I am 27 years old and happily married to my best friend! He has been one of my greatest motivators during this FITBODY journey. Together, we enjoy weight training, traveling and watching movies in the comfort of our own home. We also have three beagles, who are a handful to say the least!I am a committed follower of Jesus Christ and with HIM all things are possible. Without my faith, I don’t know where I would be. I have faced many trials and tribulations during my 27 years of existence, but have endured because of my faith in the Lord. At 16 years old, I nearly lost my life in a car accident. After having a full blood transfusion, multiple reconstructive surgeries and countless hours of physical therapy I realized that the only reason I was alive was because of God. I decided to not let this become a tragedy, but rather a triumph. The first Sunday I was able to make it back into church, I gave my life to Jesus Christ and was baptized.I am a Lung Cancer Awareness advocate and have worked hand in hand with The Lung Cancer Research Foundation. I hosted a 5K in 2011 in memory of my Mom and all of the other individuals who have died because of this horrible disease. This is the leading killer among all cancers. Over $1,000.00 in proceeds were collected that day and donated to The Lung Cancer Research Foundation in New York City.Philippians 4:13 “I can do all things through Christ, who gives me strength.
Stepping on stage as an NPC bikini athlete was a great accomplishment in itself, but I am most proud of the journey that got me to that point. Knowing that I am lean and healthy is the greatest accomplishment anyone could ask for.
When I met with Julie at our first team meeting on January 4, my body fat was at 29%. With Julie’s guidance and my determination, I was able to cut my body fat by 12% during a four month span. It was also beneficial to have such an amazing support system. My husband, my sister, my best friend Megan and my fellow hometown FITBODY teammate Hyla Conrad were by my side giving me the support and motivation I needed. It was also nice to have my six year old niece, Reese, always ask, “Can you eat this, Monkey?” (she calls me Monkey).
I love everything about fitness. This truly has become a passion of mine. It is no longer a hobby. This is what I live; every minute of every day. There is nothing comparable to the feeling of accomplishment after a strenuous workout and the visualization of the changes being made to your physique. Exercise truly is a natural anti-depressant, giving an overall sense of well being and happiness.
First and foremost, I am anxious about starting classes to become a Certified Personal Trainer. Not only will I have the knowledge to continue a healthy lifestyle, but I will be able to assist so many other people who don’t know where to begin. Second, I would like to continue progressing as an NPC bikini athlete by building more lean muscle and cutting additional body fat. Eventually, I would like to branch out into fitness modeling since that has always been a dream of mine.
Losing my mother at such a young age has given me the drive and motivation to maintain a healthy lifestyle. She was diagnosed with Stave IV lung cancer at the age of 45 and passed away that same year. She was a non-smoker, non-drinker, ate healthy and exercised moderately. Seeing an otherwise healthy woman deteriorate over the course of 11 months due to a horrific disease gave me a completely different view on life. It is extremely important to be pro-active and take every chance to be as healthy as possible. Living a healthy lifestyle by being physically active and eating clean are actions that I can take to help prolong my own life. Anytime I struggle to finish cardio or power through that last rep, I remind myself that my Mom made it through chemotherapy treatments without complaining. If she can do that, I can complete a workout without complaining.
How do I narrow this answer down to just one thing? There are so many amazing aspects about working with Julie. The most refreshing thing is knowing that she is not like other trainers. She is not harsh with her critique, yet still motivating and empowering. When I walked into the first team meeting, I immediately felt like family. Julie is always available to answer any questions that I might have. I tend to get anxious before my body comp testing, as if I haven’t achieved what I was hoping for. But, her kind words are always so reassuring. She was able to manipulate my workout and nutrition plans to help me achieve my ideal physique. I believe each person has a true “God given talent”, and this is definitely Julie’s.
There is no “worst part” about working with Julie. Team FITBODY and Julie have exceeded any expectations I may have had at the beginning of this journey.
Currently, my favorite “diet” food is Rocky Road UMP pudding made with Greek yogurt and unsweetened cocoa powder. Top that with 3 strawberries and I feel like I’m eating a delicious French inspired chocolate mousse. But, you can never go wrong with anything made with UMP!
If anyone has the desire to become healthier, achieve other fitness goals or just take on a new hobby….DO IT NOW! Never be afraid of failure. Every success story comes from some form of failure. I would rather try something and fail miserably as opposed to having regret or wondering “what if…” my entire life. You must find strength through your weaknesses and struggles. Life is too short to stay inside of your comfort zone.