WeissCrax: Grimmesey’s big pain, championship gain 

Suzanne Grimmesey at Fresno Classic

Suzanne Grimmesey

All the clichés work here …

When the going gets tough, the tough get going.

Make it happen – it only hurts for alittle while.

Suzanne Grimmesey knows them, lives them …

A painful, ruptured disc in her neck in the Summer of 2012 — one requiring surgery and physical therapy — proved to be a test of character, ultimately fueling a defining, championship moment for this lifelong fitness fan.

She set her sights BIG in repairing and strengthening with a goal of a competing in a bodybuilding contest.

“After doctors cleared me to start working out, I wanted to step it up so the surgery didn’t take me out,” Suzanne, 46, says.

It would take focus, commitment and discipline.

Along, of course, with those every day responsibilities and commitments as a wife (she and Edwin have been married for almost 4 years) … as a mom to three active kids (Amanda, James & Anna) … and with a demanding job as SB County Alcohol, Drug & Mental Health Services’ Chief Quality & Strategy Officer.

It was a call to friend and figure competitor, Jenn Kelley that set the plan in motion.

She would need a trainer and Jenn recommended David Esparza – a Certified Specialist in Performance Nutrition, Strength & Conditioning Coach and inspiration of Esparza 3D Training, and Team 3D.

“I told David that I wanted to reach for the highest,” Suzanne shares.

And so it began at Performance Fitness Training, a small downtown gym, now known as Santa Barbara Gym & Fitness.

Early mornings worked best …

“While the kids are sleeping – that way I didn’t miss anything,” she added.

Diet changed.

For the next 15 months, it would be the same things: eggs whites and steel cut oats for breakfast and sirloin, chicken, salmon, asparagus for everything else.

“I usually ‘eat clean’ anyway — organic vegetables, no fast foods. I actually liked the structure,” she says.

And, of course, she listened to everything her coach told her.

Suzanne in the weight room training for competition. (Grimmesey Photo)

Suzanne in the weight room training for competition. (Grimmesey Photo)

Trophy time

Suzanne, trained by David Esparza, has won contests in Culver City and Fresno. (Grimmesey Photo)

This past March, after hours of concentrated training, she was deemed ready!

First up: Culver City Bodybuilding Show.

Results: 1st Place in the Over Age 35 Division and 3rd Place in Over Age 45 Division.

Next: The Fresno Classic (April) that was “HUGE” she says, with tons of competitors.

Results: 1st Place in the over 45 Class B and 1st place Overall for the 45+ Class.


Randy Weiss

Randy Weiss

WEISSCRAX: With a fun, creative
flair, Randy Weiss showcases
the lighter side of sports,
or sportz as he calls it.
Randy’s work from Presidio
Sports has surfaced in Parade
Magazine and Runner’s World.
Randy can usually be found on
the pool decks at local water polo
matches, in the ocean for Reef &
Run and Nite Moves summer series,
and at a zillion community and
sporting events around town.

In her own words …

It’s scary to walk out there, in a bathing suit with ‘a swag’ — I was way out of my comfort zone. A longtime friend, James Pettit, now a Warner Brothers executive, taught me how to walk.

In the Fresno Competition, I wanted to enjoy and do it for fun – there were sooo many competitors. I found spending time with other women helped with my nervousness – helped me overall.

I competed in the Over Age 35 and Over 45 Divisions and competed with other winners and scored 1st Place Overall.

Coach David drove up for the day. My brother and my family were there. My brother is always incredibly supportive. I prepped all of them in advance …


“Suzanne is the shining example of an amazing individual who listens actively, enacts and executes directions with understanding, flawlessly, and never, ever, waivers in true discipline!“ states Esparza. “She does what it takes, day in and day out, without complaint, because of her trust in the process!”

“Coach David is so incredibly knowledgeable and inspirational — I never would have been able to do this without him,” Suzanne smiles.

It’s been an amazing journey….

“I think in life when it feels out of control, and one feels weak, it actually feels great to have a physical release but to also feel strong,” she says.

These days she is back to a more relaxed morning workout routine with her always inspiration — Mom, Elaine — at SWELL (formerly Cathedral Oaks Tennis Club) in Goleta.

What’s next?

“I’m thinking about doing it again,” Suzanne claims, “I like a focus when I train.”

Stay tuned folks, because….

It ain’t over ‘til it’s over.

And, of course:

Never underestimate the heart of a champion…

The Grimmesey Family photo. (Courtesy Photo)

The Grimmesey Family photo. (Courtesy Photo)