A Birthday Celebration Princess Style!

22 07 2011

Hello Family, Friends and everyone in between,

I keep on intending to update this more often but it takes me a good few hours to put together my blog and sometimes I just don’t have the time or energy. But today I have both, so here we go..

First of all thank-you so much to everyone at home for all my Birthday wishes. It really meant a lot and to know that people are still thinking of me on the other side of the world (although we can’t take the credit away from facebook for reminding everyone). It was a little overwhelming to log in a see 60+ messages comments and wall posts. The funny thing was that it was all a day early… hehe. I had just finished a busy embarkation day and starting to mentally prepare myself for a long and tiring sea day the next, I still had to get through the crazy day before I could really celebrate my birthday.

But seeing all my messages and comments completely lightened up my night and put my in the best mood ever for my special day.

Even though it was the first birthday I hadn’t been at home, I have made some really amazing friends and meet some really lovely people on here who made it such a nice day.

My mum and family had sent me a little package from home which I received on my Birthday it had arrived the day before in Vancouver. I got some really nice cards and a heap of laminated photos of the family, friends and our two new little pets. A kitten and a bunny rabbit called Marley and Angus. That was the best present ever, it made me cry. I had just been thinking only a few days earlier that I should go and get some of my photos printed from home. I had a day off today so I spend some time decorating my cabin/bunk bed wall with all my photo’s cards and a few other things I have pulled together. My little space is so much more cozy and inviting now 🙂 That was a great start to the day!

A bed fit for a queen!?!

My day at work was busy but quite successful. My seminar went really well, good bookings, as well as great feedback from my bootcamp, yoga and pilates classes. They were my busiest classes yet, I officially had no more floor space or mats left in yoga.

 

Julie the Art Director from Tassie and I

After work my birthday celebrations really began. I had had a little too much fun in Vancouver the day before and had treated myself to a new dress and shoes for the occasion. It happened to be formal night too so all dressed up, 7 of my closest girlfriends from the ship went off to dinner at 9:30pm (we have to always dine late) at Sabitini’s (a speciality Italian restaurant on board) to wine and dine. We had a ball and engaged in some very elaborate conversation. Dinner was great as always, they serve lots of small appetizer dishes. Then my special request arrived which was choc coated strawberries (courtesy of the pastry chef) which arrived for dessert as well as a Birthday cake (courtesy of the head chef). Yum! I was also spoilt by the girls, Tamieka and Lina gave me some gorgeous Swarovski earring. Julie a set of lip gloss (a girl can never have too many) and Heidi a cute little necklace… 🙂

 

Do you like me new earrings? Thank-you girls X

Then after dinner we headed down to the crew bar for dancing and drinks. It was a disco night (D.J., and traffic light theme party) so lots of people, it doesn’t get busy until 12:30 which is when most staff have finished work. We even gained an extra hour of partying because we changed time zones, BONUS!

Post crew bar was a very un-organised attempt at a cabin party, it was fun briefly. But at that point I was ready for bed… Time to call it a night as Annie and I wandered home, down the M-1 (Main crew passage way) up to deck 9 and into our cabina’s to bed, I dare not look at the clock but I think about 4ish sounds about right..

 

Our Birthday notice on the M-1.

What a great day/night! I couldn’t have asked for a better birthday on the Coral Princess

Boy…. did I LOVE the sound of my alarm at 6:15am the next morning when I woke up for stretch class… NOT! Actually I did feel quite ok as I didn’t drink too much, but a slightly tired me was a work by 6:55am ready to take stretch class for two keen participants… Grrr! Lucky it was a Port day in Ketchikan so I had plenty of time to rest and recover ready for a busy afternoon of appointments.

