Pin Me, Wrestle Me, Abuse Me, Dominate Me: The Uncomfortable Association of Female Bodybuilders with Violence

Uncomfortable with Mistress Treasure and Yvette Bova? Yeah, neither am I.

The association of female muscle fetishism with violence is an uncomfortable reality that cannot be overlooked. Anyone with even a casual level of knowledge of female bodybuilders and the men who love them can see this relationship underscored everywhere.

Guys who love female bodybuilders often fantasize about being dominated by them, disciplined by them, trampled by them, tied up by them, punched by them, pinned to the ground by them, verbally abused by them, and having other physically demeaning activities done to them. This is not to put all female muscle fantasies in the same boat, however. This is merely an observation of a trend that cannot be denied.

Nothing about this is inherently wrong. Nor is anything about this explicitly scandalous, surprising, or unethical. As far as I can tell, as long as all the parties are consenting, openly communicating, and enjoying these activities, there isn’t anything to complain about. I have no quarrel with a guy who becomes aroused by a female muscle dominatrix teasing him, pouring hot candle wax on his skin, and calling him all sorts of filthy names. I’m not personally into that, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be allowed to.

Whatever floats your boat, as the old saying goes.

However, I must be completely honest. I am a bit uncomfortable with the close association of female muscle fetishism with violence. Any decent human being should abhor violence in any form. We live in a particularly violent world filled with shootings, riots, terrorism, war, political repression, rape, abuse, genocide, and a whole host of other unspeakable acts of brutality. I’d like to think we live in a more peaceful world today than our ancestors did hundreds of years ago, but it only takes reading the news for five minutes to have that belief shaken to its core.

This is why the mixing of sex with violence should make any free thinking person squirm a little. You don’t have to be an ardent critic of “50 Shades of Grey” to hop on board this train. While experienced BDSM practitioners are, for the most part, intelligent people who define their sexual play with meticulous rules that ensure safety and mutual consent, accidents do happen. But more than that, it’s the root of BDSM fetishism that can create a cause for concern.

Why does sexuality have a violent component to it that seems, well, unavoidable? Surely, I am not the first person to have ever raised this question. Critics have argued that the proliferation of BDSM into pop culture could have the unintended effect of “justifying” rape and sexual assault in the eyes of people who are already prone to commit such atrocities. I cannot speak to how warranted these concerns are, but they are definitely worth mentioning. How can you not fear such a backlash?

Our pop culture reinforces these messages in other ways as well. I love the James Bond movie franchise just as much as anybody else, but it is clear what 007’s two chief pastimes are: Making love to beautiful women and shooting/punching/blowing up the bad guys. He also happens to participate in both activities in immodest quantities. And worst of all – to put myself in the shoes of a feminist media critic – Bond is “rewarded” with the former after doing the latter.

American football games feature scantily clad cheerleaders right next to big burly men pummeling each other to a pulp. The “Sex and Violence” motif is found everywhere: sports, movies, TV shows, video games, music, literature, advertisements, religious texts, folk tales, and so on. It even infests the evening news. Bombings in Baghdad are shown side-by-side with stories of young female teachers having sex with her teenage male students. It’s everywhere you look. It’s so pervasive it’s sometimes hard to see it because of how saturated it is in our culture. Because it’s everywhere you don’t actually notice it.

Who wants to be put in a headlock by Melody Spetko?

This motif is also deeply embedded within the world of female muscle fetishism. Of course, I’m referring more to the fantasy aspect of the fetish. In no way shape or form are female bodybuilders more inherently aggressive than non-muscular women. But maybe there exists in the imaginations of some of us the belief – or the desire – that this is somehow true. Or that we want it to be true because it titillates a part of our deeply held kinkiness.

One of the reasons why many people in society look down upon guys who love muscular women is because they’re also uncomfortable with how this fetish is played out. Perhaps they’re just as unnerved by the undertones of violence as I am – although I am less troubled by it than others are, for sure. But it is completely understandable why this uncomfortable reality exists…and why we need to talk about it.

I am not of the belief that sadomasochistic sexual activities are explicitly dangerous, oppressive, or dehumanizing. If it’s safe, consensual, and enjoyable by all parties involved, I have no bad words to say about it. But on the other side of the equation, I get why this makes some of us cringe. So I’m not trying to make a point so much as I’m trying to articulate a topic that I think needs to be discussed.

It should be stated that very rarely is any single act, interest, hobby, or creative endeavor inherently evil. Unless we’re talking about terrorism, overt political repression or murder, most activities exist in a gray area. Whether it’s “good” or “evil,” “valuable” or “trash,” all depends on the context in which it exists. A book unto itself isn’t evil. A science textbook, for example, can be a force for good. Books such as “Mein Kampf” or “Mao’s Little Red Book” on the other hand, could be used to spread hateful and dangerous ideas. So it’s not the object of a book that’s up for debate. It’s the intent behind creating a particular book that is. And the results.

If a guy fantasizes about a strong female dominatrix giving him physical pain because he finds it exciting, there’s nothing (on its surface) harmful in that. If this guy goes out of his way and pays a professional dominatrix to perform such acts on him, that also isn’t necessarily a red flag. The presence of violence within female muscle fetishism isn’t a bad thing, nor would I want to change a thing about it. However, what should be talked about is why this is and whether this should concern any of us.

From the beginning of human civilization to the present day, conflict has been a constant theme throughout our history. And not just conflict between groups of people, nations, governments or tribes. There has been conflict between individuals, ideas, cultural norms (both from without and from within), assumptions, and social hierarchies. Without getting too deep into the history of humankind, let’s just settle on this conclusion: Conflict has always been here and will be here to stay.

This is especially evident in the relationship between men and women. Or, to be more politically correct, between masculine and feminine dynamics. Whatever your worldview may be, the Battle of the Sexes is something we’re all familiar with. Hollywood screenwriters have made a fortune capitalizing on this. Lecturers have gone on tour and sold books purely on the basis of telling us how we can alleviate this perpetually awkward relationship. It’s the topic of endless discussions over coffee, beer, cocktails, and happy hour chicken wings. Men and women – and people who are not comfortable identifying as either of these two choices – just can’t seem to get along 100% of the time.

