LAHAINA - Since her early childhood days on the Sacramento, California, soccer fields where she grew up, Michelle Camina's life has been fueled by sports and fitness. In her high school years, she moved from those soccer fields to the basketball and volleyball courts and the track and field oval, where she gained national prominence as a sprinter and a member of the relay team.
Upon moving to Maui in 1990, Camina kept up her active lifestyle with yoga, surfing, ballroom dancing and a traditional karate club here on the West Side. Ten years ago, she gave birth to a son but kept up her attention to health and fitness, as she caught the Crossfit wave that has hit Maui's shores in recent years.
"I moved over to Maui to be with my dad and found wonderful ways to stay active and enthusiastic about fitness," she commented last week.
Pictured at the Paradise Cup in 2011, Michelle Camina finished second in the Women’s Figure Division, Tall Class at Saturday’s Ikaika Bodybuilding Championships at the Neil Blaisdell Center in Honolulu.
She began training at Sports Club Kahana under the guidance of owner/operator Dale Smith, who became her personal trainer. With her active, athletic background and Smith's coaching and friendship, Camina blossomed in the high-intensity fitness environment and was encouraged to enter a bodybuilding competition.
At last November's Paradise Cup Bodybuilding competition in Honolulu, Camina entered the Masters 40-plus Figure event. To her great surprise, she walked off the Sheraton Waikiki stage with the first place trophy.
"Oh, I was completely shocked," she said of the aftermath at the Honolulu event. "It was such an awesome feeling to be there and realize the hard work and training served as a catalyst to this and to feel really good about myself. I didn't know what to expect, but I just wanted to bring the best me that I could. I was proud and happy that my son Kai was in the crowd that night.
"Now, I want to continue forward with personal growth and fitness training," said Camina, who runs her own business, Camina Clean, while continuing to raise Kai.
With her training regimen, she explained that she keeps up with yoga to maintain flexibility as well as weight lifting and cardio workouts. She stays on a strict protein diet with specific percentages of carbohydrates and fat.
"I've gained a sense of personal credibility with this title, and now I want to maintain this enthusiasm as a catalyst to move forward in my life," she concluded.