A Female Muscle Fan Never Forgets the Moment When He or She Finally “Got It”

A legend of the world of female bodybuilding: Cory Everson.
A legend of the world of female bodybuilding: Cory Everson.

You never forget your first time.

The first time you ever had sex? Nah, I’m talking about the first time you “got it.”

And by “got it,” I mean the exact moment when you truly understood why muscular women are so unbelievably awesome.

This “ah ha” moment is not just an epiphany, but a wholesale perspective shift of how you view men, women, beauty, sexuality, relationships, biology, and your own hidden desires. Typically known as a “paradigm shift” in academic circles, it’s more than just the moment you realized it was Professor Plum in the Library with the Revolver while playing a lackluster game of Clue with your grandparents. It’s the moment you decided to question every assumption you used to hold about human sexuality and start to ask better and more informed ones.

What exactly do I mean? Let me explain in further detail.

The first time you see a photo or a video clip of a muscular woman is not necessarily the first time you “get it.” I can speak for myself when I say the lightbulb did not turn on instantaneously. It took time. I will admit the first time I remember seeing a picture of a female bodybuilder I was sort of disgusted. It took me aback and forced me to do a double-take. I didn’t say anything out loud, but in my head I knew what I was seeing was both jarring and strangely intriguing.

Did I love the experience or hate the experience? Well, it’s hard to say. Neither, really.

I didn’t realize the exact power and allure of muscular women until much later (adulthood, to be exact), but the seeds were sown. But alas, I still had not experienced my Great Female Muscle Awakening. That happened in college. I’ve summarized my own personal history of female muscle fetishism before, but I’ll briefly recap it again. In short, during my freshman year in college I wanted to avoid the dreaded “Freshman 15” where new college kids who’ve just moved away from home tend to gain upwards to 15 pounds due to poor dieting, excessive drinking, and other shenanigans. Being away from Mom and Dad’s bird nest has consequences, after all.

So, I went out of my way and researched how to best exercise at the gym and avoid gaining extra weight. My school had a modest yet effective fitness center (of course, they completely renovate it the moment after I graduate!) that I would visit a few times a week. I took a weightlifting class in high school two years earlier but figured I should brush up on exercise techniques so I don’t accidentally injure myself.

YouTube and Google Videos were still in their infancy (yes, I’m getting old), but online workout videos did exist nevertheless. Initially, I only watched exercise instructional videos posted by guys. Then, after searching more and more, I started to stumble upon videos posted by women (or videos featuring women). One video in particular struck me.

It’s grainy, embarrassingly pixilated and looks like it was shot with a camcorder from the 1980s. Perhaps it was. But it featured Lisa Marie Bickels, a low-level competitive female bodybuilder, former U.S. Marine, and personal trainer. The video unto itself was not remarkable, well produced, or intended to be well produced. However, it left an indelible impact on me. I had seen photos and a limited number of videos of muscular women before, but this one produced my “ah ha” moment.

No skimpy dress will get in the way of showing off Lisa Marie Bickels' incredible body.
No skimpy dress will get in the way of showing off Lisa Marie Bickels’ incredible body.

In it, Lisa is doing a set of triceps pull-downs at the gym. After finishing, she poses for the camera and flexes her pumped arm. You can clearly see her ripped triceps running down her beautiful arm. I did some further research on Miss Bickels on her website and it then hit me.

She’s beautiful. And powerful. And independent. She’s willing to show off her hard-earned body and I cannot do anything but sit here and stare helplessly.

Whoa. Now I get it.

Lisa was the first FBB I ever saw who was young, undeniably feminine, muscular, and fiercely powerful (both as a person and as an object of beauty). Of course, in the decade that would follow I would view countless more videos of other FBBs doing similar things, but you never forget your first time. Ever.

Like losing your virginity, the first time you ever had sex wasn’t necessarily the best sex you ever had. It was probably awkward. Or painful. You may not have known what you were doing. Maybe you were sweating profusely. Maybe you were drunk, stoned, or nervous as hell. Regardless, it’s still noteworthy because…well, it was your first time. That’s important!

Likewise, Lisa Marie Bickels isn’t necessarily the best or most accomplished female bodybuilder in the world. Nor is she the most famous or best shining example of the beauty of strong women. But she opened my eyes to a whole new world. For that, this hardcore U.S. Marine deserves my respect.