My God…Dayana Cadeau.

For better or for worse, we’ve managed to exist for thousands of years despite these tensions. And we will continue to exist. So will the next generation. And the generation after that one. And so on. Unfortunately, we are all too familiar with how violence has been intertwined in this ongoing conflict. Domestic violence, spousal fights, disagreements that lead to physical altercations, and cultural norms that accept these acts as being normal – or at the very least “acceptable” if it’s not openly talked about – have created a cycle of conflict that isn’t healthy. This won’t go away anytime soon, but that doesn’t mean we have to like it or turn our heads in the opposite direction whenever it happens.

This is why BDSM culture strikes a nerve in so many people. This is why people who are supportive of this subculture feel inclined to vehemently defend it with their dying breath. This is why so many of us don’t want to understand these things to begin with. After all, how can you argue in favor of violence? How can you possibly win that debate?

BDSM aside, female muscle fandom is different…but not at the same time. I’ve long argued that one can be not into BDSM but still really dig female bodybuilders. They can be mutually exclusive. Yet, the perception exists that they aren’t. For lots of folks, they are definitely interconnected.

Lots of guys love it when a female bodybuilder wrestles them into submission. Or pins them to the ground and holds them there against their will. Or verbally abuses them. Or smacks them with a paddle. Or “forces” them to do things upon command. This dominant/subordinate relationship carries the underlying theme of violence to its literal interpretation. However, because it’s all “fun and games,” it’s not really violence, is it?

Well, no. But yes. Uh, maybe both?

The relationship between a muscular woman and a normal-sized man can be jarring. It’s unusual. It flies in the face of social norms. We don’t expect to ever see such a sight. It challenges our notions of gender roles. It forces us to ask ourselves questions that we’d rather not contemplate.

Are women the weaker sex and men the stronger sex? Well, most of the time. But not all of the time. What does that mean? And how do we proceed going forward? Is an FBB more than just a woman, or is she just a “normal” woman with an abnormal physique? And is this man really a man, or an emasculated man? Wow, this is bonkers!

And yet, these questions don’t really come up with we witness a muscular woman and a normal-sized man quietly enjoying drinks at the pub. Or silently riding the subway together. Or holding hands while strolling down the sidewalk. If they physically appear to be a “normal” couple, we may stop and stare but we don’t necessarily ask these questions.

We only start to wonder about the dynamic of their relationship if we witness any conflict. What if they start to argue? What if they fight about who will pay the bill? What if she slaps him in the face? Will he slap her back? Or does he not dare? If he doesn’t hit her back, is it because he’s scared of her, or is it because he’s not naturally inclined to do such things? If she were “normal-looking” like him, would his reaction be different? How could we know for sure?

Do you want Amanda Dunbar to put you in an armbar?

Whew! All of this is so confusing. But this does bring up a crucial observation: When we see a female bodybuilder, our minds automatically – whether we consciously know this or not – wander off into the realm of violence. We wonder how rough their sex lives must be. How are they like in bed? Is she domineering? Does she prefer weaker men or men who are strong like her? How does she react if she’s angry? Is she naturally aggressive? Are men scared of her? Are other women scared of her? Is she fearful of people and that’s why she became so big and buff in the first place? Was she physically abused as a child, with bodybuilding acting as a “shield” against future abuse?

So it’s pretty clear that whenever we’re presented with a strong muscular woman, our natural inclination is to think about her within the framework of violence, self-defense, and aggression. Yes, we also think about her beauty, impressive strength, and numerous accomplishments; but doesn’t it seem like the first thoughts that pop into our minds consist of whether she can crush me with her thighs or if any of her ex-boyfriends have ever been sent to the emergency room after an argument?

Perhaps this speaks to the cognitive dissonance that muscular women create in our brains. We cannot accept the sight of a strong woman being “normal” or “no big deal.” There must be an explanation why she wants to look that way. And she must be a completely different person now that she does look that way.

But alas, these ideas are not always true. Maybe she always was aggressive, “alpha,” and assertive even before she ever picked up a dumbbell. Maybe for her, bodybuilding is an avenue for channeling her strong personality, not a result of it. Who knows?

The larger point to be made is this: Society, both fans of FBBs and everyone else, cannot seem to separate female bodybuilders and violence from their imaginations. I’ve written this before but will rewrite it again. My ultimate female muscle-related fantasy has nothing to do with violence. It has more to do with a romantic candle-lit dinner, a fine bottle of wine, a nice long walk along the beach, and an entire evening of passionate lovemaking. No one gets tied up. No one gets paddled for being “bad.” No one gets verbally abused. No one feels any pain. Everything is pleasant, sensual, low-key, and most of all, idyllic. In other words, I’d love to spend an entire night with Alina Popa in a setting that looks more like a cheap romance novel than a creepy bondage-themed Dark Web video.

I’d love to spend a peaceful evening with Gina Aliotti.

Yet, not everyone shares my pacifistic fantasy. There are lots of folks – and this is not a negative judgment about them – who want a more “antagonistic” experience. They want Miss Popa to burn them with hot candle wax. They want her to pick them up and toss them to the ground like a rag doll. They want her to punch them in the belly until they surrender. They want her to crush their head between her thighs until they “tap out.” They want all that…and more.

Well, to that I say this: That’s fine.

That’s fine. But that’s not for me. And it probably never will be my cup of tea. I tend to have a “live and let live” attitude toward most things in life. I have nothing against violent fantasies unless things cross a certain line. Yet, there is a significant part of my brain that feels uncomfortable with this. Why must we think about female bodybuilders within this context? Why are we unable to separate FBBs from the violent chambers of our imaginations? Why do our minds automatically go there? Is this unhealthy, or just the cost of doing business? Is it possible to love female bodybuilders in a non-violent way, or is it inevitable that this motif will always seep its way in?

I have no good answers. Only more questions.

