Former bodybuilder shows off a figure she's happy with
For five years, Jolene Nicole Jones spent countless hours at the gym and stuck to a strict diet in order to have a perfectly toned body. Two years ago, the 26-year-old from Montana decided to take part in a bodybuilding competition — and it was to be her last. Jolene has been showing what her body now looks like with a very different kind of before-and-after photo:
"Body builder to body lover. This isn't your typical transformation photo. I went from being controlled by my grueling gym regimen and weighing chicken and having protein shakes in my purse to fully enjoying a social life. Some people might say this is 'letting yourself go' but you can't put a price tag on happiness. I call this finding myself and realizing I can have more than one passion in life, whether it's hiking up in Glacier Park or enjoying beers with friends. A six pack didn't make me happy.
I was never enough and always needing to improve. Today I went rafting with friends and enjoyed food the old me would have drooled over and wouldn't have dared to touch. Your body is quite literally the only thing that gets you through this life, your worth and joy isn't weighed by what you can lift or what the scale says. My worth is weighed by those I surround myself with and the smile on my face."
While some people find happiness and a sense of fulfillment in bodybuilding, Jolene learned that she was better off doing something else. "My initial response when I saw the current picture, I was kind of disgusted," admitted Jolene. "Then I felt bad like, 'Why should I be disgusted with my body? My body does so much for me. Start thanking your body for what it does for you instead of hating it.'" Wise words.