If you know me in real life you know that I’m extremely passionate about fitness. I was a competitive runner for 6 years before I was diagnosed with chronic compartment syndrome, had surgery on both legs and then found out that I could no longer run competitively. However, it didn’t take me long to find another passion in the fitness world and here I am 6 years later, from a 110 pound runner to a 135 pound nationally qualified bikini bodybuilder – something I never thought I would call myself.
The picture on the left is from an invitational where I placed 13th out of a few hundred girls, and the picture on the right is from one of my first shows last year, the PA State, where I qualified for nationals🙋🏼.
I didn’t even know what bodybuilding was about before I moved to Pittsburgh, but when I saw other girls compete I was immediately intrigued. I did my very first show 4 years ago at the young age of 19, and needless to say, I had no idea what I was doing or getting myself into. But, I figured if I’m going to do it, I might as well go all in and learn along the way, and it was the best decision I ever made. I learned so much about what I’m capable of, my mental strength, and how far I can go when I fully commit to something. I learned how my body works and what diet & training it best responds to. Like most people, I definitely had my days where I was stressed with studying, fatigued, and busy, but this sport was my motivation to get into the gym every single day. I did my own diet and training and had my pictures taken every 2 weeks by Gary, who supported me along the way. I was new to the sport but I was hooked the second my heels hit the stage.
**The left is from my first show in my hot pink bikini, (teen/collegiate nationals) and the right is from the NPC Philly of April this year.
After my first show in 2013 I knew I needed to put on size, so I took a long 3 years off to train as hard as I could. I came back in July of 2016 for the PA State & UPC Championships and qualified for nationals! I weighed around 132 pounds at this one. It was probably the most fun I’ve ever had backstage, meeting fellow competitors and making super cool, super tan friends💁🏾.
After this show in July, I took some time off in order to focus on school and graduate from UPitt😄💙💛. I made another comeback this April and competed in the NPC Philly where I came in 4th in a very, very competitive class. My body fat was in the single digits and I weighed around 126 standing at 5’9″. I had never been this lean before, and this is a package I am very proud of achieving! I’m tiny!
Then came my most recent show, the NPC Lehigh valley Championships this May, which was probably the most competitive show with well over 200 competitors. I was excited just to do this one because it’s so much fun for me. Having a positive attitude helped a lot because I ended up coming in relaxed, having fun, and placing 3rd among a stack of very beautiful women, and I qualified again!
This was probably (definitely) my favorite look🤗. BW:125
I did a few photoshoots while I was stage lean this year so that I could have pictures to remember, but after this last show I decided to give my body a break; I saw a chiropractor, ate lots of pizza and pound cake and went to Hawaii with no plans of lifting. And here I am today! I’m absolutely planning to compete again with the goal of winning an overall competition, and I might have a national show in mind😉. But until then I’ll just keep lifting my weights and eating my pizza and bringing my best to the stage. I’ve come a long way and this sport has taught me the importance of patience, hard work, and consistency, and I will forever be humbled by these experiences and lessons, and the many more to come!
*top 5 from the npc lehigh valley championships in May, I qualified!(I’m 2nd from the right)🙋🏼🏆
**I went through a phase where I was obsessed with pink so I matched everything but I promise my sense of style has evolved..
***Mike was the photographer for both of my shoots, I highly recommend if you’re in the jersey area!
more pictures on my instagram😊 – @selmabrk_👙💦