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Is female bodybuilding crossing into the mainstream? Daily Mail story about Eastern European Cup bodybuilding competition suggests so.

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FEMALE bodybuilding, which in the mainstream has long been derided as a sport for freaks, is gaining massive popularity on the world's biggest news website.

Today a story about Russian female muscle athletes hit the top of the Daily Mail's 'most read' chart – and remained in the top five.

The story was oddly headlined Behind the Iron Cur-TAN: Russian bodybuilders shun expensive treatments for an obliging comrade... and a paint roller – but it was essentially a fairly straight story about this weekend's Eastern European Cup bodybuilding competition, in the southern Russian city of Stavropol.

The writer seemed to find the fairly standard technique of applying pre-show fake tan by roller as odd.

But the words were really only a vehicle for the pictures of tanned and taut-muscled female bodybuilders which gleaned a huge portion of the Mail Online's 5.7 million unique users who hit its site every day.

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