By Joshua Estabrooks
Special to The Pioneer
For sisters Luraina Oddy and Jolaine Bloom, the last few years of their fitness-focused lifestyle have been impressively successful, as each woman has excelled in the body building/CrossFit world as of late.
Both Luraina and Jolene have a strong competitive streak, but as fate would have it they have never competed against each other, as each woman has explored similar events and exercises at different times of their lives.
Lurainas journey began watching her sister excel at sports while spending her time on the sidelines with mobility issues, she said.
My sister was a competitive gymnast, a competitive diver, competitive trampolinist, and I just basically watched her do well in every sport she tried. She was always the champion growing up, but at the age of 12, she kind of just stopped competing, Luraina said.
This was Lurainas cue to start her sporting career, which began with competitive running. She found that physical activity helped her channel her energy and feelings into something worthwhile, she said, and she soon realized she also had a strong natural ability in sport.
I really enjoyed running, but was struggling with anorexia and bulimia. My sister came and helped me, and I started to really get into fitness, she said.
At this point in their lives (between 1996 and 2003), Luraina began a highly successful kickboxing career, while Jolene explored a career in retail. Lurainas kickboxing became world renowned, winning the intercontinental title and the North American title three times. For four consecutive years, she was ranked number one in the world.
Ironically, as Luraina was winding down her kickboxing career, her sister was rediscovering her love for physical activity, and began competing in fitness figure body building competitions.
Once again, I took to the sidelines and my sister started to excel in her chosen sport. We flipflopped again, said Luraina.
For both women, living a healthy lifestyle and pushing physical boundaries has long been the norm. The sisters often talked about competing together, but because of their strong competitive drives, they thought it would be best to avoid competing against each other in the same competitions.
Shes my big sister and neither of us needed any hard feelings, so I supported her from the sidelines while she started winning more and more competitions, Luraina explained.
Jolenes fitness career has steadily been shifting to the CrossFit world and, just recently, she completely switched her focus over to this new form. Her successful career saw her take part in an international CrossFit competition in California on July 22nd to 24th.
Luraina is also achieving success, most recently taking home a 2nd and 4th place finish in a provincial body building competition, which set the stage for a trip to the Nationals in Vancouver on August 17th. Check back with The Pioneer for a follow up story on their experiences.