Yesterday in Juneau I did a fire fighting course which was quite fun then had dinner in one of the passenger dining rooms, we had gained permission, (it is all about who you know and who you are friends with on the ship). Then today was a lazy day. It was my day off so I just caught up with things I had wanted to do, such as decorated my cabin with my new photo’s, upload photo’s on facebook and grabbed dinner off the ship in Skagway at a regular little place we go to. Now I am finishing my blog update at 9:55pm. Heidi one of my good friends the magicians assistant is putting on a speciality crew show tonight because they are trialing and filming a new show. It doesn’t start until 11:45pm because of the regular passenger shows. I might be a little tired for tomorrow, but I will be still be there tonight for moral support.

A true sports model can pose in any situation.

 

Fire fighting training… Something different and little bit fun.

Good old boat drill…. Not the most exciting 1.5hrs of my week, but it is all part of the job.

That is all for now! Two sea days now, so busy few days to come, then embarkation in Whittier. And after that we are set to do it all over again as we sail back to Vancouver over the following 7 days.

Until next time, take care.

Love Stacey

XoX





Another Day at Work – Glacier Bay, Alaska.

28 06 2011

Hello, Hello,

I hope everyone is going well and staying out of mischief. Once again it had been way too long and about time I updated everyone on the next addition of my adventures at sea.

To be honest nothing exciting has really been happening. Cruise ship life doesn’t change significantly from week to week especially now that I am settled in well and truly. I can’t believe I have been on board for 3 months now, like every situation it is very easy to get caught up in the negative and the things you are missing out on rather than what you have and experience. So I guess I wrote this blog for myself too, just to remind myself how important it is just to live in the moment.

I officially hit the 3-4 month slump that everyone predicted. I have spent some time weighing up if this life is for me, too busy thinking about the things I don’t like rather than the amazing life and opportunity I have been presented with. This job can certainly be challenging at times, but I endeavour to stick it out. The more skillful and better I become at my job the more I have to take with me into my next adventure. When you feel challenged and uncomfortable, that is the time when change is taking place and even more of a reason to stick it out.

I am not exactly one to give up things too easily. So I will officially be living on the Coral Princess until the 6th of December. The timing works out well because that means I will home in time for Christmas.

As I think about the experience I am presented with, I will give you a run down of my day today…

Every day is different, but this was my day today…. Monday 27th June – Scenic Cruising in Glacier bay National Park.

I woke this morning at 6:00am, feeling a little sorry for myself as I possibly had one too many drinks at the disco (crew bar/70’s and 80’s night) last night, got bed at 2am… Opps!

Anyway.. quickly showered and got ready for work. Made a sneaky trip into Horizon (the 24hr buffet) at 6:40am where they were serving breakfast. There is pretty much every option you could imagine for breakfast, including, fruit, muesli, pastries, waffles, hash browns, bacon, sausages, beagles… Just to name a few of the options. I stuck to my usual, a freshly made personalised omelette of veggies with salmon (we are in Alaska by the way, rapidly approaching peak salmon season).

I arrived into the aerobics studio at 6:55am ready for stretch class. It was my day for stretch today.

30 min of stretching with the 15 or so keen passengers. Then 7:30am I commenced the Abs class which is also a complimentary  30 min session. (At this point I was regretting staying out for the extra hour or two last night). Mind you, I never ever let my social life get the in the way of work.. If anything, I put more energy and effort in to my classes if I’m tired just to make sure the guests never pick up on it….. Don’t worry I’m not out until 2pm every night, lol.

8am consisted of Body Sculpt Boot Camp, small group this cruise of 6 passengers who sweat it out for 30min of intense fully body exercises. At this point I was feeling excited to finish my morning classes with as much energy as I could muster. I couldn’t help but notice how amazing the weather is today, a bright sunny day!

That was until the other trainer called in sick with a chest infection, which meant a quick schedule change and the 8:30am spin class was mine to instruct aswell… Eeek!!!

Aw Well… We do what needs to be done, I pumped up the 16 guested and put on a fun filled and energetic class. I probably needed the adrenaline rush and sweat as much as they did anyway… The aerobics studio is at the top of the ship and looks out over the ocean, we have ‘the best view on the ship’ … My 1st BONUS of the morning, we spotted up to 5 whales swimming alongside the boat during the class. It’s not every day you get to take a spin class and go whale watching at the same time!

