I used to dream of having a perfect body.
I worked for it, planned for it, failed hundreds of times and gained weight back, but heck – at one point I even achieved it for 5 minutes: when I stepped on stage in 2012 for my second NPC bikini competition. (The first one I wasn’t quite as lean as the second. *Eyes rolling!*)
Even now, I could pick out what was not perfect, when I put everything into achieving perfection.
I spent 25 years of my life believing life would begin when I had the right body.
Guess what? Not so, not so, at all.
I came up on a hard truth that day I stepped on stage. I was starving, miserable, and after the compliments stopped and fake tan faded, my life wasn’t much different. What a let down.
I started worrying about my weight at 9 years old.
I went on my first self imposed diet at 10 and even wrote myself up an exercise plan to follow.
These motivations have shaped me into who I am now. I spent most of 25+ years obsessed with diet and exercise, and ran the gamut of bingeing and purging, starving, and compulsive exercise. I was mostly a binge eater and even went to Overeaters Anonymous meetings for a year when I was 27.
I was misled into thinking happiness was found in looking a certain way and in being different than who I was. Being thin.
It sounds crazy now, thinking back on it all.
I studied Fashion Design in college and in my 20’s was working in the Retail Industry as a designer, where image was a priority to me. In my mind, I was not good enough at around 130 pounds and 5’6”. This is my body’s set point. (I’ll talk more about set points at another time.)
I did love exercise for stress relief and healthy eating because it made me feel good. I just couldn’t seem to stick to it before something would happen and I’d start overeating again and gain 30+ pounds. I had 4-5 sizes of clothes in my closet and at one point even wore the same two pairs of jeans every day until I lost the weight. By then I was 29.
I had a vision of who I wanted to be and how I wanted to feel. I thought fit people had it all.
At 30, I left my job as a Designer and went head first into Personal Training after doing my 1st Bikini Competition. My weight loss success story was even featured in Oxygen Magazine, which I idolized. I did the 2nd show, and then struggled for another year with bingeing, dieting and self image. I gained 20 pounds after the show, went into prep for the 3rd, lost 10, knew the lifestyle of show prep wasn’t for me and I couldn’t do this anymore, and then gained 50 pounds. Yes 50!
My self esteem was at an all time low and I was even having panic attacks. I was a full time Personal Trainer at this point, and I felt so lost. I had created my whole new identity around being a Bikini Show girl and I had ruined it. I had a lot of reflecting and soul searching to do.
The past 6+ years since that low happened I’ve been on a journey of self love. Through trial and error, I can now say I’m content and never see myself going on another diet again.
I am at the best place I’ve ever been and though it’s not perfect or always easy, I knew one day it could be possible for me.
How Did I Get Here?
I took all of the experience and knowledge I have accumulated through studying Personal Training, Nutrition, Weight Loss, working with clients, reading countless books and articles by experts, working with coaches, and I decided: I was going to be happy, healthy and still have a body that was fit and that I was proud of.
I’ve been helping make it possible for others, too.
My goal is to teach you how to eat enough to fuel your body and your goals, just as I did, exercise because you love it, and it makes you feel amazing, and to practice self care.
Happiness is not found in the shape of your body, but it can be found in loving the habits of moving your body, feeding it well and caring for it.
Your best life is possible, the struggle can come to an end.