The Top Mistakes Aspiring Fitness Models Make

I began my fitness journey almost 10 years ago. With about 10 shows and around 80 published photos and/or articles under my belt, I feel the need to write a blog that I think could help many people that are currently in or aspiring to be in the fitness industry. One of the most common emails I get (often from parents who have kids who want to get into the fitness modeling industry) is "What do I need to know? How do I go about getting myself/my kid published?"

When I began competing in 2008, competing was an underground sport. The only physique categories were fitness, figure, and bodybuilding. Bikini and physique were added a few years later. Since then, everyone and their mom competes. And everyone and their mom wants to get into fitness modeling.

And trust me, I don't think there's anything wrong with that.

But the big thing you need to know is why do you want to compete and model?

And equally as important (if not moreso), how are you marketing yourself?

Have you …

So You Want to Dye Your Hair Purple...

I get emails and messages all the time, or people stopping me somewhere and saying "OMG I love your hair color! I would love to have purple hair but I'm not brave enough!"

Okay, I can get that. But really it's not about bravery... it's about the commitment that purple hair actually is. Purple hair is a tedious marriage that requires time, effort, patience, and unconditional love to keep your locks that vibrant color you love.

My hair has been some semblance of purple for about 3 years now so I've lived through all of it. Almost every brand, every shade, every cleaning process, every everything. Let us also bear in mind that I went to cosmetology school so I'm pretty much fearless when it comes to hair color because I know I can always fix it.

So before you jump into having your hair superhero colors, here are some things I've learned.

If You Don't Know What You're Doing, Go To The Salon The First Time... or 8.

If you didn't go to school for ha…

Thoughts on a Friday Night: Confessions and "The Universal Assignment and You"

I was invited to my friend's house about two hours north of the Twin Cities this weekend, so I made the trek up here and was left alone with my thoughts and an audiobook for a few hours. It's a chilly night in late September by Lake Millacs. It's quiet. peaceful, and I sit here on my laptop in my makeshift bed wrapped up warm in a blanket and a million thoughts in my head.

The month of September was probably one of the most difficult things I've been through. But realistically, I'm grateful for all of it, and it was truthfully the hammer dropping on a lot of things in my life. There's so much I can't write about because I simply can't. There's so much behind the scenes that I could write a novel about in terms of learning experiences.
The man that I was dating often asked me why I didn't blog more often. I didn't really have an answer at the time, but the truth of the matter is I just didn't feel like writing.

If I'm being honest, I…

Why I Love and HATE the Fitness Industry

I’ve been part of the fitness industry since 2008. 
I naively wandered into this field and never really planned to be any part of it. Though I’m no Alicia Marie or Mike O’Hearn, I have also built a substantial amount of followers on Facebook and attained some accomplishments  I’m quite proud of over the years, with hopes of continuing to build those accolades. My aim has always been to leave a footprint in this field that is of my own making and voice. And that's why this is being posted on my blog and not on that big website my articles go up on. 
That being said, the fitness industry has shifted drastically in the last 3-5 years. There are more and more people getting into competitions and stepping in front of the camera, and everyone has their own purpose.
I fell into fitness because it challenged me to my core, physically and emotionally. I’m naturally introverted (a fact that may surprise some people) and generally like to be a wallflower in a room. I don’t speak much of my …

If 2015 is Steamrolling Your Life... This is for you.

Summer is winding to an end; I realized I've not written a blog in an extremely long time. This summer has been one of personal growth, reflection, forgiveness (of myself and others), and connections.

I'm going to go ahead at put this out there: it seems 2015 has been a rough year for many, many people I know. I personally have been through some extremely painful experiences, and I see others around me going through crises and unexpected tragedies more now than I ever have. I've never seen more divorces, long-term breakups, broken engagements, deaths, job losses, and general plot twists have a lot of people down and out emotionally. As someone with a big heart, it’s really, really tough to stand by and watch. 

We all are aware life has extreme ups and downs at any given point, but the amount of people that I have conversations with is making is extremely apparent that this year has been significantly more down than up. Though I’m a silly goofball at heart, I also tend to dwe…

Own Your Sh*t: The Tough Love Reset

Summer is here, we're halfway through 2015... and how is your life looking?

We start the year with lofty goals and visions of rebirth, and I often find people's ambition fizzles out by March. They usually have a series of reasoning for it, but ultimately these are just excuses.

And this is where a very simple (but not always easy to accept) principle comes into play:


Sounds simple enough, right? But it's not. Because owning your shit requires actual ownership of your own life, behaviors, decisions, and results. That is not always cozy for people.

Ownership sounds so simple and logical, but it's not. We're all about owning the cool parts of ourselves, but nobody likes the icky stuff. Nobody likes to own the part of themselves that they haven't tamed yet. The binge eating. The excuse making. The poor financial decisions. Yeah... that ownership blows.

But it doesn't have to be BAD. In fact, owning your sh*t is GOOD! It feels scary but it's…

On Values and Dating

When we were young, we observed relationships on TV and movies and got a picture of how these things were supposed to pan out in our adult lives. Our families and media heavily influenced these expectations, and as we ventured out naively into the world of adulthood, these were the things that carried us through from date to date and moment to moment. At least, that was the case for me. First kisses are put on pedestals and finding love was the end-all-be-all to life.

I was in two long term relationships that spanned my 20s. I definitely thought my last long term relationship was my match; after all, the ring had been selected, the venue located, and a rough date had been set. We had our issues, but this was someone I was positive was my "person."
Imagine my surprise when I was tossed out of our home and suddenly single in 2012 because he had other plans for his life. I will define the next 6 months of my life as "not a very fun time for Abby". I specifically went …