Our Team Tabban athlete, the incredibly lean Doreen Nicolaou is off to QLD this Sunday to compete in the WFF International 2014 World Championships. Doreen is such a beautiful spirit, gorgeous from the inside out. She has been an absolute delight competing as part of Team Tabban, always so bubbly, happy and full of positivity, bringing a smile to everyone’s face as she enters through the doors of Tabban MBS. We asked Doreen to share a little bit about herself and her competition journey to date…
Athlete Profile – by Doreen Nicolaou
My comp journey…
I have exercised all my life and entered my first gym at the age of 14. I was inspired by how good I felt add that to my determination not to ever stop. I have enjoyed my gym life for 34 years. I focused more on group training classes thinking this was the only way to keep me in shape. Twelve years ago I took an extra 20 steps and passed the aerobic room and found myself in the weight training area. From this day on I only attended classes for a social gathering as the results I gained from weight training were very noticeable in a shorter period of time. Added to that my willingness to understand nutrition and how my body responded to food, I have been able to maintain my weight for all these years.
Ten years ago it was time to take my body to the next level and this is when I decided to train for my first competition. Unfortunately it wasn’t a very positive experience but my trainer and I did the best that we could do. With not many resources and not much experience I struggled through a twenty week diet, trained as hard as I could, never cheated or gave up. When it came to learning how to pose and present myself a stage all I was given was a link on the internet where I studied photo of a lady posing. I had no chance, especially when my trainer forgot to feed me any carbohydrates before the competition. I entered the INBA 2004 Victorian titles. When I got there I was just thrilled to even look like everybody else. I blitzed my routine because of my aerobics class addiction that I had in the past, but I was way underweight and place equal 4th with most of the ladies on stage. To tell you the truth I was so HAPPY!
I had been to many competitions and always admired the athletes trained by Michael Tabban. Yep, every competition I went to all the Team Tabban girls would win.
If only, If only I could ever meet and train with this Michael Tabban!!
Four years later my sister in law Anita told me she was training in Richmond at Tabban MBS. She asked me to go in with her to make her a posing routine. I couldn’t believe she had walked into Tabban MBS and met Michael. I was there in a flash. When Michael saw me his first words were I know you… Me? Who me? No, I thought that’s not possible. Anita told me that’s a good thing that he recognised you. Then I remembered that Michael was back stage on my DVD from 2004. He said 2004 you were in a red bikini? Oh my I nearly fainted. Then before I knew I had a contract in my hand to sign up for the 2008 team. All the negative thoughts entered my mind – I can’t it takes an hour to get here, I have 2 school age children, I couldn’t afford it and so on. Until I read the contract and the cost to enter the team was exactly the same amount of money I had won a month ago. My friends wanted to help me spend my winnings but I said this money came to me for a reason and in that moment I found my reason.
I started training with Michael that next week. The training was the hardest training I had ever experienced in my life. I was the weakest girl in the team, suffered with the driving, struggled with the posing, feared ever stepping on that stage again but I was the diet queen and followed every instruction Mike gave me.
I was a little shy when it came to Mike as I never really got over the fact that this trainer was the best in Victoria and he was training me. I always tried not to be needy of his time but he and Areti were always there for me. Tabban MBS is second to none, the only thing they didn’t do was stand on the stage with me. Even when I was on stage Mike was my personal photographer and calmly would call out “That’s it babe take your time, you got it” such calming words. Areti would race front stage after preparing me in my bikini and tan to scream and cheer for me.
That year I placed 1st in the WFF/NABBA Victorian Championships for Ms Athletic Open Short, placed 4th in the WNBF Victorian Championships for Ms Fit Body Masters 40+, then took out 3 x 1st places in the WNBF Asia Pacific Championships in the Lightweight Bodybuilding, Ms Fit Body Open Medium and Miss Fit Body Masters 40+ Short divisions.
As part of Team Tabban I then flew over to Miami USA where we competed in the Fame International Championships and received a 1st place in Figure Open Masters and 2nd in Advanced Bodybuilding.
We then flew to New York for the WNBF/INBF World Championships, and at the last possible moment Mike entered me in the Bodybuilding Fit Body Divisions. I didn’t place in the Fit Body but the master minded Michael Tabban played his cards right and I placed 3rd in the World for Women’s Bodybuilding. To this day I am truly grateful.
I had a six year break but always knew I would be back at Tabban MBS to train with Mike as that is where my loyalty lied. My 2014 journey has been a lot less stressful. I have enjoyed every single minute and my drive in seems so much shorter as I can’t wait to get to Tabban MBS. The training is still the hardest training ever all over again but I can’t wipe the smile off my face. I have made lifelong friends and have lots of happy memories. As for my body, Mike has transformed me to the next level. To a level that I thought was not possible. My first comp this year I placed 3rd in the INBA Victorian Championships for over 40’s. I didn’t believe I had it Mike had to coax me forward to receive the trophy. Then I placed 2nd twice at the ANB Victorian State Championships for Figure Short Class and over Masters Women Figure 45+. I was thrilled to say the least after a six year break.
Now I face my biggest challenge but I am overwhelmed to be acknowledged as competitive by my guru Michael Tabban and the president of the WFF Graeme Lancefiled to enter the WFF World Championships in Queensland on the 2nd of November. It is a privileged to represent Tabban MBS on this stage with the best athletes in the world. This has exceeded my expectations and I hope I make Michael and Areti proud. No trophy can bring me as much joy as I’ve had this season, but I will give it my best shot as I always do and as I am trained to do!
In just seven days time, with both Michael Tabban and Areti Anagnostellis by her side Doreen will be completing the final leg of her competition journey for 2014. From all the team at Tabban MBS, we’d like to wish Doreen the very best of luck and all the support in the world.
We hope you have an amazing time as you flex up a storm on the world stage Doreen! GO GET ‘EM GIRL, and GO TEAM TABBAN!