Renee Harshey had been in a bikini for a while. She had competed in nine national competitions and two international shows but failed to win her pro card. "My problem," she says, "is that I tend to be tighter in my lower body than the bikini judges are looking for."
Renee points out that the female body in general tends to carry a disproportionate amount of weight below the waist. So, bikini competitors with more density in the lower half will have to focus on losing muscles in their legs and buttocks. “For that,” Renee adds, “you have to stay in a catabolic state for a long time, which is not really healthy.” As a bikini competitor, she also had to avoid a lot of heavy leg training.
“I have a lot of lower body muscles,” she says, “and I LOVE working my legs with things like lots of squats and leg presses. So when I read the wellness rules, I immediately thought it was a category that was practically developed for me. "
One of the things you notice the most about Renee, besides her fabulous physique, is her resemblance to Rachel McClish, a pioneer in women's bodybuilding like Renee in Wellness.
Wings of strength
Because of her genetic structure, Renee decided to give wellness a try when the division was introduced in 2020. Renee had already earned her Pro card at the Amateur Olympics in South America in 2019, where she won the overall award, but in the bikini class. The next day there was a pro bikini event so she changed her travel plans to stay and compete as a pro for the first time. "I finished ninth, which was great for me considering that I had actually climaxed the day before to earn my pro card. With all the stress and excitement, I am in good shape for the pro show not really held the next day. "
Renee doesn't really consider this her professional debut. Instead, she regards this as her participation in the 2020 Wings of Strength Tampa Pro, where the IFBB Pro League's first wellness division debuted. "This was a competition that I could fully exercise and diet for, which allowed me to do my best." And her best was good enough because she won the wellness division and became the first wellness professional in the IFBB Pro League.
One of the things that observers highlighted at this event was the quality of Renee's poses. “In a bikini you mainly do model poses. In wellness, you do quarter turns and the participant poses in such a way that attention is drawn to muscling, definition, and separation in muscles such as the hamstrings, glutes, and quadriceps. In other words, to highlight the things that lead to your being devalued in a bikini contest. "
Wings of strength
Wellness is a great crossover opportunity for Renee Harshey. Competitors from other categories like bikini, physique, and even figure are drawn to it. “I love the figure department,” she says, “and train figure competitors. But I don't have the structure for it myself. My hips are too wide and my shoulders too narrow. Wellness is a kind of intermediate category that suits many women who do not exactly meet the requirements of other types of competition. "
Renee actually got into bodybuilding training by accident. She switched high school and wanted to sign up for a dance class, but it was full. Instead, she started strength training and, like so many future muscle competition champions, found that she really liked it and saw the way her body responded to the workout.
“Over time, I've gotten into strength training more and more,” explains Renee. “I gave birth to a daughter in 2012 and gained 40 pounds during my pregnancy. After that, I went back to the gym and managed to get back in shape pretty quickly. At some point my body changed so much that I decided to take part in competitions, and I've been doing that ever since. "
In addition to the competition, Renee is also a sought-after coach for professional figure competitors. She also started a company called FitChoice Foods. “Our passion and dedication to living healthy and fit drives us to create nutritious meals that will help you meet your health and fitness goals,” explains Renee, “and we deliver them straight to you. At FitChoice Foods, we prepare a wide variety of cooked and portioned meals every day using only the best available ingredients. With careful planning and design, each meal is tailored to your specific nutritional goals to provide your body with the nutrients it craves. "
Wings of strength
For all of her other life interests, Renee is still focused on continuing her career as a wellness professional, and she is motivated by her successful appearance at the Wellness Olympia 2021. “As the first IFBB Pro Wellness Champion, I have the feeling that I have raised my career to a high level. But as they say, when you get to the top of the mountain, you generally see one more mountain to climb. And I plan to continue climbing mountains as long as there is one in front of me. "
History of the Renee Harshey Competition
- IFBB Olympia Wellness • 2021-13.
- IFBB Arizona Pro Wellness • 2021 –1.
- IFBB Tahoe Pro Wellness • 2021 –6.
- IFBB Milwaukee Pro Wellness • 2021 - 3.
- IFBB New York Pro Wellness • 2021 –4.
- IFBB Pittsburgh Pro Wellness • 2021 - 7.
- IFBB Tampa Pro Wellness • 2020–1.
- IFBB Sheru Classic Bikini • 2019 –9.
- NPC Amateur Olympics South America • 2019 - 1st overall ranking & Pro Card
- NPC Romania MuscleFest • 2018 -5.
- NPC rth America • 2017 –6.
- NPC Universe • 2017 –10.
- NPC Junior Nationals • 2017 -5.
- NPC rCal • 2017–4.
- NPC nationals • 16.
- NPC USA • 2016-16.
- NPC universe • 2016 –8.
- NPC Junior Nationals • 2016 -5.
- NPC rCal • 2016–3rd
- NPC Junior Nationals • 2015-12.
- NPC Dennis James Classic • 2015 –6.
- NPC Thunderdome • April 2015 –2.
- NPC Felicia Romero Classic • vember 2014 –3.