Ben Nadel
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Ben Nadel at CFUNITED 2010 (Landsdown, VA) with: Randy Brown
Ben Nadel at CFUNITED 2010 (Landsdown, VA) with: Randy Brown

Project HUGE: The Spawn Of Lydia Cheng - An Inspiring Meetup

By Ben Nadel on
Tags: Project HUGE

Yesterday, my friend and I got on the 1/9 train going downtown and sat across from this girl who was a total cutie! I of course kept looking at her, cause, well, she was hot. I noticed that she would occasionally glance in my direction, which is always surprising cause people tend not to notice me. I was also a bit confused, cause I was like, this girl is so cute, why would she be looking at me?!?

As it turns out, she was checking out my shirt. At the time, I was wearing my 1980 IFBB Mr. Olympia Arnold Schwarzenegger shirt. Who wouldn't check that out? Arnold's so awesome, I find myself checking out my own shirt in shop windows all the time. Anyway, in one of my subtle glances, we actually made eye contact and she asked me if I was there (pointing to the shirt). Yeah right! I wish! Unfortunately, I was born that year and it wasn't until some years later that I was introduced to The Arnold.

Anyway, long story short, it turns out, this very cute girl was the daughter of Lydia Cheng, one of the female bodybuilders from the classic Pumping Iron II: The Women:


Pumping Iron II : The Women  

Now, I have to admit, I didn't know which one she was - I never really followed women's bodybuilding that much; I was always drawn to the mass monsters produced by the world of men's bodybuilding. But, based on what I have read and what she looks like, I think that this is Lydia Cheng (screen capture from my own personal copy of Pumping Iron II: The Women):


Lydia Cheng - Pumping Iron II: The Women  

But regardless, it was an awesome and inspiring moment. Cuteness aside, I mean, just meeting anyone who is someway part of that generation - the generation of both male and female bodybuilders who basically laid the foundation of modern bodybuilding as we know it. Needless to say, my workout last night was pretty high quality :)


Lydia Cheng - Pumping Iron II: The Women  


Lydia Cheng - Pumping Iron II: The Women  


Lydia Cheng - Pumping Iron II: The Women  


Lydia Cheng - Pumping Iron II: The Women  

Reader Comments

Ha ha, I think its tradition for each Pumping Iron movie to have a "shower scene". In the first one, I think it was Arnold Schwarzenegger and Franco Columbu talking about arm development. In this one, the ladies are soaping up talking about how people who feel intimidated by strong women look down upon an athletic and female physique.

In doing some research for my mother's new company, I cam across your blog. I'm glad that both my mother and I were able to make such an impression on you.

Did you ever see Robert Mapplethorpe's photos of Lydia Cheng? There's one in particular that stands out above the rest that is my single most favorite of any photo of any woman I've ever seen. Here it is:

She's probably 50 now but I'll bet that she still looks great. And I don't doubt that her daughter is as attractive a young woman as you say.

And here's Lydia back in the early 80's? Obviously it's not a Mapplethorpe photo but still....

No tattoos. No breast implants. Just 100%, all-natural, healthy, strong, woman.