Finetix Magazine: November 2017

Photo Credit: Ross Images

Name: Stephanie Morgan

Social Media:
Website – www.FitnessBySteph.com
Facebook – www.Facebook.com/FitnessBySteph
Instagram – www.Instagram.com/FitnessByStephanie
Twitter – www.Twitter.com/FitnessBySteph

Date of Birth: September 14th, 1991

Height: 5’3”

Weight: 120

Hair Color: Blonde

Eye Color: Blue

Location: Chicago, IL

Tell us a little about yourself?:

My name is Stephanie Morgan and I am a model and fitness, fashion & lifestyle blogger from Chicago!

As a model, fitness is a huge part of my life, but it has also become one of my biggest passions. I recently started a fitness blog, and I love talking about my journey, fitness fashion ideas, and tips on how I stay in shape. I always try to mix up my fitness routine, and some of my favorite workouts include boxing, yoga, running, and weight lifting.

It took me a long time to find a workout routine that I actually enjoy, and look forward to doing every day. I want to help inspire others to find a fitness routine that is fun and speaks to them personally. I know the struggle, because I’ve BEEN there!

Fitness to me is about more than just looking good, it’s about being healthy and loving the skin you’re in. Strong is sexy!

What motivates you?:

Honestly, rejection has fueled some of my greatest motivation. Tell me I can’t do something, and I’ll work 100x harder to prove you wrong. I’ve been told from day one of being a model that I was too short, and wouldn’t be successful. I have worked extremely hard to prove everyone wrong, and show the world that petite models are just as strong as anyone else in the industry.

When it comes to fitness, I am motivated by my progress. There is no better feeling than looking in the mirror or in pictures and seeing your body making improvements and changing. I am a true believer that strong is sexy, and being fit and healthy only makes me want more. I love going to yoga practice and being able to achieve postures that I couldn’t dream about doing 6 months ago, or being able to comfortably lift weights that seemed impossible when I first started. It’s an incredible feeling when people say “Wow, you’ve improved so much”. Fitness is an amazing confidence booster.

How did you get started into fitness?:

Staying in shape and eating heathy was not something that always came easy for me. I realized a few years ago that my unhealthy “party girl” lifestyle was starting to catch up to me, and I decided it was time for a change. I had been looking for gyms & classes to attend, but wasn’t really inspired by anything to the point where I could see myself there several times a week. That is until I found Yoga.

Over the past few years, yoga has become one of my biggest passions. Not only has it helped me become physically stronger, but it has also helped me become more confident and in tune with inner self. My yoga practice is honestly one of the only times during my day where I am completely disconnected from the rest of the world, and can truly focus on myself and my well-being. It has helped me understand the importance of “me time” and being able to close out the noise of the outside world, even if just for 60 minutes. In fact, I love it so much I’ve signed up for teacher training this winter to get my yoga teaching certification!

I also found a personal trainer who was willing to push me to my greatest potential. I found that it’s so much easier to achieve goals when you have someone there helping you and pushing you every step of the way.

How did you get started into modeling?

I remember first wanting to be a model after watching America’s Next Top Model in elementary school. A few years ago, I got my chance when a photographer friend asked me to take part in a photo shoot for a creative blog. The pictures turned out amazing, and I got a lot of requests from other photographers that wanted to shoot with me.

From there, I started to build my print portfolio and worked extremely hard to network within the industry. After years of working without pay and dedicating lots of time to the modeling world, my confidence and skill grew to the point where I was ready to begin modeling professionally. I am now signed with 8 Midwest modeling agencies, and have shot campaigns for global brands such as Motorola, Garett’s Popcorn, and Groupon just to name a few.

What would you say is your biggest influencer in living a healthy lifestyle?:

There are several things that influence my healthy lifestyle. I really love the way I feel when I work out and eat healthy. There is something so gratifying about the way you feel after an intense workout. It always leaves me wanting more.

In the modeling world, there is so much pressure regarding body standards and weight. Your always too much of something, and not enough of something else. There is also a lot of competition and negativity on social media these days, and I love that yoga centers around body acceptance, and just being happy with yourself and where you are in your journey. Fitness looks different on everyone, and I’m happy to see industry standards are slowly changing.

If you had to choose between cardio and strength training, which do you prefer?:

I actually really love cardio. My mom was a serial marathon runner so I’m sure I got that gene from her. However, I’ve been working on strength training a lot more lately since I know it will help me become toned and reach my goals much faster. I try to find a balance between the two.

When dieting what are some of your biggest cravings?:

PIZZA! I would eat pizza every day if I could (gotta love that Chicago deep dish!). I’ve learned that balance is key when dieting. Constantly depriving myself of certain foods usually leads to binge eating later – I always give myself a cheat day each week where I can indulge in “bad foods” as long as it’s in moderation!

What is next for you?:

I hope to continue to grow my blog, and possibly become a brand influencer for a large fitness clothing brand like Alo Yoga, Nike, or Athleta! I am currently working on several fitness modeling projects, and hope to one day be on the cover of Women’s Health Magazine!

What is an embarrassing fitness moment you are willing to share?:

I could write a book on this one! I am a huge klutz and tend to embarrass myself on a daily basis LOL. I have fallen off treadmills going full speed, almost got punched in the face by my trainer (on accident - I was supposed to roll and forgot), fallen going up stairs, fallen going down stairs, tripped on absolutely nothing while running, fallen on my face doing handstands, the list goes on. I’ve learned to never take myself too seriously. It’s okay to mess up, as long as you always get back up and try again. Plus, it makes for a great story later :)

What is a typical day for you?:

My day always starts with a cup of coffee – I can’t operate without it. I’ll start off by answering emails, checking my website messages, and responding to social media inquiries/comments. I try to get in a morning walk every day – walking is the best way for me to clear my head and get the blood flowing for the day ahead. I try to get a 3-5 mile walk in every day.

During the day, I usually have photoshoots, auditions, or client meetings. I also try to consistently get at least one blog post out per week. I also aim for one social media post per day as well.

For my workouts, I have a pretty set schedule for each day, which I plan in my calendar on the Sunday prior. If I have a predetermined schedule, it’s much easier for me to follow a routine and ensure that I get to the gym/studio every day. I alternate my daily workout routines between bikram yoga, running, yoga sculpt, weight lifting, boxing with a heavy bag, and private boxing training.

At night, I always try to find new healthy vegetarian recipes to cook for dinner. Switching up what I eat every night keeps things exciting and fun!

What are some tips you have for others trying to break into the industry?:

There are many things you can do to start your journey as a model, but it will take a lot of work. Don’t expect anything to happen overnight and be prepared for a solid amount of rejection. However, if you are truly passionate about it, no amount of rejection will stop you. Do what you love and don’t let anything or anyone hold you back.

What is your greatest achievement thus far?:

I’m most proud of my success as a petite model, and how much I’ve accomplished over the past 6 years. I have been very fortunate to work with some incredible photographers and artists that have supported me along the way.

I have had some very large international publications that I’m extremely proud of. There’s nothing more fulfilling to me as a model than getting published - It’s a great feeling to have tangible proof that all your hard work is paying off.