This week’s episode of “Femme Flex Friday” was headlined by the top three finishers of the 2020 Figure Olympia. Alina Popa and Whitney Jones were joined by the reigning champ, Cydney Gillon, as well as the second- and third-place finishers, Natalia Soltero and Nadia Wyatt — the first time the three world-class athletes have been face-to-face since that fateful December weekend in Orlando, Florida.
Gillon was the first to speak, and she talked about the process of going into this contest as the defending champion going up against such a stacked lineup of athletes. The former star of “Survivor” explained that she had to balance enjoying the process while using her mother as a source of motivation.
“I think at this point, it’s about having fun and seeing how good I can be each and every show and seeing what I can accomplish. So mindset wise, I had a lot on my mind, I had a lot of health things going on with my mother. So my focus was on focusing each and every day and making sure I was putting one foot in front of the other. That way, I could accomplish what she always wanted me to accomplish. She always wanted me to break records. So I wanted to make sure that I could make that happen for her.”
Soltero was asked about her prep, and she shared how her prep was affected in Tijuana, Mexico because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Her husband served as the translator and offered insights as well.
“We had almost a whole year that the gym was closed,” he says. “So there were times that we trained in the gyms because the owners let her in by herself, and part time at home. She has a small gym at home. She had a lot of support from the local gyms. So while it was difficult, most of the people helped her make it through this whole problem.”
Wyatt shared that she had to train at home while maintaining a full-time career as a human resources executive for Target. While placing third at the top show in the world is quite the accomplishment, she knew that there was room for improvement.
“I’ve come to grips that I’m never going to be the biggest competitor onstage. So that is never going to be my goal. Honestly at this point, I look at my presentation onstage. I think that’s one of the things I’m very focused on working on, just that overall presentation. And then I like to picture just a silhouette and make improvements based off of that I see. Something else I would like to see is a little more quad sweep, technically, and working on my shoulders is always something that has been an issue for me. That’s always something I’m working on.”
When Cydney Gillon was asked about how she can improve on a four-time Olympia winning physique, she revealed a surprising insight about her prep.
“I personally don’t really have a vision. My coach always has a vision. He’s very, very clear cut. He doesn’t even tell me what the vision is. I just do the work, and he just guides me as I go, and I’m either on track or I’m not. I leave that up to him. When I do get offstage, I do look at the pictures. I never know what I look like because I never look at myself during prep. He’s literally the only person who looks at me. He looks, and I turn around and turn around, and I put my clothes on to go work out. So until I see stage pics, that’s my first time that I’m seeing myself.”
Among other talking points are Wyatt’s engagement after the Olympia, Gillon’s wedding after the Olympia. You can catch the entire conversation with the Figure division superstars on this episode. Femme Flex Friday premieres on Fridays at 6 p.m. EST at www.wingsofstrength.net.