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The feminine side of bodybuilding: Yarmouth woman says determination, drive and willpower key


YARMOUTH - Prior to 26 months ago, Rachelle d’Entremont had never lifted a weight in her life.

Rachelle d’Entremont began bodybuilding about 26 months ago and is the only bikini competitor from Nova Scotia that has ever won her class in a national event.

Now, after training hard and competing in eight events, this Yarmouth resident hopes to become the first bikini competitor from Nova Scotia to become an International Federation of Body Building pro.

Her life took a new direction after healing from back surgery at 26. She joined the YMCA and started working out in the gym.

She remembers watching bodybuilder Lisa Bowden in awe, wishing she had the same determination, drive and willpower.

“But I was just little old me, doing my workouts, kind of feeling embarrassed because I didn’t know how to lift weights,” she said.

“Then one day it just kind of clicked and I thought, ‘Why not me?’”

After talking to Bodin she hired a coach (Greg Doucette) for her diet and weight training.

“That was a learning curve… to resist the temptation of food,” she said.

Following the plan and exercising for an hour each day, six days a week, she began seeing changes.

At five feet, nine inches tall, her competition weight is 140 pounds. Her training diet consists of five or six small meals a day, each 200-300 calories.

In October 2015 she competed for the first time. At that show, the International Drug Free Association, she won her height class and the overall division for bikini.

“I thought I was something else after that,” she laughed.

Female bodybuilders can choose from three classes: bikini, where judges are looking for a toned, conditioned, lean body with no visible striations or veins. The walk and smile are part of the presentation.

The figure class means more muscle, with visible striations in muscles apparent and poses designed to emphasize muscles.

Physique highlights the maximum amount of muscle with very low body fat percentage and intricate posing routines. Judges are looking for size and leanness.

D’Entremont entered more competitions and won her height division several times.

Most recently, she won gold competing against eight others in her height class at the Canadian Bodybuilder Federation International event qualifier May 6-7 in Laval, Quebec. By doing so, she became the only bikini competitor from Nova Scotia that has ever won her class in a national event.

“It was super exciting… surreal,” she said.

Other female bodybuilders in the area are:

Longtime bodybuilder Anna Woodworth-Gates will be competing at the 2017 Figure, Fitness and Physique Canadian Nationals in Surrey, B.C., July 29.

Chelsey Belliveau, Danielle Rountree, Taylor Buchanan, Audrey van Oostrum (works in Yarmouth), Tessa Churchill-Morehouse, Candice Stone and Jennifer LeBlanc.

Another Yarmouth bodybuilder, Anna Woodworth-Gates, is nationally qualified and will be competing in the physique division at the 2017 Figure, Fitness and Physique Canadian Nationals in Surrey, B.C., July 29.

She’s been bodybuilding for the past 13 years and her coach is Jonni Shreve.

“The biggest challenge for me is the mental aspect and not letting your head play games with you... doubting yourself, fear, comparison of others and negative talk from others,” said Woodworth-Gates.

She frequently questions as to whether she’ll be ready in time and faces the challenge of wanting to eat when she is hungry but can't.

“You have to keep your mindset focused and always be visualizing the outcome you want to achieve.

“You have to believe in yourself and your abilities 100 per cent,” she said.

 

Typical training meals for bodybuilders

Greek yogurt with a cup of blueberries.

Chicken breast and a salad

Six egg whites with a salad (low fat dressing)

Protein bar with half an apple

 Wrap with chicken breast and fat free cheese slice.

 

 

 

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