ONLY 4 DAYS LEFT TO HELP ME SECURE THE #1 SPOT IN MY GROUP!
PLEASE CLICK THE LINK ABOVE TO VOTE!
Although I’ve been in the running for the title of Ms Health & Fitness 2021 (through Muscle & Fitness HERS magazine) for nearly four weeks now, my health and fitness journey began in May of 2014. Through the outpouring of love, support, WARRIOR VOTES and FREE daily FB votes; I’ve advanced through the top 15 elimination round, the top ten and now I’m in the top five for my group! Shit gets real in the next four days! In order to advance to the SEMIFINALS, I must secure 1st place in my group by July 15th.
Entering this competition has changed my life so much in the past month! I’ve completely detached myself from the outcome of winning and focused more on the momentum it’s helped me build in the process. I’ve stepped up my game to the next level with my workouts, joined the Warrior Babe fam to help me get my macros/calories on point again. I’m BEYOND GRATEFUL for the tremendous amount of love and support from my children, my partner, friends, family and my iron brothers and sisters. This competition has instilled an extraordinary drive within me to grow my whole body wellness coaching business/career to the next level.
For all of this, and even more, I am SO THANKFUL to be part of such an incredible opportunity. In order to understand my “WHY” for signing on to compete, it’s important to understand a bit of my back story…
Seven and a half years ago, a Stage III Colon Cancer diagnosis launched me into a lifelong love of health & fitness. It was transformative as a catalyst; to either make me stronger, healthier and better or break me down beyond retrievable repair.
Prior to my first chemo treatment in February of 2014, I was severely underweight, 118 pounds and 6 months away from terminal cancer. It’s no exaggeration that death was knocking at my door. Images of a skeletal ghost, with a white-knuckle-grip grasped firmly to the thread of my life come to mind when I sit in the truth of how close I came to dying. Life as I knew it, hanging in the balance on one end of the thread. Everything I loved, at any given moment, could have come crashing down. All death had to do was let the thread go.
I remember sitting there at one of my first pre-chemo check ins with the oncology nurse counselor. There was a TON of paperwork. Signatures for health insurance coverage and treatment authorization forms. Questions about having a health care proxy, thinking about what would happen to my children if I died. Who would look after them? No one would ever love them the way I could. All the moments we would never have together if my body and Spirit were too weak to battle cancer.
It was all a bit of blur looking back. Yet I can still feel the pit in my stomach, the wave of emotion in my chest as I sat there all those years ago with that nurse. Signing forms that said I agreed to pump chemicals into my body, twelve rounds of them, for at least six months. Maybe longer if my body reacted negatively to my treatments.
When the nurse explained how chemo works, that it could cause me to lose more weight and muscle mass, I knew I HAD to do something. Her words stirred something inside me that day. Something that, to this day, brings me to tears to think about. Dominic. Izabella. My children were only five-and-a- half and two-and-a-half years old. I REFUSED to leave them behind. They needed me as much as I needed them and it was that very connection to my children that saved my life.
The first gym I walked into scared the shiznit out of me! It was INTIMIDATING AF. There were big muscle “meatheads” working out, sweating, grunting. With the exception of working out with one of my girlfriends (one time) at her college gym about ten years prior, I had NEVER set foot in a gym. Or worked out in one. Or lifted weights. After taking a tour of that gym, I headed straight to the nearest planet fitness.
“The expert at anything was once a beginner.” ~Helen Hayes
When I walked in to the Planet Fitness down the street from the “super scary” gym full of “meatheads”, I was so flustered I walked in through the “EXIT” door. At least I tried to. The door got stuck and I was so embarrassed to see two staff members laughing at me from behind the front desk. I immediately turned around, got in my car and drove to the NEXT closest Planet Fitness. So trust me when I say, “If I can join a gym and level up my fitness, YOU CAN TOO!”
When I began exercising, I started SLOW with LIGHT WEIGHT and a PERSONAL TRAINER. We kept track of EVERY workout. I could barely do squats on a Smith Machine with ten pound plates on each side. Smith Machine squats tend to be MUCH easier than squats with an olympic bar because the Smith Machine is already stabilized (and locked into the machine so it only does up or down). Even so, I could BARELY complete eight repetitions with hardly any weight on the machine. My legs (now) are probably the strongest, most solid and highly developed muscle group on my body.
Since being diagnosed with cancer; I’ve made it my mission to advocate and help educate as many people as I can, as often as I can, about Colon Cancer and living healthier. I’ve become a Reiki Master, a personal trainer and a life coach. It is my own personal belief that the road to wellness entails all three; mind, body and Spirit. Each pillar cannot exist without supporting the other. If it does, a person’s foundation of health will be as rocky and unstable as a temple built with rubble.
The body may be strong but if the mind or emotions are weak, strength only goes so far. Eventually a person will train less or put in less work and not be motivated. If the mind is strong but the body is not, you can tap into your emotions and channel your “WHY” to get there. All three go hand in hand. All three, when fine tuned, work together like a well oiled machine to produce the most magnificent of transformations. On all levels.
One thing I know for certain is this. No matter the outcome of this competition, now is my time to SHINE. Now is my time to take what I’ve learned, experienced and grown through to help others level up their lives too. It wasn’t an overnight process but the time it’s taken to get HERE has ALL been worth it. Every experience has given me gratitude for the present. Appreciation for the good times. Compassion for those currently going though their own version of what struggle looks like. I’m here for YOU. I see YOU. I witness YOU. I’m here to help.
THIS is my mission. THIS is my passion. THIS is my WHY. Winning this competition would help take my career to the next level much faster. Whether it’s my time to win this competition or someone else’s, THAT is all part of God’s plan and I trust in that process wholeheartedly. No matter what happens though, I’ve committed to taking my desire for change and helping others to the next level through whole body wellness.