The second part of my “awakening” would happen once I became acquainted with Karen Zaremba. Oh boy, Karen is a thing of beauty! Shortly after discovering Miss Bickels, I inevitably also stumbled upon videos of Karen Zaremba, a 40-something female bodybuilder and mother of two children. Karen is the flip side of the coin to Lisa. Karen is equally gorgeous, feminine, muscular (though not hypermuscular), and enthralling. But she is an older woman. At the time, Lisa looked to be in her mid-20s, which was not far off from where I was as an 18-year-old freshman. But Karen was a game-changer.

How can your perspective not change after discovering Karen Zaremba?
How can your perspective not change after discovering Karen Zaremba?

There is, of course, a certain acronym used to describe beautiful women who are also mothers. Out of respect for these wonderful and accomplished women, I refuse to use it. I hope the rest of you do the same. It’s crude, misogynist, and incredibly disrespectful. Don’t use it. Please.

That being said, Karen is without question a gorgeous older woman who instantly cast a spell upon this teenage boy. For the first time, I realized that muscles are the ultimate anti-aging remedy. Normally, middle aged women do not pique the interest of impressionable teenage boys with raging hormones. But Karen did. At the time, I considered her the Most Beautiful Woman I’ve Ever Seen in My Life. Other women would later replace Karen for that title, but a decade ago she was #1.

My discovery of Lisa Marie Bickels and Karen Zaremba set off a firestorm that would result in me starting this blog a few years after graduating from college. I would learn about hundreds of more competitive bodybuilders, fitness models, and “normal” women for whom lifting is more than just a casual hobby. But none of that would have happened without my fateful “awakening” as an 18-year-old kid.

As I mentioned before, that wasn’t the exact moment I first discovered muscular women. There was the cover of Red Sonja (1985) at a video rental store that made me stop dead in my tracks and stare. I’ve never seen this cheesy 1980s action flick starring Brigitte Nielsen and Arnold Schwarzenegger, nor do I ever have the inclination to. But regardless, the cover of the VHS tape caught my attention as a little boy.

Then there was the photo spread of Cory Everson in the 1999 issue of The Guinness Book of World Records. That definitely caught my attention. I reacted to this photo of Miss Everson with a mind-blowing mixture of disgust and arousal. Yes, I will admit that initially I looked upon Cory with repulsion. I’m not proud to admit this, but honesty is the best policy, is it not? However, I cannot deny that a small part of me was captivated by her. I may not have totally liked what I saw, but I could not look away. I spent many hours secretly gazing at this photo in private and wondering all sorts of things about her.

I also grew up watching WWF (now the WWE) and seeing women like Chyna (may she rest in peace), Sable, Jacqueline,  Trish Stratus, Debra, and other prance around, beat each other to a pulp, and occasionally show their male counterparts who’s boss. I also grew up watching GoldenEye (1995) on VHS and getting an electric thrill up my spine whenever Famke Janssen’s Xenia Onnatop flashed onto the screen. If episodes of “Xena: Warrior Princess” came on TV, yeah…I’d watch it in the basement without my family finding out!

May I squeeze Charmaine Patterson's bicep?
May I squeeze Charmaine Patterson’s bicep?

So my experience with strong/powerful/muscular women did not start as a college freshman. It began much earlier. But I didn’t “get it” until Miss Bickels and Miss Zaremba entered my life.

So, what exactly did I finally “get?” I have two major observations:

One, I finally saw a superb example of muscularity and traditional femininity working in tandem together like never before.

I didn’t find the photo of Cory Everson arousing, even though I intuitively knew there was something exceptional about it. I did find Famke Janssen and Trish Stratus immensely sexy, but neither of them were very muscular. I knew muscular women existed and I definitely knew beautiful non-muscular women existed, but I never saw the two combined until I encountered Lisa, Karen, and others.

Sometimes, that’s all it takes. It’s not that you’re blind to reality, but rather you just need to see all the elements come together in order for you to believe that it’s possible. As a young teenager I probably knew that a muscular woman could be sexy. I just never thought much about it. It’s not that I doubted this; it just rarely crossed my mind in the first place.

It never occurred to me that a gorgeous woman with muscles can become even more gorgeous. Her muscles can become a complementary asset that accentuates the natural beauty she already has. Her muscles enhance her good looks. I’ve obviously seen beautiful women before. I’ve also seen muscular women before. But it wasn’t until I saw the perfect mixture of the two that my perspective started to change.