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The Benevolent Voyeur and the Female Bodybuilder – Part Two

Rebekah Kresila looking like a well-trained athlete.

Rebekah Kresila looking like a well-trained athlete.

The following morning before breakfast, Rebecca found herself staring long and hard at the $500 lying on her coffee table. It’s as if the smug stare of Benjamin Franklin were directed toward her, with Old Ben warning her not to go through with this madness.

A voice on the television informs her that the captured aid worker was in fact executed by ISIS in the most brutal fashion imaginable. Thankfully, the network spares its viewers the gruesome details, but the general idea remains loud and clear. We live in an unforgiving world. Sometimes, we cannot let reason or logic dictate our actions. This isn’t the way Rebecca wants the world to work, but she accepts this is the way it is regardless of her feelings.

The hour-long jog on the treadmill goes by so slowly Rebecca could have sworn it took two hours. But indeed, only 60 minutes pass before she finds herself taking a short shower with Katy Perry music blasting in the background. Thank God for Katy. We may live in a world with sexually deviant stalkers and international terrorists, but at least a quick listening to “Firework” can be enough to lift your weary spirits.

Thursday is arm day, which is a day no serious weightlifter would ever skip. In fact, it seems like most people only work out their arms and nothing else. Rebecca knows better than that. As a professional female bodybuilder who one day hopes to achieve elite-level status, she must be diligent and strategic while at the gym. Today is no exception.

“Nice arms, little lady!” Rebecca doesn’t need to turn around to know whose voice this gratuitous compliment comes from. It’s Gregory, a somewhat dirty old man who frequents the gym during the early hours of the morning. Rebecca characterizes him as “somewhat” because for an older gentleman (he appears to be in his mid to late 60s), he’s actually pretty handsome. But not movie star handsome. Let’s not get too carried away.

“Thank you, Gregory. What are you working on today?” Rebecca takes a generous swig from her water bottle. The contents are room temperature, which annoy her to no end.

“Oh, shoulders and back. Whatever I feel like doing,” he says. “When is your next competition? Didn’t you last do some a couple of months ago?” Gregory’s silver hair looks as stiff as roadkill. Does his sweat ever mix with the oil he puts in it? Rebecca apparently has time to ponder these things. She takes a look at Gregory’s biceps and notices a significant amount of size growth. She won’t say anything about that to him, however. There’s no need to feed his already oversized ego.

“Yes, I did a competition last March. It was down in San Diego,” Rebecca replies. “The next one is in Houston in eight weeks. I’m hoping to place in the top five this time around.”

Gregory looks up and down at Rebecca’s body, which sends a shiver down her spine. He doesn’t do it in a creepy kind of way, but she is a little bit “on the edge” right now for obvious reasons.

“I have no doubt you’ll place in the top five. Maybe you’ll win it all!” He laughs. She laughs too, forcing every fiber of her body to play along until she can find an excuse to exit this conversation. Thankfully, a gorgeous 40-something blonde woman walks by wearing a skimpy white athletic bra and short shorts that leave little to the imagination. Expectedly, this steals Gregory’s attention. Using Miss Blondie’s presence as an excuse to leave, Rebecca quickly makes a beeline for the free weights room and enters unnoticed.

Conveniently for her, the gym is within walking distance of her condo, as it is for hundreds of others for that matter. The early mornings are usually not too crowded, but by 8:00 a.m. the masses of people start to show up in droves. Rebecca senses now is the time when these folks might start to arrive. She grabs a pair of 65 pound dumbbells and cranks out 12 repetitions of bicep curls. This impresses all the men who are working out near her. They don’t say anything, but she knows exactly what they’re all thinking:

Not bad for a tiny Asian girl!

Rebecca estimates the gym’s clientele consists of 70 percent men and 30 percent women. The guys range from out of shape couch surfers to young men who aspire to become professional bodybuilders like her. But she doesn’t go to the gym to pick up guys. She goes to get to work. And that’s what she always does.

Of the women, there are only three regulars who are as muscular as her. There’s Candace, a 20-something black girl who’s competed before and is actively working on landing her IFBB card. Then there’s Michaela, a 19-year-old track and field athlete with a lean muscular body and breasts even smaller than hers. Rebecca used to be enormously insecure about her flat chest. Today, she’s accepted this fact and has moved on with her life.

Finally, there’s Joyce. Oh, Joyce. Rebecca suspects she’s a lesbian, but a short haircut, tattoos, and a pierced nose doesn’t necessarily mean she’s into chicks. Rebecca is definitely not one to stereotype like that. Joyce can talk your ear off if you let her. She always has something to complain about, whether it’s her flailing personal training business or her mother who’s wondering when she’s finally going to get married. Joyce is probably in her early 40s, so it’s not like she doesn’t have time to find a significant other. But by now maybe it’s a foregone conclusion that she’s not into men.

Or maybe she is. Rebecca doesn’t care either way.

Today, none of these ladies are at the gym. None of the talkative guys who endlessly flirt with her are here either. So perhaps Rebecca will be able to lift in peace and quiet.

“I’m almost done. Just a few more sets,” Rebecca tells herself.

Before leaving the gym, Rebecca sometimes visits the smoothie bar and orders something to help her recover from her workout. Today is one of those days. After finishing her workout and taking a nice long shower, Rebecca dresses and approaches the bar. This morning, a cute guy named Dale is holding down the fort. She and Dale have some history together. A few years ago at a Christmas party they met each other through a mutual friend. They both got really drunk and started to make out. One thing led to another, and before the night was out they returned to Dale’s apartment and almost had sex. They were about to do the deed until Dale, who was more drunk than Rebecca, accidentally hits his head against a wooden cabinet and suffers a bad laceration on his forehead.

Rebecca dutifully ordered a cab and took him to the hospital. They ended up not having sex that evening. That’s probably a good thing in retrospect. Dale is a good guy, but his frat boy days haven’t totally left him yet. He’s nearly 30 but still thinks he’s a freshman in college. Rebecca tends to not gravitate toward men like that.

“What’s up Dale?” Rebecca smiles and takes out her phone to check her e-mail. No messages.

