We don’t talk much about figure competitors on SeriousAboutMuscle.com; in fact, we haven’t talked about them at all. But a brand-new competitor in the IDFA’s figure scene has changed things – 30-year-old Nadine Young is one of the very best figure competitors we’ve seen in a long time and she certainly deserves to be featured here. What’s more, Nadine doesn’t only use her muscles for show – her full-time profession is as a firefighter!
I first saw Nadine compete on October 9 at the IDFA Eastern Canada Classic in Montreal. I was bowled over by her the moment she stepped onto the stage – she displayed wonderfully wide shoulders, a super-tiny waist, full-sized female muscles, and striking facial beauty. All told, I could immediately see that Nadine had the perfect structure and look for figure, and that she possessed more potential than anyone I’d seen compete in years.
But as impressive as Nadine was in Montreal, she didn’t win that show; instead, the overall title and the IDFA Pro Card went to her friend, Amanda Schmidt, who was quite a bit more defined that Nadine. As a result, Nadine won the runner-up spot. However, she certainly was noticed by everyone there and was told that if she just “got a little tighter” she could easily win a top-calibre competition.
Nadine took the advice to heart and emerged on October 30 at the IDFA’s Ottawa-Gatineau Classic looking just as beautiful and shapely as she did in Montreal, but with definition that was about 25 percent better. The improvement she made was startling, so much so that Nadine easily won that show and earned her IDFA Pro Card. Since the SAF Fall Spectacular was held the same day, Nadine took her perfectly sculpted physique over to the SAF competition stage, was the runner-up in the open Swimsuit Model category, and earned SAF Elite Pro status. Obviously, that was a big day for Nadine.
But that was just a warm-up. One week later, Nadine competed in the IDFA’s Pro Universe competition at the Jane Mallet Theatre in downtown Toronto and won the whole darn thing. Then, a week after that, she took part in a photo shoot with the Girls of SAF crew at Paul Buceta’s photo studio, which is also located in the Toronto area. Paul is one of the world’s best fitness photographers and was absolutely enthralled with Nadine’s beauty as well as her physique. Paul shot the unique black-and-white firefighter image that SAF now proudly displays in their promotional literature, as well as the image that appears on our “cover” this month.
In one month, Nadine went from being an unknown in the physique world to becoming the top figure competitor in Canada. Obviously, with that kind of past success and future potential, I knew that Nadine was someone that our readers needed to learn more about, which is exactly why I’m writing about her here.
I wasn’t kidding when I said that Nadine is a firefighter – it’s her full-time gig and is something she’s exceedingly proud of because of the obvious help that it can provide to the community, and also because of the positive influence that firefighters have on other people, particularly kids. She said to me: “Have you ever noticed how kids run to the fire truck when firefighters visit schools or homes in a neighborhood? They don’t react that way to all professions.” It is this helpful, positive image that Nadine not only wants to have for her full-time occupation, but also something she wants to bring to figure competitions. That’s one of the reasons Nadine competes with the IDFA – an organization that prides itself on only holding drug-free, natural physique competitions. Nadine wants to convey the message of healthy living to other women and show just how much can be accomplished without resorting to the dangerous world of drugs. According to Nadine: “Anything is possible if you can just believe in yourself. It takes hard work, dedication and inner strength to overcome obstacles. I've learned now that nothing comes easily. Everything that I have achieved is because I've never given up! Determination is key!”
Nadine’s message is a good one, particularly the part about never giving up – because she hasn’t. Nadine has enjoyed a startling amount of success in a very short time in the IDFA’s figure scene and has also become a key member of the SAF team, but she’s actually been competing with other physique organizations for a few years. She simply didn’t have the success then that she has now, which is at least partially attributable to her current coach and trainer, Jason Pilon, who works out of a gym in Barrie, Ontario, Nadine’s hometown. He’s helped her make some great improvements and, according to Nadine, “Jason is an amazing trainer.” We don’t doubt it. Jason has had plenty of success recently with the IDFA not only because he trains Nadine, but because he also trains Amanda Schmidt, whom I mentioned earned an IDFA Pro Card, as well as Robin Jonkman, who also earned an IDFA Pro Card at a competition earlier in the year. Helping to create three pros in one year is certainly something to be proud of. But despite Jason’s recent involvement, Nadine’s actually been into weights for quite some time – she started when she was 15 years old, when she was into wrestling, and became an Ontario and Canadian champion.
Now, though, Nadine is fired up for figure and, in turn, she is firing up the figure scene with her unique look and positive attitude. Unlike so many figure competitors whose careers come to a grinding halt the moment they leave the Canadian competition stage (that's basically every Canadian figure competitor who has tried to make a mark in the U.S.), Nadine has the potential to compete successfully for many more years with the IDFA, and she is in the unique position to inspire others and create a lasting impression that will be remembered for a long time.
We’ve never featured a figure competitor on SeriousAboutMuscle.com before, but we haven’t seen a competitor like Nadine Young before. Look for more great things from Nadine in the years to come, and look forward to even more features on this fast-rising star right here on SeriousAboutMuscle.com!
. . . Doug Schneider, Publisher
Doug Schneider is the publisher and chief photographer for SeriousAboutMuscle.com.