Journey to the NPC Bikini Competition

It can be hard to imagine how Karla De Epstein juggles her busy life.  Not only is she a mother and a wife, but she works full time, has a side business, and keeps up with a vigorous training schedule. Although there are only twenty-four hours in a day, she manages to fulfill her many different responsibilities and still fits in time to train for next year’s NPC Bikini Competition.

With all this on her plate, it’s no wonder that Karla is not a stranger to working hard.  However, she loves the feeling of being productive while also being a hands-on mom. In fact, even when Karla has an extra hour she is “already brainstorming what [she] can do” with that time.  Though this may seem difficult, Karla lives by the motto, “When there’s a will, there’s a way.”

“I try to incorporate all the things I wanted to do in my life and shape my life the way I want it to be,” Karla says.  “Everything is possible if you put your heart and soul into it”

A year ago, Karla had her second child, which motivated her to get into shape.  She wanted to have a big comeback, wanted “to put in the effort, find the right coach” and learn more about things like macros. This interest in educating herself as well as working out physically is emblematic of the powerful connection that Karla has discovered between her mind and her body. 

Because this is her first time competing, she has started from scratch and had to make sure that she is taking the time to prepare mentally and physically.

As such, Karla is an ardent believer in the importance of one’s mental state, expressing that one of the hardest parts of her journey was keeping her mind disciplined and training her mind to tell her body “not to be weak.”

When speaking of the significance of mindset, Karla says, “The mind is such a powerful thing that can prevent us from being who we want to be and achieving the things we want to achieve. The mind is the only thing that can come between you and your accomplishments.” 

She also notes that there hasn’t been one big moment of doubt for her.  Rather, part of the struggle has been dealing with the little moments of temptation.  One of the many ways that Karla now ensures that she stays on track with her goals is through a journal. Her journal serves as a form of motivation and reminder as to why she started her fitness journey in the first place.

One of her very first entries reads: “You always wanted this, and you can’t give up because if you give up, you will want to start all over again. You are already on your way.”

Additionally, though there is no question that the coronavirus pandemic has forced us to change our lifestyles, Karla continues to find the will to carry on her training for the NPC Bikini Competition.  Not only that, but she is also quick to motivate people who are struggling with their own journeys. 

One of the things she advises is that people who aren’t sure how to start exploring the world of fitness look at alternative ways of working out, especially as the COVID-19 crisis opens new doors.  She suggests turning to videos, live Instagrams, or even local gym websites.  She herself has continued to dance and teach free classes online.

“There is always going to be a good fitness activity that fits your lifestyle,” Karla suggests.  “You don’t have to go pump iron. You can sweat in other ways. You can put on music in your house and start dancing.” Perhaps most importantly, Karla encourages people to “start thinking outside of the box and consider: What do you like to do and what will make you happy? You don’t have to feel obligated to work out.”

Although Karla wishes that she had started this fitness journey earlier, she stands by the fact that everything happens for a reason.

“And that,” she states, “is why I am where I am now in this time and place.”

If you want to learn more about Karla’s story and her training, you can follow her on Instagram @peruvianprincessfit

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