“Hey, girl, hey! Looking good. Oh, not much,” Dale says. “My dog puked all over my bed this morning. That was fun. What about you?”

Learning about Dale’s dog barfing up his breakfast was not the type of news she was in the mood to hear. But that’s Dale for you, ladies and gentlemen.

“Not much. Same old, same old. That’s what happens to people our age. We fall into ruts. I’ll have a strawberry banana smoothie with two scoops of protein powder and half a scoop of energy. I’m going to need it today.” Out of the corner of her eye she sees Gregory hitting on Miss Blondie. This brings a smirk to her face.

A fine pair of legs on Sandy Vu.

A fine pair of legs on Sandy Vu.

“Coming right up!” Dale quickly goes to work. If there’s one thing he does exceptionally well, it’s make delicious smoothies just as you ordered it. So bravo to him for that.

Twenty minutes later, Rebecca almost finishes the smoothie as she parks her car at the physical therapy clinic. She slurps down the rest and tosses the plastic cup into a garbage can. A small army of flies circle around the opening. It looks like it hasn’t been attended to in years. Disgusting.

The work day begins as usual. Only three clients today. None of them noteworthy to mention. In the back office there are several computers that therapists and freelance employees can use. Her usual computer at the back of the room appears to be taken, as someone’s backpack and fleece pullover is lying on top of the chair.

Who could this possibly be? Everyone knows this computer is always reserved for Rebecca Tanaka…

“I’m sorry. Is this your computer? I didn’t know these were assigned to anyone in particular,” an unfamiliar voice says from behind Rebecca’s back. She immediately turns around to see who it is. Standing before her is someone she’s never seen before at the clinic. It’s a devilishly handsome Asian guy with a charming smile and a fit athletic body. Rebecca’s eyes widen as she loses herself in this man’s beautiful aura. She finally composes herself and extends her hand toward him.

“Oh, I didn’t see you there. I’m Rebecca. Pleased to meet you.” They shake hands. His firm grip sends a jolt of electricity through her system. There is something about the way he touches her that Rebecca knows is different from anyone else she’s ever met.

“Hi. I’m Brad. I’m new here. Today is my first day on the job,” he says. Rebecca continues to get lost in his eyes. “I’m the new sports athletic trainer. I had no idea this was your computer.”

“Oh, no. These computers aren’t assigned. I just usually choose this one by default. But I can use the one next to yours.” Rebecca puts her backpack in front of the computer next to Brad’s. He smiles at her again, which sends another jolt of energy through her body. God, what is happening to her?

“Great. I don’t want to step on anybody’s toes on my first day at the job, you know what I mean?”

“I definitely know what you mean!” Wow, is that the best she can come up with? Rebecca turns on the computer and sits down. She admires Brad’s impressive biceps and forearms, which is significant considering she’s seen hundreds of big and buff dudes in her life. “Sports athletic trainer, you say? Julie did say she wants the clinic to go further into that direction.”

“Yeah, I guess most of your clients are elderly people and folks recovering from surgery, right? It’s about time we get some new blood in here. High school and college athletics are becoming a bigger and bigger deal, so it makes sense that she would want to adapt to the times,” he says. Right now, Rebecca is hanging onto every word he speaks. Her eyes move from his arms to his chest, legs, and angular face.

“Where were you before coming here?” Rebecca asks.

“I worked with minor league baseball players down in the Phoenix area,” Brad says. “I just moved up here a few months ago. I couldn’t stand the heat anymore and wanted to go somewhere cooler.”

Before Rebecca could say something, Julie pops her head into the room.

“Rebecca! I’m glad you and Brad are getting acquainted. But Sam is here for his 12:30 appointment.” Well, shit. Time to go to work. Rebecca stands up, gives up on checking her work e-mail, and grins at Brad.

“It’s nice talking to you, Brad. I have to get to work. I’ll see you around,” Rebecca says. She stands up, accidentally places her foot underneath a power cord, and trips as she attempts to take a step forward.

“Whoa there!” Brad saves Rebecca from falling by clutching her in his strong arms. The warm touch of his body against her body provides some dampness to form between her legs. It’s not too often that Rebecca becomes sexually aroused at work (actually, she’s never felt sexually aroused at work), so this is a new experience for her. Also, it’s humiliating to be tripping over herself the moment she encounters a good looking guy.

“Thanks. I can be a klutz at times,” she says. Rebecca regains her composure and exits the room without further antics one would usually find in a low-grade romantic comedy. Brad smirks to himself and makes a mental note to remember Rebecca’s name and face. He too is smitten with her.

Rebecca wasn’t able to see Brad for the rest of the day. Her three clients decide to take up entirely too much time (it’s not her problem, though. They’re willingly paying for her time) and their appointments were lined up one after another. By the time she clocked out for the day, Brad had already gone home. Oh well. There will be a next time, Rebecca supposes.

Typical agility drills done by sports athletic trainers.

Typical agility drills done by sports athletic trainers.

After picking up a tub of fresh quinoa and sundried tomato salad from a deli across the street, Rebecca returns home. She makes small talk with Craig and checks her mail. Thankfully, no perverted letters from nutty voyeurs. Rebecca enters her condo unit and decides to take a shower before eating dinner. She usually showers right before going to bed, but her three clients gave her a workout more than she gave them a workout. The daily grind needs to be washed off before her evening could commence.

Self-conscious about preying eyes, Rebecca closes the blinds on all her windows. You never know these days, she thinks to herself. Rebecca strips naked and takes a moment to look at herself in a long full-body mirror. Despite her natural beauty and impressive muscle mass, Rebecca is still insecure about her looks. She looks at her flat chest as a major flaw. She hates her short stumpy legs. She loves the muscle definition on her legs, but she wishes they could be longer. Her short stature combined with her wide muscular frame makes her look like a Hobbit bodybuilder.

