By Sara E Walker
I first recall being inside a gym with my parents when I was 9 years old. I had this overwhelming sensation that I wanted to be there and even asked if I could also work out with them.
My next introduction to a gym was by my high school P.E. teacher and golf coach when I was 14 years old. He didn’t know what to do with us one day for P.E., so he took us to the high school football weight room. I was addicted. I didn’t realize it then, but working out, building my body and nutrition would be a lifelong passion. Being in a gym is a place I have always felt profound happiness and fulfillment.
I kept using the high school gym. I read every fitness magazine I could get my hands on. I watched all the bodybuilding videos and competitions I could find. I can’t tell you how many times I have seen Pumping Iron.
When I went to college, I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to workout in the Baylor University weight room as a member of the golf team. When I finally moved back home, I was old enough to get a gym membership. I was there every day. My obsession for fitness had solidly taken root.
Over the years, life happens. Sometimes we lose sight of passions and what truly makes us happy. This was true for me. Somewhere along the way, I was derailed from my fitness goals. My passion would reignite sometimes as I would fade in and out of the gym. At times I think I turned my back on it because I wasn’t moving in a purposeful way towards my ultimate desired goal, and it was easier to turn away than to just do it. For whatever reason, my lost path was all my doing and no one else. It is time to stop talking about they why's of the past and to start asking about the how's of the future.
Over the last few months, I have found my path again but this time with a new purpose. This new purpose is becoming a very muscular woman. I love the look of a beautiful, feminine woman with big muscle. I was finally being honest with myself about what I wanted from my fitness and nutrition.
As I ramped up my research with this new goal, I found it incredibly hard to gain knowledge on women's bodybuilding. Most of the information available is about men. The information I did find about women was targeted to smaller, figure-style women, and even that information is few and far between. I finally came across a website called Wings of Strength. This is an organization promoting all levels of women’s bodybuilding. I was so excited to find this resource! I was able to finally see women who had a similar body-style range I wanted. Some of my inspirations are Nicki Chartrand, Justine Albert, Lenda Murray, Wendy Fortino and Margie Marvelous.
Once I figured out the muscular body style I desired for myself, I continued researching to learn what it was going to take to achieve the next level of my fitness goals and how I could best get there. It was a no brainer to hire a personal trainer. I have worked with a few trainers over the years, but this time it was different. I needed someone who knew what it was to take their fitness and bodybuilding all the way. I wasn’t playing around this time. I needed a pro.
With this decision being so personal, I took my time to select someone who I felt was the right trainer for me and my desired outcomes. I chose International Federation of Bodybuilding and Fitness (IFBB) Pro, Justine Albert. I chose Justine due to her mix of training intensity, knowledge, background, transparency about women’s bodybuilding, charisma and empowerment. Justine will provide me with a customized training plan for workouts and nutrition that is tailored to my current needs and goals. Age and genetics always play a role, but I will be 100% invested in this transformation – to whatever level it takes me – and it will be up to me to stay on track in every way.
My training sessions will take place at Justine's gym, Club NBT in Apollo, Penn. As of now, we will train once a month for two to three consecutive training days. My first session will be three days at the beginning of September. Outside of my sessions with Justine, I will be training on my own at my home gym.
Due to the lack of information out there about women’s bodybuilding, it is even more important for me to document my experience and transformation with this blog. It is going to be a lot of hard work and maybe some tears along the way. It won’t be pretty, I know, but being transparent for other women out there who may be interested in this is far more important. As I continue to document my journey, I will be adding links to what has inspired me along the way.
Though I won’t be talking about the specifics of my training and nutrition, as each plan is created for the individual by their coach, I will be giving as much insight as possible into my journey and experience.
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