AGE ’58 to 78′ WHY NOT ‘100’+?
Just another distance runner from off the roadways into a gym called ‘Sierra Athletic Club.’ Tread Mills were inviting but so were the massive muscles and machines.
Owner and trainer; Jerry Hay; interviewed me thinking that would satisfy my curiosity and asked: “Why do you want to get into weight lifting?” My rapid response: “Growing up I was the littlest kid in the class and was haunted by a lot of ‘bullies.’ As a teen and a young adult, I needed protection from ‘predators.’ “I want to be STRONG!” From January 2, 1995 thru December 1995, Jerry trained me in rigorous strength training.
Early January 1996, Gary Werchick Sr.; a spectacular carved specimen of a body builder; noted my style and determination. A steroid free competition was lining up and he was looking for a partner. Intensive body building training began which led to ‘The Natural Nevada Invitational – Body Building Championship’ held in the ‘Grand Lake Theatre – Horizon Hotel – Lake Tahoe, June 23rd 1996.’
Marketing motivator Gene Smith promoted the entire competition onto success resulting in many deserving winners. Even me (age 59 1/2) walked away with a 1st Place Win in the ‘Womens Grand Masters Division.’
This beautiful ‘TROPHY’ I hold as a tribute to the men who played a vital role enroute to such a competition. Every step of the way they gave support, recognition and most of all, RESPECT toward me as the weaker sex. This experience healed many wounds from horrors growing up and fearing the opposite sex.
Wherever you are Gary & Jerry, I hold dearly your memory and to this day in any gym, I can feel the comfort of yours and others support. I surely recommend such an experience to any woman.
Elaine Neihardt Smith
World famous Bill Perls, held the titles of Mr. Universe (4X) and Mr. America. In his 50’s he was still competing and doing full bore workouts over 70. He profoundly influenced Lane’s body building career, stating her to be one of the most promising women champions.