Weightlifting Champ Ingrid Marcum Pushes to Make Olympic Bobsled Team

Two Sport Queen: Even though not a bodybuilder or figure girl, the athletic, photogenic Ingrid has been a fitness model favorite on many sites.

Two Sport Queen: Even though not a bodybuilder or figure girl, the athletic, photogenic Ingrid has been a fitness model favorite on many sites.

Female physique enthusiasts are used to seeing various types of crossovers in the sport. Some of them, such as when a figure girl decides to do fitness, involve details like tweaks in training, learning a new routine and finding the right costume. Changes to be sure, but once showtime rolls around, everyone shares the same stage.

For Ingrid Marcum, a 33-year-old Olympic-level athlete from Chicago, switching sports has not only meant performing on a brand new stage, but doing it during an entirely different season as well.

The sturdy, statuesque 5-foot-6, 165-pound longtime weightlifter — a sexy sport queen with long, curly blonde hair, sparkling blue eyes and a lovely, soft smile — is now focusing her attention on bobsledding, training for a spot on the American team of the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver.

Ingrid has a look of intensity during bobsled training.

Ingrid has a look of intensity during bobsled training.

Then again, Ingrid isn’t exactly a rookie when it comes to the esoteric but adrenaline-packed, heart-racing cold weather sport in which two-person teams packed snugly in the sleek, aerodynamic sleds zoom breathlessly down icy, winding tracks reaching speeds of 85mph and faster.

Ingrid first discovered bobsledding in 2002 while working as a strength and conditioning coach. She has since traveled to tracks across the country — sampling the snow covered hills at Lake Placid, New York; Park City, Utah; and recently Calgary, Alberta, Canada for the Olympic trials — competing in various national events and bringing home a gold medal in 2005 after setting a record for top time at the America’s Cup.

A graduate of the College Of William & Mary — located in Williamsburg, Virginia, it’s the smallest of the highly regarded Colonial League schools — Ingrid adopted weightlifting to fill a need for competition after finishing a stretch as a gymnast. It was a smooth transition for the naturally strong athlete who loved lifting weights all along.

Super Girl: A national champion weightlifter, Ingrid hits a powerful lift during a meet.

Super Girl: A national champion weightlifter, Ingrid hits a powerful lift during a meet.

Ingrid will be holding a fundraiser for her Olympic quest coming up on September 23rd at Rock Bottom Brewery in Lombard, Illinois just west of the Windy City. More details can be found on her website, along with news on her latest exercise DVD and plenty of pictures and media.

You can also check out some great clips from weightlifting meets on her YouTube channel, including footage from the U.S. National Championships held this past June. Despite a torn labrum in her hip, Ingrid powered a 200-pound snatch and 227-pound clean and jerk to win the overall title for her weight class.

Pretty Strong: Flashing a winning smile in a photo from her 2008 shoot at the Arnold.

Pretty Strong: Flashing a winning smile in a photo from her 2008 shoot at the Arnold.

Stomping her feet before she prepares to lift, Ingrid even turns a familiar bobsledding trick — used to free clumps of snow and ice from her shoes before shoving the sled into action — into a bizarre but irresistibly charming weightlifting quirk.

Dramatically speaking, the rough sound of shoes thumping hard against the floor registers like a symbolic punctuation of her athletic identity. And why not? After all, when you’re an Olympic-level athlete in two sports on the American side, you’re not about to let anyone forget it.

Ingrid “The Remarkable” Marcum is and we won’t anytime soon.

Dean's avatar

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~ by Dean Sucich on September 14, 2009.

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