Helen Fritsch - IFBB Bikini Pro

When I turned 56, almost 5 years ago, I realized that 60 was just around the corner! An athlete my whole life, I decided I wanted to test my limits and get into the best shape ever! Someone suggested I look into bodybuilding. When I did, I immediately shut it down. The strict diet was overwhelming! At that time, I was also working at a wine and chocolate shop and was not willing to give up my wine or chocolate! lol I revisited that possibility six months later and decided to go for it. I entered my first show after only a month of prep. I placed third in a 35+ Bikini division and never looked back! Four years later, I won my IFBB Pro Card when I turned 60!

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My diet doesn’t change too much when I’m in contest prep versus off-season. I still eat very clean off season, but if I decide to have some wine, dessert or any other treats I don’t hesitate to eat them! I find that tweaking my carbs has the most effect on changing my physique. When trying to grow muscle, I will add more carbs into my diet. As I get closer to showtime, my carb intake will be reduced and that’s when shredding begins! When I am in prep, I let my coach write up/dictate my diet regime. I tried IIFYM and it was just too much trouble for me trying to work up macros and keep track of carbs, proteins and fat portions and ratios on a daily basis.

As a flight attendant, I find myself in front of hundreds of people day in and day out. I believe this helped me tremendously getting up in front of strangers strutting around in a thong bikini in 5 inch heels on stage for the first time! It continuously got easier the more shows I did. Now I have no apprehension, nervousness or stress at all when I hit the stage!

The components of my training program vary depending where I am in prep. During a prep, I normally will lift six days a week. I’ll also do cardio six days a week. Three out of those six days will be HIIT training. In my off-season, I normally train four or five days a week. I don’t make HIIT mandatory but will do it at least once a week. I also enjoy taking classes like Orange Theory or athletic conditioning classes with local personal trainers. Also, when I am in contest prep, I usually train with my coaches 2-3 times a week. They push me beyond my limits and even though I usually hate every minute of it, the results are proof that the struggle works!! I stick to my diet plan during prep and very rarely stray. I usually get 1 cheat meal a week which helps me mentally and physically continue down the path!

You are officially looking at the new 2017 Masters National Figure 60+ national champion and new IFBB Figure Pro!!! ??????????????????????????????#neversaynever#npcmastersnationalchampionships#nationalchampion#figure#newifbbpro#ithinkican#iknowican#ididit#ageisjustanumber#redefiningoldage#60fitandfierce#omg!??#ineed??

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It’s a different world as an IFBB Pro now! Being 60, I’m only interested in doing Masters Categories. There aren’t any shows offering 50+ Bikini categories….yet, so I have competed against women 20-30 years younger than myself. That’s OK! At this point in my life, it's all about having fun and continuing to evolve as an athlete and improve my physique! The actual Pro shows are fun and there’s a lot of pomp and circumstance going on! I recently competed at the IFBB World Klash Bikini Pro Championships. At check-ins, everyone was individually called up to get their numbers and get pictures taken. Nice swag bags/gifts were presented. They offered us private dressing rooms. They had champagne and desserts for us after the show….I loved it! I felt very special to be a part of this elite group! Pre-judging and Finals ran quite well and on time. Everyone back stage was calm, friendly and relaxed. It was great meeting new gals from all over the USA and other countries and hearing their stories about how they got to where they are today as Pros.

Being an athlete my whole life has had an amazing positive impact on my body, mind, outlook and soul. I was taught at a very young age about working hard to get results, teamwork, good sportsmanship, sharing, sacrifice, perseverance, discipline, accepting bad outcomes, handling disappointment, learning from your mistakes, believing in yourself, going after what you want, making yourself happy….and the list goes on! Plus, I feel better and look better than I ever have. I was diagnosed with CLL, Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia, 3 years ago and the athlete in me keeps me forging straight ahead with an “eyes always forward” attitude. My lifestyle is working because I am keeping this cancer at bay so far!!

My future plans?? I’ll be 61 in July and I still have joy and passion when it comes to my fitness journey! I’m hoping to compete in more fitness shows. I presently write a column called Forever Young for Max Sports and Fitness Magazine and I would like to expand on my writing. I’m also in the process of starting a Podcast called “Age is Irrelevant”. I think there are so many women out there today, over 40, who have so much to offer, who are so inspirational and have a wealth of knowledge to share on aging gracefully. I want to bring their knowledge and expertise to those women out there who want to improve their lives and livelihoods but just don’t know how and need some help and direction in getting started!

Email hfritsch18@gmail.com
Instagram https://www.instagram.com/helenfritsch

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