TAMMY MARIE: certified by the American Council of Exercise ACE.
I’m a single mom of 4 and Natural Bodybuilding Competitor in X-Treme Fitness, Figure, Bodybuilding and Mixed Pairs.
I grew up dancing and was a cheerleader while in high school. At the age of 17, I started teaching dance and coaching gymnastics. I then went onto college as a dance major/art minor taking electives such as bodybuilding, nutrition and anatomy. This is where I gained the appreciation and knowledge for weight training and diet. After college I continued to coach gymnastics and teach dance. With a constant desire to know more about the fitness world, I became certified in both aerobics and personal training. With my certifications I chose to leave the dance world for awhile and work in Fitness, working at a total of 8 different fitness centers across the United States, managing 3 of them and assisting at two, while holding a position of Aerobic coordinator at one.
In 1990 I married and started a family right away laying aside all fitness endeavors to raise a family and support a military husband and lifestyle.
In 2001 I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease (gluten intolerance). I had to learn a whole new way to eat if I wanted to stay healthy and live a good long life. Gluten free foods were not easily accessible on the market yet so I had to grind all of my own rice and oat flour and bake everything from scratch. I did not eat pastas, doughnuts, bread and any “good” thing you can think of. However, this enabled me to experience the positive outcome of eating clean. I was then able to help other people, including my children.
In 2003 I moved to Okinawa, Japan where I continued with my desire to learn more about fitness. I trained for my certification in Turbo Kick, taught Dance, and coached gymnastics for the military base. While there, I also studied Sedakon Karate for three years giving me a love for the martial arts. After returning back to the states in 2009 I decided to fulfill the dream of opening a dance studio and named it “Dance 4 Life”. Although teaching children is very rewarding, I felt that I really needed a personal goal and something to call my own. I had always thought that body building would be something I’d like, but could never find the time to sacrifice as a mom and military wife. Last year I made a decision that it was my turn and be it selfish or not I needed it for me. So I set out in April 2011 training myself and competing for the first time in July of 2011. I placed first in X-treme fitness and fourth in Novice Figure.
In April 2012 I was contacted by renowned fitness photographer, Rob Sims, who expressed his interest in shooting me. I had never done a fitness shoot and was very skeptical. I agreed to meet with him and scheduled a shoot. It was such a great experience and an absolute blast! I felt liberated, beautiful, and so proud of what I had accomplished in such a short time of training. I competed in three shows, two more photo shoots with Rob Sims, and four more with other photographers in less than six months. I knew that this was one of the best journey’s I had ever taken and I was going to enjoy every bit of it!
Although I felt some guilt for focusing on me, I continued communicating and scheduling future shoots with Rob Sims which in turn led me to organizing a future shoot for a group of women. I had a strong desire to empower and encourage women to be all that they could be. I wanted women to feel what I was feeling. I contacted Denise my stage prep coach and Natural Bodybuilding Pro of 30 years expressing my desire to Inspire women by sgiving them a focus and a goal to feel beautiful by shooting for a calendar. Through the discussion both Denise and I came to the realization that we had an identical vision about empowering women in the health and fitness field. Through this 40 minute discussion, we created an organization and named it “Iron Angels”. It was to be an organization that would help and direct women coming back from struggles in their life such as cancer, divorce, addictions, abuse, etc. to becoming a better and more beautiful them.
As an Iron Angel, I am doing what I love and have had the extreme opportunity to network.
Other achievements include:
*Owns Vision Fitness & Health Tumwater
*Co-Founder & Owner of Iron Angels and Iron Beasts.
*UNBA Promoter for 2 Washington State shows: UNBA Iron Angels and Beasts Natural Bodybuilding Championships & UNBA South Sound Fall Classic.
*Author/Publisher of “Eat 2 B Fit”