Ethereal Beauty: A Rational Explanation to Why Female Bodybuilders Seem Otherworldly

Andrea Giacomi showing off her gorgeous legs.

Andrea Giacomi showing off her gorgeous legs.

Anybody who has ever been in the presence of a muscular woman, either in an intimate or public setting, knows the ethereal feeling that inevitably summons inside you.

They’re otherworldly. They’re angelic. They’re supernatural spiritual beings who defy conventional description. When you see (or have the privilege of physically touching) a muscular woman with your very own eyes, you know this experience is vastly different than being in the presence of any other attractive human being.

This feeling isn’t limited to being physically present with a female bodybuilder, athlete or fitness enthusiast. Looking at pictures of them, watching their videos, or reading about them can also conjure up this reaction. But it’s most pronounced when you get to witness up-close-and-personal a muscular woman in the flesh.

What kind of “reaction” are we talking about exactly? Consider the following:

You’re minding your own business one fine day. It’s a warm spring Saturday afternoon and you’re outside running some casual errands. Shopping for dinner, buying a birthday present for your mother, or just going out for some good old fashioned exercise; it doesn’t matter why you’re out and about.

You’re walking down a busy street. Thousands of people are milling around, minding their own business. It’s a sea of humanity. Cars, pedestrians, people taking public transportation…there are men, women and children everywhere. You’re instantly reminded of how large this world can be. Thousands of souls, each with their own personal lives and unique histories.

As you turn the corner to head to your favorite retail store, something catches your eye. You see the figure of a person walking straight toward you. It must be at least 30 yards away. Despite being surrounded by countless bodies, all milling about their own business, this one particular figure catches your eye. You take a closer look and you see why.

It’s a woman. A beautiful woman. But not just any other type of beautiful woman. She’s special. What’s remarkable about her appearance isn’t her gorgeous face, flawless hair, powerful feminine charms, impeccable fashion choices or her graceful gait. It’s something else entirely.

Her muscles.

You can clearly see her muscles as she walks closer and closer to you. Broad shoulders, bulky chest, pumped biceps, a ripped six pack abdomen, long tree trunk legs and a rounded butt that nearly makes you pass out unconscious, you know right off the bat that she has to be a competitive bodybuilder. There’s no way someone who casually goes to the gym and lifts could look that incredible. She’s a one in a million and everybody surrounding her knows it.

She walks right past you without taking a single moment to acknowledge your existence. You turn your head to follow her and you run right into a telephone pole. Normally you’d feel foolish to make such a gaffe in public, but you’re so captivated by this woman that none of that matters. You get up off the ground and follow her. You don’t know where she’s going, but you know you have to follow her. You completely forget where you’re supposed to be going. Your plans have just changed. For the better.

You’d follow her to the ends of the earth. You want to know more about her. You want to learn about her life’s story. Why did she become a bodybuilder? What’s the lifestyle like? How many trophies has she won in her career? Is she dating anyone? Is she married? Does she have kids? Or, is she not into guys and prefers girls? Just show strong is she? Can she lift me? Can she push a truck with her bare hands? Can she knock me out cold with only one swift punch to the face?

Do we have any shot at being together?

You wake up and realize how ridiculous all of this sounds. She’s a complete stranger. She doesn’t know you. You don’t know her. She barely even saw you walk past her. She has bigger and better things to do right now. What are the odds that she’d even take two seconds out of her day to say “hi” to you, let alone spend the rest of her life with you? The self-embarrassment you feel from this delusional fantasy is enough to make you blush beet red.

But you can’t stop thinking about her. Even hours, days, weeks and months later, you still think about that brief moment when time seemed to stop and nothing else mattered but her. Only her. Your world became just about her. Are you crazy? How could someone whom you only saw (not touched, spoke to, or got to know) cast such a commanding spell over you? She almost doesn’t seem real. It’s as though she were just a figment of your imagination. A complete fantasy. A lovely daydream. A passing hallucination that’s here one moment and gone the next.

