D'FYNE Fitness Magazine Winter 2019 - Page 19

my family’s needs and my own personal fitness. I book my clients according to my family life. Manag- ing work, family, and com- petitions can be tricky! What I’ve learned over the years is that burning your f lame at both ends, being overworked, over-trained, and feeling resentful toward your schedule does no one any good; in fact, it has terrible physiological and emotional effects. Therefore, I prioritize balance in my life. If I’m not helping others in need or working out, I’m with my two amaz- ing sons and my beau- tiful husband. Literally, relaxing for me is doing nothing but being present. Sitting in a Muskoka chair with a probiotic drink, watching my youngest son play outside and my oldest work on his car. An Early Start I was always highly competitive, and I started tumbling at a very young age. Regretfully, after achieving much success in gymnastics, I decided to quit at 15 years old due to a priority shift in my life. I was a teenager, after all! I suppose that because I quit competitive gym- nastics very regretfully, I always had the continued urge to compete. At 19 years old, I began training for the Ms. Fitness Canada Series, and I’ve been com- peting ever since then. My fitness and diet routines were extremely different then. When I first started in fitness, in the 1990s, it was the peak of the Gold’s Gym era and bodybuilding, so everything was done in excess and to extremes. That meant exces- sive unhealthy dieting, as well as excessive training and supplemen- tation. There was very little regard for health and longevity in the sport. Now, I follow a macro-based eating program, and my macronutrients change according to whether I’m prepping, trying to gain muscle, or leaning out for a photo shoot. Every Saturday, I do a “free-from-tracking day,” and I do not input my macros into my app. This doesn’t mean I binge or cheat all day—it means that I free my mind from having to track food and I trust myself to eat the right amounts. Staying Strong The only time my life- style wavered was when I became very ill and was told that I would never be able to compete or train again…but that is a whole other story! At that point, I made some very hard career and life decisions, changed my lifestyle, meditated, and defeat- ed the medical model. I stepped back on stage af- ter this period in my life, about four years ago. This may sound odd, but when I’m going at my hardest, I turn inward to myself and my spirituality to keep me driven and strong. I am very intrin- sically motivated. I do not really rely on anyone else, especially during peak moments. However, with that said, my husband is my only rock. Rest and Reward To me, success is defined by a person achieving balance among their inner life, their physi- cal wellness, and their physique goals. Success is measured by change, small or big. Often, when I know the time frame of completing my goal, I re- serve a spa getaway with my husband for a night or two. We hike, work out, get spa treatments, and eat a beautiful dinner. If a getaway is not possible, I always indulge in some- thing else like a facial and body treatment, hot yoga, or an infrared light pod. Consistency and tenac- ity through adversity is the key in every aspect of your life, especially with regards to training and nutrition. Prioritize yourself first, so that you’re sure to have the opportunity to be the best partner, professional, parent, and athlete. Let go of all that guilt; it is a use- less emotion that wreaks havoc on your body. And finally, become passionate about something in your life. Do things that scare the hell out of you, so you can grow. It’s okay to not be perfect. D’FYNE - Winter 2019 19