Feeling pumped up and full of energy I ran back to my room to shower and head back up at the gym for some appointments. The rest of the morning consisted of postural assessments and foot print analysis.

By 12-noon the gym is pretty quiet, all the guests are outside because we have arrived at the Glaciers at Glacier Bay National Park. Time for my lunch. Down to deck 4 into the staff Mess (not my favourite place). Food is always touch and go, a little un predictable, I just try to pick the best options, usually a salad or sandwich and fruit. I also managed to sneak in quick 45min nap on my lunch break.

Today happens to be a pretty quiet day, I had another hour spare, so I stepped outside into the sun to observe the Glacier. Mother Nature decided to put on an amazing display. There was some great glacier action today and we saw a huge chunk of ice break into the water. BONUS #2! The scenery here is AMAZING!!!

The rest of the afternoon, consisted of a few scattered appointments of both postural assessments and body composition analysis with some really lovely guests, I also squeeze in a meditation session and reading. All in all… today was an OK to average day in terms of a successful working day, nothing ground breaking.

Finished work at 7pm, dinner in the mess with a few of the other spa girls and back to my room… Here, I am FINALLY updating my blog.

After this I am contemplating a walk out onto the open deck that goes all the way around the outside of the ship to catch some fresh before tucking into my bunk bed for an early night in.

So there we go, a random day in the life of Stacey!

No two days are the same. The next three days are port days, Skagway, Juneau and Ketchikan I have two half days off. We also have a couple of Birthday’s this cruise so I have lunch planned in Ketchikan with Tamieka, the Jamaican nail tech, one of my good friends. And dinner planned at Sabitini’s one of the on board restaurants for Julie, the Art Director from Tasmania Australia. I have also applied to be a tour escort on a whale watching and glacier trek tour in Juneau, fingers crossed I get my application.

Lots of things to look forward to over the next few days.

Until next time, big hugs to everyone at home.. I will try not to leave it so long between blog updates.

Take Care

XoX

P.s. Check out some of the Alaskan scenery.





Life on the Coral Princess

10 05 2011

Hello, hello,

Well it is about time I updated all in my adventure. I truly am having a really amazing time…

Don’t get me wrong, it certainly isn’t without it’s challenges and ups and downs. But I would never regret for a second making the decision to come on this adventure. I have officially been working on board the Coral Princess for 6 weeks now. I thought I would give everyone an insight into my experiences and life at present.

LIFE ON BOARD – WORK

Life sure is different, I never ever have any idea what day or date it is. It is either a port day or sea day, Panama Canal, or Jamaica day. Weeks are no longer weeks, we really just go by cruises. At the moment we are on a 17 day repositioning cruise. We have finished our season on the Panama Canal and now on our way to Vancouver, this will consist of 7 day cruises where we travel up to Whittier in Alaska and back for the next 3 months.

Here is a typical Sea day (this is shared between 2 fitness instructors):

6:00am – Wake up, shower, Breakfast.

7:00am – Stretch Class

7:30am – Abs/Circuit

8:00am – Boot Camp

8:30am – Cycle Class

9:30am – Yoga

11am – Seminar

12  – Lunch

2pm – Seminar

3 – 7pm Consultations.

5pm – Pilates

5:30pm – Stretch/Meditation Class, Body Conditioning

7:30pm – Meeting

8:00pm – Dinner

10:00pm – Sleep/ Socialize depending on my mood and the night.

 

Port Day:

Depending what time All Aboard is (The time everyone should be back on ship), these days can be very quite and we usually get a long break if we are working or this is when we have our days off or incentive hours. We still take class, in the morning and afternoon, but the day it much quitter in general.

Generally everything is split down the middle between the two instructors. Although if one of us get sick (not very often) We would have to do the full program on our own. This is what I have to do for the first 2 days of this cruise. It was very, very exhausting, although very rewarding, I had my most successful cruise yet. We are basically running our own business on board. We go and promote on T.V. (the on board T.V. Show), you have to market yourself and services.

