Manuella is a determined young woman aged 40 who will inspire you physically and mentally. However, nothing predisposed her to engage in restructuring her own body this way… or even consider ending up doing fitness competitions.
She arrived in St. Barths 21 years ago and has many skills: she has worked in various areas such as sales, cleaning, catering, babysitting etc., before developing a great enthusiasm for house painting.
This reconversion, which may seem surprising for a young woman, is not so strange when you understand her energy and determination to succeed in whatever she undertakes.
Manuella trained for 8 years with building professionals before setting up her own business on the island, the painting company Manue “LA” Peintre. For the past 17 years, she has been working tirelessly, with a great passion for her job, offering a service that is quite strict on finishing details. She acquired is highly regarded as a local professional with a strong personality.
While Manuella had never exercised in her life, after her 2nd pregnancy in 2015 she set off on this new adventure and decided to take serious care of her body. In February 2016, she took things in hand, found workout programs on the Internet, enrolled at the local gyms, first at “LE Studio” then Formfitness. Since she started, Manuella has never let go despite life’s ups and downs. Something inside her just clicked and she realized the need for a physical change after meeting Filipina, a regular at Formfitness, who had her first bikini competition in 2017. Manuella decided to give it a try and engaged in this future challenge.
“I got caught up in the game, and I went for it…”.
In January 2021, she felt ready to take the plunge and got into a bikini competition which was scheduled on April 10, 2021 in Guadeloupe, but was unfortunately canceled due to Covid. However, Manuella has not let go of her preparation and follows ultimate workout plans tailored for her. “I am assisted by personal trainers: Kenny Maerten in Metropolitan France, specializing in competitions, has established a lean diet and workout plans for me. I also have gym coaches: Mika, Ocal and Seb who follow me to better advise me, help me improve my performance and go beyond my limits.
It’s essential to get help to do this kind of competition in order to progress and be able to hold out morally because it’s very difficult. You can’t just tell someone to enter a competition and fend for themselves. It’s not possible. Too many people often sign up for the gym and only go a few times before giving up just because they were not guided properly. Having a follow-up with a personal trainer is essential for me to progress. But you also have to create goals to move forward and above all stay motivated. ”
Manuella has implemented strict programs that she follows daily without ever giving up. Her routine involves 30 minutes of very intense bodybuilding every day, to work on different parts of her body each time. And she walks very quickly twice a week for one hour, very early before going to work.
“Over 3 months I have seen my body change, get lean, my muscles take shape: a physical transformation that was the goal of this training. Once the deadline arrived (April 10) at the end of the program I only had 4kg of fat left in my body, very little water, I had lost 3KG and a few centimeters everywhere, I had a body ready to challenge in a bikini…. But destiny decided otherwise. Even though I couldn’t do this competition, the intense preparation brought me a lot. I have to keep working on my weak points even more and be at the top level for 2022.
For now on, I have set off on a new adventure, with weight gain, diet and bodybuilding plans. My body needs to regain volume, to refuel while still keeping the right daily diet, allowing one cheat meal on the weekends, which helps feel better psychologically, and then work better on the muscles. Five months from the next competition, I will start a lean muscle workout plan even stricter than the first one and keep the same workout program, hoping to be able to achieve this competition goal.”
Manuella obviously follows a very strict diet, carefully weighed and chosen, physical checks with measurements and pictures taken every week. She has progressed physically so she can claim to be in the higher category for the 2022 competitions.
“I want to show all women, regardless of age, that the only way to get what they are looking for physically is to have a healthy lifestyle and to exercise. You don’t need to try to find miracle cures for weight loss. You have to be strict, with a lot of willpower, determination and you will get what you are looking for physically and mentally. Like many of us, I have a family life, a business to run, a very demanding job that is also physically tiring, but I can still find time for sport in my daily routine.”
Manuella is willing to help or advise whoever would like to start. She can direct you to the right personal trainer or give you advice from her own experience. However, she does not see herself evolving into a coaching profession, because “You should stick to what you know best.”
An inspiration for many of us. So, go do some exercise… with your coach!