My interest in weights started in high school. I always loved the look of gymnasts. For several years, I trained five days per week with a combination of weights and aerobics. As I entered my 30s, life started to take over. A new house, job, and a monster commute to go with the new job took me away from the gym. Adding a pregnancy and bed rest to the list ended my workouts completely.
Ten years later, into my 40s with two small children, I was in the worst shape of my life and needed to make dramatic changes. My boys needed me healthy. It was time to get back to basics. I altered my diet and began working out at home. Soon, I was back to the gym with my passion for weights renewed.
I trained hard and wanted to look like girls who grace the covers of fitness magazines. A friend told me I was too old; that my hormones, tendons, and age would work against me. She told me that my goals were unreasonable at my age. Luckily for me, I have a bit of a stubborn streak. I ignored her advice and began obtaining the look I wanted.
One year later, I entered my first figure competition with the INBF and won a pro card with the WNBF. I fell in love with the stage and the entire process. After winning my pro card, I began competing in the NPC. My new goal is to earn an IFBB pro card. I've competed in two NPC shows now. I placed fifth in my class and first in novice at the first and second in my class at the second. I earned the right to compete at a national level and a chance at an IFBB card. At 43, I'm in the best shape of my life.
Reading Oxygen magazine and seeing the spotlights on figure competitors drove me. I love their physiques and find them so inspiring. Erin Stern's cover in Oxygen pulled me right in. I love her physique and subscribed to her Facebook page.
Fitness model and creator of Fighter Diet, Pauline Nordin, is simply amazing. I first saw her amazing glutes inside Oxygen. I look her up and what she did to earn that glorious physique. She has been an amazing source of inspiration and motivation for me. Her diet plans have made a huge impact on my results and her passion for training and staying lean is infectious.
Whenever I have an off day mentally or life gets busy and chaotic, I take a look in the mirror. Seeing my reflection in the mirror reminds me of the promises I made to never go back to being unhealthy. My mind immediately snaps to my boys. If I slack on my goals, they'll see it and think it's okay to let yourself down.
I will continue competing because I love every aspect of it. I'm preparing to be certified in personal training and would love to model and provide inspiration to others. If I can do it at 40, then anyone can.
Remember to rejoice and celebrate your successes. It's easy to get caught up in the work and distraction of life. Don't let that overshadow your successes. It's important to keep a pure image of yourself. That's one of the reasons I enjoy competing. When the day comes where there's nothing left for me to pick at or train for, I'm done. I embrace my results and enjoy every moment of every day.
Erin Stern; I love her physique and her competitive and joyful spirit. She's truly inspiring. Pauline Nordin; her drive and determination in every aspect of life is intoxicating. Her commitment and willingness to share knowledge is exceptional.
I entered the Bodybuilding.com Spokesmodel Search last year and it lit my competition spark. If I was going to put my name on my body, I was going to be serious about fitness. While I didn't win, the flames to compete were fanned, and before long I was planning my first figure competition.