It have taken me a good month to 6 weeks to get the hang of everything, however I finally feel like I am almost on top of my job. That being said, you should never stop learning and improving. The better you are, the more you earn, save and the more time off you get.

Income is solely commission based.

LIFE ON BOARD – SOCIAL

It is good fun, I have meet some amazing people from all over the work. There are a few Australian staff on board, probably about 8-10, I haven’t really counted, but considering there are 900 crew, 8-10 isn’t really that many!

Everyone on board works long hours, It’s not always hard work, but days are long. Somedays are flat out crazy busy and exhausting, and other days are quiet, it just depends. Although at the moment we have been doing 10 day cruises but when we head to Alaska, things will definitely speed up with 7 day cruising.

The crew bar is somewhere I do visit regularly, it’s definitely not glamorous at all on the Coral Princess by any means, but we have some really fun ‘disco’ nights. I have probably been drinking and letting my hair down a lot more than I usually would at home, (I’m ready to curb the alcohol intake) oops! But at the same time it’s all apart of the experience. After a long day at work, it’s so nice just to go and have a chat and a dance with everyone, it’s is also good to meet and interact with people in other departments.

We are lucky on board to have the privilege to go to most of the passenger areas on the ship some nights we go to movies under the stars, see a show, band, or some of the guest entertainment, i.e. Princess pop Stars or a cocktail or two in one of the bars of lounges.

TRAVEL

So far over the last 6 weeks I have seen some amazing places. It’s quite cool to be able to have a lunch break or afternoon off and spend it in an entirely different country. So far I have:

  • Zip lined in Costa Rico
  • Visited the Blue Hole (natural water fall/ springs) in Jamaica.
  • Lunch in Colon, Panama.
  • Beach in Limon Costa Rico.
  • Beach, Lunch and walking around in Hutulco, Mexico.
  • Exploring Acapulco, Mexico.

This is just some of the things I have been able to do. I am excited for the amazing hikes and glaciers that are still to come in Alaska.

CHALLENGES

One of the most frustrating things I have had to deal with is communication problems. My laptop screen broke so I now have an external monitor plugged in to use my computer. Finding time to call home at appropriate times can be difficult and also on board internet and phone usage can get very expensive and add up quickly.

Food is not the greatest at times especially coming from such a strict eating regime throughout my competition period. It can be difficult to keep to strictly clean eating, sometimes there are just very limited healthy options available and other times the ‘unhealthy’ options just look a little more appealing there are also desserts that are available at every meal… Eeek! It’s a good lesson in self control!

On board is a small community, just like a small town, everyone knows everyone and you don’t really have much privacy. However it’s something you just get used to. It is certainly a great environment to learn a lot about yourself and people in general.

Anyway…. I am pretty sure I have said enough for the time being. This is just a glimpse into my life at present and the experience of living on board a cruise ship. I love that I am here, I love that I chose to step out of my comfort zone and see the world, meet new people and experience life, it certainly puts everything into perspective.

Finally I want to send my love to all my friends and family and everyone at home, I miss you all a lot and think about home every day. Be good and take care of yourself and the people around you.

Much Love,

Stacey  XoX





Life is what you make of it…. You only live once!

25 03 2011

Hello All,

Well I thought it was that time again to update my blog. I have literally been flat-out in training and studying non stop since my last entry. In the space of 6 weeks there have been many challenging times but many rewarding and empowering moments too. I can’t believe how much I have grown and learnt in such a short period of time…. I can admit one thing though, I am sooooo glad I took the plunge and stepped out of my comfort zone to explore, It has been worth every second! I am a believer that when life starts to get too comfortable, it’s time for a change!

Some of my new skills include presenting Seminars, take Spin, Yoga, Tai Chi, Pilates and Boot Camp classes and Personal Consultations….  it has been really awesome experience! Not to mention the new friends I have made from all over the world. I think I am going to have to visit South Africa, New Zealand, Hungry and some other places in Aus just to name a few… I can’t believe how many amazing South Africans I have met and keep hearing how much of a beautiful place it is… I am determined to visit one day.

