Professional beach volleyball player and Wilhelmina model Lauren Sieckmann shares with Dr. Rob Berberian her unique journey that has led her to where she is now and how she has grown through her early struggles to become a successful athlete, a professional model and an inspiration to young girls with her mission in bringing awareness to body image struggles, nutrition and a holistic approach to health and beauty.
1. How have your challenges shaped your journey into health?
When I was a freshman in college, I lost 20 pounds due to stress and trauma which triggered anxiety, depression, and IBS. I developed orthorexia which is the disorder of being obsessed with being healthy. I had seen GI doctors and psychiatrists and nothing seemed to make me feel better and in better union with my body. Before this traumatic event, I was not very into my nutrition and did not give it much thought. In my process of healing, I read and read about nutrition and about how certain foods can affect certain neurotransmitters in the brain that work with our emotions. This really became a hobby to be and a healthy hobby that gained my 20 pounds back in muscle, cured my depression and anxiety, and got my IBS under control. It’s amazing how much nutrition is overlooked and I think everyone should be more aware of how much nutrition plays into not just our bodies, but our minds and soul.
2. What advice would you give to young girls who are struggling with body image
Before losing 20 pounds, I was told by my college coach that I needed to watch my weight. Right then I was already exposed to the idea that my body was not good enough. After losing my 20 pounds, I was accused of being anorexic and although I was not, I know the emotions that come with being underweight and being labelled as that. I want girls to understand that their body only needs to be good enough for themselves. It’s good to strive to be healthier and more fit but I think instead of striving to lose weight or be “skinny,” I believe we need to strive to be strong and beautiful. That not only will make you feel the best about yourself, but you’ll look your best. When your body is happy and your mind is happy, your body will look the way you want it to. It’s all about finding harmony in the body. I wish “skinny” would be taken out of the dictionary. We want to be strong inside and out and that is what’s beautiful.
3. What’s your workout regimen like?
My workout regimen is pretty tough!! I practice 3x a week and before each practice I weight train for an hour. I condition twice a week and that normally consists of a hill sprint workout or conditioning circuit with a pool workout at the end for recovery.
4. Three things you can’t live without?!
1. My Coffee!!!!
2. A gym, if I couldn’t find a way to work out and escape then I would go crazy!
3. Secret in-a-Tube My skin gets so damaged from being in the sun and sand all day, this product helps the anti-aging and repair aspect that my skin needs!
Follow Lauren on Instagram: @LaurenSieckmann
Creative Consultant: Rosy Mak