HEALTH & FITNESS: MANDY WHITE ON GETTING FIT INSIDE AND OUT

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“It’s all about quality of life and finding that place that delivers pure happiness and balance between achieving your dreams, family and friends.”

Las Vegas: a city that never sleeps, glamorous ambiance, limos, stars, countless shows and entertainment, and, of course, the beautiful people. There is a gravitational pull that seemingly attracts you to the nightlife. It’s a city where boredom is not an option, because there is always something amazing to do. Living in this incredible city, it is easy to get wrapped up in the glitz and glam. In the midst of it all, I’ve had to find the perfect balance in my life, the kind of balance that has enabled me to follow my professional dreams, while also being a successful wife, mother and young adult who still likes to have fun.

As I awake, before the roosters, I am already well prepared for the day ahead. Walking by my windows I cannot help but notice the energy emanating from the bright lights of the Vegas strip, glowing in the distance. Each morning I make breakfast and pack lunch for my husband and two children. It’s part of a promise I made to myself that regardless of my busy schedule, I would first and foremost be the best “mommy” and wife that they deserve.

Being a mom is not easy and after dropping off my children at school, I am reminded daily of the mothers who struggle to maintain their individual identities and to find time to care for themselves. Overwhelmed and stressed by all the duties of motherhood, they feel that finding time to take care of their physical and emotional needs take a backseat to family priorities. Dedication is the answer and for those moms who say they don’t have the time, I simply turn up the car radio and get more pumped up. I am achieving my goals and aspirations and that fires me up. I am learning every day how to balance life, career and goals. The day belongs to me and I am in motion achieving my training, career and family goals.

Accomplishment is a mindset and I choose not to be a victim of time and excuses, yet I embrace the struggle. I realize that life is a journey and this story is all my own. I can choose to have the perfect ending. My life was not always one of empowerment and belief. In fact, I used to be that mom who tricked herself into believing that my obligations in life were a priority over my health. It wasn’t until I reached my breaking point; 25 pounds overweight and feeling lost that I finally said, “enough!”

The questions in my head were plentiful. Who have I become? How do I get the person I used to know back? I knew I had to find me again, so I sprung into action and started making a plan instead of yielding to excuses. Dedication to a plan and making a schedule was the first step, sticking to it was the second. Work life balance wasn’t going to be easy, but I knew this would be the catalyst to keeping it all together. I had a lot on my proverbial plate at the time: working alongside my husband in his business, managing a fitness model division, maintaining my obligations as a fitness coach, my fitness schedule as a WBFF Pro (and, of course, being a rock star mommy has it challenges). Sometimes it feels like an impossible task, but I wouldn’t want it any other way. The commitment seemed like a small price to pay for me to find me again and meet my own goals and desires.

Goal setting is a way of life for me now; I write them out daily and vow to complete them. As women we often sabotage ourselves by setting goals, failing to follow through with them, then walking away with feelings of failure. A goal without a plan (and follow through I must add) is merely a wish. The best way to achieve your goals is to schedule things and prioritize in the order of importance. These areas of your life are in constant motion, so it is important to review these values and goals daily as a way to reset your priorities. Start your day with a plan of action; it’s the first step of empowerment and begins the process of building momentum towards your goals for the day and week.

Living a balanced life is about integrating those components of your life that are truly important to you and realizing that sometimes you need to make choices about what must come first. Making choices is powerful and allows you to live a balanced life that’s united with your values. Living a balanced life, however, does require you to give 100 hundred percent of yourself, 100 percent of the time. There will be times when personal and family life collide with work, but knowing what’s most important will help you make the best choices. It was a long process, but now I am better able to balance my decisions and feel whole.

The biggest obstacles that we face are getting rid of the excuses that we all lean on: such as “I don’t have enough time” or “I can do it tomorrow.” I banished all of that and got real with myself.  I also had a hard time giving myself the gift of time, as I wanted to see the results instantly. I had to learn to let go of wanting my dream body and success to happen overnight. I also learned to enjoy the process and journey of living healthy.   Diet, in my opinion, determines 90 percent of your fitness success.

Growing up in a food and family culture in Louisiana, I knew that I not only had to eat better but I also had to learn how food affected my state of mind and body. I learned to eat foods that nourished my body and provided me with strength and energy throughout the day.  The better I ate, the more amazing I felt.

After shedding unwanted weight, I desired to push my dreams further.  I worked hard in May of last year to become a WBFF pro. My ambitions haven’t ended there, as I continue to keep working hard to become the best me that I can possibly be.  My current goal is to win the WBFF World Championships in August, here in Las Vegas as a Pro Diva Bikini model (last year I competed and won third in the world).

Although I am extremely humble, I feel empowered daily. I want my experiences to lift other women’s spirits and inspire them to reach for the sky and know that it is possible to create a balanced healthy life.  I want young girls to look up to me and see that they can be a successful woman all while staying healthy and maintaining a family. Balancing life and ambition is not easy, but the rewards are great; accomplishing your dreams and knowing that you are in charge of how your story ends is a bold and daring gift that you give to yourself.


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