This past Saturday, November 9, 2013, these two became the newest champions of the NPC Idaho Cup -- Joe winning 1st place in the Heavyweight Division, and Stephanie winning 2nd place in the Bikini Division (yes, she was ROBBED!). This single event marked the most incredible pinnacle of their journey -- both individually as well as a couple. And a journey it was indeed!
For anyone who knew Joe as a young child, activity was not his friend, or so he thought! Until he decided to try his hand at football, he didn't know where his future would lead him.
Excelling through high school as an all-American, Joe began to understand his talents on the football field, becoming First Team NJCAA All-American guard who was named one of country's top 125 JC players by PrepStar in 2002, and ultimately being recruited after his mission to play for John Robinson at UNLV.
However, although he had the opportunity to play for the NFL, he made one of the wisest decisions of his life and decided to use his other many talents and begin his career in the Boise area. But football was clearly still in his blood, and he enjoyed playing for the Boise Burn for a few seasons, continuing to gain confidence in himself on the field, as well as his business career.
Because of this decision to settle in Boise, he met and married his beautiful Stephanie, and together began their family in the Boise area. Although he no longer had time to be on the field, he took time to coach some of the high schools in the area, and eventually began to coach for his own sons. Joe and Stephanie began an in-depth workout program, beginning with cross-fit, and then found that personal trainers would help them individualize their specific goals.
Then Stephanie, who had also been working on her own journey to better health, was asked to compete in April of 2013 in the women's body building competition here in Boise. She had never done this before, but thought it would be fun. So, she worked harder than she'd ever worked...and she ROCKED that competition after only a few months of working with her trainer. This inspired Joe to join her in this journey, so he found his own personal coach, and began to work -- together they started to prepare for a competition in November.
After just a few short months, Joe could actually see his body transformation -- he had muscles in places he didn't know existed!
His back was changing and every muscle began to respond to his dedicated efforts. And it was a HUGE effort -- not just physically, but the commitment and dedication to every detail of the preparation -- the types of food, quantities, schedules, and the most specific training they had ever experienced!
Stephanie was thrilled with the results of her hard work, and was one of the major reasons that Joe was as successful in maintaining his dedication, because of her joining him on this journey, as well as the tremendous support she was for him along the way -- they were doing this together, and were so excited for the big day!
The stage was set at the Revoltion Concert House...ready for these talented, hard working people!
With his incredible trainer, Jon Buettner, by his side every step of the way, Joe and Stephanie were ready for the NPC Idaho Cup...with people coming in from all over the Country to compete, as well as to host and entertain.
Steve and Cortney came into town with their kiddos from Utah, just to support Joe and Stephanie on this special day (and to get a few hugs from Gramma!). Here they are at the morning's pre-judging event with Mike O'Hearn, who would be the MC for the evening's performance. Known as one of today's American Gladiators (also a former Mr. Natural Universe Bodybuilder Champion), he brought some National exposure to this event!
But it was really just about these two love birds...patiently awaiting their turn on the stage, calm as a midsummer's morning! They had worked hard, prepared well, and how they were ready to just have fun!
And here goes Joe in the morning's pre-judging...
my favorite -- the Hulk pose!
Did his head just shrink, or did his torso just blow up!?!
Such a pose!!
Look at that back -- good luck everyone else! This boy's got it in the bag!!!
Although Stephanie has more natural beauty than most of the others on stage, her stage makeup was flawless, and her extra "bling" was perfect!
If it's a body building contest, and it's the bikini division, there's not going to be much in the way of clothing, so since she's worked hard to accomplish this transformation, she maximized the accessories.
When Stephanie entered the stage, there was an audible gasp, as this beautiful woman stunned all who saw her poise, femininity, charm, and natural beauty -- she was the real deal -- authentic through and through -- she literally glowed! There was NO ONE who could compare with her beauty, and for all those who know her, that beauty is NOT skin deep. She is such an amazing woman, and I personally have come to love her as my daughter, not just an "in-law" and was so very proud of her! Now come on -- Charlie's Angels has NOTHING on our Stephanie!!
In the evening competition, Stephanie was at her best, and as far as we are concerned -- was THE best! Shown here with the winner in the middle, third place on the far right, and Stephanie being awarded 2nd place in the Bikini Division, you can see how close the competition really was!
Then it's Joe's turn for the evening competition -- the others trying so hard to even come close!
These guys really are amazing!
I know a mother isn't supposed to say, but dang Joe!
You can see he was indeed the Mighty Joe -- by whom all others paled in comparison! While this may have been a competition, Joe's greatest competitor was himself...and he won!
I'm so very proud of what he was able to accomplish, and the personal victories along the way!
And at the end of the night, these two came home -- with these two -- beautiful remembrances of their triumphs and accomplishments -- personal challenges and goals met, and incredibly hard work acknowledged and rewarded. The flowers from brother Bill and the candy corn from friend Kelly were icing on the cake!
Striking her pose with the award was part of the celebratory aftermath, as Joe and Stephanie's friends and supporters flocked around them with cameras to capture the glows...
...and capture them they did! This is the face of a woman who has conquered some incredible milestones...
...and her Prince Charming who came into her life -- and they saved each other! How very proud I am of each of you individually as well as collectively. How you have supported and strengthened each other has been an inspiration to us all. Your hard work has taught you more about personal growth and accomplishing any goal you desire. You have mastered the beautiful bodies entrusted to you by a loving Father in Heaven, who is also very proud of what you have accomplished.
But we all know what your greatest accomplishments are:
So, what's next? Well their children continue the tradition of excellence, dedication, and hard work.
Van's flag football team won first place in their division -- coached by his dad Joe, and together they built a football team out of these inexperienced young 7 year olds, and beat another team almost 1/2 again as tall as they were!
|Halloween 2013 - Jason from the Halloween Movies!|
Van reminds me of his Uncle Steve -- he is a natural athlete, and so incredibly good at any sport he decides to undertake! Not unlike the Punt, Pass & Kick competition that his PE teacher suggested he walk on -- which he did -- and came back with more bling!
[picture of Kingston and his trophy]
|Halloween 2013 - Super Ninja!|
Not to be left out, Kingston also found his love for flag football, and their team grew in experience, as well as having a great time!
|Halloween 2013 - SWAT Team Member!|
|Gramma's Office Halloween Party|
And what of little Jax? I'll bet he'll be right in there with his brothers next year, and every year thereafter, and they all better watch out!