LaVerne Forrest, 63, of Traverse City, flexes her muscles after winning the Elite Class competition during the 27th Annual Grand Traverse Bodybuilding Championship and Figure Contest Saturday night at the Leelanau Sands Casino. Forrest competed against three other women in the class, which is designated for individuals who won the overall contest title in years past. Forrest also took home the overall womens title during Saturday's competition.
LaVerne Forrest considers herself to be in the prime of her life.
The 63-year-old grandmother proved that Saturday night, when she won the "Elite Class and "Overall titles against women half her age at the 27th Annual Grand Traverse Bodybuilding Championship and Figure Contest.
"I'm speechless, she said. "It's a dream come true.
The asparagus-loving vegetarian from Traverse City has been participating in bodybuilding competitions since 1998. Saturday's competition was her sixth event.
"I was intimidated at first, Forrest said of her first bodybuilding competition. "It's a lot of energy. You take on a role when you're up on stage. You are like an actress taking on a part.
Her oldest son, Scott Clark, wasn't surprised when his mom told him and the rest of the family nine years ago that she planned to participate in a bodybuilding competition.
"She is pretty much an athlete, he said. "It was pretty unique to see your mom in a pretty tiny bikini with bronzer all over. It took a lot of courage. She definitely is a role model.