebrate Halloween’s macabre roots. Zombies, vampires, serial killers, ghosts, goblins, ghouls, monsters and politicians are all par for the course. Who doesn’t like to channel their inner Jason Voorhees or reenact a scene from Night of the Living Dead? Whatever is most frightening is often the most fun.

These two reasons might explain why, as absurd as this may sound, for a female bodybuilder every day is Halloween. Every day is their chance to “dress up” and become something different. To become something superhuman, unworldly and strange. Many fans of female bodybuilders may not consider the presence of a muscular woman to be “ghoulish,” but unfortunately some people out there do. So let’s celebrate Halloween this year by paying tribute to the ladies we love 365 days a year.

Her body is her costume

Every single time an FBB goes to the gym to train, isn’t she essentially creating the “costume” that she’ll wear every single day of her life? Except in this case, her costume is her own body. It doesn’t consist of hats, tights or capes; but instead muscles, veins and sharp angular curves.

It takes a lot of work to achieve the physique of a Katka Kpytova or Alina Popa. Strict dieting, strenuous weightlifting, supplements, drugs, mental toughness, hardcore dedication and sacrifices are necessary to reach that level of muscularity. Not too many people in this world are that dedicated to their craft. But those who are should be very proud of their work.

When a woman builds bulk on her body, she’s making a decision to sculpt a better version of herself. She’s changing her identity. She’s breaking the mold of convention and embracing the nontraditional. Whether she intends to compete or not is irrelevant. The desire to gain maximum muscularity is a statement unto itself. It says “I’m reinventing myself, whether you like it or not.”

The concept of reinventing one’s self through the lifestyle of bodybuilding is fascinating. If our “traditional” idea of femininity includes slender arms, lush curves and a small frame, a female bodybuilder tosses all of that out the window. Her rebooted identity defies these norms while at the same time creating new ones. “Feminine” doesn’t have to be a euphemism for “weak.” It can mean so much more.

Her muscles are what define this new identity. Because muscles are not typically associated with femininity, women like Debi Laszewski are not seen as traditional women even though their womanhood hasn’t changed one iota. Deep down inside, Debi has always been Debi. Even before she took up bodybuilding, Debi was Debi. Now that she’s a world class athlete, she’s still Debi.

You don't want to get on Maribel Barnes's bad side!

You don’t want to get on Maribel Barnes’s bad side!

Think of it this way: the mere presence of muscles on a woman’s body doesn’t change anything about her. Whether someone changes their appearance for the better or for the worst, who they are intrinsically doesn’t change. Yes, an FBB may gain more confidence during her training, but her inherent identity hasn’t been altered by a single degree. Everyone has an identity. Your body’s appearance is just one facet of that.

In this respect, a female bodybuilder’s muscles act as her “costume” or “uniform.” To put it another way, a football player becomes a football player once they put on their pads, helmet, shoes and protective gear. When it’s not game time and they’re dressed in “street clothes” out in everyday life, they’re no longer a football player. They’re just like you and I. Sometimes, the uniform makes all the difference.

Likewise, an FBB’s muscles acts as her professional uniform. It informs us about who she is and what she does. But that’s not all that there is to her. She’s so much more than her appearance. Her thoughts, feelings, beliefs, actions, relationships, opinions, interests and everything else encompasses her entire identity. Her body is just the uniform she wears as a result of her chosen profession.

Like other self-revealing occupational uniforms (a construction worker’s hat, a doctor’s smock, a radio DJ’s headset, etc.), a female bodybuilder’s muscular body is an instantly identifiable clue as to what she does for a living. It’s her way of announcing to the world what she’s passionate about. It’s an outward expression of self-identification. Her muscles are her costume. Her muscles are her uniform. Her muscles are not her entire identity, but it’s a very important part of it.

Her body as a grotesque costume

It’s maddening. It’s ridiculous. It’s blatantly sexist and stupid. But this train of thought still exists: Muscular women are gross. They’re disgusting. They’re not real women. They’re women who are trying to become men. They’re revolting to look at. They shouldn’t look like that. Blah, blah, blah.

