The world of competitive and professional bodybuilding has a storied place in the United States, but remains obscure to many Americans. To the competitors, trainers, judges and promoters inside the community, however, bodybuilding is more than a sport; it also serves artistic and social purposes and endures as a symbol of the constant drive for self-improvement and personal growth.
Governed by the National Physique Committee, bodybuilding competitions are held around the country. The Battle of Texas is an annual NPC bikini competition that our …destination members look forward to each December. One of the competition’s promoters, Sheilahe Brown, spoke on her role in the bodybuilding community.
Brown, who started competing in NPC bikini competitions in 1984, was first motivated to start competing thanks to a completely random encounter.
“I was walking down a sidewalk and a gym owner noticed me from inside his gym,” Brown said, “He offered me a free membership if I would compete in a show.”
It was the start of a long and fruitful journey for Sheilahe, who has judged and promoted competitions in addition to competing in them herself. She enjoys attending competitions around the country, but when asked to name a favorite, one came to mind: the NPC USA Championships in Las Vegas.
“It’s where I earned my IFBB (International Federation of BodyBuilding) pro card,” said Brown regarding her fondness for the prestigious competition.
As her career has advanced, Sheilahe often finds herself in the position to mentor newer competitors.
“My favorite part of the job is seeing these competitors improve from show to show. Seeing them attain their goals warms my heart.”
Despite the amount of time spent training, taking time for rest and recuperation is still important for professional bodybuilders and other extreme athletes. At the end of the day, Sheilahe says she likes to unwind with many of the same comforts as anyone else: a glass of red wine, relaxing music and a Netflix binge. She’s earned it.