Former Lillooet resident Nancy Ganner Clark has won her share of body building awards.
Last summer, Clark won the overall championship, the BC Grandmaster women's title and the Women's Best Poser Award at the BC Bodybuilding Championships. Adding to her laurels, last fall she earned her first national title, winning the Miss Canada Grandmasters over 45 title in Laval, Quebec.
She's now set her sights on winning another coveted title at the National Bodybuilding Championships, which will be held in Edmonton on Aug. 18.
"I'm in the building phase now, increasing my calories and working out five days a week for a couple of hours a day," Clark told the News Feb. 23. As the date for the competition nears, she will move to what she calls the "cutting" phase, reducing her calorie intake and intensifying her workouts. That means she'll be working out six days a week, three to four of hours per day, including one-and-a-half to two hours of cardio training daily.
"You're basically starving yourself and working out everyday and doing cardio. You're trying to get that last bit of fat off," she told the Grand Forks Gazette. "If you can get through that, you can get through everything; it definitely tests your character."
Clark told the News she began working out when she was still living in Lillooet.
"It was Tim Cody who got me started," she remembered. "We used to watch him work out at the Fisheries office in the 1980s. When we moved to Christina Lake (near Grand Forks), I started working out again at the gym. It's pretty quiet here at the lake and we needed something to keep us busy."
In 2009, she started competing in bodybuilding. "We thought we'd give it a try and everybody says you either love it or hate it after your first show. I really liked it, so I decided to carry on from there."
Clark, 47, says weightlifting and bodybuilding have given her and her husband, Al, 52, a new outlook on life.
"You're eating healthy all the time; you don't smoke, you don't drink. We've never been healthier," said Clark. "You do make some sacrifices, but in the end it's definitely worth it for sure."
The Clarks are also now owners of Body Edge, a personal training business.