You know she’s real and your heart can’t stop beating to her drum. You sincerely believe she can’t be human. She has to be a creature from outer space. Or a robot created by a team of scientists who love the sport of female bodybuilding. Or an angel from God sent down to Earth to do His bidding.

Whoever she is, you can’t get her out of your mind. Not that you want to, though.

Even if you’ve never actually encountered a situation like that before, hopefully the general idea comes across. When you see, meet, or come in close proximity to a muscular woman, for many of us the experience borders on something mystical. Not to get too “woo-woo” or anything, but the point is that you know intuitively that meeting a beautiful muscular woman is a radically different experience than meeting any other kind of person.

This isn’t necessarily the case with all beautiful women. How many of us casually meet a beautiful person (regardless of your gender or sexual orientation) and come away thinking, “Wow! She’s smoking hot!” This person could be a man or woman, it doesn’t matter. Their good looks make you want to look at them and appreciate them. But that’s normally where it ends. You acknowledge their beauty, maybe think about what they’d look like naked or how they’d behave in the bedroom, and swiftly move on with your life. You may or may not even remember seeing them an hour later.

A rising star, Sophie Arvebrink.

A rising star, Sophie Arvebrink.

But a muscular woman is different. You can’t get those images out of your head no matter how hard you try. The shape of their bodies. The way they carry themselves. The potency of their physical prowess. You know they’re special, even if you can’t articulate why. You know being graced by her presence is something you’ll treasure for a lifetime.

It might be this way after you meet a female bodybuilder for a muscle worship session. You might get this reaction after attending a bodybuilding competition. Or going to the gym and seeing a woman lifting heavy weights. Or after watching a TV special about female bodybuilding or seeing a photograph of one in a magazine or sports website. Regardless of how you come across this particular female, you treat her with a level of awe and wonderment almost exclusively reserved for a deity.

Why is this exactly? Is there a logical explanation for this illogical reaction? What makes this particular type of human being feel so metaphysically different in such a real and tangible way? There may be a rational explanation.

1. Muscular women almost seem non-human

Even seeing it doesn’t make it real. She can’t be real. There’s no way in your mind that a muscular woman can possibly be human. Women, especially, are not supposed to be that big and bulky. They’re supposed to be small, frail and weak. Yes, these are pretty sexist attitudes, but stereotypes exist for a reason (even if those reasons are atrocious).

Guys can get that big because they have loads of testosterone. Women have some, but not nearly enough to get that muscular. Nature isn’t supposed to allow female bodybuilders to exist.

So when you meet a woman who defies all these conventional descriptions, your mind can’t properly process it. Women aren’t supposed to look like that! She’s not supposed to have more muscle mass than a man! Women are the weaker sex, right? How can this be?

This is why, in a strange way, muscular women seem almost non-human, as if they’re fictional cartoon characters or superheroes from a Hollywood blockbuster. Cyborgs from The Terminator movies can be big and buff because…well…they’re robots designed to look like that! They can go against social norms because they’re a product of science fiction storytelling.

Muscular women are human, of course. Which is why they seem so darn supernatural. You can see her muscles, but can you actually believe they’re actually there? You know she’s not an intergalactic space alien fashioned by someone’s active imagination. She’s a real human being just like anybody else. She’s no different from a so-called “normal” looking woman…only a lot stronger and with a lot more meat on her body.

The beautiful face of Ginger Martin.

The beautiful face of Ginger Martin.

This cognitive dissonance created by seeing a muscular woman explains why we (subconsciously) treat them like divine beings instead of people. Women aren’t intended to look like that, we might say. So when a woman does indeed look like that, there must be some divine explanation at play here. This is why whenever we’re caught staring mindlessly at a human female with muscles larger than most males who regularly lift at the gym, we treat this experience with celestial reverence.

Psychologically, we’re not capable of completely fathoming these contradictions. This explains why the mere presence of an FBB in the same room as you makes you act irrationally. Your eyes see it, but your mind cannot comprehend it.

