A Dream Deferred – Montrie Adams

montrie adams figure model pic 2012

Montrie Rucker Adams never gave up on her dream. She just deferred it.  Her journey to win a women’s figure competition is nothing short of courageous.

When a car accident left her injured with a severely scarred leg at age 19, Montrie had to endure painful and grueling physical therapy sessions. Her therapy included strength training three times a week in the hospital fitness center for more than six months. It was there, while recovering from her injuries that Montrie began to develop a love for the gym.  

“I was enjoying the process,” says Montrie. I liked how my body was transforming. It was almost as if a sculptor took some clay and delicately formed my arms and legs.”

After her hospital stay, Montrie resumed her college studies and continued her workouts. She became an aerobics instructor at the Y and other local gyms in various cities where she lived as a young single. Comrades talked about competing in bodybuilding contests and encouraged Montrie to do so too. But she was self-conscious about the 15-inch scar on her left thigh and an obvious limp.   

In the years that followed, Montrie settled in her native Cleveland, pursued a career in public relations, married and had two children. She admits that aging makes you stronger, wiser, and more confident.  So in 2006, she set a goal—to enter a bodybuilding contest. Yet with family and work responsibilities, she found it too difficult to go through the rigorous training.   

The year 2011 seemed the right time. Montrie wanted to get in better shape naturally and prepare for competition.  But after 4 months of training, she was not ready for the October event.  So she focused on a contest of the National Physique Committee (NPC) to be held the following April, hired a coach, and trained in the gym 6 days a week.  For nutrition training, Montrie followed a regimented 6 meals-a-day plan.  A typical breakfast was 4-6 egg whites, 3 ounces of lean meat, half a cup of oatmeal or quinoa and a serving of blueberries. 

Montrie chose to compete in figure competition, a physique-exhibition event for women that emphasizes muscle tone over muscle size. Workouts include plyometrics, “jump training” exercises that help build strength and enhance performance.

After 12 weeks of training, Montrie won her very first competition, placing 3rd in the Women’s 50 and Over Figure Modeling Division at a NPC contest in Lakewood, Ohio. Inspired by her own performance, the ambitious competitor entered 4 more contests in 2012, winning three more trophies in the figure modeling division. 

Montrie shares how she achieves her fitness goals:

  1. Create a dream board.  Mount pictures on a poster of who you want to become and display so you can imagine your dream where you work, live and play. 
  2. Surround yourself with people who will encourage you.
  3. Set and keep deadlines that help you reach your goal.
  4. Push past the pain. Even on the days you don’t feel like working out, do it anyway. 


Do you want to share your health and fitness journey with us? Do you have a “Transformation Story” or know someone who does? Submit your information to be featured on our website! For more information click here.

Ilen & Lauren Bell are the husband and wife team behind Black Fitness Today, born, in 2011, out of their motivation to change culture, build a platform and lead the charge. Their purpose is to help change the culture towards health and fitness in the African-American community, showcase those who are making an impact, and promote healthier living. They also aim to serve as a platform for African-American fitness and health professionals and enthusiasts who are otherwise overlooked in traditional fitness media.

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