While the previous point talks about a female bodybuilder’s muscles being her living costume, this point discusses her muscles as other people perceive them. Unfortunately, not everyone perceives them in a positive light.

For many people, an FBB’s muscles make her a monster. It makes her a freak. It changes her identity, but not in a good way. It’s scary, frightening, disturbing, repulsive and lots of other synonyms that would tear a thesaurus in half. Her Halloween costume resembles that of a horror movie villain rather than an elite athlete. These perceptions explain why more women don’t lift weights at the gym and are afraid to pick up a dumbbell heavier than 8 pounds.

I've never seen the film "Blood + Kisses" starring Denise Masino, but I'm sure she's very sexy in it!

I’ve never seen the film “Blood + Kisses” starring Denise Masino, but I’m sure she’s very sexy in it!

Thus, another reason why every day is Halloween for female bodybuilders is because for many folks out there, an FBB is a walking and breathing humanistic monstrosity of distorted femininity. Her Halloween costume is her “man-like” muscles that obviously make her so unattractive. Whether her motivation for gaining muscle mass has anything to do with a deliberate attempt at reorganizing her gender identity has nothing to do with this perception. For far too many people, a muscular woman is nothing more than a woman pretending to be a man (or to put it another way, she’s “unnatural” for looking like that).

Or, wanting to become a man. Short of undergoing gender reconstruction surgery, adding muscle bulk to her body is the next best option. This opinion is far from being the most popular reason why women decide to pursue bodybuilding. Most do it for the sport. Others do it for self-empowerment. For many, it might be a “hobby,” but one that they take a bit more seriously than knitting or collecting postage stamps.

For the men and women out there who are genuinely sickened by muscular women…well, that’s life. There’s very little that will change overnight. They might view her like a sci-fi creature from a mad scientist’s laboratory, but the rest of us know better. It’s only a matter of time when women like Lisa Cross are celebrated as much as mainstream female celebrities like Jennifer Lawrence.

If Tina Chandler wanted to arrest me...yeah, I'd let her.

If Tina Chandler wanted to arrest me…yeah, I’d let her.

Trick or treat?

Just so we don’t end this discussion on a sour note, imagine this scenario playing out in your actual life:

You’re going out trick-or-treating. Let’s say you’re an adult, but you live in a neighborhood where it’s socially acceptable for grownups to knock on doors and ask for candy. It’s getting late, so you know it’s about time to start wrapping up this confection excursion. You have one house left to visit. It’s nearing 9 p.m. (your self-imposed bedtime is 9:30 for whatever boring reason) and your bag of candy is still not completely full.

You knock on the door of a strange brick house standing on the top of a steep hill. It’s covered with moss, ivy, chipped paint and cobwebs. You’re alone. Your heart races but you’re still insisting on gathering as much sweet loot as possible. You approach the house cautiously. You knock once. No answer. You knock twice. Still no answer. You knock thrice. Once again, there is no answer. You wait a beat. Then two beats. Then three. Several more beats pass by, then you finally give up and start to walk back to the main street. Then, out of nowhere, you hear the door open. It creeks loudly. You turn around. And you see who answers the door.

Monica Martin. MEOW!

Monica Martin. MEOW!

It’s not one, nor two, nor three, but seven gorgeous female bodybuilders having some sort of a spooky soiree. They’re all in costume, ranging from Elvira to a cannibalistic Nazi zombie stripper to a trial lawyer. Seven tall, thick, highly muscular women with the most beautiful faces you’ve ever seen. They seem intrigued by you. They look you up and down at your wimpy frame and even wimpier costume. A glow-in-the-dark cartoon skeleton? Seriously? That’s the best you could do?

The host FBB speaks first.

“Are you here to trick-or-treat?” she asks. Her low, gravelly voice seems to shake the foundations of the Earth.

“Uh, yes. That’s why I’m here ma’am,” you answer timidly.

The seven start to laugh. You might have heard laughter from several other female bodybuilders inside the house that you can’t see. The leader raises a hand to hush everyone up. Everyone becomes silent. But their gaze is still exclusively on you.

“Good,” she begins. “Then you should come on in. We’ve got a very big treat for you.”