Two, I finally realized that muscles can transform a normal-looking woman into an Irresistible Sex Goddess.

I too fell into the trap once upon a time ago that female bodybuilders were sort of freaks of nature who should be admired for their accomplishments but not necessarily seen as objects of desire. Yes, I was also once young and dumb! But I know better now thanks to finally seeing the light.

In addition to realizing that a woman with muscles can be both beautiful and feminine at the same time, I also came to the epiphany that a woman who isn’t considered naturally attractive can transform herself into an epic muscle goddess just by putting on bulk at the gym. I won’t name specific names, but we can probably all think of “homely” women who are hot as hell because their thick legs, bulging biceps, and wide shoulders make them completely irresistible.

Without muscles, these women aren’t much to look at. This sounds like an insult, but it’s not. It’s just a simple observation and a testament to the power of muscularity.

As women who have “earned” their beauty, we applaud them for maximizing who they are as people (not just physically, but also mentally and spiritually) thanks to hard work, sacrifice, and the will to improve day-by-day. Nobody handed them their muscles on a silver platter. They had to expend buckets of sweat for years on end in order to achieve their remarkable physiques.

I now appreciate the beauty of the tall blonde goddess Shawn Tan.
I now appreciate the beauty of the tall blonde goddess Shawn Tan.

Once you have your “ah ha” moment, you feel silly for not realizing this sooner. You feel foolish for intentionally shutting yourself off from a whole category of human beauty. It’s like a poor person living underneath an ocean of oil or a gold mine. They move to a new city, disgruntled and searching for new economic opportunities. A year or two later, the new property owner randomly stumbles upon a suspicious leak of smelly black fluid seeping from the ground.

And voilà! He or she is now rich and you’re still adjusting to your new surroundings as poor as you were when you left. Shucks!

That’s sort of how I felt when I first discovered my love for muscular women. I felt like I was limiting my scope of the world. I felt like I had a narrow definition of “beauty” that did not include a fraction of what humanity had to offer. But now that my eyes have been opened, I now appreciate women like Annie Rivieccio and Shawn Tan as I did not before. People who do not share my love for these gorgeous ladies are truly missing out!

The reason why you never forget your “first time” is because of how beautiful the experience is of enjoying female bodybuilders. Unlike the virginity comparison, even before you ever start having sex you know that sex is (supposed) to be a pleasurable and amazing experience. But before getting into female bodybuilders, I had no idea about the potential these women had to offer. I could never imagine the world of female muscle could be so incredible and stupefying because it never occurred to me it could be so incredible and stupefying. This is another key aspect of our “awakening.” I knew even as a little boy that sex is a big deal. I had no clue FBBs were also a big deal. See what I mean?

Additionally, not only do you finally “get it,” but you now have the opportunity to indulge in this love over and over again. Those of us who love FBBs and fit women understand what it’s like to enjoy them. The tingling that goes down your spine as you watch a sexy woman deadlift or squat 400 pounds cannot be accurately described. I don’t know if I can do it any justice.

But it doesn’t matter. You know a beautiful experience when you are privileged to participate in one. The Female Bodybuilder High we get is difficult to put into words, but it is indeed a tangible thing. It’s very real, and its power has not diminished in the past 12 or so years of my life.

You never forget the moment you got it. Not because you regret your previous ambivalence toward female bodybuilders, but because you can now celebrate your newfound love for them. Our worlds are now brighter because of this awareness.

Female bodybuilders are beautiful beyond words. The fact we cannot put it into words is telling.

The Adventures of Ryan Takahashi: Chapter Twenty – Tales from the Unemployment Line

Fired? Holy shit.

Really? Me? Fired from my job???

This doesn’t happen to people like me. This happens to OTHER people. You know, people who are lazy, incompetent, under-qualified or rude.

Not smart, studious, polite Asian guys like ME!

Motherfucker…

It’s been nearly two hours since I was fired from my annoying but stable job at Wellford Fitness Center. Here I am, lying in bed, eyes glazed over and a million thoughts running through my mind. Did I really just get fired for doing what I just did?

I mean, I got fired because I was caught having sex with one of my fellow employees. And not just any employee, for the record. I got caught by my boss having sex with Michelle, a hot perfect blonde. Michelle is the type of girl I could NEVER get in a billion years. She’s the type of girl every guy fantasizes about. She’s the type who gets muscle jerks like Big Danny, not awkward Asian guys like Ryan Takahashi.

