Eating right and working out consistently is hard. For one former fitness model, it was too hard. Madelyn Moon, a twenty five year old woman who was once a participant in fitness competitions and worked as a model, is now speaking out against the health and fitness industry, saying that her diet and exercise regimen destroyed her happiness and positive self-image.
Moon, in an interview with The Daily Mail, said that when she was dieting strictly in preparation for fitness competitions, she was at her limit.
“I’d wake up early each morning to work out twice a day. I’d eat nothing but chicken, egg whites, oatmeal, peanut butter, broccoli, and protein powder for five months, and I totally isolated myself from my friends and family.”
And the deeper she went into perfect health, the less perfect her emotional life grew.
“It got to to the stage while I was training for a competition where I hated my body – whatever it looked like. I had 6.5% body fat, the worst gas in the world from all the protein, and the only thing I could think was that people would say at my funeral was that I had been a ‘good clean eater.'”
Moon maintained her regimen for a full three years until she reached her breaking point. She stopped accepting new clients for her fitness and diet consultancy, ditched the gym and binged on junk food. Specifically, “pizza and Pop Tarts – what I needed to get healthy.”
She stands by her choice. “I chose happiness, and I am a much more relaxed, controlled person as a result.”
Moon joins a growing chorus of ex-fitness models who have negative things to say about their former lifestyles.
Living the kind of life it takes to produce an elite-level physique is a full-time job. Professional bodybuilders have little time or money left to pursue anything other than competition prep. And when you add steroids and other performance-enhancing drugs to the list, the tolls on competitors’ health and finances can be catastrophic.
It’s never a bad idea to eat healthy, exercise regularly, and care for your physical wellbeing. But part of that process, that can be easy to neglect, is recognizing reasonable limits and not violating them. Maybe you don’t need to wake up at four in the morning to go on an hour-long fasted run every single day. And maybe you should have a Pop Tart or two. Sometimes, they’re what you need to get healthy.