Life as a fitness competitor ain't easy. Ever heard of the phrase "no pain no gain"? Yeah, that. Clean eating, vigorous gym-going and tirelessly healthy lifestyle choices are not easy things to maintain.
With the Fitness Universe competition happening all weekend here in Miami, we thought we'd speak to a couple competitors on what, exactly, they're eating to maintain those bods of the Gods.
First, we spoke to Phil Elbaz -- now, Paris Ashley McBride, who boasts an amazing story. She lost a whopping 120 pounds through daily exercise and healthy eating, and now she's a regular on the competitive fitness set. Eat your heart out, Biggest Loser. Check out Paris' secrets after the jump.
Paris, who calls Daytona Beach home, attributes her weight loss success to consistency. And we should listen, because five years ago she weighed 235 pounds and has since dropped more than half of it. Plus, she looks good. Damn good.
"My diet consists of protein shakes, lean meats ,vegetables, healthy fats and starches," she says.
On any typical day she eats the following basic foods:
- Egg whites
- Lean beef
- Sweet potatoes
- Brown rice
- Peanuts everyday
- Coffee (as a treat)
Her calorie needs vary depending on her workouts, so she doesn't have set meal plans.
And no, she doesn't really drink. "Socially a couple times a year I will have a glass of wine but I put too much time and money into my body to destroy it with harmful toxins that hurt your body and make my muscles sore."
Courtesy of Paris Ashley McBride
She does, however, have cheat days every now and again.
"I do have cheat days once a week, sometimes twice if I need it for energy. But because I got to eat some extra calories it helps me to have a better workout in the gym and push harder," she explains.
And going out to eat isn't taboo. She goes out when she wants, but generally sticks with salads with double protein. "I do not necessarily have rules about what I eat. I will never forget weighing 235 pounds and how I got there so I choose to pick healthy meals. I feel good about eating them and I am able to maintain my weight that way," Paris says.
And her advice for anyone who wants to accomplish an amazing feat like hers? Or even drop a few pounds, for that matter? "Surround yourself with like-minded people who encourage the changes you want to make in yourself. You will end up with a new set of friends that will always lift you up when you're struggling and a positive environment that will impact your life forever."
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There you have it folks. Wanna look like a million bucks? Gotta work for it. No shortcuts, no easy way out. And no (or not too much, anyway) donuts/pizza/French fries.