Rebecca also hates her eyes. As a full-blooded Japanese woman, her eyes are as narrow and slanted as a cartoon character. Kids used to make fun of her growing up. Deep down inside, she still feels like adult women judge her because of her strong Asian facial features. She knows that’s ridiculous because most people in the Pacific Northwest are more open-minded than that, but those scarring childhood memories don’t ever go away. They’re a part of her psyche for eternity.

Another remarkable feature of her body is her astonishingly large clitoris. Rebecca takes a modest amount of anabolic steroids to help her gain muscle mass, but nothing too extreme. Nevertheless, the additional growth hormones circulating through her system made a certain part of her body grow larger than normal. Even when she isn’t aroused, the thick head of her clit sticks out between her legs like a really tiny penis.

When she is aroused (and when she’s lucky enough for a guy to be willing to give her oral sex), her clitoris can grow to an eye-popping size. Long and thick, she once measured it with an old plastic ruler. Rebecca did a double take when she saw how long it is. Two and a half inches when she’s fully aroused. Only an inch and a quarter when she’s not aroused.

Is that normal? She has doubts about that.

Every time Rebecca goes to the beach and wears a bikini, she uses a piece of scotch tape to hide her clit from public view. It’s embarrassing, but it’s what she has to do to feel like a normal woman. “Real” women don’t have large bulges in their panties. All she wants to do is to not feel like a freak.

Upon finishing her inspection of her body, Rebecca likes what she sees overall and goes on to take her shower. Fifteen minutes later she walks out to the living room still naked and drying her hair with a towel. She turns on the television to see what’s on. Some murder mystery show. The victim died by a sledgehammer being pounded repeatedly into the side of his skull. What an unpleasant way to go. Why do people watch violent shit like this?

She turns off the TV and plops down on her bed. For some unexplained reason, Brad’s handsome face and impressive biceps flash into her mind. Her heart flutters. The dampness returns between her legs. Rebecca thinks now is the appropriate time to masturbate, an activity she hasn’t done as much lately as she’d like.

Lee Jin Won in top competitive shape.

Lee Jin Won in top competitive shape.

Rebecca turns off all the lights and takes out her trusty dildo from the bedside nightstand. She dabs a small amount of lubrication on the tip and spreads it all over the shaft. A typical 7 inch long white dildo, she’s had this since college and uses it as her default masturbation toy. She also has a vibrator, but she doesn’t like the annoying humming sound. It gets her out of the mood and ruins her mindset. Rebecca needs everything to be perfect in order for her to optimally get off.

Taking in a deep breath, Rebecca closes her eyes and spreads her legs out wide. She leans back against her pillow and exhales. She playfully taps the dildo against her enlarged clitoris and moans at the sensations this gives her. Rebecca suspects that when her clit began to grow it also started to become more sensitive. She could be wrong about this observation, though. But the added pleasure it’s given her is something she can’t argue about.

Inch by inch, she inserts the dildo inside her moist vagina. She strokes it in and out at a leisurely pace, not wanting to rush anything. It’s been four days since she last had an orgasm, so she wants this to be a good one. Rebecca makes sure the dildo touches every square centimeter of her wet and sensitive passageway, including her g-spot. More moans escape from her throat.

If only “Jones” were able to see this! He’d go crazy and would probably give her $2,000 instead.

The thought of Jones watching her temporarily takes her mind off of pleasing herself, so she immediately refocuses on Brad. Rebecca imagines the dildo being Brad’s erection invading her, exploring her, pleasing her. With her free hand, she pinches her dark brown nipples. Both are sticking straight up into the air. This inspires her to increase her tempo. Faster and faster she stimulates herself. Her legs tense up. She lifts her back up off the bedsheets. Her head almost bangs against the bedframe.

She’s close, and she knows it.

Suddenly, the explicit visual image of Brad kissing her just as he comes inside her unexpectedly flashes into her head. This is enough to set her off.

“Oooooooohhhhh! YES!!!”

Rebecca comes and squirts a small amount of creamy white fluid onto the bed. The walls of her vagina contract wildly, as if this is the first orgasm she’s ever experienced in her life. This is not true, of course, but this is a testament to how strong of a spell Brad has cast over her imagination. Out of breath, Rebecca opens her eyes and enjoys the smaller vaginal contractions that follow the more intense ones. Finally, her orgasm ends and she is left lying on the bed drenched in her own sweat.

Fuck. She might have to take another shower!

She sits up and notices the wet spot between her legs on the bedsheets. Fuck! She’s been able to ejaculate for years now, but she can usually control it by not excessively rubbing her g-spot. She must have gotten carried away this time. Rebecca goes to the bathroom, cleans up the mess with a paper towel, and pees in the toilet. Looking at herself in the still-fogged up mirror, she smiles and says to her reflection:

“Damn. That was a good one!”

Friday is the next day. It is uneventful and boring, just like every other Friday at the office. It is a rest day, so she spent the morning talking to her photographer about finalizing the details of their shoot tomorrow. The weather is supposed to be gorgeous, which is fantastic news.

As it turns out, Brad will work primarily in the field and away from the office. At a weekly team meeting – who holds staff meetings on Fridays? – Julie informs the group that Brad will travel to high schools and college campuses to work with athletes to help them improve their speed, strength, quickness, burst, coordination, and overall athleticism. Rebecca is disappointed to hear this news, but she is still glad he’s part of the staff.

Later that evening Rebecca goes out for cocktails with her two best friends, Lauren and Desiree. These three have known each other since middle school and they remarkably still keep in touch. Wisely, Rebecca makes no mention of “Jones” but did glowingly rave about her new cute coworker.

“Girl! Are you going to pursue anything with him?” Desiree asks.

“Before she can answer that, she needs to know if he’s single. Is he available?” Lauren chimes in.

Rebecca downs her whiskey on the rocks and coughs. Lauren and Desiree always elect to drink “girly” drinks with too much sugar and fruit. Rebecca considers herself to be more hardcore and goes for the hard stuff. Her two friends cannot figure out why she’d intentionally drink that shit.

“I think he’s single, and I’m definitely going to make a move if the opportunity presents itself,” Rebecca assures them. “It’s been forever since I’ve last dated.”