So, at the moment I am officially no longer in London and arrived in Maimi, US today. I am about to move into my new home tomorrow. For the next 9 months (unless I get changed throughout my contract) I will be living on the beautiful  CORAL PRINCESS!!!!

It’s a floating city, with 16 levels, 1950 passengers, and 900 crew, 5 start luxury, 3 pools, roof top cinema, Broadway stage shows, casino, restaurants, bars, cafes, boutiques and most importantly my new playground the gymnasium which  is located up towards the top deck with wall to wall ocean views … I will get to see it for real very, very soon!

I am very excited, scared and nervous all at once. It’s another big step in the game of life. I’m not sure what expect yet, but time will tell. I’m prepared for lots of hard work and big days at work, especially sea days. My first cruise season is going to ARUBA, COLOMBIA, PANAMA, COSTA RICA and  JAMAICA… Not bad hey!!! I could never imaging having the opportunity to visit all these amazing places otherwise!  Then later in the year I venture up to Vancouver and Alaska 🙂

Anyway this blog was short but sweet…

Off to bed for me now, big day tomorrow!

I shall update again when I have a chance hopefully with some photos too.

Until then…. Live, Love, Laugh XoX





Dubai = out of this world…

13 02 2011

Hello, Hello….

Here I am safe and sound on my travels.

I just spent 5 nights in Dubai with Nicole, Louise, Matt and Jack. I had an amazing time and go to see and do so much in my short visit. About 5 days was perfect… 🙂

Monday: I was glad to arrive after spending 16 or so hours flying. Although I was VERY lucky and the whole way from Melbourne to K.L then K.L. to Dubai I had a row of 3 seats to myself, Spoiled! hehe.. Louise and Jack picked me up from the airport, dropped off my luggage and went and checked out the Dubai Mall. It is HUGE, apparently one of the biggest in the world (like everything else in Dubai). Met Nic for dinner, but I was exhausted in the end!

Tuesday: I went on a tour of old Dubai on the ‘Big Bus”. It’s a double decker tour bus where you can do hop- on-hop-off tours. This was great. The building are amazing in Dubai, everything in white/cream and covered in sand, but the architecture is awesome. I ended up visiting the Gold Souk which is a market. It took me a while to find the right spot. Initially I ended up down a side street and thought it was a little odd. To say I stood out was an understatement considering I’m a tall white blonde gal amongst lots of Indian, Arabic people wearing PJ like attire. A quick phone call to Nic and I was back in a more civilized area… oops! I did manage to haggle for a silk pashmina. I paid $100 Dirham which is apparently pretty good or at least reasonable….. Yay! Tuesday night was fried rice for dinner at Matt and Lou’s.

Wednesday: I was able to finished of the 2nd part of the big bus tour. This went through the newer part of Dubai, I got to see another market which was a stunning little place. Then the tour also went over the big Palm island. It’s really huge, I had no Idea it was so built up. The Atlantis which is a massive hotel on the end is amazing. There is also an aquarium and water park and heaps of accommodation and apartments. Wednesday night was the desert safari. It is definitely one of the best things I have done. We got picked up form Lou’s in a 4 wheel drive. We made our way about an hour into the desert, as part of a convoy of about 15 or other 4 wheel drives we literally went dune bashing all through the desert for at least 45 min. Then we made our way to camp and had a Arabian BBQ for dinner with camel rides, sand boarding, sheisha pipes (shh), I got a henna tattoo too. As well as lots of other entertainment, it was AMAZING!

Thursday: This was more of a chill out day. In the morning I went on a tour of Jumeriah Mosque, where I got to learn more about their culture. That was a great experience, we had a quick stop to the beach then spend the rest of the afternoon at playing with Jack at Louise’s before heading out to dinner.

