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All the world’s a stage — a stage Jasmine Fernandez has been drawn to since birth. Her parents enrolled her in gymnastics when she was 3 years old, and she trained hard until high school when she switched to cheerleading. Now, at age 23, the IFBB Bikini pro works as a trainer and online coach who loves producing educational vlogs for YouTube.
“I think my background helped a lot with being comfortable onstage,” says Fernandez, who is single and raising four cats in the Tampa Bay area in Florida. “Since I was a kid, I was preparing and practicing a routine to perform in front of people. If I hadn’t had that experience, I’m not sure that I would be as comfortable onstage as I am now.”
While some might think that a short stature — Fernandez stands at just 5 feet 1 inch tall — would negatively impact your stage presence, she focuses on its advantages. “When you’re tall, you have to work a little harder to make your muscles look fuller, but at my height, creating a balanced shape is a little bit easier,” she says. “Honestly, it could hold me back that I’m being compared to girls who are much taller because they just naturally stand out more, but short girls do well in this sport all the time because of symmetry.”
Fernandez earned her pro status after only three shows, and she credits her meticulous preparation for her accelerated trajectory: Every ounce of every meal is accounted for, every rep of every exercise is done to its full potential, and many hours a week are spent practicing her posing routine. Fernandez routinely counts her macros and carefully pairs foods at mealtime that help make the most of her training and recovery.
She believes that since you are only given one body, you should do your best to take care of it. “I always look at this sport as something you get to do — not something you have to do,” Fernandez says. “There are so many people in this world who don’t even have the choice as to what they can eat and put in their bodies. We are fortunate enough to have a choice, and we should make the most of that.”
Jasmine’s Sample One-Day Meal Plan
Meal 1: 4 egg whites + ½ cup oatmeal + 1/3 cup strawberries + 1 oz avocado
Meal 2 (postworkout): IsoFlex shake (birthday cake flavor) + 1 tbsp natural peanut butter on a rice cake
Meal 3: 4 oz chicken breast + ½ cup jasmine rice + ½ cup broccoli
Meal 4: 4 oz lean ground turkey + 3 oz sweet potato
Meal 5: 4 oz chicken + spinach salad with 15 crushed almonds + tomatoes, onions, 1 oz avocado and 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
Meal 6: Protein crepe + 1 tbsp peanut butter
Whisk four egg whites and a half scoop of vanilla HexaPro together, and cook in a pan like a pancake. Bonus: Mix an additional 2 tablespoons of HexaPro with a bit of water to make an icing topping!