Saturday, June 30, 2007

Arkansas Soldier Wins Bodybuilding Competition

6/29/07, North Little Rock, AR—MAJ Betty Anderson takes her physical fitness seriously, and now she has the hardware to prove it.

MAJ Anderson, a Maumelle resident who serves with the Arkansas National Guard's 87th Troop Command, competed in her first bodybuilding contest earlier this month. She didn't expect to win, but she did.

"I went to the Miss Arkansas competition last year, and I looked at the ladies on the stage and thought that this was something I wanted to do. I really like that kind of stuff," she explained.

The contest was the North American Natural Bodybuilding Federation's Northwest Arkansas competition. The group's events are for athletes who do not use chemical enhancements, and participants must pass drug screens to compete.

By winning, MAJ Anderson earned berths in regional events and plans to compete later this year in a statewide contest and in Oklahoma.

MAJ Anderson's past fitness regimen had consisted mainly of running. The major said she exercises at least two hours each day.

"I still run a lot. I probably run six miles in the morning and do upper body training," she said. "In the evening, I'll work my lower body. I'll get on a stair-climber or a different type of cardio, but I do double cardio every day."

To prepare for the contest, though, MAJ Anderson sought the help of North Little Rock police officer David Baxter.

"I always had a tight upper body, but the lower body has been a problem," she noted. "My trainer at Pro Gym in North Little Rock helped me get my legs 'cut up.'"

MAJ Anderson said training for a bodybuilding competition requires focus.

"You've got to be dedicated and motivated," she said. "A lot of the training that goes with bodybuilding is working out, but the key to success is your diet. You have to eat right, which means no junk food."

The major explained that her diet consists of grilled and baked chicken and fish, vegetables and other foods such as oatmeal and egg whites. She avoids starchy foods. The lifestyle not only keeps her fit but helps her military career, MAJ Anderson said.

"I think it keeps me more motivated. I know it keeps me more fit," she commented. "I'll probably be able to max out on my push-ups on my next physical training test. I usually score 290 or better, but I should score above 300 now."

The MAJ Anderson plans to continue to train and compete.

"I'm trying to get practice, and next year I'm going to try to get my pro card

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