HARARE – Bulawayo bikini fitness bodybuilder Shantel Greenland is on cloud nine having managed to add another national title under her wings after winning the 2017 Mr and Ms Ironman title for her category.
With the contest being held in her hometown at the Bulawayo Theatre early this month Greenland formerly Batch and now married to Nathan Greenland was certainly in a class of her own romping to victory in an all-Bulawayo top three podium finish as she beat into second and third place Lorraine Moyo and Mitchelle Matsitso respectively.
“It feels great to achieve another title, as competitors we put in a lot of effort and to win makes it all worth it,” Greenland tells the Daily News on Sunday.
“Well, I would like to compete internationally and also be able to assist upcoming female athletes with training, preparations, diets and poses.”
The 31-year-old mother of two sons aged seven and 13 says it takes a lot of hard work, time and resources to prepare for a bodybuilding competition such as Ironman which is second in importance to Mr and Ms Zimbabwe.
“Some gruelling daily training for months and along with eating clean six to eight weeks before competition dates and not to mention supplements. To put a figure on it is hard,” she adds.
“My day begins with getting my kids ready for school preparing their lunches and so forth then dropping them off, I then go home and have my raw oats and fruit with coffee for breakfast and hit the gym.
“I train for about two hours or so and sometimes longer. I will then have lunch and my protein shake. Once again pick up my sons and head home. The balance (between family and sport) just works it’s way through I have a great family support.”
Greenland attended Eveline Girls High School before enrolling with BES Topaz for a secretarial administration programme.
She joined her current gym Body Works in Bulawayo in 2014 with a view of losing extra weight she had gained while living in South Africa for two-and-a-half years.
“At body Works I met Simon Gama (instructor and trainer) who offered to assist me with training and then introduced me to my first competition which was Ms Western 2015 and I came first,” she said.
“I went on to compete Ms Novice the same year and came in first place and continued to compete leading to other titles such as Ms Bulawayo 2015, Ms Zitf 2015 and 2016, Ms Ironman second place 2015/16 and first place Ironman 2017 and also placed fifth at Ms Zim 2015 and first place in 2016,” Greenland shares her impressive winning record.
“I also competed in South Africa Cape Town in 2015 for Ms SA Fitness pageant placing 14 out of 18. After winning Ms Zim 2016, I qualified to compete at Arnold’s Classics South Africa but did not stage due to a backstage mix up with one of the officials who denied me to go on stage after combining my line up with another category, this was my biggest disappointment.”
While training at Body Works from 2014 she was employed at Chippys Soft Furnishing as a personal assistant to the managing director.
She met her husband at Body Works, and the love birds got married in November 2015.
“He has been very supportive of my passion for the sport and also developed an interest in the sport there of,” she said.
“He has tried to stand strong even though people have tried to put him under pressure about his wife being in a bikini on stage and on media, I guess it must be hard on him at times having a partner that is a public figure especially with him being based in the UK.
“Regardless of the circumstances he has tried to attend some of the competitions, assists in various ways he can where ever he can, not only with me but with the Body Works team of body builders.”
Greenland’s husband Nathan shares of his undying love and support for his wife.
“We opened Bodyworks Gym in September 2014, that’s when I met Shantel she was one of our first members with Gama being her coach and started to train her and convinced her to compete. Because of her courage it was not hard to support her as she was always in the gym training everyday and her progress was being noted as she started competing and winning as within two years she landed the big one Ms Zimbabwe 2016 Beach Bikini. I flew down from UK to surprise her and watch her win,” Nathan Greenland tells the Daily News on Sunday.
“Bodyworks has built a team with Shantel being the core of it. She has motivated other ladies in a sport that had no women from Bulawayo competing, but now we have almost 10 ladies who are active in the sport and her leading by example has also pushed our male bodybuilders and we are currently one of the top body building gyms in Zimbabwe.
“I fully support my wife as she has made Bulawayo a force of note. I only want the best for her as she deserves.”