Eve Guzman was featured in PEOPLE’s 2015 Half Their Size Issue after going from 277 lbs. to 138 lbs. by dramatically decreasing her portion sizes and sticking to a high protein, low-fat, moderate carb diet. Since her weight loss, the genetic toxicology research assistant and mom of two, 33, has coached people all over the country on how to lose weight, helping them drop a combined 2,950 lbs. Guzman recently competed in a figure competition, and will be sharing the next phase of her journey in an exclusive PEOPLE blog. You can also follow her on Instagram.
I’m back at it again! I am currently five weeks out from my last show of the year. It has been six months since I competed, and I have had a great off-season enjoying time traveling, relaxing, spending time with family and friends, and enjoying great food.
Competing has helped me to successfully navigate through gaining a positive body image. Body shaming exists in many forms: criticizing others publicly, criticizing others behind their back, and criticizing yourself through judgment or comparison. During prep I had to be careful to not get caught up in self body shaming.
The fitness industry through the eye of the social media world can be brutal for those that have poor body image. It’s very easy to see pictures of beautiful and perfect physiques and compare yourself to the photos. Some people idolize bodies that aren’t really real – sometimes the photos have been edited, or captured in perfect lighting or at the right angle to look more desirable.
I won’t look like every other competitor. I may not be the most muscular. I may not be the leanest. I do keep realistic views of what my body is capable of achieving in a given amount of training time.
There is pressure to stay “stage lean” after shows to keep up with the beautiful trendy bodies on social media. I had to be comfortable with gaining weight in the off-season, and not care that my abs were gone and my delts were no longer popping. Off-season is meant to be a time of growth, rest and fueling your body for muscle gains – not a time where you deprive yourself to live up to your stage look.
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I am on my own journey. My physique has flaws that are both beautiful and unique to me. The ideal physiques that can be seen on social media are simply trends. Even though I have to be judged against other competitors, my biggest competition is me. It has taken me years to love the skin I am in, and accept that I can be my own body goals. My physical body will always change, just like trends. If I were to chase these trends trying to be exactly like everyone else I would never be happy.
My goals since the last show were to grow muscle size, shed cellulite and tone up my loose skin from losing so much weight. I also wanted to gain more stage confidence and place higher than I did in the last two shows.
At the last show I was 122 lbs. (down 155 lbs. total) and graced the stage at 10.63 percent body fat. I am currently 127 lbs. and sitting at 10.66 percent body fat. I am on track to have a better package for the stage.
During the first prep, the biggest objective was to make it to the stage as a woman who went from fat to figure competitor and show everyone, including myself, that it could be done. This time the objective changed. After making it to the stage the first time and living my dreams as a reality, my goal was to improve my physique as a competitive athlete, and gain muscle size while maintaining a feminine physique.
I put my heart into trusting the process. I put on 15 lbs. during my off-season and I was nervous to see how much were muscle gains, but this girl did it!