VICTORIA LYNN JANUARY-FEBRUARY 2015 ATHLETE OF THE MONTH
Name: Victoria Lynn
Weight: 110.6 lbs
Measurements: Arms: 12 in Legs: 20 in Calves: 13 in Waist: 27 in
If you lift weights how much can you: Bench: 80 lbs Squat: SM: 180 lbs/Squat Rack: 120 lbs Leg Press: 305 lbs Curl: 40 lbs
What sport or sports do/did you play? I lift weights. I do, however, like to play ultimate Frisbee for fun.
How long have you been doing your sport or sports? I started lifting weights as well as cardio boxing/kickboxing about a year after my father suddenly passed away in 2011. So I’ve been doing my thing for just over 3 years.
What is your favorite body part and why to train? I love training shoulders and glutes. These muscles are round, and creating more shape gives me that nice curvy look I’m looking for.
What is your lease favorite body part and why to train? I like training all parts of my body, but I’m not too keen on training abdominals directly. I can get far better results focusing on diet and implementing compound exercises that already engage the core.
How did you get started? I grew into depression when my father died in 2011, and remained pretty much immobilized on my couch eating junk food and drinking soda. I gained a few pounds, and my boyfriend at the time mentioned that my butt looked bigger. I wasn’t too thrilled with that, and started to run. I cut out soda and all added sugars. Needless to say that was the best decision I have ever made. I have not drunk soda for almost 4 years. I also started by following fitness gurus, such as Emily Skye and Monika Mazur. Today I follow and look up to many more notable athletes, such as Hope Smallwonder, Michelle Lewin, Bella Falconi, Justine Moor, Eva Andressa, Jennifer Selter, Oksana Grishina, and Andreia Brazier.
Have you ever had any tragedies in your life and how did you get through them?
Of course, we all have tragedies. What distinguishes individuals is how one handles their tragedies. I was born with Goldenhar Syndrome, which is a facial disfigurement that affects the symmetry of the mandible, ears, eyes, and nose. In addition I was born with cleft palate and bilateral cleft lip. My left side was greatly affected and was considered a moderate case. I have had over 20 reconstructive surgeries to correct form and function.
I vaguely remember the details, but I do remember the pain. But what is life without pain? My life wasn’t just filled with physical pain, but emotional as well. The moment I stepped in a school for the first time I was taunted and ridiculed to my face and behind my back. This occurred until I graduated high school. I even remembered the words that stung me the most as they left a lasting impression. I was in 4th grade, and someone asked me if I was human, and the proceeded to ask what I was. I simply replied human. Do I not bleed? Do I not breathe? Do I not cry? Do I not hurt? Of course, I do! My self-worth disintegrated with each passing year. I eventually gained confidence and pride in myself. The only opinion about myself that matters is mine. It took so many years to love myself for who I am on the inside as well as the outside. Beauty is truly in the eyes of the beholder. There are days I still don’t find myself attractive, but for the majority of the time I do feel that way. My beauty on the inside, however, is what really shines though. And due to the way I was treated I unfortunately suffered from anorexia entering 9th grade at no more than 70 pounds. It was the ONLY facet of my physical being that I could control, and I did. I couldn’t be fat. I just couldn’t because it would just add something else for the other kids to make fun of me about. It wasn’t an option, so I starved. My hair thinned, and I was always sick. I eventually gained weight, and essentially control of my appetite.
Once I regained confidence the opposite sex started to find me attractive. I eventually met my ex-boyfriend, and in 2009 had a daughter. She was born perfect, and is the sweetest little girl going. She will be in 5 in November. He emotionally abused me for the last 3 years. He didn’t want me to get an advanced degree as he wanted me to be at home 24/7 catering to him, and only him. However, in February 2009 my father passed away suddenly due to a heart attack. My world was literally turned upside down, and my heart was forever shattered. He was my biggest cheerleader, and he always believed in me. Over that next year I grew sad and eventually became depressed. I couldn’t get off of my couch, and I had typically had soda or a donut in one hand and a tissue in the other. I did gain weight though not a lot (~5-8 pounds). My ex told me that my butt looked better, and this made me feel horrible. I opted to eliminate soda and sweets from my diet. I picked up running, and cardio boxing/kickboxing. I also discovered weight training.
I eventually graduated with my M.S. in Cellular and Molecular Biology, and was awarded a seat at a medical college to obtain my Ph.D. in the same field. I accepted the position without confronting my ex, and he was quite insulted by this. We were not married, and we were having problems with our relationship, so why should I even bother telling him? It wasn’t like I was moving out of state. In May of 2013 I discovered that he was cheating on me with a 22-year-old girl from Oklahoma. I was fed up, and finally left that July. I left everything except for clothes for my daughter and I. I have yet to receive any of my valuables back, and he claims that I have nothing left there.
Once I moved back home with my mother and brother I decided to sign up for a NPC bikini competition. This brings me to where I am today. I battled a rough custody trial and obtained physical custody. This put so much stress on my schoolwork that I had to leave the Ph.D. program as of February 2014. I have been having such a hard time finding a job that I decided to change careers. I need a career that is reliable, as I have to raise my daughter on my own. I opted to obtain a certificate in personal training, and from there apply to another M.S. program to become a registered dietician.