The seven FBBs move to the side of the door, inviting you indoors. You can clearly see that the house is infested with beautiful muscular women, all of them more muscular and more beautiful than the rest. There must be several dozens of them in there. Their costumes are very sexy. Everyone is scorching hot beyond description. You’re speechless.

But you go inside nevertheless. The door closes behind you. The party commences.

Happy Halloween!

Advertisements

Self-Worship: The Unspoken Confessions of Female Bodybuilders

Four of the most beautiful women in the world: Yaxeni Oriquen, Anne Freitas, Alina Popa and Iris Kyle.

Four of the most beautiful women in the world: Yaxeni Oriquen, Anne Freitas, Alina Popa and Iris Kyle.

Everyone knows how amazing female bodybuilders are in every aspect of life: Physically, emotionally, intellectually, socially, sexually and perhaps even spiritually.

It should be obvious that lots of men out there share these feelings. Female bodybuilders, athletes and those who love pumping their bodies at the gym are, simply put, a thing of beauty. They are beautiful in ways that cannot justifiably be put into words. The context of their beauty is so unfathomable that 100 volumes of encyclopedia-level text could not explain it all.

But that’s just one perspective. That’s the perspective of straight men who love strong women. But there’s a whole other side of the coin that deserves its own discussion.

What about women?

Specifically, women who are also strong and muscular. What do they think of their fellow muscular sisters? Or themselves?

For the past year I’ve been in correspondence with a real-life female bodybuilder who has expressed her love for my blog. Yes, I was floored when I learned that an actual flesh-and-blood FBB was reading my posts! In our many discussions, this topic recently came up: Female bodybuilders are often turned on by each other…and themselves.

A very tanned Nicki Pimm.

A very tanned Nicki Pimm.

Wait, what? In addition to that being perhaps the hottest thing I’ve ever heard in my life, in many ways this makes perfect sense. Of course, it goes without saying that I myself am not a female bodybuilder, so my knowledge on this subject is somewhat limited. But from what I do understand, let’s take some time to discuss a topic that definitely deserves a blog article unto itself.

The Underlying Assumption

First, let’s begin with the Underlying Assumption. A female bodybuilder is a woman who dedicates nearly every waking moment of her life toward one singular goal: to achieve a desired physique that maximizes her body’s muscular potential.

This potential could be realized in terms of muscle mass, aesthetic proportions, striking the perfect balance between muscularity and traditional femininity or a combination of all three. Regardless, the ultimate goal is to sculpt one’s body to become Beautiful (despite, of course, not everyone in our society sharing this definition of “Beautiful”). I capitalize the word “Beautiful” because it’s not just a general classification of “beautiful.” Conversely, “beautiful” with a lowercase “b” is defined as “pleasing the senses or mind aesthetically.” That dictionary definition is pretty basic and covers a lot of ground. “Beautiful” with an uppercase “B” means (in my personal dictionary) “pleasing one’s own personal senses or mind aesthetically.”

In this definition, “Beautiful” is not a term defined by others. It’s a standard defined by one’s own self. Yes, obviously competitive bodybuilders are being judged by a panel of other people, but that’s beside the point. Ultimately, an FBB (or male bodybuilder) is really competing against herself. Her standards are the only standards she cares about. Perfection is an internal goal, not an external one. She doesn’t seek to please others. She seeks to please herself. PERIOD.

So given all this, the Underlying Assumption is the basic premise that female bodybuilders are actively pursuing to achieve “Beauty” as they define it. It’s a lofty goal that takes years and years of dieting, lifting, supplementation, drugs (yes, this happens. Get over it), strategic periods of rest, consulting, tears, anguish and sacrifices. All to achieve what? That’s right. Beauty. To become Beautiful in ways that are almost comparable to a religious experience. It’s a spiritual quest that one always pursues, yet never fully achieves.

Sheronica Sade Henton is a rising star.

Sheronica Sade Henton is a rising star.

No professional athlete worth their weight in gold would ever admit out loud that they’ve “made it.” Michael Jordan never believed he reached the mountaintops of being a great basketball player. Even at the prime of his career, he always believed he could be better. There was something about his game that could be improved. While we all know now (and at the time) that he was indeed the greatest of all time, he never believed that. He always needed something to push him further, to motivate him to become better at what he does. Greatness is not an end result, it’s a process. A process one never stops chasing.