Friday: Nic, Lou and I had a girls morning our and treated ourselves to a mani and pedi. It’s a tough life sometimes! hehe Then I tagged along with Nic on a yacht cruise for one of her friends birthday. It went out around the palm and down to coast a little. Dubai sure is amazing from the water too.

Saturday: Up bright and early to continue my journey. Departed Dubai at about 8am…. Next stop London.

Thanks to Nic, Lou, Matt and Jack for making me feel so welcome. I had an amazing time, it was very jam-packed but Awesome. It was so good just to hang out and spend time with you.

I have no doubt I will be back!

Much Love XoX





My Journey Of Self Discovery….

31 01 2011

Hello Again,

Well, I thought it was about time I finally updated my blog with news of my upcoming events. I know it has been over two months since I last posted. I haven’t disappeared off the face of the earth but I have definitely retreated and been laying low for a while.

The last few months have included a trip to the Golden Door Health Retreat in QLD, Christmas with the family, NY’s at Pyramid Rock, Phillip Island with 2 of my besties, lots of dinners, lunches, working at the Ivy Restaurant in Olinda dabbling hospitality for a change (I couldn’t have picked something more opposite to the fitness industry if I tried, hehe) sporadic training and lots of organizing and packing….

Last year was a very exciting and intense year. It was definitely full of lots of accomplishments and exciting times and I wouldn’t change a thing. Now that everything is well and truly passed and I have settle back into my daily patterns, I am finding myself back at this same place. I somehow feel lost with my place in the world, without an intense goal right at my door step, I actually find myself taking backward and sideways steps in rapid succession with absolutely no direction. To be honest when I reflect on these last 3 years of Sports model competitions, having a knee reconstruction and various part time work, I keep traveling this roller coaster back to this same place. I am very fortunate to be surrounded by a loving family, amazing friends and co-workers in my life. But…. Call me hard to please or whatever you like, I still feel like I’m missing that spark. I know when I am passionate about something because I give it everything I’ve got and never give up until the job, task is completed (e.g. sports model competitions).

It’s certainly not from lack of searching, maybe I’m just looking in all the wrong places. But right now I feel as though my career not heading anywhere in particular (no idea what I actually truly want to do), partner non-existent (and to be honest, not interest at present), my training and health are all over the place (no routine whatsoever), broke (check), debt (yep), stuck in a rut?….. Definitely!

So here are my options…

I keep doing what I’m doing, train my butt off, diet, compete again in 2011, aim to compete overseas and build on last year’s success. Keep working my part time jobs, remain unsure about where I’m heading long term or what I want to do. Feel like I’m living an uncomfortable slightly superficial and unfulfilling life. As much as I LOVE getting on stage, for some reason this lifestyle just isn’t quite sitting right with me at the moment, it feels uncomfortable and unsustainable… The biggest risk which I am not willing to take, is ending up exactly where I am now, AGAIN in another 12 months time!!!

So what have I decided to do about the situation?

I am packing up my belongings (well 20kgs worth) and heading off on an adventure. My journey of self-discovery… I officially have only 7 full days left in the country and in this jumbled little position I have created for myself. Then C’est la vie…. the world is my oyster!

I have obtained a position working on cruise ships as a personal trainer/instructor with Steiner. Steiner are contracted to run the spa and fitness facilities on over 120 different cruise ships.

I am departing at some ridiculous hour in the morning on Monday Feb 7th, firstly heading to Dubai. Here I will get to spend 4.5 days with some close family friends who are currently living there. Then on the Sat 12th Feb I fly to London. Training with Steiner commences on the 14th, they will teach us all the procedures and standards of the company and prepare us for our time on board a ship. We will learn things like presenting seminars on weight loss and detoxing, taking spin, yoga and Tai Chi classes, retail skills and how to perform body composition assessments etc. Once I am deemed competent and a position opens up on a suitable ship, I will be flown to a port to commence a 9 months contract on board.

