‘And the hard work paid off’

By Dan Martynowicz

The Organization of Competitve Bodybuilders Midwest States bodybuilding competition showcases hard work, dedication and flawless physic.

The Egyptian Theatre, 135 N. 2nd St., hosted the 6th annual all natural Bodybuilding, Figure and Bikini Competition Saturday. Seventy-five competitors from all over the Midwest were judged on symmetry, leanness, muscularity and overall appearance.

The OCB Midwest States was Noe Calderone’s first bodybuilding competition. A DeKalb Resident, Calderone said he was excited and couldn’t wait for his next competition.

“The promoter said I was looking good,” Calderone said. “I like [bodybuilding], and I’m very excited.”

According to head judge Nick Katrichis, all entrants are subject to a polygraph test and winners to a drug test. An International Fitness and Physique Association (IFPA) qualifier, OCB Miwest States must insure all competitors are not using banned substances. First place in any of the four categories is rewarded with a Pro-card and the opportunity to become a professional body builder.

Best overall in the Bikini Competion was Amanda Barango. This was Barango’s first win.

“I can’t really explain,” Barango said. “I started to cry up there. It feels fulfilling and the hard work paid off.”

Ray Binkowki, event promoter, personal trainer, body builder and owner of Fitworks, 1690 Sycamore Road, said the reward for competing is the training itself.

“You can’t buy it,” Binkowski said, “It’s not something you can go get off the shelf. You have to earn it. You have to make the right decesions on food. You have to make the time. You’re gonna ride around in your body for the rest of your life; you better take care of it,”