"I was pretty active as a kid. I did gymnastics, played soccer, was on the dance team in high school, and then BAM.. without a team/sport I found myself in my early 20s needing to lose a little weight because my clothes weren’t fitting well anymore.
I completed a mud run in April 2011 with my brother, husband, and sister in law and that’s the day I realized it.. I’m very out of shape.. my back is killing me. Barely 2 miles into a 5 mile course I was struggling. I remember so clearly my brother telling me “You’re doing great sis! We’re almost half way done!” Almost?! Half way?! I remember my back seizing down the whole right side when I jumped into cold water on an obstacle. I literally couldn’t move to swim myself out! It was terrifying.
I’d known since about 8th grade I had scoliosis, but without regular activity/exercise keeping me strong the pain from it was creeping in and becoming constant and some days excruciating. I mean actual tear inducing pain.
I was told I’d need a Harrington Rod in my back and L5/S1 fused. Before I went the surgery route I opted for physical therapy. In therapy I met a Crossfit instructor which ties in perfectly with my Crossfit obsessed brother PCSing to the same base where my husband and I were stationed.
They both encouraged me starting Crossfit was a great choice to strengthen my body and get in shape again.. All these thoughts of fear and doubt went through my head.. “Crossfit is too intense. Too hard. I’m not fit enough. I’m not strong enough.” The first time I walked in was to a total beast of a small framed woman deadlifting 225#... for reps.. Intimidating? Heck yes it was! I wanted to walk right back out but I didn’t. I’d promised to give it a few classes before I decided. I fell in love. My pain was getting less and less as my body got stronger. I went on to complete my Level 1, 2 and Crossfit Kids course and coach. I could run 5 miles easily. I ran 10 miles with a friend just to see if I could.. l worked out fairly consistently until about 2 days before I had my son in 2014 at 36 weeks via emergency c-section. I was back in the gym as soon as I could be!
We moved to Las Vegas in 2015 when Matthew was about 9 months old.. I was ready to get serious about getting my body back so I followed an online program with incredible results, but it was pretty strict and not exactly maintainable for me. The results were so good though I remember putting on heels with my underwear after a shower one day and briefly dreaming “this body could almost compete.”
I quickly shut that that down because there was no way I had the nerve or confidence for something like that. I mean I loved the idea so much, but I’m the girl that wears shorts and a T-shirt at the lake with family, and on the boat with my friends, and these are the people who I love and who love me most. Who was I kidding to think that I could compete? What would people even think? A mom competing in a tiny bikini?! Is that inappropriate even though it’s a sport? Would I embarrass my family? Symmetry is important in competing and my back is so crooked. I’m definitely not symmetrical from a straight on view.. Again. Fear.
I lucked into a scholarship to the local college for Personal Fitness Trainer Program where I learned a lot and also realized I have a lot to learn! There’s a whole fitness world outside of the Crossfit I know. That’s where I met Jay Horn. He was shadowing the teacher to see if he wanted to take over teaching the class. (He ended up declining, making a syllabus and teaching his own course because he’s awesome!)
Time goes by, more online challenges with great results. I loved learning from each challenge. New movements. New combinations of movement & training methods. New recipes. New Facebook groups of people excited and motivated to be better versions of themselves! In one of those challenges I met Drew Coiner. We had a Facebook challenge group and we were all saying where we were from and introducing ourselves. Drew and I were both in Vegas so we decided to meet up and do some of the challenge workouts together and hold each other accountable. We quickly became good friends and even ended up training for the Rock and Roll Half Marathon together!!
Skip ahead again to the end of 2018... Drew asked me out of the blue did I know someone who trained people for competing. I remembered back to the class I’d taken.. Jay had mentioned in the Personal Trainers course writing a book about being stage ready and how much pride he took in changing body composition and the “before and after” so I connected them so Drew could accomplish her goal. Then I let them rope me in.. they said I should compete and my heart fluttered. I wanted so bad to say yes right away, but I made excuses.. they kept pushing and I reached out to Jay for prices and such to see if there was any way I could make it happen! We got it all worked out! I am now officially a bikini competitor and no one can ever take that away from me! I placed 2nd in both Novice and Open division my first time on stage! Ahhh!
At this point I’m not even sure what I’m trying to say other than I’m thankful for every dot and the way they connected to allow me to feel this good, and to finally compete with CONFIDENCE like I’ve never felt before! Life is short. Believe in yourself. Take care of yourself. Spend the money! Get the great trainer. Rock the stage! Don’t let what people think hold you back from living your life! You can literally do anything you set your mind to and I’m so proud to SHOW that to my son!!" - Alissa Hubbard