2. When you’re in the presence of a muscular woman, you know you’re in the presence of Greatness

Relating to the previous point, in order for a woman to achieve such a high level of muscularity, you know she must make an inordinate amount of sacrifices to earn that physique. But it’s more than just sacrifices that make her great. It’s the results. And her results turn her into a superstar.

We feel awestruck by people whom we perceive to be Great. Not just good, but Great. It’s the same feeling you might have if you ever meet a Nobel Peace Prize winner, a Hall of Fame baseball player or an author whose writings have literally changed your life for the better. Meeting them is akin to meeting an illustrious spiritual leader. They’re Greatness in the flesh.

Just like being able to meet Michael Jordan or Muhammad Ali, it’s intoxicating to be in the presence of people who have achieved legendary status. You admire their accomplishments. You understand that what they did is so difficult that they have to be “made of stuff” that nobody else has. Greatness is a status reserved for only a select few.

G.O.A.T. Greatest of All Time.

A muscular woman is just like that. Because it’s so exceedingly difficult for a woman to achieve a high level of muscle mass, you know she had to go through extraordinary measures to get it. She had to be Great. Bodybuilding has to become her life, not just a passive hobby. Greatness is enthralling. It’s compelling. It’s majestic to witness.

3. Many muscular women are also celebrities

While not nearly enough of them are famous, there are a significant number of muscular women who have earned mainstream fame. Recently, athletes like Ronda Rousey and Venus and Serena Williams are nationally recognized for both their athletic achievements and their muscled physiques. While not bodybuilders, nevertheless these are women whom even casual sports fans should recognize.

There are some bodybuilders, like Bev Francis and Rachel McLish, who were (somewhat) household names at one point a few decades ago. Iris Kyle and Alina Popa may not be “true” celebrities, but if you pay close enough attention you definitely will know who they are.

Which brings up the obvious point: the celebrity status of muscular women is really just confined to those of us who love them. Ms. Popa, Ms. Kyle, and others like Yaxeni Oriquen-Garcia and Debi Laszewski may not be famous to the general populace, but they’re famous to people like us. We consider them celebrities. And just like how millions of teenage girls’ hearts flutter when they see members of One Direction live and in-person, we also have to fight against the urge to faint to the ground whenever we’re in the same vicinity of our favorite muscular ladies.

Dominique Furuta showing off her swag.

Dominique Furuta showing off her swag.

Their celebrity status adds a level of intrigue to them. Society, going back several centuries, has always deified celebrities. Celebrity worship is not a recent phenomenon. Medieval lords, members of royalty and charismatic social and religious leaders would be on the cover of People magazine if such a publication existed generations ago. We may not necessarily elevate celebrities like that in our own personal lives, but the intrigue stays the same. Are they like us? What do they do in their spare time? How can I be as awesome as them?

Some people adore pop singers. Others prefer movie stars. Lots of little kids look up to star football or basketball players. We, on the other hand, idolize female bodybuilders.

4. Generally speaking, muscular women are a rare type in our society

Whenever a commodity is rare, it becomes more valued. Call it the “Scarcity Principle.” Call it the dynamics of Supply and Demand. Whatever the explanation is, we all know that muscular women are prized because (unfortunately for the rest of us) there aren’t too many of them.

It’s sad, but a fact of life. Muscular women are rare. If half of all the women we encounter in our lives were as buff and beautiful as Lindsey Mulinazzi, we would all be remarkably happy campers. But alas, that is not the case. Ho hum.

Thus, because of the scarcity of muscular women in our everyday lives, whenever we do encounter one, our reactions proceed accordingly. We get shortness of breath. Our heartbeat increases. We can’t move, talk, or act normally. We treasure these once-in-a-lifetime experiences because, for all we know, they might actually be once-in-a-lifetime experiences.

Muscular women don’t just fall from the sky or grow on trees. They’re a rare breed. So we must treat them with veneration whenever we’re privileged to meet one.