Three and a half years to be exact. Both Lauren and Desiree know this.

Finally, Saturday morning arrives. Rebecca gets up at 6:00 a.m. – an hour earlier than she usually does – and eats a larger than normal breakfast. She cooks herself a veggie omelet made with egg whites, low fat cheese, peas, broccoli, onion, carrots, celery, zucchini, asparagus, and avocado. This is served with a bowl of Greek yogurt with granola and peach slices. She drinks way too much coffee before brushing her teeth (in order to make her pearly whites as white as possible) and heading to the gym.

Leg day. Oh, fun.

Saturday mornings at the gym is the best time to go because hardly anyone is there. But Rebecca is there. Gregory and Michaela are also there. Gregory might be flirting with Michaela by the TRX machine. Gross.

Several squats, lunges, deadlifts, leg presses, snatch and power cleans, and miles running on the treadmill later, Rebecca showers in the locker room but struggles to walk around. She always wants to get an arduous workout in before a major photoshoot. It makes her feel more sexy and alive when she’s so exhausted her body is running on pure adrenaline. She skips the smoothie bar (and having to deal with Dale, who seems to work here every single day) and instead drinks a bottled protein shake. It’s not the same, but it’ll do for today.

The drive to Alki Beach Park from Bellevue only takes 35 minutes, which is pretty damn good, even for a sleepy weekend. Rebecca receives a text from Garrett, her photographer, saying he’s running a few minutes late. This doesn’t surprise her one bit. He’s always late. Rebecca’s Asian heritage doesn’t allow her to be late for anything. There’s one perk of having slanted eyes.

Garrett has been Rebecca’s primary photographer for a solid decade. They work perfectly together. He’s an artsy type who also knows how to shoot commercial shots. He’s also very gay, so she has no worries of him coming on to her. That’s been an issue with past photographers. But no longer.

It’s a gorgeous morning in Seattle. Not a cloud in the sky, but there’s a cool breeze to keep her from getting too overheated. The beach is thinly crowded, populated with a few joggers and little kids making sandcastles. Wearing gray sweatpants and a tank top, Rebecca notices she’s already receiving unwarranted stares from random strangers. A group of bros smoking weed by the public bathroom stalls makes comments about her “wicked shoulders and savage biceps.” Rebecca doesn’t even give them a courtesy smile. Those fuckers don’t deserve it.

Alki Beach on a beautiful summer evening.

Alki Beach on a beautiful summer evening.

Rebecca arrives at the agreed upon meeting area and waits. She sits on a park bench and checks her phone for messages. Nothing. She looks around to take in the sights and smells of springtime transitioning into summer. This is her favorite time of the year. It’s not too hot, but the chilly dewy elements of spring are long gone. Out of the corner of her eye she sees a middle-aged white man wearing a suit and tie sitting down on a bench about 400 feet away from her.

“That’s an unusual thing to wear to the beach,” Rebecca says aloud.

He’s looking out into Puget Sound with a pair of professional-grade binoculars. The man has dark hair with streaks of silver on the sides. His black suit is complemented perfectly with a bright red tie. Rebecca even notices the impeccable shine on his Italian loafers. They look damn expensive. They probably are damn expensive.

For whatever odd reason, Rebecca notices him out of the 40 or 50 other people within view. She doesn’t know why, but all her life she’s had a well-developed sixth sense about certain situations. Every so often, she’ll fixate on something or someone for reasons she can’t explain. Intuition is a strange thing, indeed. The man isn’t doing anything inappropriate or suspicious; the only noteworthy thing about him is his out-of-place suave attire.

“Rebecca! Hi!” Rebecca jumps out of her seat when a familiar but sharp voice calls out her name. She turns around and sees Garrett, dressed like a 1970s Greenwich Village hipster, jogging toward her with an expensive Nikon camera around his neck and a backpack full of photography equipment slung over his shoulder.

“Hello Garrett!” They hug. Garrett playfully rubs her muscular back and whistles.

“Holy fucking shit, Becky. You’re getting bigger and bigger every single fucking time I see you, I swear to God,” Garrett exclaims. “Holy fuck, you’re gorgeous.”

“Thanks,” Rebecca says, blushing a bit. “I do what I can to add quality content to your portfolio.”

Garrett laughs heartily and checks the settings on his camera. Rebecca self-consciously removes her tank top, sweatpants, and sandals and stuffs them inside her tote bag. As always, a hidden strip of tape conceals the bulge between her legs. The brand new bikini she ordered earlier in the week hadn’t arrived yet (the distributor says it’s stuck in Cleveland of all places), so she had to pull out an old frilly Navy blue bikini from her closet instead. Oh well. Life goes on.

“Motherfucker, stop looking like that, girl!” Garrett says. “Well, are you ready?”

Rebecca looks around and already sees a small gathering of onlookers watching them. Some are pointing at Rebecca and presumably commenting on her muscles. She overhears a little girl ask her mother if “that girl is a boy or a girl.” Gee whiz, kid. You just answered your own fucking question!

No matter how long she’s been a competitive bodybuilder, Rebecca has never gotten used to unsolicited stares from strangers and rude remarks from the peanut gallery. But that’s the life she’s chosen to lead. If they can’t handle the sight of a beautiful muscular Asian woman flaunting her stuff at a public beach, they can take their opinion and shove it up their ass.

“I’m ready,” Rebecca says. “Let’s do this.”

For Female Bodybuilding Fans, Workout Videos are Our Porn

The next generation of female bodybuilding, Shannon Courtney.

The next generation of female bodybuilding, Shannon Courtney.

We all have our own vices.

Some of us like to gamble. Others like to party “in da club” till the wee hours of the morning. There are some who enjoy high-fat and high-sugary foods a little too much. How about smoking? Or excessive drinking? Or, *gasp* hitting the Mary Jane a few times here and there?

Unless you’re an ascetic monk living high in the Tibetan mountains, most of us have vices that we’re either proud of or wish would remain a secret. But let’s face it. Unless your vice hurts someone else, what’s the true harm? I, for example, am not one to claim to be a police officer of “outstanding character.”

