My friends can never understand how I stick to my diet and exercise plan. They go out and party all night or go to dinner or even just an afternoon bar-b-que and chow down on some of life’s most guilty pleasures. They laugh and have amazing times together. Then they see me and bitch and moan about how I won’t go out drinking with them and I won’t indulge right along with them. I’ll be the first to tell you… this sucks. I do miss going out at the drop of a dime and throwing back Patron and Grey-Goose shots with the girls. But can I tell you what I don’t miss? I don’t miss seeing those same shots that went down so easy, come right back up just as easily. I don’t miss my head pounding so badly that I can’t even sit up in the morning. I don’t miss taking two days to recover from a few hours of over-indulgence. I don’t miss that extra belly bloat hanging over the waist-line of my jeans every day. I don’t miss the wrinkles in my face, the smell of smoke in my hair, and the ruined clothing from the cranberry juice and bar-b-que sauce that was spilled on them. I don’t miss opening up my phone and realizing I belong on that website “Texts From Last Night”. I don’t miss screwing up every meaningful relationship in my life because of one too many drinks and one too many emotional outbursts. Being a "fitness freak", as I'm sometimes referred to, (and a few other things that involve too many cuss words) is ok by me. This is not just about eating right or going to the gym. This is a life-style choice. This is something that changes how you look at yourself, your friends, your family and your world. It's not just a 'diet'. If you want to see change in your life, real change, it takes stepping outside of your current life and realizing you're willing to give up all those bad things...and some of the good too. You will loose friendships. You will loose your VIP invites to every party out there. You will loose your social status as a Party Diva. You will loose all of that…But what you gain is so much more valuable! You will gain a lease on life in an up-graded mansion of a body. You will gain a support system of people there to help build you up instead of tearing you down. You will gain pride and respect in yourself. You will gain the heart of a champion. It’s not easy. You have to be willing to work and work hard. You have this one chance to live the life you really want and you possess the power to choose that life. Can you do it? Can you leave all those destructive things behind? Only you can answer that question and only YOU can do it…. The only thing you’re waiting for is yourself. Make that decision now; You have that power. Do you have what it takes? Shawn C Hektor is a model, actress and figure competitor with the NPC. She began competing three years ago and with many local and national shows under her belt, she has no plans of stopping. You can find Shawn in several national publications including Planet Muscle, is featured on Bodybuilding.com and she will be at the Beast booth at the Mr. Olympia Competition. She loves living a healthy life and inspiring others to do the same. At home, she is a wife, author and mother to two loving dogs...who also enjoy a clean diet of chicken and rice!