Tough Talk from Champion Bodybuilder
by Christian Duque
It's been many years since Lenda Murray was making $250,000 a year to be the best female
bodybuilder in the world. With Olympia and Arnold prize money being only a fraction of what the men make,
and with the introduction of Figure, Fitness, and no Women's Physique, the female bodybuilding world of
1990 seems almost like a dream in 2011.
In an era when female bodybuilding and its adherents are all over tv (e.g. Lauren Powers), it almost
seems that the fascination is more with wrestling, lift & carry sessions, webcam memberships, and
private lingerie shows than it is with sound dieting, hard training, and year-round competition. Is this reality
the athletes fault -- or it just a sidn of the time?
The top women today (like the top men of the Golden age of Bodybuilding) have sponsorships and
can still make a good living off their sport. You won't find women like Iris Kyle or Yaxeni Oriquen-Garcia
doing cam shows, but they are the best. And interestingly, their sponsors are mostly European and their
work goes largely unnoticed by the press.
One exception to the rule, is Cathy LeFrancois Priest, who was recently on VPX Radio with John
Romano and Lee Priest (her ex-husband).
Cathy has consistently placed Top 10 over the last ten years, despite having one of the smaller
physiques on the stage. She has always been in high demand, with a figure and demeanor that highly
exudes her own femininity and drive to win. LeFrancois was on the show, fresh off another victory, to
promote her sponsor (Gaspari Nutrition) and to let the world know that she is a great example of what
living right is all about. She doesn't do the sessions, the cam work, and she doesn't do any nudity --
that kind of work is not for her.
And she doesn't compete in shows to lose money! The stage isn't a loss (financially), it continues
to be profitable for the French Canadian muscle goddess. But she's clear to point out, that her
sponsorship with Gaspari involved hard work - especially when the company was understaffed (on the
road). She speaks of GN with great confidence, she knows they have her back - and you can hear that
trust over the radio waves. She's not a little robot shooting off a sales pitch here and a bs testimonial
there. Cathly Lefrancois uses Gaspari products - and believes in the in the line! Every penny Gaspari
has invested in Cathy, is a dollar VERY well spent!
I believe that her interview on the Shotgun Big Show delivered a much needed dose of dignity to a
sport delving lower and lower into a world of fetish and sleaze. Cathy didn't sugarcoat anything, she
wasn't diplomatic, she didn't beat around the bush. In fact, she made sure to convey every thought -
fully & completely! At times, it sounded like Cathy wouldn't stop talking, but this was an athlete with a
lot to say.
I know Iris & Yaxeni have the best physiques in the sport -- but they really need to start talking like
Cathy Lefrancois Priest. People don't care about how you cook your sweet potato or if you drink
grapefruit juice on an empty stomach prior to doing cardio. Female bodybuilding seems to have a
healthy group of champions, but Cathy is the first one (since Lenda Murray) to finally speak up.
And she didn't just say what people wanted to hear. In fact, her comments may very well turn many
women against her -- but it needed to be said. And Cathy also addressed the promoters, calming
recognizing a point championed by critics like Bob Cicherillo, who find themselves having to cancel
shows for lack of interest. Cathy held no ill will for not being able to defend her title at a show that just
wasn't going to make the investors the kind of profit that would make it was worthwhile business
Again, Iris Kyle may be the reigning Ms. Olympia, but after hearing Cathy Lefrancois on the radio
-- I think she's the kind of Ambassador to the World that Female Bodybuilding truly needs.
Please take a moment to visit Cathy's Official Website. Also, take a look at the Gaspari Nutrition
page. I am a HUGE Female Bodybuilding Fan -- and I REALLY appreciate this great company
sponsoring one of the sport's BEST champions!