Another popular vice that many of us share is pornography. Whether we’re talking about late night pay-per-view skin flicks, dirty magazines, snuff films, or good-old-fashioned Internet porn, we all know what we’re dealing with. Porn is everywhere in our society. On the cover of magazines, in popular movies, in clothing store advertisements, in music videos…everywhere. Not just hidden underneath your mattress or behind the playground monkey bars. Both softcore and hardcore porn (however you define either term) is saturated in our culture.

It’s so saturated, we sometimes forget what we’re seeing. Most of us would point to a Jenna Jameson video and say with definitive confidence, “That’s porn!” However, we might look at a Beyoncé music video and say, “Well, it’s not quite porn, but it is quite risqué. I would say…that’s NOT porn.” Fair enough. Everyone has the right to hold their own standards.

The real definition of “pornography” is as follows: “Printed or visual material containing the explicit description or display of sexual organs or activity, intended to stimulate erotic rather than aesthetic or emotional feelings.”

This photo of Lisa Cross might give me a heart attack if I stare at it long enough. But I'd die a happy man.

This photo of Lisa Cross might give me a heart attack if I stare at it long enough. But I’d die a happy man.

Basically, porn is media that’s intended to turn you on. It doesn’t have to be explicit. It doesn’t even have to be visual. Written erotica can constitute as porn if we assume a wide all-inclusive definition. Are risqué music videos or provocative fashion ads intended to sexually arouse you? Well, not primarily. They’re intended to persuade you to buy record albums and clothing. But if the adage that “sex sells” is true – which nobody would argue it isn’t – certainly eliciting an erotic response is one of the tactics used to convert advertising media to sales.

Alright. We’ve established that porn is everywhere. We’ve also discussed that porn can manifest itself in a variety of ways, not all of them explicit. Porn can also have objectives outside of just turning you on, such as convincing you to open your wallet and buy something. Other objectives could include persuading you to think about a social issue in a different way (nude PSAs by PETA, anyone?) or inspiring you toward self-improvement (pole dance aerobics isn’t just for exercise, people!).

This all ties in to female muscle fandom, trust me. What, did you think this post would be totally unrelated to what my blog is primarily about? I start with this simple question:

As a female muscle fan, what turns you on the most?

Many of us would answer with traditional responses like FBBs masturbating, FBBs having sex with scrawny guys (or each other), FBBs dancing around in the nude, FBBs glamorously posing in the nude, etc. Essentially, we get turned on by FBBs doing things in from of the camera that traditional looking women also do in mainstream porn. But if there’s one thing I understand about female muscle lovers, it’s that we’re especially turned on by something else entirely, something that’s not necessarily X-rated.

Workout videos.

Or, more specifically, videos of female bodybuilders doing what they do best: building their bodies at the gym.

When I say “workout videos,” the image that probably immediately pops into your head is that of what Denise Austin and Jane Fonda created in the 80s and 90s. Or maybe those old-school Tao Bo videos by Billy Blanks. Ah, yes. Those were the days. The good old days of cheesy music, bad camera angles, bright yellow stretch pants and enough sweat to fill a small lake. I can’t imagine what it must’ve smelled like in those studios. Yuck.

But, no. These are not the type of workout videos I am referring to. Instead, I’m referring to amateurish or semi-professional looking videos of female bodybuilders pumping iron in the gym. They could be shot on a cell phone camera, a store bought camcorder, or perhaps an actual professional-quality video camera. They could be shot for Flex magazine, Bodybuilding.com or for the FBB’s own personal brand. Quality notwithstanding, the idea stays the same: video footage of beautiful athletes doing what they do best.

For female bodybuilding fans, workout videos are our porn. They are what turns us on the most. They titillate us unlike any other media. We find them more arousing than videos that are explicitly sexual in nature. Sound strange? Let me explain what I’m talking about.

As female bodybuilding fans, we don’t just love the final product. Yes, of course images of Alina Popa or Lisa Cross looking ripped and contest-ready can be a divine spectacle to behold, but we’re just as interested in the process it took them to look that way in addition to drooling over how they eventually look.

What’s arousing about female bodybuilders isn’t just that they look so damn sexy, it’s also the fact that they have to bust their butt in order to look that good. There’s something about the strenuous nature of bodybuilding that makes these athletes so remarkable. Female bodybuilders are especially intriguing because their looks are both unconventional and supremely difficult to attain (and maintain).

This is why a grainy 90-second clip shot on an iPhone of a female bodybuilder, completely covered in sweat pants and an old t-shirt, squatting 300+ pounds is way more erotic than watching two silicone-enhanced teeny boppers sucking on each other’s clits with awful automated music playing in the background. If I were a sheltered teenage boy, the latter might excite me like no other. But as an adult, that stuff bores me to death. It’s unexciting. I’d even go as far as to say that it’s disgusting.

Watching two nameless 18-year-old women engaging in sex acts with total lack of interest or passion while moaning from an orgasm so fake it belongs in a can of Velveeta cheese isn’t erotic. It’s dumb. It’s an insult to my intelligence. It’s sophomoric. It’s a shame to the word “erotic.” I’m not necessarily knocking on those who actually like this sort of thing (I’m just kidding – I am knocking on you!), but get with the program, people! Doesn’t authenticity count for something anymore?

Ah, yes. Now we get to the heart of the matter. Authenticity. Workout videos are authentic. I’ve seen a fair share of fake or staged workout videos, but the ones that are real are so fun to watch because it gives you a brief glimpse into the process it takes to transform a woman’s body from “sexy” to “All-Powerful Goddess.”

If more women looked like Mavi Gioia at the gym, I'd go there every single day of my life.

If more women looked like Mavi Gioia at the gym, I’d go there every single day of my life.

But it’s not just about the process of becoming a bodybuilder or the authentic nature of these videos that excite us so much. There’s something unspeakably tantalizing about watching a woman work hard to achieve her dreams. Maybe it’s because a lot of us guys aren’t accustomed to seeing women lift heavy at the gym. There’s an Internet meme that says that “A girl in the gym is much hotter than a girl in the club.” I would agree with that wholeheartedly. But why do I feel that way exactly?

