Emily is a realtor who lives in South Florida and is the founder of Tall Girl Gang. She started competing in 2013 and after a 5 year break, returned to competing with the goal of earning her pro card. She did so in 2020 at National Championships and then won her first pro show to earn a spot at the 2021 Olympia.
Because Emily’s mom was a competitor, she was inspired by her hard work and dedication to building her body. Watching her mom conquer prep helped her through her prep. Her mom is extremely supportive. Emily tells us that before she steps on the stage, she looks out into the audience to find her family to get her excited.
Emily explains why she needed a break after her first season. She was 18 years old when she started competing and needed to recover mentality from the prep cycle. She also focused on school and all of the things that go along with that. She talks about how she initially wanted to be a doctor and then switched to nutrition, but her heart wasn’t in it. She made the choice to drop out so she could prioritize her happiness.
Celeste asks what inspired Emily to start Tall Girl Gang. Emily explains that after winning her pro debut, she received so many messages thanking her for representing tall girls. Emily tells how she was the shortest in her class growing up until high school, when she had a growth spurt. As a competitor, she often receives feedback to “fill out” her muscles.
When started working out again, she regained the desire to compete and reach her original goal of turning pro. She started without a coach and eventually hired a coach to help her get to the national stage. She talks about feeling the frustration of having shows pushed back due to COVID in 2020 and being eager to get back to the national stage after not having won her pro card in 2019.
Celeste asks how she’s approaching her offseason. This reverse she has focused on how she is feeling in her body and not the number on the scale. Her coach is local to her, as well as some of her teammates, and that allows them to workout together. Even during prep, Emily lifts heavy because it helps keep her muscles fuller. Emily describes how she maintains flexibility in her offseason diet, but keeps the same daily routine that she does during prep.
Emily sees her coach almost daily. As the have more experience together, they have gained trust for each other, which makes communication easy. They decided to jump into a pro show because it was so close to her home. She wanted to get feedback for the 2021 season, but she ended up winning and qualifying for the 2021 Olympia. Eventually, she dreams to be Ms. Bikini Olympia.
Celeste asks how she would use the platform if she became Ms. Bikini Olympia. Emily feels it’s bigger than just the title. She would want to give back to the people who have helped her, possibly starting a charity to give back. She feels added pressure to do well because she won her pro debut. For her pro debut, Emily didn’t change her posing routine from Nationals. She says it was an honor to stand on stage with girls she has admired for so long.
After she moved to Florida, she became a realtor to earn money while competing and to have flexibility. With Tall Girl Gang, she wants to inspire other tall girls to know they can do well in the sport.
A listener asks what her biggest life lesson learned form competing is. Emily says that we are capable of anything we set our minds to. Completing a prep is a huge accomplishment and we should be hard on ourselves if the placing isn’t what we want. She doubted herself when she first started, but stuck with it and proved herself wrong.
Emily talks about losing her father when she was young. He passed away from brain cancer when she was 13. It taught her that life is too short and you need to go after what you want. It took her a few preps to figure out how to balance her relationship with her boyfriend. She couldn’t use prep as an excuse to slack on their relationship. She practiced more patience and listening. She realized she can’t dictate what he eats just because she is on prep. Being on prep can amplify problems in your relationship.
To first time competitors, Emily recommends to just try it. Go to a show and see what it’s about, reach out to someone on Instagram. For seasoned competitors, regardless of how long the road is, don’t give up.
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Episode Time Stamps:
[1:49] Pre-stage ritual
[2:30] Emily talks about what inspires her
[5:00] Celeste asks why she returned to the stage
[7:25] Inspiration for Tall Girl Gang
[9:39] Emily talks about competing as a tall girl
[14:14] Celeste how she’s approaching her offseason
[16:30] Emily talks about a hospital visit
[18:10] Lifting during prep
[20:35] Working with a coach
[23:50] Celeste asks how she would use the platform if she became Ms. Bikini Olympia.
[26:35] Emily talks about posing.
[29:23] Emily talks about her career.
[32:35] Pre-Olympia plans
[33:05] Biggest life lesson learned from competing
[35:08] Emily talks about losing her father when she was young.
[37:10] Emily talks about her relationship with her boyfriend.
[41:53] Celeste mentions Emily’s consistency.
[44:13] Emily offers advice for first time competitors and those wishing to turn pro
[46:00] Emily and Celeste rap up the conversation.