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Body Transformation: Courage Against Despair

Body Transformation: Sohee, So Hot

Sohee suffered from two eating disorders. She exercised madly, but just didn’t know how to do it right. Once it clicked, she kicked her EDs and gained 30 pounds!
Name: Sohee Lee
BodySpace: slee00
Website: www.soheeleefitness.com

Sohee Lee Sohee Lee
AGE 14
HEIGHT
5'2"
WEIGHT
80 lbs
BODY FAT
13%
WAIST
22"
AGE 22
HEIGHT
5'2"
WEIGHT
112 lbs
BODY FAT
18%
WAIST
24"

Why I Got Started

There came a point in my earlier years when I realized I didn't want to be miserable anymore. I was stuck doing hours and hours of cardio a week and nothing else. It had gotten to the point where exercise had become a chore and I dreaded every minute of it.

I was suffering from anorexia nervosa at the time, so I was set in my ritualistic ways. I looked sick and I felt even worse. Food had become my enemy.

Now, working out is one of the highlights of my day; I can't get enough of it.

Lifting weights has allowed me to view exercise and fitness not as punishment, but rather as a valuable, fun asset to my life.

Whereas before I would think about my upcoming workout all day with my stomach in a knot, wishing it would be over already, nowadays it's often the only downtime in a day that I get.

Being in the gym and training has a way of calming me down - almost like my own form of meditation of sorts. Gripping the iron, pulling the barbell off the floor … I don't think of it as "work;" it's my own personal me-hour. And food? I love food; I'm not afraid to eat big.

Fitness has given me the confidence to excel in other areas of my life. It takes guts to go in there and squat heavy. It's not easy; it hurts. But when you finally reach that elusive number you've been striving for so long to hit - there's no feeling quite like it in the world.

It's addicting and puts you on a complete high. You can hold your chest up high and know that yes, you do have the strength it takes to succeed. Nothing beats that.

How I Did It

When I first discovered weightlifting, I spent many, many late nights perusing the Bodybuilding.com forums. I combed through anything and everything I could get my hands on.

I learned exercise technique through the Bodybuilding.com exercises page as well as what I should be eating by visiting other members' Bodyspace profiles.

In addition, I hired my first online trainer in the summer of 2008. This turned out to be a great decision for me, as that was when I really started to learn about proper nutrition and training. I studied each new program that I got in order to understand the how's and why's of every little detail.

I asked questions, I read fitness writers' blogs, I invited feedback, and I associated myself with other fitness-minded individuals.

This last component was absolutely key; I needed to be around those who would support me in my endeavors instead of sabotage me.

Today, fitness has grown into such a passion of mine that I've recently decided to make a career for myself in this industry. I'm progressively dedicating more and more of my time and energies into working on my business, writing articles, making a name for myself, and networking.

Am I outside of my comfort zone? I'm hardly ever inside it anymore. But I know that this is what I need to do in order to grow as a person, and so far, I've been having an amazing time!

Supplements

I typically blend some protein powder in with iced coffee to make my own high-protein frappuccino. Tastes better than any Starbucks I've had!

Daily
With First Meal

Diet

While I initially started out eating six meals per day every three hours, I've learned over the years that doing so was not necessary. It took me a while to really learn what my body wanted and how I functioned best, but now I've found a system that works for me and I'm very happy with it.

I follow a rather unconventional method to diet called intermittent fasting in which I only eat during an 8-hour feeding window each day. Studies have found no evidence of slowed metabolism, decreased blood sugar, or any other negative side effects from not eating for more than 3 hours.

This allows me to eat much larger meals while still meeting my macros for the day, which is great for me because I love the feeling of being full. Depending on how busy I am and whether or not I am training that day, I will consume all my calories in 1-3 meals.

I also believe that you don't have to eat clean 100% of the time to achieve a lean physique. If I really want to, for example, I will squeeze in a little bit of candy into my day and fit it into my macros. Doing so has not hindered my progress in any way. I am incredibly wary of the all-or-nothing mentality and strive for moderation, especially given my eating disorder background.

My food varies somewhat from day to day. Unlike many individuals, I like to sit down in the evening, pull out the Calorie King software program I've been using for over four years, and plan out my next day's food depending on what I feel like eating.

When I feel my sweet tooth kicking in, I'll start off my day with 500g berries mixed with Stevia, cinnamon, and some cottage cheese. Yes, I eat it all in one sitting!

But most of the time, my diet is very similar to the following:

Training Day
Meal 1
Meal 2: Post Workout
Meal 3
Non-Training Day
Meal 1
Meal 2

Training

I've recently begun incorporating about 10 minutes worth of foam rolling and mobility work before each workout. My personal philosophy with regard to training is that the big, compound exercises should be the primary component to every session. I think that isolation exercises don't give you nearly as much bang for your buck.

More is not better; smarter is better. As such, I like to get in, hammer it out, and leave. Yes, fitness is a lifestyle, but I have a life outside of the gym and I'd like to keep it that way.

My current fitness goals are to front squat (a** to grass) 135 pounds and deadlift 225 pounds. As such, my training is catered toward achieving those milestones. I'm also on my school's club rugby team, and we practice 3 days per week. Aside from that, I don't do any cardio.

Here's a sample training week for me:

Day 1: Full Body 1
Day 2: 90 Min Rugby Practice
Day 3: Full Body 2
Day 4: 90 Min Rugby Practice
Day 5: Full Body 3

Rugby Practice: 60 min

Day 6: Full Body 4
Day 7: Rest

Suggestions For Others

If you're someone who's struggling with insecurities, body issues, or lack of confidence, I have one thing to say to you: weightlifting has saved my life.

Never underestimate the power of becoming physically strong - doing so transcends beyond the confines of fitness and will have a positive impact on you in so many ways. You are so much stronger than you think!

You Could Be Our Next Transformation Of The Week


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VegasCowboy

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VegasCowboy

absolutely perfect, marry me lol

Jun 13, 2013 8:13pm | report
 
Spawn8214

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Spawn8214

I love stories like this. Seeing an article that's not about losing weight for health, but about gaining weight for health!

There is too much out in the media and in our stupid pop culture which would say that she was "beautiful" at 80 lbs and would also say that now at 120lbs, 18% bf, that she is fat.

This level of brainwashing in the media is so much to the extent that when I first started (I was at unhealthy levels of body fat and extremely underweight at about 145lbs at 6'3") everyone thought I was stupid for wanting to gain weight... because gaining weight is "always unhealthy".

Sohee, great job in becoming healthy! I hope others who have been brainwashed by society so much to the point where they develop eating disorders can see your story so that they can understand what it truly means to be healthy.

Dec 23, 2013 4:55pm | report
 
GoingFitModel

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GoingFitModel

Wow!! Looking good, cute smile, awsome body!! Keep up the good work girl !

May 18, 2014 6:13pm | report
 
Showing 1 - 3 of 3 Comments

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