Women’s rights are human rights, and we stand behind the selfless pursuit of equality for every single person — regardless of their ethnicity/race, nationality, gender, age, beliefs, or upbringing. In recognition of International Women’s Day 2021, we are celebrating the females of the past and present who push boundaries, break misconceptions, and continually strive for excellence.
As part of honoring the accomplishments of these women, we interviewed Team JF female athletes to shed light on the courage, dedication, and resilience it takes to be a successful female athlete. Our hope is their fitness journeys, like those of the 1930s/40s strongwomen Ivy Russell and Pudgy Stockton, will inspire and empower other women.
Never give up. Never settle. The journey is the destination. Finish unfinished.
How Taylor Baker-Tucker Became a Bikini Competitor
Taylor is a certified personal trainer and bikini competitor. She has competed in bodybuilding since 2018 and continues to do so while training clients and promoting fitness on social media platforms. She has a passion for helping others reach their goals and live a happy and healthier lifestyle through good nutrition and physical activity.
We chatted with Taylor about her start in fitness and the impact it has had on her.
How did you get started with fitness and lifting?
Taylor: “I was always really active and involved in sports/athletics growing up. When I started university, I was no longer participating in anything team-related, and I kind of lost touch with myself and with living a healthy lifestyle.
Being active and healthy was always something that was extremely important to me, so I began going to the gym more regularly. As I started seeing changes, I started challenging myself more!
I then began working with a coach in 2017. Shortly after, I started training to run my first race. I was really happy with my results at the race as well as with my progress in strength training and working with my coach.
I fell in love with working on myself and challenging myself, then I decided to do my first bikini prep in 2018! I thoroughly enjoy the process, and have been committed to fitness and pushing myself in the gym ever since.”
Were there any challenges you overcame when starting or along your fitness journey?
Taylor: “Absolutely! When I first began I really struggled with adjusting my mindset. I had thought that doing a lot of cardio and eating less was the answer to looking the way that I wanted/needed to look. I avoided strength training as I thought it would make me look ‘bulky,’ and it really took me some time to adjust the way that I viewed lifting and nutrition.
I wanted quick results and would try every fad diet and fit tea on the market. I eventually realized that living a healthy lifestyle required me to take responsibility for my actions. I needed to hold myself accountable if I wanted to see results that would last. It is a marathon, not a sprint.
Working out and being in tune with my body has literally changed my life so much for the better. Everyone's journey will look different, but being more self-aware and less scared to try new things and step outside of my comfort zone has helped me become who I am today — and I am so grateful for that.
Why do your lift, train, or bodybuild?
Taylor: “I love seeing progress and have a strong passion for pushing myself. I have learned so much about myself through strength training and bodybuilding. I feel that I am constantly growing not only physically but also mentally.
Bodybuilding and lifting/training have taught me that if you really put the work in, the results will follow. I believe that this mindset carries over with everything that I do now. I
feel that the dedication and determination I have when it comes to achieving all of my goals in life stems from challenging myself physically, and I can thank training for teaching me that.”
What is next for you on your fitness journey?
Taylor: “Currently, the plan for me is to continue bodybuilding as I plan to compete in the bikini division for the next few years. I will be competing in a couple of months and, hopefully, will get to step on stage at least 2-3 times after that!
The goal is to place provincially and become more of a familiar face nationally. I would like to see myself step on a national stage at least once in 2021. From there I plan to get feedback and work with my coach on becoming more competitive at the national level.
When I am not prepping for a show I love to live a healthy balanced lifestyle and I enjoy sharing my journey with others so I will for sure continue to do that on all of my platforms!”
Connect with Taylor Baker-Tucker on Instagram @tbakertucker