“From all the social and family pressure, constant name-calling, and jokes, I developed an eating disorder.”
Name: Andrea Guzman
Occupation: Personal Trainer, Fitness Model, BCABBA Bikini Competitor
City/State/Country: Vancouver, BC, CANADA.
Age: 28 years old
Type of Training: Bikini competition
Q: Who had to most positive influence on you growing up as a child and why?
My brother and mom. Since around the age of five, my mom became a single mother. Due to this she had to work 24/7 to provide all the food, education, and a good home for my brother and I.
So my brother became my everything.
He was my dad, mom, brother, best friend, confident, enemy and all the names you can think of. They always worked so hard to keep us happy and safe. They always taught me to work hard for everything I wanted because I could do and be whatever I wanted to be. We always loved each other and we are always a team!
Q: What uncommon activity do you schedule into your daily routine?
I clean my fridge and kitchen all the time, it’s like an addiction for me. I just hate dirty and smelly fridges, microwaves, or stoves.
Q: Do you have a mindfulness practice?
Yes, I practice Yoga seven days per week.
Q: What has been the hardest obstacle for you to overcome in your life?
The process of becoming a Canadian resident as a Mexican immigrant.
Q: How did you get into competing?
I wanted to become a model-actor-performer but people thought I was crazy, even my family, but I always kept my dreams up.
My obsession and love for fitness started from being bullied for how I looked physically.
In Mexico I was told that I was never going to be a model or a lean person because of my genetics, my “heavy” bones, my curves, and my culture.
From all the social and family pressure, constant name-calling, and jokes, I developed an eating disorder.
After my parents realized I was doing harm to myself, I couldn’t do it anymore so I began to abuse dieting pills and laxatives, working out more than three hours per day.
I never got close to how I wanted to look.
When I decided to move to Canada, my whole life changed. Having to pass through the immigration process and while working for minimum wage, I really wanted to make my dream come true.
So I hired a personal trainer and joined the gym even though I couldn’t really afford it at that time. From there I started to learn so much from my personal trainer and best friend Marie Eve Dube. I started seeing how far I could go, and how nutrition and exercise can be so important and vital for your life.
After three years of training with her I was ready to try it by myself and I wanted more. I kept training from online plans but I always hit a plateau, so I was starting to get desperate.
One day some acquaintances at the local supplement store advised me to try competing, to look for a coach, and to keep following my dream. The first thing that came to my mind was…ME??? Competing? No! They connected me with IFBB Pro Bikini Eboney Chipman for advice.
“It was pretty amazing and fun to see how, with a good plan to follow, you can create the body that you want.”
Figuring this out made my life so much happier and competed for the first time in 2013. It was the best feeling ever because was the first time that I accomplished something that I really wanted apart from getting my permanent residence. I started to create my modelling portfolio and grow as an athlete as well.
I got more involved with practicing yoga everyday, which helped me to love myself more and connect with the “real” me. This is also the time that I became vegan (July 2014). I realized that I have being always like this, but since I was a child my parents told me I couldn’t because I was going to get sick.
I was scared to change because the Internet and society at large, says that we need animal products to be healthy and especially to build muscle as a bodybuilder.
Through all of this I can say that I tried several diets and have followed so many different meal plans with so many coaches. The most important thing I think is to find a coach that respects your core values, believes in you and sees you as a person not a number. More than anything, that they care about your health. Remember, there are millions of trophies, but we only have one body, one soul, one heart, and we have to take care of it.
I love being vegan in bodybuilding competitions, and life in general. Seeing how your body changes and transforms with all the different food is something that I love!
Seeing the look on so many faces when they become aware that you’re vegan and notice all your muscles.
Q: What is the good/bad/ugly behind the scenes that no one talks about?
Good: The opportunity to be able to see yourself succeed in fitness, health, and self-love.
That we can create our own physiques. Also being able to meet so many amazing people and all the opportunities that can come with these events.
I love how you become an inspiration and a role model to so many people.
It’s a great opportunity to market yourself through professional photography and learn about all the modelling industry.