5. More often than not, muscular women have that “It Factor”

You sort of have to be a little “off your rocker” to become a professional bodybuilder. Male or female, it doesn’t matter. Being a bodybuilder is a really weird thing to do. The diet, the workout schedule, the time, the sacrifices, the bizarre changes it brings to your body…all of it is exceptionally odd.

That being said, any woman who dedicates her life to developing such great levels of muscle mass has to have the “It Factor.” Simply put, the “It Factor” is when someone has a certain air or quality to them that’s dynamic yet unexplainable. Whether it’s charisma or having certain skills/abilities, the “It Factor” isn’t a label one can give one’s self. Only other people can hand that out.

The angelic Mavi Gioia.

The angelic Mavi Gioia.

It’s pretty fair to say that many FBBs have this “It Factor.” When they walk into a room, everybody becomes still and falls silent. All eyes become glued to her instantaneously. When she walks into a gym and starts to workout, nobody dares get in her way or asks her “how many sets do you have left?” You’d be a foolish mortal to do that. A commoner. A peasant. You let her control the room because she’s earned the right to control it.

A female bodybuilder, especially in the eyes of a female muscle fan, can essentially do whatever she wants and get away with it. This explains why some men will pay hundreds of their hard-earned dollars to participate in a muscle worship or BDSM session with her. It’s a lot of money, but it’s worth every penny.

Why, exactly? Simple. She’s got “It.”

6. Muscular women are beautiful in ways that cannot be put into words

Lastly, muscular women are beautiful in ways that none of us can describe. For all the reasons stated previously, their Ethereal Beauty goes beyond the physical. A blind person who can only feel a muscular woman’s body would know that what he or she is experiencing is unique. Even hearing someone describe a female bodybuilder being able to leg press 1,000 pounds is enough to make your pulse race and a chill run down your spine.

Their beauty is otherworldly because our worldview tends to be quite limited in terms of female beauty. Strict beauty standards leave very little room for body types that are brawny. Hopefully this will change, but in the meantime we’ll just have to accept that our points of view are not shared by a majority of us.

In short, we cannot help but feel the way we feel about female bodybuilders. It’s instinctive. It’s a gut reaction that we cannot control nor do we desire to control. While there might be a completely rational explanation to why we become so irrational in our female muscle fandom, hardly anyone will ever complain about being introduced to this world. Loving muscular women isn’t something to be looked down upon. It’s something we should celebrate and embrace.

Women of all shapes, sizes and colors are beautiful. But muscular women are beautiful in a distinctive kind of way. We may not be able to describe how, but we know. We know our devotion to them may not make sense, but it feels so right. Our reactions to them may be irrational, but there’s a perfectly reasonable method to our madness.

Divine. Otherworldly. Angelic. Goddess. Heavenly. Celestial. Perfection. Beautiful.

Different words, but the same meaning. It all means the same thing.

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6 thoughts on “Ethereal Beauty: A Rational Explanation to Why Female Bodybuilders Seem Otherworldly

  1. Methinks you did Katka Kyptova a SLIGHT disservice. She has something of a flat chest ( Hasn’t really chosen the way of implants yet ), but she still looks like a woman you would notice in a crowd. She has an exotic East European vibe.

      • ** Maybe ** I shouldn’t have said ” disservice “, just ” Ginormous honking omission “. She’s pretty hot – looking, even with no sizeable breasts !

      • She is very smoking hot. She’s definitely someone who can break the perception that muscular women can’t be both super huge and super feminine.

      • & as far as implants, I think Katka’s chosen ** not ** to have them,or at least not to have them so NOTICEABLE.. Some FBBs overdo it & look almost ludicrous. There have been debates over Youtube videos of FBBs about how ” natural ” the body – builder in question is, people that prefer natural body – building over steroid use, etc. & those are the Youtube threads that are more rational, which I prefer, of course. 🙂

  2. Pingback: Expectations vs. Reality: Tempering Our Warped Perceptions about Female Bodybuilders | The Adventures of Ryan Takahashi

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