At this stage I have no idea what ship I will be on, who I will meet or which part of the world I will end up (I’m hoping for the Mediterranean or the Caribbean, hehe). I guess that’s all part of the adventure! I am very lucky to be able to embrace this time in my life where I really can live as a free spirit and see where life takes me. Good or bad it’s still going to be an experience.

Competitions will always be there and it’s nice to know that I always have somewhere to come home to in Melbourne. I just feel like I am ready to add another element and adventure to my life and I want to make the most of this little snippet of time and freedom. My main goal is the let everything go, turn the page and start a new chapter.

I wonder what the plot will entail!

X

 





Believe in yourself, you will be amazed at what you can achieve….

18 11 2010

Hey All,

So it has officially been about a month since my crazy span of competitions.

It has been SOOO nice relaxing back into a more balanced lifestyle. The time immediately following competitions can be a little bit challenging adjusting back into ‘normality’ (if there is such a thing). I had been particularly concerned for this post comp period, I was actually more worried about adjusting after comps than the actual comps themselves. I had been dieting pretty intensely for about 7 months and couldn’t even remember what it was like not to be dieting. But…. I have managed to stay active by ‘moving’ everyday and keep my nutrition pretty clean with the occasional indulgence 🙂

This last month has also been a great time to sit back a reflect. Even now I cannot believe how much my life has changed, the things I have learnt and the people I have met..

Easter weekend was when I first made the decision to get back on stage and compete after having a very rough year post knee reconstruction. When I made the decision to pull my life back on track I knew it was going to be challenging, intense and hard work, but now as I reflect I can’t emphasise enough how much it was worth it…

If you believe it, you can achieve it….

This has been my experience and how far things have come that Eater Weekend….

  1) Over the 13.5 weeks to the All Female Show I lost 15kg (17.5kg if you include stage weight on comp day). I successfully maintained this weight and adjusted my comp prep through to September/October comps. It is such an amazing feeling getting back into my ‘skinny’ jeans and being able to buy a whole new wardrobe. It’s so nice to actually look forward to summer and being able to wear what ever i want!

2) I can now say that I am embracing life and all it has to offer. For awhile there I actually didn’t really want to leave the house, I felt pretty low, flat a certainly hit rock bottom a few times.

3) I have learnt SOOO much about myself in every area of my life. I now know how my body responds and changes with nutrition and training, I approached these competitions with a very different strategy to the first few. I have a better understanding of my emotions and life in general – that feeling is priceless.

4) I have meet some amazing people, traveled to two different states and now have friend all over the country.

5) I really wanted to have a photo shoot but thought I would never have the confidence and opportunity. Over the last couple of months I have been able to work with some brilliant photographers and have been able to develop quite a diverse portfolio.

6) I appeared in the October/November issue of Oxygen.

7) I have finally learnt and accepted myself for who exactly who I am. I am not trying to be  someone who I am not or please anyone else. It is so nice to be 100% happy and confident in my own skin!  A place I never though I would be.

8) As a final point I can’t fail to mention that I did happen to achieve 1st place at the All Female Show, INBA S.A. State titles, ANB VIC’s and INBA Australian titles and a 5th placing at the ANB Nationals.

But as you can see these titles seem so superficial and irrelevant when I truly reflect on the journey I have just endured. Even without the trophies I would still be so far ahead of where I started.  

I guess I just wanted to share in the hope that I could inspire others to make some of those big decision to start embracing life and living it exactly how you choose. Don’t be scared of the unknown.

What are your goals and dreams? what is stopping you from achieving them? There is never a right times to start. Making those life changes may be hard or difficult at first, but I promise that those tough times and challenging moments NEVER EVER outweigh your sense of achievement and personal empowerment when you finally reach your goal. It’s amazing how when you make one decision to change an area of your life particularly when it comes to your health, you gain and grow in ways you could never imagine.

Life is unpredictable but it is your only shot so give it everything you’ve got, you have nothing to lose and so much to gain.

Believe in yourself, you will be amazed at what you can achieve…

Stacey

XoX