Rachel Livia Elizondo McLish was born in Harlingen, Texas USA, on 21 June 1955, so under the zodiac sign of Cancer and holding American nationality – she is popular for being an ex-bodybuilder, while she is also an actress and author. Rachel hasn’t been competing since 1984, but is still exercising, and is still a great motivation for many women.
Childhood and Education
Rachel was raised by her father Rafael and her mother Raquel, with one older sister named Sandra Lopez – she spent her entire childhood in Harlingen.
Rachel wasn’t interested in bodybuilding nor sports during her early years – she was dreaming about becoming a model, and once she enrolled at the Harlingen High School, she became a cheerleader and was named the Cardinal’s Football Sweetheart twice. She was one of the most popular girls there due to her attractive looks, but it is not known if she dated anyone during that period of her life.
After she matriculated from high school, she enrolled at the University of Texas-Pan American and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in physiology, health and nutrition in 1978 – it was during these years she spent at the university that she became hooked on exercising, and decided to pursue it as a career.
Career of a Bodybuilder and Other Jobs
Rachel’s career of a bodybuilder began while she was still attending college – she was working at a health club in McAllen, Texas and formed a partnership with them. They launched the Sport Palace Association together, and as it was very successful, two additional facilities were then opened in Corpus Christi and Brownsville. Rachel was attending the gym on a daily basis, and was steadily working on her physique – she had Lisa Lyon as her role model, while Javier Gutierrez, the manager of the gym kept showing her pictures of female bodybuilders who she was going to compete against.
Amazed by their looks and determined that she could be as good as them, Rachel decided to start competing professionally. Her first competition was in 1980, when she went on to win the inaugural United States Championships – she also won the IFBB Ms. Olympia contest in the same year.
This victory made Rachel very popular, as she got to appear more than any other woman on cover pages of fitness magazines throughout the next four years.
Dynamics Health Equipment Manufacturing Corporation offered to be her sponsor, and after she signed her contract, there was nothing to stop Rachel from becoming the best female bodybuilder. She is credited with the rise of the popularity of female bodybuilding, as she’s inspired so many women to start competing.
Rachel has never scored anything lower than third place in the competitions she attended – she came in second at Ms. Olympia 1981 and then won the 1982 to reclaim her title. She won two second places at the 1983 Caesar’s World Cup and 1984 Ms. Olympia – after the 1984 Ms. Olympia, Rachel decided to retire from competing. In January 1999, she was officially inducted into the IFBB Hall of Fame.
Although she is not an actress, Rachel has appeared in the “Pumping Iron II: The Women” documentary movie shot in 1985, “Getting Physical” in 1984, “Aces: Iron Eagle III” in 1992, and “Raven Hawk” in 1996. She has also written two books, entitled “Flex Appeal, by Rachel” and “Perfect Parts”, all of which have contributed to her net worth.
The Most Popular Female Bodybuilders in the World
The Ranker website has compiled a list of the most popular female bodybuilders in the world judging by the people’s votes – most of these women have made their way into numerous other industries including film, music, and wrestling. We are going to mention five of the most popular female bodybuilders out there today:
- Nikki Fuller is holding fifth place in the Ranker’s list – her personal best at lifting is 315lbs (143kgs) on bench press and 1100lbs (498kgs) for multiple reps on leg press. She won first place at the Jan Tana Classic held in 1992;
- Fourth place goes to Betty Pariso – she was the world’s oldest professional female bodybuilder while she was still competing. She has won numerous competitions, while her most recent first place was at the IFBB Tampa Bay Pro held in 2009;
- In third place is Nicole Bass, who is also an actress, professional wrestler, and a valet – she has appeared in numerous shows, and has worked for numerous companies including Extreme Championship Wrestling and World Wrestling Federation;
- Lisa Marie Varon is in second place, and is a professional wrestler, mostly recognized thanks to her involvement in the World Wrestling Entertainment where she went by the ring name Victoria;
- Top place goes to Chyna, who is also an actress as well as a bodybuilder – she attended her first competition in 1997 when she was named the ‘ninth wonder of the world’. She won the WWF Intercontinental Championship two times, and the WWF Women’s Championship once.
Rachel might be a popular well-built bodybuilder, but as yet she is nowhere to be found in the list of the most famous female bodybuilders of today compiled by the Ranker website.
Rachel’s Training and Diet
While most people might believe that Rachel was working out a lot more, she was only having three workout sessions at the gym per week, and was having ballet classes during the rest of the week. She was mostly focused on power movements with weights, so that she could work on her entire body, and she used ballet classes to work on her calves.
When it comes to her diet, she was eating only three times per day, but was often adding snacks in between her meals – she was keeping good track of her intake of calories and was very careful about her intake of fat.
Personal Life and Relationships
Rachel does not enjoy talking about her love life, as she prefers to separate her personal matters from her professional life, but she has still shared some details of her former relationships and marriages with the public.
Rachel met her first husband while she was still attending college, and was still shaping her figure – she married John P. McLish on 3 February 1979, but they soon divorced for unknown reasons. Most of her fans believe that the two split due to jealousy but this hasn’t been confirmed.
In 1990 Rachel married for the second time, and is still married to Ron Samuels, who is a popular film producer. They are currently living in Rancho Mirage in California, and don’t have any kids – they were living in a $3 million worth house before they sold it to Coco Crisp, the popular Boston Rex Sox player.
Hobbies and Other Interests
Rachel was mostly focused on her exercises and her ballet classes during the years she competed, but she has since had numerous other interests.
Rachel was always a big lover of animals, and often spent her free time on her cousin’s farm where he had horses and other animals – Rachel was friends with a very special horse, and the two were inseparable. She also had a black cat who nobody else wanted, and a dog. She traveled a lot during the years she was still competing, and it didn’t take long for her to fall in love with it – after she retired, she traveled across the entire US, and also visited a few parts of Europe.
Rachel has been a spokesperson, and was actively helping people who wanted to work on their body, and change their physique for the better.
Appearance and Net Worth
Rachel is currently 64 years old. She has long brown hair and brown eyes, is 5ft 6ins (1.69m) tall, and weighs around 130lbs (59kgs).
According to authoritative sources, her current net worth is estimated to be more than $500,000, and may still be rising, as although she is no longer competing, she is still motivating others.
Social Media Presence
Rachel is quite active on several popular social media platforms, as she is still actively working on motivating women to start exercising.
She launched her Twitter account in June 2009, and has gathered more than 1,200 followers and has tweeted nearly 550 times. Her Instagram account is currently followed by more than 2,700 people, while she has uploaded only 33 pictures onto it – she is running a Facebook Page as well, which currently counts more than 15,000 people following her.