Janet Layug Says She Will Not Defend Bikini Title at 2021 Olympia

A new champion will be crowned in Orlando, Florida this fall.

On July 31, 2021, 2020 Bikini Olympia Champion Janet Layug made an announcement that stunned everyone in attendance at her “Battle of the Bodies” event in Fort Lauderdale, FL. Before presenting the awards to the winners of her show, Layug told the crowd in attendance that she will not defend her title at the 2021 Olympia, scheduled to occur the weekend of October 7-10 in Orlando, FL. 

Mr. Olympia LLC shared the video of the announcement on their Instagram page that same day. The video can be seen in the post below.


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“This show is very symbolic of my career transitioning into a new chapter. I’ve been competing since 2013, a very long time, and I’ve enjoyed every moment of it,” Layug told the crowd from the stage. “We have the Mr. Olympia show coming up again in about 10 weeks, and I feel as though with the journey and path that I’m taking…I’m announcing that I won’t be competing in this year’s Olympia.”

Last year’s victory for the nurse from Florida was her first Olympia win and the culmination of a career that saw her place as the runner-up three times. She is also the 2019 Bikini International winner at the Arnold Classic

Layug’s announcement does not mean that she’s retired from competition, however. BarBend reached out to Layug for clarification. She didn’t give a direct answer but did express gratitude for her success in this exclusive statement.

“I’m focused now on opportunities to give back and do more in the industry, so the decision not to defend my Olympia title felt like the best decision for me,” Layug wrote in an email. “I feel so grateful for all the love and support.”


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A post shared by ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀W Wittmann (@w_wittmannphoto)

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While her athletic career is uncertain beyond 2021, it is evident that Layug has her eye on being a show promoter herself in the future.

What can be confirmed is that fans in Orlando will be guaranteed at least one new champion out of the 11 divisions will be crowned at the Olympia. Among the top contenders to be considered are three-time champion Ashley Kaltwasser and 2019 champion Elisa Pecini. 2020 runner-up Jennifer Dorie is currently sitting in third place in the Olympia points standings, but she has yet to clinch an official qualification. Former champion Angelica Teixeira will not compete this year because she and her husband are expecting their first child.

Featured Image: @janetlayug on Instagram/Photo by Will Wittmann