That being said, a female bodybuilder is – every single day of her life – climbing her own bodybuilding Mount Everest. She’s seeking out her muscular Nirvana. Her spiritual quest, though unorthodox, resembles more a Tibetan monk striving toward Enlightenment than a professional athlete preparing for game day.

Which leads us to…

Now that we’ve established our Underlying Assumption, we can now move on to the idea that started this discussion.

Cindy (which is not her real name, but a fake one to conceal her true identity), confesses that many female bodybuilders get sexually aroused by both themselves and their fellow FBBs. Whether it happens during a contest, while working out or during interactions with her muscle sisters, there are FBBs who can’t help but become sexually provoked by it all.

Just to give you a better idea of what I’m talking about, here is an excerpt from a recent conversation I’ve had with Cindy:

Cindy: Women are omnisexual. Everything turns us on. Men are more likely to be oriented in one or the other direction.

Cindy: There are a lot of bisexual men, but bisexuality in general comes STANDARD with the women’s psyche.

Ryan: Do you get turned on by yourself?

Cindy: YES very

Cindy: When I see or feel my body growing, pumping

Cindy: And my body reacts when I see other women’s bodies although I really NEED a man for sex

Ryan: Fascinating

Ryan: Are you turned on by the fact that it’s a female form that’s muscular, or because muscularity is traditionally associated with masculinity?

Cindy: No because of how it feels, the sensuality of it

Cindy: I feel so STRONG

Cindy: It makes me wet to feel this way

Cindy: And my body responds, my pits get moist, my nipples get hard

Cindy: It is just so erotic

Wow. What a fascinating conversation, wouldn’t you say? While this is coming from her own perspective, it probably isn’t a stretch of the truth to assume that other FBBs share this same experience. I wouldn’t go as far as to say that all of them do, but for the sake of argument, let’s assume this experience is common enough.

So, we’re not talking about lesbians who are naturally attracted to other women. That’s an oversimplification. We’re talking about straight (or semi-straight) women who, in certain circumstances, become aroused through the mere fact of being a bodybuilder. This means there must be something inherent within the lifestyle that causes this to happen. But what is it?

What this all means, in a nutshell

It’s not surprising that some bodybuilders (male or female) find their profession (or when participating in activities associated with their profession) to be so sexually arousing. These are men and women who are the top of their class competing with themselves to achieve a physique of gargantuan proportions. Our Underlying Assumption returns us to the concept of “Beauty” and how attaining this level of “Beauty” is an unrelenting driving force behind everything these athletes do.

You don’t reach the pinnacle of athletic achievement without passion. You don’t reach it without being out-of-the-ordinary. You don’t get there unless there’s something deep within your soul that aches to be the best you could be.

And that attitude can be very arousing. Especially when you mix in the dynamic of creating perfectly sculpted bodies, which already carries heavy sexual overtones.

The blonde goddess Johanna Dejager.

The blonde goddess Johanna Dejager.

Think about everything related to competitive bodybuilding. The time. The preparation. The sacrifices. The heart. Everything. Just to qualify for a competition is an accomplishment unto itself. But more than that, it’s a very sensual experience. The hot lights flashing down on the stage, the sweat dripping off your brow as the judges write down notes about you, the sounds of people screaming your name as you strike a pose, and especially the high stakes drama associated with any competitive environment.

Sexual arousal is predicated upon being exposed to stimuli that create a physiological and mental response conducive to sparking arousal. These stimuli come from the five senses: sight, taste, touch, sound and smell. Whether you’re in the gym, backstage before a show or in the privacy of your bedroom admiring your physical progress in the mirror, opportunities to being exposed to stimuli are numerous.

So what is “stimuli?” Stimuli can come from a variety of sources. It’s highly sensual and differs from person to person. We’re not all turned on by the same thing. But when exposed to these stimuli at the proper time in the proper manner, it triggers a sexual response in the mind.

