Working out in itself isn’t easy. What more so if it’s bodybuilding? While most people seem to think that bodybuilding is a men’s sport, these women prove otherwise. With inspiring stories on how their journeys began and quotable quotes you’ll repost after you read it, you might just want to try it out yourself and see if you have the dedication, discipline, and confidence needed to become a bodybuilder, as well.
These 14 Filipina Bodybuilders are Literally Both Strong and Beautiful
Angel Funa, 27
Angel Funa has been into bodybuilding for a year now. In fact, bodybuilding has become her way of life! “It gives me such a sense of pride to know that I have achieved something that most girls would never attempt,” she explains. “Every workout gives me the power to enhance my physique. I feel so healthy and strong. I also have more confidence. I started working out one year ago and I’m never going to stop. I think all girls should do weight training because it’s such a healthy way of life.”
Angel is also a certified tattoo artist at Prettylooks and also a certified aesthetician. “My passion is not only in bodybuilding, but also in making people bring out their beauty,” she shares.
Emay Amin Guiap, 39, @emayaminguiap
Emay Amin Guiap has been in competitive bodybuilding for 12 years now. She actually joined to conquer her fear and to showcase how far she can go from a skinny physique.
Emay is also the owner of Extreme Fitness Club.
Erika Bacani, 31, @erikabcni
Erika Bacani has been training since 2013 and this will be her 4th competitive season. Back in the day, Erika wanted to prove that her situation can’t dictate what she can and can’t do, so she tried stepping on stage. “As I learned more about bodybuilding, I began to appreciate the sport for its principles and how it helped me develop good habits, a stronger mindset and better work ethic,” she shares.
When she’s not training, Erika loves to read.
Jilli Gomez, 30, @jilligomez / @idofitnessph
Jilli Gomez has been bodybuilding since August 2017. Jilli was introduced to weight lifting at an early age and got hooked. “I wanted the abs Britney Spears had in her ‘Slave 4 U’ comeback,” she shares. Jilli has always been fascinated with sculpting the body. In fact, she would watch Arnold Schwarzenegger and Jean Claude van Damme movies in her teenage years before trying different types of exercises. She did CrossFit for 5 years, yoga for about a year, and 360 Fitness for a few months. After seeing her dedication in CrossFit, Champion bodybuilder Rowee Co asked her to join the bikini category in bodybuilding competitions. Since it was a secret dream of Jilli’s, she prepped right away. “I loved the process of it all, how it’s both an art and a science.”
Jilli is also a licensed architect educated in the University of the Philippines. “The art and science of designing and building structures and interioes is also another thing that excites me on a daily basis,” she gushes. Since fitness is also a passion of hers, Jilli just started a new business called I Do Fitness that aims to help engaged couples (and their entourage) look and feel their best on their big day through proper training and nutrition. Check them out at @idofitnessph
Georgia Angeline Agbayani, 27, @heytheregeorgia
Georgia Angeline Agbayani has been bodybuilding since July 2018 after her close friend Jilliane Gomez heavily influenced her to. Georgia shares that she actually got into an accident in early 2018 while training for her first Crossfit competition. “I had a hard time getting over the trauma and getting back to lifting,” she admits, “so I decided to shift programs and focus on aesthetic/physique. Plus, I just really wanted to look good in a bikini and have abs, too!
Georgia is a licensed preschool teacher and a fitness enthusiast. “I literally sparkle in glitter and sweat everyday,” she says.
Joanne Solomon, 27, @joanneslmn
Joanne Solomon started bodybuilding early last year and has competed for the Mr. and Ms. Philippines Bodybuilding, where she won 2nd place under the Novice and Short Categories. “I entered not expecting anything, so it truly surprised me because it was my first time entering a competition,” she reminisces. Joanne decided to get into bodybuilding after her coach invited her to watch a bikini competition live.
Joanne is generally a very active person. She loves to workout even on weekends and she also does yoga, boxing and muay thai. Right now, she’s preparing for Spartan Beast this May 2019. She is also trying out trail hiking and obstacle courses, and has plans to compete in bodybuilding again before the year ends.
Liza Fielder, @lizachefitness
Liza Fielder has been three years on and two years off bodybuilding. She is currently on season for a comeback bodybuilding competition. “Aside from the inspiration and motivation I get to give my followers and clients, bodybuilding also cultivates and strengthens the discipline I already have in terms of health and fitness lifestyle,” she says.
Liza is a chef by blood and a future veterinarian by heart. She has incorporated her passion for cooking and her love for fitness in her business Chefitness, a healthy diet delivery service. “Through that, I was able to help many clients attain their goals and adhere to a healthy lifestyle,” she shares. Apart from that, Liza has a very soft heart and unique connection with animals, especially stray dogs and cats. She is a fur mom to 17 pomeranians, 3 rescued aspins, and 8 adopted cats. To strengthen her advocacy in animal welfare, she has decided to take a second degree at the University of the Philippines Los Banos: Doctor of Veterinary Medicine. “Some of my classmates call me DocChef or ‘fitspiration Ate’, which makes me feel flattered and even more motivated to continue my advocacy in fitness, healthy living, and animal welfare,” she adds.
Keziah Landicho, 27, @kezh.landicho
Keziah Landicho started working out in 2010 and joined her first bodybuilding competition in 2015. At one point in her life, Keziah got confined for weeks in the ICU for stage 4 hemorrhagic dengue with several complications. “I told myself that if I survive, I will take care of my body and be stronger,” she shares. After that, she started collecting fitness magazines and finding inspiration in fit and strong women.
