I grew up in a little town in the Western side of Romania, in a small family of intellectuals. My father was a lawyer and was my first hero, whom I’ve lost unfortunately way too early. After the fall of Romanian communism, in 1989 my family reconnected with the person who completely changed my life, by the name of Ervin Litkey, a well-respected musician and composer, who immigrated to the United States from Hungary, in 1948. He was a distant relative to my family. I was very young at that time, but the desire to visit and personally thank my benefactor sprouted in my heart. My mom wanted me to be a teacher, and for that reason, I attended the Pedagogical School of Arad and became one when I was only 19. But my dreams were bigger than that and they entailed crossing the ocean.
My desire to visit the United States materialized in 2005 when I came through a Work & Travel program designed for Romanian students. On July 13th, 2005, I landed at the JFK Airport, with $300 in my pocket, and the dream to conquer America. I arrived too late unfortunately to express gratitude to my benefactor. The following weeks were difficult, and after spending nights in places like YMCA, I found a reasonable room to rent and a job. The surrogate mother country offered me a warm welcome and prospects that I could’ve only dreamt of in my native country, where being a teacher meant living on the edge of poverty. But I wanted more, and I knew it was possible because I was living in the greatest country on Earth. I started to look for ways to continue the education I had started in Romania –a Banking and Finance program at Aurel Vlaicu University. In the fall of 2008, I took Economics classes at Hunter College, as a transfer student from Romania, after having passed, with brio, the TOEFL exam. Throughout my Hunter College education, I also worked a full-time job. While I was doing that, I tried to take advantage of every opportunity to enhance my understanding of how the markets function and fluctuate. After three years working at an exclusive, high-end restaurant in the famed UES facilitated my first interactions with some of the top executives of the financial world.
After living in NYC for six years, I decided to move to Florida. Being an immigrant, in the process of obtaining the residency, was not in my favor in the newly adopted state. Finding jobs was practically impossible. The very next day, after obtaining my legal residency I.D, I received a phone interview from Bank of America, and in June 2012, I’ve started a career with one of the largest banks in the U.S. Five years later, after I was able to advance four positions within the bank, I decided it was time to pursue higher education. That was when I enrolled as a new MBA student at Nova Southeastern University, initially with a concentration in Business Intelligence/Business Analytics. I graduated with honors in December 2019 and started a career as a Data Analyst with a major telecommunications company.
Bodybuilding has been a great part of my life since 2014 when I’ve competed in my first bodybuilding competition. It was a great experience that motivated me to strive to get better and to continue to grow as an athlete. My goal is to obtain the IFBB PRO Card this year, under the marvelous guidance of Paul Revelia of Team Prophysique.
Pompano Beach, Florida.
I have started to compete in the bodybuilding/bikini division in 2014 and fell in love with the sport. I placed top 10 at a National Show in Pittsburgh in 2019 and won several first, second, third places at the many local shows I have participated in.
Thoughts on HIIT, Powerlifting, TRX, Yoga, bodybuilding, others?
I love HIIT and I incorporate it in my weekly training for at least one day. Yoga is also part of my journey, spiritual and physical. I practice vinyasa yoga a few times a week. Of course, bodybuilding is my passion and a path to my dream.
Share your unique training/coaching methods:
For over two years, I’m training with Paul Revelia of Team ProPhysique. He adopts a flexible dieting approach that is working well for me and my body. I train 5-6 days a week. The splits are 2 upper body and 3 lower body.
Is weight loss more of a fitness issue or a health issue in your opinion and why?
Weight loss is often a taboo topic for many. It’s never been a goal for me. It shouldn’t be a health issue if done consistently, and at a slow natural pace. I strongly believe in achieving results naturally.
Workout 1: Back – Workout 2: Legs – Workout 3: Shoulders – Workout 4: Arms – Workout 5: Weak Point.
Back + Shoulder:
Low Cable Row 3-5 X 6-10. Single Arm Cable Pulldown 3-5 X 6-10. Pull-Over Machine 3-5 X 6-10. Underhand Wide Cable Row 3-5 X 6-10. Seated Wide Row (to chest) 3-5 X 6-10. Machine Shoulder Press 3-5 X 6-10. Cable Side Lateral 3-5 X 6-10.
Leg Press 3-5 X 6-10. Good Morning 3-5 X 6-10. BB Hip Thrust 3-5 X 6-10. Goblet Squat 3-5 X 6-10. Single-Leg Curl 3-5 X 6-10. Single-Leg Extension 3-5 X 6-10.
Standing DB Shoulder Press 3-5 X 6-10. Machine Shoulder Press 3-5 X 6-10. DB Side Lateral Raise 3-5 X 6-10. DB Front Raise 3-5 X 6-10. Machine Side Lateral 3-5 X 6-10. Reverse Pec Dec Fly’s (rear delt) 3-5 X 6-10.
Cable Overhead Extension 3-5 X 6-10. Preacher Curl 3-5 X 6-10. Skull Crusher 3-5 X 6-10.
I’m following a macros plan – Current Training Day Macro’s.
P 120 / F 40 / C 110.
2 consecutive Off Days Macro’s.
P 120 / F 40 / C 145.
I’m currently taking multivitamins and collagen only.
What separates Status from other fitness magazines?
I know how it is to start from nothing and I can hold my head high with dignity for not compromising any of my core values in order to achieve anything in life so far.
What would it mean to you to become a “Status Symbol”?
It would mean that I will continue to strive to inspire women of all ages to become the best version of themselves.
What would it mean to you to grace the cover of Status?
Beyond a personal and professional accomplishment.
Status Fitness Magazine runs model searches across North America including the largest one at the Arnold Classic for the Status cover. As part of the Status family, you will receive a special participation invite. How excited are you about this opportunity?
I am very humbled and honored to even be considered.
5 things people don’t know about you?
- I was born in communist Romania.
- I speak fluently five languages.
- I am vegan.
- I rescued 3 dogs and 2 cats.
- I am not afraid to start from the bottom over and over again.
Who inspires you? And why?
There are many female bodybuilders and not only that inspire me and motive me to be better every day, among them: Angelica Teixeira, Etila Santiago, Novak Djokovic to mention just a few.
If you could inspire one person, who would that be?
Fitness is good health, not a spectator sport. I want to be a motivational beacon for women of all ages, all body types. I want to help all the women find their authentic selves as they envision how they want their bodies and spirit to be.
“It takes 4 weeks for you to notice your body changing. 8 weeks for your friends and family. 12 weeks for the rest of the world. Never give up”.
“You’ve got to find what you love. And that is as true for your work as it is for your lovers. Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work.” Steve Jobs
Great to read your story!
Congratulations on your success!
Thank you, Edward! I appreciate your kind words and reading my story.