Christian Duque: First and foremost, I'd like to thank today's guest for taking the time to do this interview. At a time when even
pro athletes aren't making the time to speak to their fans, it's a breath of fresh air to have a published model and NPC Bikini
competitor going out of her way to share her journey with our audience. Monica, welcome to!! Please take
this opportunity to introduce yourself. Also, if you'd like, share one or two fun facts about yourself - maybe things people would
never know about you.

Monica Minx: Hello! My name is Monica Minx, I'm 31. I grew up in Tooele, Utah. I train at Eagle Ridge Fitness Center in Pueblo,
CO and at Anytime Fitness in Tooele, Utah.

I'm such a sugar bug!! My sweet tooth is BAD; that mixed with the fact I can eat the equivalent of food as 4 grown men (LOL). It
can make things interesting on dates haha!! Luckily, I'm a wizard in the kitchen! I'm pretty good at coming up with
competition-safe goodies to keep me on track during prep!

Christian Duque: Question #2 is the same on all of our interviews, because over the years, I've come to the realization that
each athlete answers it differently. So without further adieu, please share with you when/why you got started weight-training
and who/what inspired you to want to compete?

Monica Minx: So I often get asked how long I've been lifting. I had baby #3 Dec. 11, 2014. All of my pregnancies have been
super high risk with bed rest and multiple complications. I'm the lucky mommy of 3 boys, 7yrs, 4yrs, and 2yrs old. I have had
problems with fibromyalgia, insomnia, abdominal pain, very bad endometriosis, ovarian cycts, cyst in my wrist, debilitating
migraines (so bad I even stopped breathing before), bloating, and more. I've had many surgeries and just was never really
able to keep going with my fitness goals because something would come up and set me back. That having been said, I never
gave up wanting to jump back in and many times I did.

In July 2015 I finally found out that I have a severe gluten intolerance that causes abrasions, bloating, inflammation, and a
rash throughout my digestive system. It turns out it's celiac disease. That is also what had been causing terrible pain. With
this information in hand, I was able to finally address the root cause of the issue and finally jump into a diet that worked for
me. Life definitely hasn't been easy for me. I often tell people I'm working on making my outside as strong as my inside. I am a
survivor of abuse and illnesses. Although I've been victimized, I am not a victim. I won't ever give up on my dreams and goals.
Regardless of what I've been through, I choose to stay positive and be the happy woman I am today. That is also a huge
reason I love to compete. Everyone has their struggles and story. You never know what anyone has been through. Despite it
all, on competition day, there we are, ready to strut our hard work, dedication, and sculpted artwork of a body that we created.
To anyone who reads this - don't ever give up! People will judge you, criticize you, and accuse you of being conceited or
thinking you're better than others - don't listen! Keep going, stay focused on the positive, because no matter how hard or
bad the situation is, there's always a positive side..even if you have to dig deep for it.
Christian Duque: Many competitors often aspire to becoming fitness models, but actually being published is huge. How did you
get into this aspect of the sport and how difficult is it to get discovered?

Monica Minx: Well I was asked to be a part of a worldwide tattoo magazine. I ended up working with them as a model and their
talent liaison. After awhile they asked me to do a seasonal fitness spread. I did that for one issue and ended up leaving the
magazine due to personal issues. I would love to transition and be published in actual fitness magazines though!

Christian Duque: Times constantly change, but one thing that used be somewhat taboo that's become pretty mainstream is
body art, or tattoos. That having been said, not all tats are created equally. You seem to have some pretty solid work on you.
Is there a story behind each piece? Are you extremely picky of who works on you, & finally what's your absolute favorite piece?

Monica Minx:

    Chest - Sacred heart , tattered wings, all-seeing eye, and a crown of thorns to show that I love deep despite
    being through a lot, hat I don't judge on looks, and have taken pain for others so they wouldn't​have to.

    Back - I call her my phoe-cock (Phoenix/peacock) it symbolizes beauty rising from the ashes, strength,
    and grace. There's also a happy laughing Buddha back there, symbolizing love, friendship, and happiness.

    Thigh - Stippled wolf symbolizing guardianship, ritual, loyalty and spirit. The wolf has the ability to make quick
    and firm emotional attachments, often needing to trust their own instincts. Thus they teach us to do the same, to
    trust our hearts and minds, and have control over our own lives.

    Bottom lip says Minx inside

    Pinky finger says promise

    Hip - sparrow nestled on me. As a bird totem, the sparrow is a reminder to keep our burdens as light as we can in
    order to avoid a heavy heart. They're also symbols of creativity and staying ever vigilant in achieving their goals.

