Months of work will come to a head for 10 students at a bodybuilding competition Saturday in the McAfee Gym.
Doors will open to the annual Iron Panther Classic at 6 p.m. and the competition will begin at 7 p.m. Admission is $5.
The contest will be split into two sections, with both displaying the students’ bodies for five judges to rank.
In the first half of the contest, each competitor will perform 1 ½-minute routines set to music. For the second half, the judges will make them pull off different poses to highlight different muscles.
The contestants have been working for months to build these muscles in preparation for the Iron Panther Classic.
Morgan Carvalho, a graduate assistant at the Student Recreation Center who coordinated most of the competition, said the bodybuilders have been eating fewer carbohydrates and therefore have less energy now.
“It takes a lot of discipline for them to be doing this, especially while in classes,” she said.
Carvalho has handled the schedule and advertising for the show on top of making sure the competitors’ needs have been met.
“They’ve been pretty self-sufficient,” she said.
Richard Pollock, a senior accounting major, said he has been working to build his body for the past 19 weeks in an effort to win the overall competition. When he competed in the Iron Panther Classic as a freshman, he won his weight class.
Pollock’s daily efforts include cardio and posing in the mornings, two to three hours of extra training in the afternoon, followed by 30 minutes of more cardio and posing. He said he thinks he looks better now than he did as a freshman and cannot wait to find out the results of the competition.
“I’m not nervous, actually,” Pollock said. “I’ve been working out since I was 11 years old.”
Kevin Linker, the director of intramural sports, has been working with Carvalho to prepare for Saturday. Linker, who has overseen the finances for the contest, booked the judges and the McAfee Gym and purchased the trophies and equipment.
“I’m kind of there for support,” Linker said.
Planning started before winter break, but some competitors, like Pollock, have been building their bodies for longer.
“I think it’s rewarding for them to be acknowledged for their hard work,” Carvalho said.
Linker said the Iron Panther Classic, which has been held at Eastern for around 20 years now, used to take place in the Grand Ballroom at the Martin Luther King, Jr. University Union, but the show had to be moved when the crowd got too large and became a fire hazard.
Mallory Kutnick can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected]