(Posted 12:30 p.m., Sept. 20)
Tumblers coach wins Ms. Fitness World crown
By Fred Sherwin
from Orléans was recently crowned Ms. Fitness World at a competition in Las Vegas. Photo supplied
Three years after taking up competitive fitness, Vanda Hadarean has reached the summit of the sport after beating out 25 other girls to win the Ms. Fitness World competition in Las Vegas earlier this month.
The Gloucester Tumblers gymnastics coach and former Olympian first took up the sport in 2005 at the suggestion of a friend. Six months later she won her first Ms. Fitness Canada event and then placed fourth at the Ms. Fitness World competition that same year.
Last year, she successfully defended her Ms. Fitness Canada title and placed second at Ms. Fitness World. This year she was going for it all.
“I just wanted it more this year. After two years I understood the competition better and what the judges were looking for. I was a lot more relaxed,” says Hadarean.
The Ms. Fitness World competition consists of three events – the evening gown event, the swim suit or physique event and the fitness routine.
During the evening gown portion of the competition each contestant must give a short speech on a subject determined by the organizers. This year the contestants had to speak about their philosophy on fitness.
For Hadarean fitness is a lifestyle choice which is why she doesn’t really have a training regime. She stays in shape by visiting the gym every day and she eats healthy foods.
Hadarean started out in gymnastics when she was just six-years-old in her hometown of Cluj, Romania.
She was picked to be on the Romanian national team in 1989 and competed internationally from 1990 to 1993. In 1991 she won the individual all round gold medal at the European Junior Championships and a bronze medal in the team event at the World Championships.
The next year she came third in the individual all round competition at the European Championships and won a silver medal in the team event at the 1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona.
The span of time has done little to dampen Hadarean’s competitive spirit. After finishing fourth at the Ms. Fitness World competition in 2005 and second last year, Hadarean was determined to step things up this year.
The way the competition works, none of the girls know the results of the morning pre-judging as they prepare to deliver their fitness routines in the evening.
Hadarean did her routine in the middle of the pack. Although she felt good about her performance she had to wait until all 26 girls finished before finding out whether or not it was good enough to win the crown.
After the last contestant finished, all the girls were brought on to the stage together to hear the results starting with the sixth runner-up. By the time they got to the second runner-up, Hadarean was still in contention for one of the top two spots. When her main competition was named as the first runner-up, she knew she had finally won it all.
“I thought, ‘Oh my God. It’s me,” says Hadarean who plans to defend her title next year.
In the meantime she’s hoping to use her success to further her budding career as a fitness model. More importantly she wants to be a role model to other young women who are thinking about getting into competitive fitness or are already in the sport and want to raise their game to the next level.
“Oh, absolutely. That’s what I’d love to do and not just young people, but anyone who is serious about the sport and wants to get better,” says Hadarean “Fitness for me, is not only about myself. Is about inspiring and motivating other people to find better choices in their lives with balanced workouts and of course healthy eating habits.”
Hadarean has already introduced the sport to several of her tudents at Tumblers. Three of her girls recently reached the podium in the junior and teen events at the Ms. Fitness Canada competition. Emily MacDougall and Alexa Charett came first and second in the teen event and Emily Tippins placed second in the junior category.
“They are amazing girls. I love them so much. They’re so positive and even if they don’t come in first place they are so happy just to be competing,” says Hadarean.
story was made possible thanks to the generous support of our local
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