Christian Duque: Before we delve into the proverbial meat and potatoes of the interview, I want to talk about time
management. Aside from working, being a competitor, and a successful fitness model, you're also a mother of three.
If anyone has a tight schedule, it's probably you. How do you do it?

Monica Minx: With a lot of patience!! Haha jk , Some days I honestly look at my life and ask the same question! My youngest
son actually was born with an extremely rare birth defect and has all of his medical appointments out of state. This makes
things very hard. I make sure to spend as much time as possible with my boys - and boy do they love it! We have so much fun
and they fully support and love that I have muscles!! Luckily their father is very helpful. We co-parent really well together! I still
consider him my best friend, which is rare when people divorce/separate or break up. It works best for all of us and I'm happy
to say it makes things a whole lot easier. My time is often a non stop go-go-go of hustle and bustle, but luckily I'm a pretty
energetic, positive person who just does what needs to be done. So how do I do it all? In short, 'd say I just put on a smile &
my big girl panties and take on obstacles with a positive attitude, Strength, and Grace.

Christian Duque: In terms of your physique, you've built a perfect look for bikini, while still putting on a nice amount of muscle.
What's your approach to training? Do you train based on a tried & true approach or do you strive to shock the muscle with
each workout?

Monica Minx: First of all, thank you so much!! My approach is simple. I do what my coach, Shane Heugly, says to do  I don't
always do it perfectly, but I try my best. He's all about cutting fat while building lean muscle in a healthy way. I focus my muscle
and work to fatigue - and then try for 2 more. That's what has worked best for me.
Christian Duque: Nutrition is key to building quality muscle, but very few people give it the same level of importance as
training or even supplementation. What's your approach to meals, whether in-season or off? Do you cook for yourself, eat
out at suitable restaurants, or mix it up to keep things interesting?

Monica Minx: I usually cook my own meals. With prep and having Celiac's, it makes things a lot easier for me that way. I do,
however, enjoy going out for cheat meals. When not prepping for a competition. I absolutely LOVE Thai food.

Christian Duque: In this day and age, it seems everyone is all but strung out on powerful pre-workout powders, diet sodas,
coffee & energy drinks. How much caffeine do you normally take in during the day, do you sleep well at night, & how key is
deep, restful sleep for making & keeping gains? Do you have any tips, water intake ideas?

Monica Minx: I have never been huge on caffeine. Honestly, I'm somewhat caffeine sensitive. I get shakey and also get
headaches. Regular soda makes my eyes water. I do sometimes take preworkout, drink a diet soda, or take an energy drink.
I think it's all about personal preference and finding what works best for your body. As for water, I carry a gallon jug of water
with me, it doubles as a wallet.

Sleep is super important in my opinion! I definitely do not get enough at times though. I was diagnosed with insomnia as a
teen and have always struggled with it. I try to lay down and relax to quiet my mind and body before I go to bed. I have found
that that helps me to sleep best.

Christian Duque: As we start to wrap up the interview please tell us what your experience has been like in the NPC, if you're
happy with your decision to compete in Bikini, and what shows you've done in 2017 and/or plan to do in the future.

Monica Minx: I am very happy competing in the NPC & the Bikini Division - I feel I belong in this class. It has just enough glitz
and sass on stage to keep it fun to me. I'm currently prepping for a competition, the August 12th Viking championship
competition in Utah. It will be my second competition to date.

Christian Duque: One of the best parts about competing in this day and age, is the ease with competitors can stay in touch
with friends & fans. Please let folks know how they can stay up to date with you & do you accept/answer questions?

Monica Minx: I try to keep up with responding to comments and questions on my IG !! I think it's very important to share
knowledge and help others, whenever possible. On Instagram, my page is:  @minx_bikinibeast & I can also be found on
Snapchat at Monicaminx.

Christian Duque: Leaving the most important question for last, please take this opportunity to thank all those that have
helped you get where you are today?

Monica Minx: I have to say a huge thank you to my Coach, Shane Heugly and his amazing wife Tiffany. Not only have they
helped me with my nutrition and training, but also random questions and even personal venting.

To Jerry, for all of the help with our sons, pep talks, and being there for me. Most ex's hate one another and I can genuinely
say you make things easier. Thank you!

To my mom, b/c hey I wouldn't be here without that crazy butterfly chasing woman.

My son's, because no matter what, they always are my biggest fans. They help keep me on track, always love me, and never
cease to amaze me. They show me how strong and vulnerable I am at the same time. They're my whole heart and my reason
behind everything. My greatest accomplishments and biggest blessings by far.

And last but not least, God. For all he has done and plans to do. For apparently believing I'm a badass that can handle
everything I go through.
NPC Bikini Competitor MONICA MINX Speaks!!
Featured Interviews