Anything can trigger a response. Anything. A sight. A scent. Someone’s voice. Someone’s moan. Bright lights. Dim lights. Natural light. Warm air. A cool breeze. A crowded room. A lonely room. Your partner. Yourself. A thought. A memory. A nightmare. A long forgotten dream. A conversation you once had with someone. Hunger. Fullness. Thirst. Feelings of happiness. Feelings of contentment. Feelings of uncertainty. A contorted mixture of emotions too enormous to describe. Excitement. Anticipation. Anxiety. Melancholy. Nervousness. That sensation of butterflies fluttering about in the pit of your stomach. The joy of victory. The agony of defeat. The mixed feelings of seeing a loved one win while you lose. Sweat. Your heart pounding. Your pulse racing a million miles per minute. Someone’s breath. Someone’s jittery mannerisms. The look on someone’s face. The position of someone’s body. The way a beam of light shines down on someone’s face. Her face. His face. Your own face. Youthfulness. Experience. Love. Anger. Hurt. Awkward encounters. Sickness. Good health. Cleanliness. Filth. Body heat. An unspoken sense of connectedness. Intuition. Ambiguity. Jealousy. Envy. Admiration. Unconditional respect. Her muscles. His muscles. Their muscles. My muscles. Flexing. Showing off. Demonstration of hard work. Playfulness. Egos. Competition. Fierce rivalry. The epic build up. The inevitable let down. Persistence. Shattered dreams. Dreams that really come true. Waiting for your turn. Waiting for his turn. Waiting for her turn. Waiting for our turn. The spotlight. The attention. The tens of thousands of voices screaming your name. The hundreds of thousands of voices screaming the other person’s name. Loudness. Quietness. Silence. Stillness. Shaking in your boots. A chill running down your spine. A tap on your shoulder. A pat on the back. A handshake. A kiss. A whisper in your ear. That one time you made love. That one time you masturbated. That one time you saw him. That one time you saw her. That one time you looked in the mirror and liked what you saw. That one time you looked in the mirror and hated what you saw but vowed to change that immediately. The promise you made to yourself to accept who you are regardless of what other people think. Dancing in the rain. Feeling snow hit the tip of your tongue. Basking in the warm glow of a summer evening. Looking out the window at a peaceful autumn storm. The feeling of your sore muscles after a strenuous workout. The feeling of his muscles after his workout. The feeling of her muscles after her workout. Craving that pump. Needing external affirmations. Desiring to be desired. Being desired. Being the one and only. Being the focus of attention. Knowing your destiny is entirely up to you. Knowing you can fail. Knowing you can succeed. Succeeding. Failing. Not giving a damn either way. Epic moments. Subtle moments. Everyday moments. The logical. The unexplained. The magical. The divine. That which you know but cannot put into words. That which you are embarrassed to even think about. That which you need more than anything else. A goal. A purpose. Existing. God. Humanity. Everything.

Everything.

Or, better yet, anything.

Who’s to say you’re wrong to be turned on by any of this? After all, everyone has different sensual triggers. We’ve all lived lives as diverse as anything you can imagine. The list goes on and on and on. But that’s the beauty of the human mind. You can’t explain any of it. You feel things because you can. The heart and mind sometimes work in tandem, other times they work against each other. It’s all out of your control.

Sophie Legace is a spectacular view, is she not?

Sophie Lagace is a spectacular view, is she not?

Any athlete or artist who spends so much time, sweat, emotional vulnerability, personal discomfort and sense of “normalcy” is bound to be a person with heightened passion. That drive isn’t found with just anyone. The “average Joe” or “Average Jane” could not do what a room full of hot, sweaty, smelly and divinely beautiful female bodybuilders could do. Not by a long shot. What they have to do to look the way they do is simply beyond what most of us would do to pursue our so-called “dreams.”

But for them, it’s not just a mere “dream.” It’s a calling. It requires mental toughness that only a small handful of us could emulate. So when you’ve invested so much into your craft, when you’re finally surrounded by peers who know exactly what you experience on a day-in and day-out basis, you have every reason to be aroused by your surroundings. You have every reason to want to participate in a mass muscle orgy right on the spot. All your pent-up desires have to come out or else you might explode.

So…why are some female bodybuilders easily aroused by each other?

For God’s sake. Isn’t it bloody obvious?