On weekdays, Keziah works at a telecommunications company as a Corporate Solutions Manager. On weekends, she does some personal training with clients, works on some side hustles, and studies more about fitness and nutrition. She is also a fitness host and has workout videos on YouTube and Instagram. “My advocacy is to share knowledge on fitness and nutrition to people with limited access to the Internet or informational materials. That’s why I volunteered and taught a fitness class to hundreds of women in the Correctional Institute for Women,” she shares.
Myra Golloso, 29, @myragolloso
Myra Golloso decided to embark on her fitness journey after one of the saddest moments in her life left her with deep physical insecurities. After being led into a state of depression, bodybuilding helped her overcome this matter of mental health. She opens up: “My fitness training became my solace, enabling me to transform my body to be physically powerful and myself to be emotionally stronger. With every workout, I felt better about myself – it made me feel alive again.” Myra shares that she was inspired by Emily Skye’s own battle with depression and how she utilized fitness to overcome it. “Her story and physical accomplishments have forever changed my life,” she adds.
Aside from working out, Myra loves watching classic movies, reading books, and watching inspirational videos on YouTube.
Hilary Isaac, 37, @hilaryisaac
Hilary Isaac started bodybuilding in 2015 after leaving CNN Philippines as a news anchor and TV host. Looking for a new challenge for herself, bodybuilding seemed like a good choice. “As a single mom who was working full time while staying hands on with child care, bodybuilding was an absolutely physical, mental, and emotional challenge,” she admits. It all seems to have worked out well, though, as Hilary won the title of Ms. Gold’s Gym Philippines in 2016 and became the face and brand ambassador of the county’s premier health and fitness brand alongside stage actor and director Joaquin Valdes who was Mr. Gold’s Gym PH. This translated to personal fitness training with individuals and celebrities who wanted to get in better shape. This is also when Hilary started a fitness blog and did workout videos.
Hilary started as a radio DJ in 2001 for DLSU’s Green Giant Radio, the pioneers of the university radio station. She also worked as a TV Commercial model, TV host, and news anchor. She also had a stint as a music review and lifestyle writer for Manila Bulletin’s lifestyle publications. Now based abroad, Hilary works on several nutritional and fitness certification courses. While she is a full time homemaker and dedicated homeschooling mom to her son, she still trains regularly and practices good nutrition for her family. Visit her blog The Tiny Kitchen for low-carb recipes and hacks of her favorite indulgent dishes. “It’s insane how much work a stay-at-home mom and soon-to-be wife has in just a day,” she laughs. “If not for my workouts, I might lose my mind.”
Patricia Ramos, 25, @littlemisspatricia
Along with her boyfriend Mico, Patricia Ramos has a personal brand under FITME.PH. It is her boyfriend who actually got her hooked to the gym back in 2013, when she started lifting weights 5x a week, and hasn’t stopped since. Patricia’s first bodybuilding competition was in 2015, the Gemmalyn Crosby Sports Festival followed by the Shawn Rhoden Classic that same year. “Competing in bodybuilding was something I’ve always been interested in, but never thought I’d actually do,” Patricia admits. “Stepping on stage in a bikini and high heels is not my idea of fun, and to this day, it still scares me! I wouldn’t trade those experiences for the world, though, and I’m happy that I have photos and videos to show my kids someday,” she laughs.
Patricia loves to travel and experience new things, believing that you should try everything (within reason) at least once. Right now, she is keeping busy with their online store Booty Bands PH where they sell small fitness accessories like bands, barbell pads, ankle straps, sweat belts, sweat sleeves, shakers, and more. Check out their website at https://bootybands.ph
Quisha Baterna, 26, @quisha_fit
Quisha Baterna has been bodybuilding for four years now. It started when she needed more motivation in the gym and wanted more self-improvement. “Also, I was always looking for a challenge,” she adds.
Quisha is actually a pastry chef, but she also does online coaching on the side. She also owns a food delivery business called FitFuel MNL (Instagram: @fitfuelmnl) “My passion really has to do with creating something,” she explains. “That’s why I got into pastry and bodybuilding. I love creating desserts and creating your dream body.”
Lorie Enriquez, 25, @lorie_enriquez
Lorie Enriquez has been training for four years now. She started to think about joining bodybuilding when one of her mentors encouraged her to join the bikini category. “I really doubted I could do it,” she admits, “but when I was preparing for my first competition last year, my mindset was just focused on winning and thank God I got to be the bikini champion!” Lorie then became an athlete and ambassador of several brands, including supplements, working with her co-athlete champions Ken and Ming. “Being with champions and passionate people motivates me,” she shares.
Lorie is a TV Personality and commercial model. She also plays instruments like the guitar, ukelele, drums, and piano, and loves theater and broadway. She also has a car rental business, as well as a bikini line (@cheekybikinisph), where she designs the bikinis herself.
Sel Guevara, 30, @selguev
Sel Guevara has been bodybuilding since 2015 when she asked a high school friend, who is a mom, how she got in shape. “This was after I had pneumonia and dropped to 88lbs,” she shares. “The doctor said that I needed to get stronger; otherwise I’d relapse.” What was once a simple fitness regimen made Sel very competitive, so she decided to start her athletic pursuit four months after working out.
Sel is also an entrepreneur and a TV reporter.
Did we miss any bodybuilders who deserve recognition? Let us know!