On July 30th 2011 I had the fantastic experience of competing in the NANBF Washington State
Championships (http://www.unitedfitness.org/results.html), an IFPA pro qualifying show! This was my
second contest ever, my first being an NPA show here in Virginia, and what an event! The Washington
State Championships took place at the famous Moore Theater in downtown Seattle, just two blocks
from the waterfront and Pike's Place market. The crowd was huge and loud, the competitors were huge
and ripped, and the judges brutally worked us with their repeated calls for 30-second-plus poses!
My first competition was a great experience, but it did little to prepare me for the rigors of posing for
NANBF judges! We had to hold quarter turns and mandatory poses for at least 30 seconds, and often
much longer than that! On top of that, every pose was repeated at least twice, and both sides of the
chest and triceps were required. In all it was a marathon posing session, and several competitors were
gasping by the end of it, their tans running off from sweat!
When I did my first contest locally there was an even distribution of in-shape and out-of-shape
competitors, so it was fairly easy to tell from the get go who would be battling for the overall title by
the end of the night. When I got to the NANBF show I saw that was clearly not the case. The majority of
the competitors were huge and ripped, and since the classes were divided by height rather than weight
I saw early on that I would be competing against some big guys in my middle height class! As it turned
out, the overall winner of the entire show - who was massive and happened to already be a Pro in
another organization - was competing in my class! The competition was definitely high-caliber, so I was
thrilled to make the top three of seven and felt I had done well in representing vegan bodybuilding.
The audience was another awesome surprise at this show - I've heard quieter crowds at rock concerts!
Even when watching the Olympia - bodybuilding's biggest contest - the audience never seems to get
too loud or rowdy, but at this show they went crazy for every competitor and were screaming for their
favorites during posesdowns and awards! This was completely new to my experience of bodybuilding
and I can honestly say when I walked on stage to do my posing routine and the crowd went wild it made
the event for me! What a blast!
On top of all the excitement of the show, I had the honor to compete alongside fellow vegan
bodybuilder Ed Bauer. Ed and I were in different classes, but we spent all our time together back stage
giving each other feedback on posing and just general support. Ed is a great bodybuilder and a standup
guy, so I couldn't have asked for a better companion while we tanned and pumped up for the battle
onstage. There was a great representation for vegan bodybuilding at the show because in addition to Ed
and I and our partners Marcella Torres and Jade Vanacore, Giacomo Marchese, Dani Taylor, Sara Russert
and Jennifer Godfrey all traveled to the show to lend their support! It was a fantastic showing by the
vegan bodybuilding community and after spending time with this group I was thoroughly impressed with
everyone and now consider them all good friends.
The NANBF Washington State Championships would have been an amazing show in and of itself, but
with the added camaraderie from the vegan bodybuilding community and the support all along the way
from Robert Cheeke and Vegan Bodybuilding and Fitness it really become something special that I will
remember for the rest of my life. Few bodybuilders get to work with such an incredible support network and fewer still get to represent organizations they are truly passionate about, let alone at their second
contest ever! It was an amazing event and I was honored to be there with such a great team of friends
representing the vegan movement.
ACE Certified Personal Trainer
Certified in Plant-Based Nutrition