Felicia Calvin: 2017 NPC Bikini Champion, Certified Personal Trainer, Travel Enthusiast, 100% Black Girl Magic

“You are much more capable than you realize. The body does what the mind dictates. So it’s critical to always think positive thoughts, no matter what challenges we face.” – Felicia Calvin

Who is Felicia Calvin?

I’m multi-faceted, love a challenge, and not afraid to go against the norm. I’m a lover of experiences. From travel to trying something that takes me out of my comfort zone, I’m always hungry to learn and improve as much as I can. Life is more enjoyable when your’e not restricted.

What makes you jump out of bed every morning?

What drives me is consistently working towards accomplishing my goals. No matter how big or small. I find so much joy in manifesting my thoughts into reality to create the life that I have imagined for myself. Sometimes that requires me to take risks, but some of the most uncomfortable situations have been the most beneficial to me.

How do you define inspiration?

To me, inspiration is something that sparks a fire inside of you. Something that helps you achieve a goal. Everyone has the ability to leave an impact on your life and inspiration can come from anywhere. I value every single interaction that I have with everyone I meet.

What is an accomplishment you’re most proud of and why?

I’m proud of my recent overall wins at my first NPC competition. I invested many hours and made countless sacrifices to overcome obstacles to prepare for this competition. Through this experience, I found my passion. For much of my adult life, I felt like I was struggling to find my purpose. I learned our purpose can be discovered by simply adjusting something we do on a daily basis to achieve even the most minor goals. Over the summer I had a conversation with a friend about the shortage of Black women in health and fitness. I decided I wanted to aid in creating a greater presence for women like me. My goal was to continue to increase representation of Black women in the industry and serve as a positive image for not only Black women, but all women of color. I’m delighted my hard work has paid off thus far. I’m hopeful I can be a beacon for those women I want to represent.

How has fitness shaped your life?

Fitness has helped shape my life by helping me maintain balance. While I am hooked on fitness and the competitive aspect that comes with being a health and fitness professional, I must admit that I do still indulge every now and then and it feels great! Even during prep, I make sure to implement self-care and spend time with people I value. I rarely catch colds as I did when my eating habits were poor. My new lifestyle has helped me with discipline, patience and gave me goals to work towards achieving. Initially I thought competing would just be a one-time thing, but now I’m hooked! Because of the physical results and new things I’ve learned through health and fitness, I can apply those practices with clients that I train.

If you could give advice to your younger self, what would it be and why?

You are much more capable than you realize. The body does what the mind dictates. So it’s critical to always think positive thoughts, no matter what challenges we face. There were definitely times in my youth where I didn’t give my all, or I allowed myself to settle. Not anymore – that’s a thing of the past! I learned to surround myself with positive, like-minded people and not to worry about the naysayers. Sometimes your strengths remind others of their weakness.

Who is your role model and how do they inspire you?

From my mom and dad, brothers, teachers, coaches, all of these individuals have aided in shaping me into the woman I have become. Two of the best pieces of advice have come from my parents. “Follow your heart” from my mother and “Push through the pain” from my father have stuck with me since I was a child and have contributed to my work ethic.

Care to share some wisdom to the women of color looking to pursue a career in fitness or enter into a bikini competition like you did?

My advice for women of color looking to accomplish fitness goals is to start today! Do something today to hold yourself accountable, work consistently, and be patient with yourself. Talk to people who have been where you want to be. My coach and I look so much alike that people often confuse us for relatives. Having someone who looks like me, guide me through my journey and serve as my mentor was the best decision I’ve made! Don’t feel intimidated if you walk backstage at your competition and don’t see many people of color. You worked hard to get to that point. Be undeniably great! Shoot for that #1 spot and tell yourself you will achieve that every single day, regardless of the negativity we may face.

If you could share with the world something interesting about yourself, what would it be?

My golden birthday, November 26, was on Thanksgiving and I always see the time right at 11:26. I consider that a sign that I’m destined to be here.

How do you overcome fear?

I am pretty tough and straightforward with myself. I just say “don’t mess this up”. It works for me. I always remind myself that the worst thing that can happen is that my plan might not work out the first time, but I always learned that it is imperative to try again and keep going. I often think of times in the past where I didn’t live to my fullest potential or let myself down and I use that to motivate me to overcome whatever is holding me back.

In what ways has travel positively impacted your life?

Travel is one of the best learning experiences and has been very impactful on my life. I am truly blessed to have the ability to travel to places that I always dreamed of visiting as a child. Whether I’m on the road for work or exploring a new city for fun, I always seem to encounter remarkable people and I love hearing their stories. It is actually through travel that I discovered my passion for fitness. Both travel and fitness has exposed me to some amazing opportunities and influential people. Through travel, I’m learning about different cultures and experiencing new things.

What does the phrase “Keep Shining” mean to you?

Keep shining is a form of encouragement and a way of acknowledging someone.

I am unapologetically authentic because…?

I follow my heart and live MY life’s purpose no matter what anyone says or thinks.

ABOUT FELICIA CALVIN:

Felicia Calvin is a Chicago-based spokesmodel and fitness professional. She graduated from Northern Illinois University where she earned her Bachelors of Science in Pre-Physical Therapy. She’s currently a certified personal trainer. She’s been working as a spokesmodel for five years representing a multitude of world renowned brands across the country as a product presenter.

Connect with Felicia on Instagram below!

Instagram: @fee_lingmyself

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