Never in my life did I ever think that turning 40 would be something to celebrate. In fact, I believe that the first memories of my parents and their age was in their late 30s and I thought they were “Old”.
Now looking back my 20s were me full of anxiety and not feeling worthy of anything, I had all my children by age 25 so you can imagine the body image up and downs I went through. I know, I know, normal things young mothers went through.
Now my 30s was where I discovered this confident, beautiful self. I loved who I was and finally had to confidence to achieve anything I put my mind to. I joined the military as a single mother of three young children, sustained a spinal cord injury, couldn’t sit flat for three years, had an implant placing into my back, completed my EMT school. Moved countries, and then across country, twice! And somehow managed to compete in the Bikini category in Bodybuilding in not one but 4 different states.
But truth be told, turning 40 has been nothing short of AMAZING. I’m in the best shape of my life. The most I’ve ever challenged myself. the most I’ve ever believed in myself to boot.
Looking back at all the adult stages of my life. All I can say is never stop loving yourself. Strength and growth only come through continuous effort and struggle.
I wish I knew back then what I know now. What a difference that would make. I would remind myself that my body is amazing and having babies is just as amazing an accomplishment than stepping foot on stage after a grueling prep. In fact, last yeat I prepped a total of 9 months and joked I suffered all that time and didnt have a baby! Now thats perspective.
Now my goals in bodybuilding haven’t changed. All being 40 means is that in some states they have a Masters over 40 class which means I can be in the Masters 35+ and in Masters 40+.
Now what I hope to achieve this coming year. I want to inspire young women, especially mine to love your body no matter what. We all weather different seasons in life in different ways.
We all struggle with body image. Even Athletes, maybe even more than the average person. We fluctuate weight to very unhealthy levels which gives us the allusion of what we believe optimal bodies should look like.
I want young women out there, including my daughters that having proper nutrition is so important. I want them to understand labels and know what their putting in their bodies. I want them to learn to respect their bodies, which means taking care of them. Daily exercise is important. Just as important as nutrition.
At the end of the day, I want these women to look into the mirror and be so grateful that God blessed them with such an amazing body. We are designed to create life and are capable of so much! We can do anything we put our minds to.
Life isn’t easy but boy, is it worth it.