Growing up I was not athletic - in fact I struggled with my weight. Being overweight never really bothered me except when I was picked on by other kids at school for my appearance. Despite being teased, it was not until my doctor told me I had high cholesterol (at the age of 13) that made me realize I had to do something about my weight and health.
The first major step I took was I changed my eating habits. By the time I was 15, I had managed to get my weight down to a healthy weight, and had lowered my cholesterol to a normal level. However maintaining that weight was a challenge, and by the time I completed university I had put the weight back on and had high cholesterol again.
So the next thing I did was join a gym. I enjoyed working out on cardio machines, but I didn’t want to go near weights because I was scared to get bigger than I already was. When I realized I was not getting the results I wanted on my own, I decided to hire a trainer to learn about weight training and to help me get my health back on track.
Everything was going great until I was 26, when I was diagnosed with PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome). PCOS is a hormonal disorder that causes the ovaries to produce higher levels of androgens. Some of the major symptoms include infrequent menstrual periods, high cholesterol, and weight gain/obesity (all of which I was experiencing). Although PCOS is not curable, it is treatable with medications and can be controlled through diet and exercise.
Initially, I had a difficult time accepting that I had PCOS. I went through the “why me” phase and I felt sorry for myself. Discovering that something is wrong with your body and knowing that you have to live with it for the rest of life is not a fun experience to go through. However, if anything good came out of this ordeal, the diagnosis finally provided me with answers as to why I was having all these problems with my weight and cholesterol.
Today, I have accepted and come to terms with having PCOS. It has shaped the person I have become, and gives me the determination to take this negative element in my life and transform it into something positive. Competing has become that positive. I have been “gifted” with something that makes me special and unique - rather than see the glass as half-empty, I will view it as half-full.
These are my accomplishments:
****** 2009 Competition Results ******
- 1st Place, Muscular Model Level 3, Fitness Star
- 3rd Place, Figure Elite Division, 2009 UFE Nationals Elite Show
- 11th Place, Fitness Model Elite Division, 2009 UFE Nationals Elite Show
- 2nd Place, Figure Open Division, 2009 UFE Spring Bash
- 3rd Place, Fitness Model Open Division, 2009 UFE Spring Bash
****** 2008 Competition Results ******
- 2nd Place, Fittest Duo, June 2008 FAME World Championships
- 2nd Place, Fitness Model Short, May 2008 FAME Classic
- 2nd Place, Muscle Model, May 2008 FAME Classic
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