One of the most important things is that regardless of how you place, is that in the process you become the best version of yourself.
Reaching goals and attaining personal and physical transformation.
Plus, it’s super fun to glam yourself up with professional makeup, tanning, amazing bikinis, and heels!
Bad/Ugly: Seeing how many people can harm their bodies just to win a trophy or get in a specific weight that they are willing to do whatever it takes to win (good or bad). The drugs in the industry, which I always stay away from.
“What happens after your show, as some people get Post Show Depression and other negative symptoms that, without correct guidance, can be dangerous and put your health in risk.”
And never forget the horrible smells backstage from tanning, hair product, and body odors.
Q: What was unexpected in your first bikini competition?
This show was pretty good and calm for me, the only thing I can say was unexpected is how expensive it all can be.
“This is a pricey sport, but sometimes we don’t notice it.”
Another unexpected detail I experienced was feeling that I was on top of the hill (competition day) and thinking it was okay to take a long break (not listening to my Coach). After two weeks of letting myself go by eating processed food and not going to the gym like I should, I quickly fell back to the bottom of the hill. I also found myself not loving myself as I did before.
Now, I understand that everything is about balance and always listening to my coach, because she always wants the best for me. I’m learning how to be responsible for my actions instead of playing the victim. This has been a huge lesson and now it’s time to get back up and keep pushing forward, not give excuses anymore and do the work.
“Competing isn’t just about going onstage and looking good, it is a full-time commitment.”
Q: What did your meal plan (include supplements) look like before a show?
- Monday – Carbs pre and post workout only
- Tuesday – Carbs pre and post workout only
- Wednesday – Carbs post workout only
- Thursday – Carbs pre and post workout only
- Friday – Carbs pre and post workout only
- Saturday – Carbs in meal 2 only
- Sunday – Carbs in meal 2 only
Source of carbs: 2-4 oz of yams or 1/2 cup of rice
- Meal 1 – 1 scoop of protein powder, 1tbsp coconut oil
- Meal 2 – 3oz tempeh
- Meal 3 – 3oz of organic tofu
- Meal 4 – 3oz tempeh
- Meal 5 – 3oz of tofu
- Meal 6 – 1 scoop of protein powder
Supplements Two Weeks Before Competing:
Supplements One Week Before Competing:
Q: Best advice you ever received for fitness?
Your goal is now, food will be always there.
It takes weeks of consistent nutrition and training to get your metabolism going and see results. Don’t Stop! Keep going and it will even out and you will see results.
Consistency, patience, and self -love.
Q: What are your favorite plant-based protein sources?
- Protein powder
Q: What’s next for you, what new goals do you have for yourself?
My next show will be on July 25, 2015 in Vancouver BC at the Pro/Amateur show with the BCABBA. I am planning to do the competition the next day as well for the Muscle Insider Model Search. I will be one of many vegan athletes that prove we can compete and have an amazing physique.
To get more vegan meal tips, watch this video – Plant Based Nutrition: What I Eat In A Day (And Why)
Chris Willitts (creator of V3), is the founder and owner of Vegetarian Bodybuilding.
V3 Vegetarian Bodybuilding System is a mixture of science and author’s advice, providing users with optimal diet and exercise. This system is designed for vegans and vegetarians only.
A lot of research has been put in this program. Furthermore, a lot of professional bodybuilders and athletes tried and tested the program, praising its progressiveness and efficiency.
The program is about taking control of your own body and health according to your potential and needs. And worry not; you’ll get plenty of proteins with this system. It will boost you with energy, and you’ll feel just a strong as any carnivore would (perhaps even stronger, depending on how much you invest in your exercise). It avoids vitamins deficiency and provides you with a lot of proteins, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
Instead of saying things like “I think a plant-based diet is good for athletes and bodybuilders,” the V3 Vegetarian Bodybuilding System claims “I know a plant-based diet is good for athletes and bodybuilders, and I have results to prove it.”
To find out more, visit the website at V3 Bodybuilding – Vegan Meal Tips