Early Life –
As a child I was always busy with sports and physical activity. I enjoyed the company of my siblings and team mates on a variety of public and private select teams, as well as rode and worked horses from a very young age all throughout high school. Sports and physical activity were second nature and a big part of my family’s life. I felt incomplete if I wasn’t with my team or spending time out on the ranch; it has and always will be a way for me to decompress and enjoy life.
It wasn’t until my senior year in 2009 that I started to become conscious of my body. Despite constant physical activity with sports and the ranch, I stepped on the scale to read a weight of 170 pounds, the heaviest I had ever been.
At that time I thought I was happy with how I looked, but looking back it was obvious that I was content at best. I could never quite comprehend why I wasn’t seeing the results in my body that I was working so hard for. I was naive to nutrition and to be honest fitness in general, despite being a high school varsity athlete. It never occurred to me that what I was eating and how I was training influenced the composition of my body.
Knowing what I do now, it’s no surprise that despite my high activity level, I was still gaining weight. My diet consisted of fast food, starchy carbohydrates, and junk. When I should’ve been choosing water, I chose sweet tea and sodas. When I should have chosen leafy greens and lean meats, I opted for pizza or fries. I was out of control, and ate whatever or whenever I wanted, and it certainly showed. To say I was lacking in consistency with my proteins and the essential macro/micronutrients would be an understatement.
Throughout that year, I started to realize how uncomfortable I was in my own skin. I knew I could be healthier, I knew I wanted more for myself, but I didn’t know how to change. This lead to a lot of frustration, heartache, and loneliness. Not loving myself was one of the hardest things I have ever gone through. I didn’t have the maturity and self-awareness to pull myself out of the pit of depression I was creating around me. I felt like I was drowning under my own weight and I was desperate to catch my breath.
I knew something had to change, no matter what. If you have read my testimony, you know that this is where I fell into my eating disorder. Had I been educated about food’s essential role in creating a body I was proud of, and vocal about my feelings with my body image, these years of heartache and pain could have been avoided. It was a really dark and difficult time in my life, but it taught me a lot about myself and about the person I wanted to be both mentally, physically, and emotionally.
In June of 2012, I decided to train for my first bikini competition. I believed that if I followed through with my goal to step on stage it would help me defeat the eating disorder I had developed. The thought of weight training terrified me. I was convinced that I would start to become ‘bulky’ or ‘manly’ and lose the extra thin figure I had fought for years to have. The day I let go of that fear, picked up weight-lifting, and started fueling my body with right food was the day my life completely changed for the better.
Seeing what did and didn’t work for my body was practically a hit and miss, as it is for everyone. It took patience, effort and time which are the three aspects I believe everyone should adopt in order to achieve success. I began teaching myself how to eat clean and eat smart. I did research, put myself through classes and certification courses and eventually started to regularly apply healthier practices. I said goodbye to the junk food and unnecessary desires and observed my intake with more caution. I learned about metabolic rate and daily caloric intake while studying macronutrients and micronutrients.
It felt great to finally discover what worked for my body. There is no better or more satisfying feeling than waking up in the morning with strength, confidence, and happiness all because you decided being healthy was worth the patience, effort and time. Knowing that I was working to become better than I was the day before, mentally and physically, was such an empowering feeling.
I had no idea what was coming, but soon I was hooked on my new lifestyle. Switching from a low carb diet to one that consisted of 40% carbs was a drastic leap for me and it wasn’t easy seeing the scale go up 15 pounds but I did it. In 4 weeks I put on healthy weight that needed to be gained and started creating a body for life. I began weight training 6 days a week and watching my diet closely. I worked hard, putting in the time and effort in the gym and in the kitchen. September of 2012, I stepped on stage with a completely different body. I astonished my family, my friends and more importantly myself. In that moment, I was convinced that no matter what the judges rated me or thought of me, I had won. I didn’t walk off stage with a trophy, but I did leave with confidence, knowledge and the understanding of what it took to get on stage. That first competition was the start of everything; that day I was reborn.
In October of 2013, I stepped on stage for the third time. After consistent dieting and training, I managed to win my PNBA Bikini Pro Card in my home state of Texas. Never in a million years did I believe I would win, which made this moment so special. Walking off stage as a Professional Bikini Athlete had been my ultimate dream for so long, I thought my life was complete. However, I soon realized that I had so much more work to do if to lead the type of life I wanted. Simply achieving my physical goal wasn’t enough.
Since winning my PNBA Pro Card, a lot has changed in my life. I decided after several competitions to step off stage so that I could focus on maintaining my current physic through Flexible Dieting rather than the traditional and sometimes extreme cycles involved with competing. During this time, I discovered my love for teaching, which has been my most fulfilling life choice so far. Giving others the knowledge and support to achieve their mental, emotional and physical goals through diet, fitness and team support has been so rewarding.
Since starting my team in March of 2014, I have helped girls throughout the world in ways I never believed possible. I believe God can take any ordinary person and turn them into a message for his love. It is indescribable the places He can take you and the working hands He can give you. I have been nothing but blessed and honored with the opportunity to coach girls through Flexible Dieting, helping them discover their own personal strength and footing to become the confident and beautiful women they want to be. More recently, I have been working on projects that will hopefully expand my message and reach even more women and men that have had issues with body image or those unable to receive information on proper diet and exercise.
One thing I have learned through my personal journey and through coaching is no matter what road you decide to walk on, obstacles will arise. Time after time, I guarantee you will want to quit because things will get hard. Every day is an opportunity to make yourself the best you can be and it starts with education and support. I have become a better person and a better fitness professional because of the men and women that I coach and my goal is that my clients become better people and athletes as well. I believe as a team, we are one of the most successful in the business.
The past six years have certainly been an adventure and from the bottom of my heart, I want to thank all my clients, team mates, coaches and loved ones for trusting me and allowing me to be a blessing in their life like they have been in mine. I plan to continue to expand and innovate my business and platform for my team and for every little girl or boy out there that is struggling to love the skin they’re in.