I wonder what Michelle is thinking right now. Is she thinking “Gee, I’m such an idiot! I got fired for screwing Ryan! WTF????”

Or is she getting drunk right now? Or did she decide to go back to Big Danny out of desperation? Gosh, I hope not…

Oh well. She’s a wonderful personal trainer and one of the most gorgeous human beings on planet Earth. I’m sure she won’t have any problem finding another job.

Me, on the other hand, will have a much tougher time. I’m not as cute as her or as skilled in the fitness industry.

If only there were jobs for history majors just flying off the shelves. That would be convenient.

So, the next day I immediately start applying for jobs. I wake up at 8 a.m. sharp (which, believe it or not, is sleeping in for me!) and search the usual online job databases for attractive openings. Twelve cover letters later, I look up at my clock and see it is 11:27 a.m.

Time for lunch!

Because I’m strapped for cash, I’m going to have to resort to a boring peanut butter and jelly sandwich, baked potato chips and whatever cheap beer I have in the refrigerator. Ah, yes. The life of being unemployed. Oh joy. I can hardly contain my excitement.

Blah.

It’s a very surreal experience. I’m still – even 24 hours later – completely in shock over how I lost my job. I lost my job at the peak of orgasm. I was fired the moment my boss saw me and Michelle nearly consummate our impromptu coupling session. Even thinking about it gives me the chills. I still wonder what Michelle is doing right now. Is she agonizing over her poor decision to let her vagina (and my penis) get in the way of maintaining a paid job? Or has she been hired right off the bat by some other gym?

God only knows.

After lunch, I decide to take a stroll down the street and inspect the local businesses. I might strike gold and discover one of them is hiring. Stranger things have happened. There are plenty of cute little boutiques, shops and restaurants around here that might be hiring this very instant. This could be my lucky day.

Enjoying a sunny but chilly early afternoon, I see no one has a “NOW HIRING” sign hung up on their door. Well, shoot. Seattle is a large city after all, so there’s no use being down in the dumps quite yet.

Of course, I always have Sam’s proposition on the table. You know…being a high class drug dealer.

Holy shit. The fact that this crossed my mind is making me shudder. I need to stop thinking about this! Because the more I think about it, the more likely I’ll end up rationalizing a reason to take him up on his offer. And thoughts have a funny way of becoming reality if you’re not careful.

Hm. Nothing is around here. Just endless businesses with all their employment needs met. No signs of desperate storeowners needing a helping hand. No damsels in distress willing to pay me a million bucks to save her from danger. Nothing of the sorts.

Damn.

Suddenly, out of the corner of my eye, I see a business called “Cascade Temporary Staffing.” Uh huh. Temporary staffing. Well, I guess a few temp jobs here and there wouldn’t hurt. I’m not hurting for money, but a little extra green in the bank certainly could help me get through the holiday season. This could also be a great way to get my foot in the door with a great company. Gee, maybe I should inquire within and see what opportunities they have available!

And that’s exactly what I do.

I walk inside the building and see a long line. A verrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrry long line. Holy cow! There must be at least 40 or 50 people here! All they’re doing is waiting, carrying their résumés and hoping for a shot at a decent job.

Wow, it’s really sad in here.

This economy definitely is not improving at the rate we’d all hope. This explains the long line. Although I didn’t bring a CV or anything, but I’m here and I have some time to kill, so I guess there’s no harm in waiting in line with the rest of these folks. Who knows? I might walk out of here with a job interview in my pocket. You never know…

(Time passes)

25 minutes later, I think I’ve moved maybe nine feet. There’s about four or five dozen people here and only two Cascade Temporary Staffing employees helping us all. Gee, how ironic is it when a staffing agency is understaffed?

Meanwhile, I have nothing to do but overhear the colorful conversations of the people both in front and behind me. I must say, random people talking about random nonsense can be the most entertaining thing you’ll ever witness. For example, here’s a sample of a conversation between two teenage girls, one dressed like a biker chick and the other looking like she bought all her clothes at a Value Village blow-out sale.

Girl 1: You’re not going to believe this. Holy fucking shit.

Girl 2: What is it?

Girl 1: You know that guy I was with for a while? Craig?

Girl 2: Yeah. What about him?

Girl 1: He got arrested yesterday. And he just texted me. Do you know who his cellmate is?

Girl 2: Who?

Girl 1: My baby’s daddy. Holy fuck! That shit is fucking messed up.