Maybe it goes back to the meritocratic nature of our society. We love female bodybuilders because they earn their beauty. Not every one of us is born with a beautiful face or flawless skin. But we can (to an extent) control the rest of us. A bodybuilder does exactly that. They are in complete control of their physical selves, even to the point that it becomes an obsession. A ripped body is something you earn with your sweat and labor. Mother Nature may not have given you other natural physical gifts, but if you want six-pack abs, you can go out and get it. If you have the willpower to do whatever is necessary to get it, of course.

Another reason why we love watching women lift is because it goes against our collective history. Historically, men were the laborers and women were the caretakers. Men were expected to do all the heavy lifting, both literally and figuratively. The fact that men are naturally stronger than women explains a lot of this. But these gendered roles still in many regards persist to the present day. So when we’re in the gym – and I should hurry up and say that the “workout video” thing could also apply to stealing peeks at women lifting at the gym – and we see a cute girl deadlifting more than her own bodyweight, it’s pretty damn sexy to watch. Very damn sexy.

Breaking the old rules of male/female roles? Making an effort to sculpt a sexy body instead of relying on plastic surgery, deceptive clothing (padded bras, for example) and heavily caked-on makeup? Yes, please!

Workout videos, and seeing up-close-and-personal women lifting heavy weights, are without a doubt our porn of choice. Regardless of the production values or quality of the video footage, this excites us more than anything. Here’s an example:

On Lisa Cross’ Facebook page, she’s uploaded a short video that illustrates exactly what I’m talking about. It’s a ridiculously short clip of her squatting a ton of weight on a hack squat machine. In the brief 41-second video, we can hardly even see Lisa. We can’t see her face. Nor her full figure. In fact, she’s as completely covered as a nun. No sexy revealing clothing. Nothing glamourous happening here. But she’s lifting a jaw-dropping amount of weight. And you can clearly hear her grunting as she squats up and down. Her heavy breathing isn’t exactly orgasmic, but its resemblance is impossible to ignore. But most important, you truly get the sense that she’s working her tail off. This isn’t showing off for the camera. This isn’t staged. This isn’t theatre of any sorts. This is authentic. She’s actually working out with the real intent of getting stronger and bigger. This is the master artist in action. She didn’t earn my nickname for her, “Lisa Cross, the British Bombshell,” just by sitting on her butt, watching TV and eating potato chips all day long. She’s a beautiful sexy Goddess because she’s willing to do the dirty work a lot of us aren’t too keen to do.

That might be the best explanation yet. The Dirty Work. Porn videos are also known as “dirty videos” because they show people engaging in unclean, filthy sex acts (as dubbed by certain folks). But ironically, workout videos of FBBs doing the dirty work of heavy lifting, grunting, sweating and torturing themselves for the sake of self-improvement are way more sexually exciting than watching two nameless bozos who can’t act have unemotional sex with each other. That stuff is a dime a dozen. Witnessing an elite female bodybuilder work on her craft is like watching Laurence Olivier perform Shakespeare, Luciano Pavarotti sing opera or Itzhak Perlman play the violin. You cannot look away from watching the elites do what they do best. The rest of us mortals can only stare and passively watch.

To reiterate a previous point, men who love muscular women aren’t just interested in the final product. We’re also interested in the process it took to achieve that final product. Workout videos, and other related media, excite us for reasons we can’t fully explain. Watching that video clip of Lisa Cross – and for the record, you can hardly even tell it’s actually Lisa! – genuinely gives me the chills. It makes my heart skip a beat. It’s a feeling I can’t explain, but every female muscle fan knows what I’m talking about. But it’s not just this particular clip. It’s the thousands of others like it.

Alina Popa doing leg lifts. Debi Laszewski doing lateral pulldowns. Colette Nelson bench pressing. Brandi Mae Akers doing bicep curls. Lindsay Mulinazzi deadlifting. Jana Linke-Sippl killing her arms on a bicep machine. Shannon Courtney punishing her rock-hard quads at the gym. Mavi Gioia doing triceps extensions. The list goes on. And these are videos that I’ve seen. No doubt there are countless more like them out there on the Internet ready for us to drool over.

The larger point is that female muscle fans love strong women for a variety of reasons. It’s not just about lust or appreciating a certain aesthetic. Female bodybuilders are unique in so many ways. They have a quality to them that’s almost impossible to describe, but equally impossible to ignore. Once you’re hooked, you instantly “get it.” You understand their appeal and even begin to wonder why you didn’t notice them earlier. I honestly cannot believe why I didn’t become attracted to FBBs sooner. I really started to notice them when I was 18 and a freshman in college. And how did it start? I was researching workout videos online and stumbled upon amateurish clips of beautiful women lifting at the gym.

Well, viola! There you go. For many of us, including me, workout videos were what got us hooked in the first place. So there’s a reason why they hold a special place in our hearts. The element of sentimental value is also at play here. Maybe that explains a lot. Maybe there’s something about witnessing a beautiful woman exert herself at the gym that lights a fire inside our souls. It begins the “Madness,” as the expert blogger Female Muscle Slave puts it.

Come to think of it, calling workout videos “porn” cheapens what they mean to us. “Porn” is what people view to fulfill a momentary sexual urge. Workout videos, on the other hand, have a more spiritual component attached to them. It’s like a music lover watching Sir Georg Solti conduct Beethoven’s 9th Symphony. Or a great philosopher delivering a lecture on the state of the universe. It’s poetry in motion. Watching a strong, muscular woman lift is like a religious experience, or to put it in more easy-to-digest secular terms – it is art. Female bodybuilders are artists. And watching them lift is like watching a painter paint, or a sculptor sculpt, or a musician compose.

Female bodybuilders are masterpieces of human achievement. And witnessing them transform into who they are is as enticing as it gets. Just ask any one of us. All we can do it sit back, relax and indulge in the captivating beauty on full display before our eyes.

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?