Iron Royalty: Orlando bodybuilding champion reflects on her title

Natalia Coelho works to defend her title as Ms. Physique Olympia in Orlando next November

ORLANDO, Fla. – At the top of the bodybuilding mountain as Ms. Physique Olympia sits a Central Floridian.

Her name is Natalia Coelho, and when she hits the weights, everyone notices.

“Bodybuilding is a sport that requires (something) from you like 24/7,” Coelho said. “It’s not something that you can practice for one hour and go home and rest. It’s something that is 24/7. Everything that you eat, that you think, that you do affects your hormones levels, affects your performance in the sport. I always loved that. To know that I had to commit 100% to something.”

Coelho was born in New York and raised in Brazil. She has also lived in Central Florida for 11 years and graduated from the University of Central Florida. Last November, Coelho achieved one of the ultimate goals: The title of Ms. Physique Olympia.

[TRENDING: Become a News 6 Insider]

“When I stepped on stage, I felt home,” said Coelho, reflecting on her title win. “I am like, ‘I belong up here.’ I was prepared, and I think that’s the point. No matter what you do in life, if you prepare... mindset is everything. Being prepared and knowing that I did my best was the first thing that I wanted to make sure was perfect. When I got on stage, I knew my part was done and I was in the judges’ hands and in God’s hands, whatever happens.”

The life of Coelho is a package deal, including the weights and nutrition and overall fitness. She has been competing in bodybuilding for more that a decade. But for the 26-year-old, the healthiest thing about Coelho is her outlook.

“It doesn’t matter if I win the show or if I place last, which I have done before,” Coelho added. “I was just as excited because I was doing what I love, and I tell this to everybody: When you do what you love, it doesn’t matter. You’re going to go above and beyond. It doesn’t matter if you have obstacles in your life; it doesn’t matter what comes in your life. You just keep moving and keep going.”

Since her big win, Coelho has been traveling the world and speaking and meeting fans. But she already has her sights set on November 2023, when the bodybuilding championships will be held here in Orlando.

“My focus and my heart is in November. Everything I can think about is being on that stage and listening to my name as the defending champ. We will see,” she said. “I am doing my part. I am very excited and proud.”

Coelho now has a tattoo saying “Ms. Olympia” on the side of her hand.

“That’s something that’s going to stay in my heart forever. Nobody can take this title away, and hopefully this year, I can defend this title,” Coelho said. “Diamonds are made out of pressure, right? So that’s the type of pressure I try to apply to myself.”

Get today’s headlines in minutes with Your Florida Daily:

About the Authors:

Ryan Welch joined the News 6 Team as a sports anchor and reporter in July 2017. After nearly 15 years in the industry, Ryan gladly brings his passion for sports to Central Florida.