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"I had never been an active person and as an Asian female that easily gained weight, I frequently heard the contradictions of “Why are you so large.” with “Why didn’t you eat more?” Being active was never shown to be an option- I was expected to have the fast metabolism and small figure I simply didn’t inherit.

I gave birth to my child in high school and postpartum depression coupled with my insecurities of being a young mother gave way to eating disorder tendencies that blossomed as I was praised for my weight loss. I struggled with body dysmorphia even at my smallest but I was tired of the constant dizziness and self-hate. I reached a point where I wanted to heal my purge tendencies but continued to binge eat all the foods I had kept from myself and reached my highest weight. The negative weight commentary returned and spiraled my depression until my friend, later turned husband, showed me how to take my frustrations out in the gym.

I worked out, learned about nutrition, competed in bodybuilding, and learned how to love my body and fuel it properly... But my love for all things not baked chicken was nagging at me. As someone who loves to cook Filipino food and try new places or just enjoy sweet treats, I always felt like I was missing out.

I looked for the happy medium and decided to take a bulk season. Instead of bodybuilding in my off-season, I pursued powerlifting and fell in love! I had to eat healthy to have strong lifts and keep my eye on my end goal of a productive bulk but I wasn’t as restricted when I want to eat something super yummy. I finished my first powerlifting meet and am currently back to bodybuilding but as a new-found athlete, I’m glad I can continue to love every stage my body goes through in this fitness lifestyle.

My name is Michelle. I’m a competitive bodybuilder and powerlifter who loves baked goods and sushi, and I am KFKF."