Gabriela Ruma - Physqiue Competitor

In September of 2011 I was in a major car accident. After a long night of work, I had been driving home when my left passenger tire dislodged from my vehicle. I had been rushed to a New York State Hospital and had undergone major surgery in attempt to save my left leg. With God on my side I had been lucky enough to be given a second chance. After months of living in a wheel chair, countless doctorís visits and physical therapy appointments I had been given the chance to walk on by bionic leg early that spring.

With a noticeable difference between my legs I decided I would seek out a personal trainer to help me build up strength and balance that I had not quite achieved through physical therapy. That summer I worked extremely hard to build muscle back into my left leg and regain strength and balance. Before I knew it, I was hooked. I had no previous experience with lifting weights or working with a trainer. As the months led on I found myself more and more compelled to spend my free time in a room surrounded by equipment with like-minded individuals who valued a healthy life style. With my growing interest, I sought out experienced trainers and coaches along my journey to help me achieve my goal of one day stepping on a competitive stage.

As far as ďon and off season dietingĒ the goals throughout the years have changed immensely. I think thatís a major part of being a competitor. Not everything works the way we expect it to all the time. Thatís what molds success to come. This year the goal during my off season has been to incorporate as much food as possible into my daily intake. This process has allowed me to not only have great strength, endurance and energy throughout my workouts, but ultimately gro. It also has trained my body to be able to metabolize higher calories specifically higher carbohydrates. I always use to joke that my body didnít like carbs, well I was wrong. I just never went about it the optimum way. This will also help me during my journey to the stage, that way I am not extremely limited to my daily intake during prep. A lot of times it gets down to nearly nothing and with my talented coach has found other means to achieve success. I look forward to our journey this year.

When it comes to my outlook on diet and training there is no mathematical equation that equals one hundred. Itís one hundred percent diet and 100 percent training. Without giving these components one hundred percent of my efforts I canít guarantee I will bring my best package to the stage. Diet, lifting, and cardio change constantly. This is because my body is changing and therefor all the components that go into my preparation need to be adjusted as my body adjusts. This year I am working with a new coach so I am unsure of what her plans are for my competitive season this year. However, I do know sheís a mastermind of her craft and I canít wait to showcase our hard work this fall I can already smell the pro tan!

Confidence for me has always had to come from within. Itís not something that could be given or taught. When I started my journey, I had nothing to lose. Iíll never forget how I felt six years ago when I was told my doctors were going to amputate my leg. I was mad at the world, depressed, and heart broken, so every living day for me has been a blessing. However, I find myself most confident in the comfort of my home gym. Thatís where I push myself, believe in myself and motivate myself. The hardest part is the day of the show. But is it? The day of the show is a celebration for yourself and your loved ones, friends and supporters. The work has already been done. Thereís nothing more a competitor can do on the day of the show that they havenít done the last 4 months on their journey to the stage. It took me a long time to realize that. No matter what show a competitor chooses to participate in, itís a long day. Enjoy it. Meet competitors, spend time with friends, get some free samples, and reflect on all the hard work youíve achieved to be there. Thatís what itís all about. Winning and placing are great goals to have and I commend confident competitor but for me itís always been about showcasing my personal best, because thatís all I can control.

As for this year, we are planning on showcasing my efforts this late fall. After already qualifying for NPC Nationals this past year, we are considering a regional show and possibly a national one as well. This will all depend on how my body advances during prep. The mindset isnít to necessarily prep for a pre-selected show but to plan for shows as my body reflects its personal best. With all things considered I think this year will be my best showing to date, but only time will tell. I pride myself on my humble mindset but I look forward to stepping onto another stage and showcasing my hard work.

I encourage anyone who has given competing the slightest consideration to give it a shot. There is something extremely empowering about pouring all your efforts into yourself. Life is always full of ups and downs, rights and wrongs, and taking different pathways. There are few times in life that we truly have control of ourselves and which direction we are headed. Competing for me has been a way to give myself just that. Competing has been a way for me to realize that I can have control of my body, the efforts I put into growing it and feeding it, only I can do that. This feeling is empowering. This feeling develops confidence.

Thank you for giving me the opportunity to share my thoughts and experiences with others and good luck to anyone competing this season or considering giving it a shot.

All My Best,

Gabriela D. Ruma
Instagram: gabrielledanielle5

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Gabriela Ruma