Girl 2: Fuck.

Girl 1: My ex is cellmates with my baby’s daddy. Holy shit.

Girl 2: Yeah, girl.

Seriously. This is the crap I have to listen to in this God-forsaken unemployment line. I don’t want to sound too condescending, but I’m going to guess that neither of these ladies (both of whom couldn’t be older than 16 or 17) have a college degree or any employable skills beyond gossiping, getting pregnant and texting.

SMH.

Oh my God! Am I using Internet-speak? Am I degrading two people I don’t even know for having no “employable skills” when I just got fired for doing it doggy-style with a female co-worker? I am in no position to judge.

This is what unemployment does to you. It kicks your sense of self-worth out the door.

Finally, after what seems like a whole hour (but it was only about 40 minutes), I get to the front of the line and have the chance to speak to a staffing agent. The guy is named Stephen and he looks bored to death. Hey, I don’t blame him one bit. This place is a depressing cesspool full of desperate, jobless folks who would rather be somewhere else. If I worked here, I’d jump off a bridge in no time!

“Did you bring your résumé with you, Mr. Takahashi?”

“No, I did not. I came here on a whim.”

“In that case, fill out these forms and turn them in to window #5, please. Then we’ll process it and schedule a real face-to-face interview sometime next week.”

Stephen points to window #5, which is being manned by a guy who looks even more depressed than him. Boy! This place is giving me bad vibes.

“Thank you.”

“Yeah, yeah. No problem. Next!”

I walk away and find a chair in the waiting area. I thumb through the application papers, looking for what type of information they need from me. Holy cow. There must be at least thirty pages here! They’re asking for all my employment history, school records, criminal history, opinions about workplace ethics, professional AND personal references and writing samples. It even includes a math quiz (Really? Just because I’m Asian doesn’t mean I can do math!) and a personality test.

Oh. My. God. I REALLY don’t want to fill out all this crap. Seriously. Can’t someone just give me a job already? It’s only been one day and I’m already sounding as emo as a middle school kid playing with a razor blade in my mom’s minivan. Do they really expect me to fill out all this today?

You know what? Screw this. Screw this!

I get up from my chair, dump the application on the floor, give Stephen the “evil eye” and storm out the door. I don’t need this. Seriously, I don’t. I’m not going to fill out my entire life’s history just so I can get a temp job being an accountant at some disease-ridden hellhole. I need to be doing something where I feel useful, not where I’m disposable.

Yes, I just burned a bridge, but it’s nothing major and I’m sure this will not come back to haunt me anytime soon. I’ll just keep strolling down this street and see what else comes up.

Hm….

Nothing much yet. Now I’m outside the business area and moving into a residential neighborhood. I don’t think anyone around here is hiring. God…I’m depressed right now.

Like, really depressed. I don’t know why, but this entire week has been one big blur. One moment I have a stable job, the next moment I’m having sex with a gorgeous female bodybuilder, then all of a sudden I’m unemployed and on the verge of being broke.

Whew. I need a drink. I need some whiskey.

As I sulk around this particular neighborhood, I’m instantly reminded of a time when I was a child and I was the last kid picked to play kickball during recess. As I stood in the field, waiting for the ball to ever get to me, I didn’t feel happy that I was playing with my “friends.” I was sad because they thought so low of me that they chose me last, even after all the girls! I forced a smile and did my best, which wasn’t much.

I feel a lot like that now. I feel like Life has chosen me last to play kickball. I feel like Life would rather take any of those people waiting in line in front of me back there than little old Ryan. I get the sense that Life is looking down upon me and laughing at my expense.

Life would rather help out those two girls and the incarcerated baby’s daddy than me.

My melancholy daydream breaks when I hear a dog barking at me. Furious that I’ve trespassed onto “his” sidewalk, I turn around and decide to go back home. There’s nothing for me here. My best chance of landing a decent job is finding one online, not wandering around aimlessly hoping to win the employment lottery.

And to think I wasted 40 minutes of my life waiting in that bloody unemployment line. I could have been doing something more productive like watching TV, jogging, eating, sleeping, masturbating or taking a long crap.

Speaking of taking a long crap (which is such a pleasant thought, by the way), I REALLY need to pee. It truly is time to go home.

But this time, I’m not going to wait around for anyone to pick me for kickball. I’m starting MY OWN team!

Onward! And onto bigger and better things!!!