Lifestyle Health Former Victoria's Secret Model Bridget Malcolm Feels Strong in Anorexia Recovery: 'Did My First Pull-Up' Bridget Malcolm said that she couldn't exercise for a long time because she was focused on "maintaining my weight and learning how to eat again" By Julie Mazziotta Julie Mazziotta Twitter Julie Mazziotta is the Sports Editor at PEOPLE, covering everything from the NFL to tennis to Simone Biles and Tom Brady. She was previously an Associate Editor for the Health vertical for six years, and prior to joining PEOPLE worked at Health Magazine. When not covering professional athletes, Julie spends her time as a (very) amateur athlete, training for marathons, long bike trips and hikes. People Editorial Guidelines Published on June 3, 2022 04:57PM EDT Share Tweet Pin Email Bridget Malcolm. Photo: Bridget Malcolm/Instagram After years of dealing with anorexia, Bridget Malcolm is marking milestones in her recovery that she never thought were possible. The former Victoria's Secret model, 30, has been open over the last four years about the body shaming she experienced in the industry and how it led to a severe eating disorder that she's slowing healing from. Now about five years into the recovery process, Malcolm is living in "complete acceptance" of her body and enjoying the strength gains she couldn't have imagined at the height of her anorexia. "This week I did my first pull up — something that I never dreamed I would have been able to do five years ago," she shared on Instagram Thursday. "Ever since I got into recovery I wanted to feel strong, but it takes time to reverse the years of self-abuse. I had to give my body the time to even out." Model Bridget Malcolm Says a Client Fired Her for Gaining Half an Inch Malcolm explained that she wanted to start working out sooner, but it wasn't safe for someone with a deep history of body disorders. "Recovery done right is a slow, life-long process," she said. "I spent a few years at a size that took some getting used to. I was unable to be active. All I could focus on was maintaining my weight, and learning how to eat again." Malcolm admitted that the process was uncomfortable, but over time, she "learned to embrace my new body, and the process of eating." "This was when I began to write about my recovery, and to connect with others who knew what I was feeling," she said. "Which set me up for the complete acceptance I live in now today. Whether my weight goes up or down, I do not care. What I care about is what I am capable of. I get to live a full life now." The Australia native included three photos with the post. The first one is of her on Thursday, "able to do a pull-up" for the first time, and the second is from one year into her recovery, "still very weak both physically and mentally, wanting to be strong, but also unable to properly exercise for fear of relapse and lingering musculoskeletal injuries." The last one is her at her "sickest." "That was not a life worth living. I am so thankful to have made it out," she said. RELATED VIDEO: Lisa Rinna & Harry Hamlin's Model Daughter Amelia Gray Opens Up About Her Struggles with Anorexia Since she first shared her experiences with eating disorders in 2018, Malcolm has become a mental health advocate and highlighted the problems with the modeling industry. "I'm one of the lucky models. I was able to make a long career out of the fashion industry. But my job should not include abuse," she said last year. Writing Thursday, Malcolm said she's "so grateful to be alive today, and to be fit, strong and happy."