I know you are wondering if I found love. I did. I met my friend’s long-lost older brother. We met back in February, and we are still going strong. Unfortunately, he lives in Ohio and I live in New York. I am grateful that he has fully supported my career change, and my desire to compete for the NPC.
What do you do for your workouts? I do whatever my trainer, Roxie Beckles, tells me to. She has me training one muscle group per day and no more than 30 minutes of cardio. She implements steady state, interval, and HIIT. The sets of my strength training are pyramid sets, and they constantly work my muscles. I have two days off from strength, and two days off from cardio. She’s a wonderful coach, and I am glad I found her. I’ve been training with her since April. I am planning to stay with her, as she knows how to work my body properly as well as keep it fueled.
Why do you like your sport? I love my sport because it constantly pushes me outside of my comfort zone. I never dreamed of lifting the weight I do or doing certain types of exercises, such as snatches, cleans, and deadlifts. It’s about seeing how far you can take your body. It’s about being better than you were yesterday.
What motivates you? My daughter is my motivation. I need to survive each and everyday for her. I need to keep our heads above water, and this includes both emotionally and financially.
Who or what got you started? My father’s death got me started. I do not want to be in the position he was in during his last breaths of life. I can only imagine how scared he was, and the amount of pain he was in.
What are your goals in the sport and in the future of your life? I just want to continuously push myself to see how far I can take my body. I do not expect to place in my first NPC competition, which is on October 4. I just want to try my best, and get out there and have fun. My ultimate goal is to continue to train for my health, and to do more shows. I do want to become a personal trainer and a registered dietician to help others change their lives for the better.
What advice would you give others? Changing the shape of your body is mainly diet. However, strength training builds lean muscle, which ultimately burns more calories. It’s about enhancing your metabolism, so do not focus so much on long bouts of steady state cardio. Implementing HIIT or intervals will be a much better option to lose weight and burn body fat, as it continues to burn calories once you are finished with the exercise.
Who is your inspiration? Today I follow and look up to many more notable athletes on Facebook, such as Hope Smallwonder, Michelle Lewin, Bella Falconi, Justine Moor, Eva Andressa, Jennifer Selter, Oksana Grishina, and Andreia Brazier.
Do you get more attention now that you’re in better shape than before? Of course.
How many days do you train? I strength train 5 days a week and do cardio 5 days a week.
What have been the biggest sacrifices you have made? My time is my biggest sacrifice as there are only so many hours in a day. I train at 6-7 AM in the morning, as I am a single mother and have to care for her for the majority of the day. Right now my focus is mostly on my upcoming show, so I find it hard to focus on my schoolwork.
Have you ever been asked to arm wrestle and did you win (explain a time you remember)? I only arm-wrestled with my brother. At the time I was weak and small (in elementary school), so no I didn’t win.
Do you ever get asked to flex and how do you feel about it? No, I never get asked to flex unless it is some random stranger asking on Facebook.
What are people’s reactions to the way you look? I suppose some guys find me attractive. It’s hard for me to find myself attractive some days due to what I was born with. Getting past my emotional scars regarding my appearance is very difficult as the wounds are still on the surface.
What supplements do you take? I take a multiple-vitamin, calcium with vitamin D, protein powder, raspberry ketones, and fish oil with vitamin E. All products are organic and non-GMO.
What does a typical day with your eating look like? My diet is mainly clean, whole foods. I am 1.5 weeks out from my first competition, and I still have plenty carbohydrates in my diet (fruit, vegetables, and starches). As I am so close to show day my diet is much more strict, and I cannot swap out foods for comparable ones with the same macro profile. For protein I eat top sirloin, chicken, and salmon. Spinach is also another staple in my diet. I have it daily for lunch. Other staples include, sweet potato, brown rice and almonds (either raw almonds or nut butter).
Is there anything else you want to tell about yourself? I like to write poetry when I feel down sometimes. Here is a sample J
You can hear
My heart breaking.
The pieces sound like
Glass hitting the floor.
Rolling down my cheeks.
My emotions are as
Loud as a garbage truck at 6 AM.
The furrows in my forehead
Are as deep as the grand canyon when I frown.
All of these things have substance.
Your face is fading into the shadows.
Your voice is an echo ringing in my head.
Your touch can only be mimicked by the wind.
It's the memory of you
That remains in my heart
While your physical substance slowly degrades.
My love for you,
Will continue to grow even in your absence.
The Dream that Never Fades
Have you ever
Dreamed a dream
That felt so real?
My nightmare is
Hovering over me.
Following me around
Like a dark, pious cloud.
It always lies above me,
Slowly mocking me.
I wish I could
And it will all be gone.
Will reign over me.
And a rainbow will emanate
From my soul.
The design of my body
Is like a patchwork quilt.
You can see the stitch work
Making perfect imperfections.
One pattern slowly turning into another.
To some this is art.
To others it is unattractive.
The asymmetry is enchanting.
Following the lines
Connecting all the different pieces.
Which have their own story to tell.
Each tied to a different emotion.
The work that goes into creating
Art takes years.
And before you know it
The quilt needs to undergo maintenance
Just to keep its luster.