KNOXVILLE (WVLT) -- Carlene Steenekamp is Knoxville's newest professional athlete. She's also one of Knoxville's strongest women.
Steenekamp is a professional bodybuilder with a passion for her training regimen.
"The workouts aren't the hard part," Steenekamp said. "It's the diet. It is bypassing all the fun stuff that your friends are doing...you don't get to go out and enjoy an adult cocktail for a birthday party."
Steenekamp's greatest passion, however, is for her children. She believes that displaying her work ethic is a positive example for them.
"Fulfillment comes when I am leaving the house in the morning and my four-year-old runs up to me and says, 'Mommy you forgot your tuna!', Steenekamp said. "My lifestyle choices are rubbing off on them in a positive way."
Also positive are Steenekamp's gains in the world of bodybuilding. She won her division at the WBFF Championships in Kansas City, earning her pro card. Now, she'll be competing for money.
The money, though, is merely a bonus for the mother of three, who says she's just happy she's found a rewarding hobby which keeps her in top shape.
"[Even] if I don't do well or don't place well, I've already accomplished the daily in-and-out of training, eating clean and overcoming obstacles," Steenekamp said. "I have always been healthy, but this is a different level of rigid. Having that date on the horizon, something you are preparing, for helps me stay focused."
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