Chels Panzarella

Name: Chels Panzarella
Birth Date: 01/18/1991
Birth Place: Providence, RI
Current Residence: Bristol, RI
Height & Weight: 5’1, 108 lbs

1. What made you want to compete?
Moving back home after 4 years away at college, I started looking around at something I could do to be involved and stay active so as to not get bored away from all of the usual college festivities, football games, roommates, and friends. I randomly started looking into fitness competitions, after seeing pictures of someone I went to high school with who competed. It seemed like the perfect fit for me; it was a way to stay motivated, to learn how to build muscle, have a goal to work towards, meet people with the same interests, and best of all, become the healthiest and best me possible!

2. What do you do to stay inspired?
To stay inspired I try to keep track of all my goals so I know exactly what I’m working towards. I do a lot of competing with myself to always try and be better than the last time. I also hang up a lot of pictures of people who inspire me that way I see that motivation every day. I also try and surround myself with people who share my interests and who can inspire me, which is one reason I decided to train with a team of girls rather than on my own.

3. What shows have you already been in or plan to be in in the future?
This is my first ever competition. As challenging as I has been, I have loved every second of this journey and have grown so much from both the good and the bad. Therefore I plan on competing in many more shows with WBFF. Next year I will definitely be in either the Boston Championships or another round of New England Fitness and Fashion Weekend…who knows, maybe I’ll be in both!

4. Who got you started?
I got started on my training with my coach Kayla Faith at Team Body Rock!

5. Who do you look to for help now?
I always look to my coach, Kayla Faith, for help now. She has been extremely helpful and supportive of me throughout this entire journey. I probably text her about 10 times a day with new questions about training or just overall health and fitness questions and she always gets back to me and is always willing to help. I trusted her from day 1 of my training and will continue to trust and take her advice.

6. Where do you usually workout?
I workout both at 426 Fitness in Warren, RI and Body Rock Fitness and Nutrition in Lincoln, RI.

7. Do you use any suppliments? If so, what ones (brands, names, etc)
I use AdvoCare supplements. I use their Mass Impact, Arginine Extreme, OmegaPlex, Catalyst, Multivitamins and Muscle Gain.

8. What are your most noticeable results?
Every time someone compliments me on my progress they always end up mentioning my shoulders, so I suppose those are my most noticeable results!

9. Has fitness changed your life? If so, how?
Fitness has most definitely changed my life. This journey has taught me so many things about health and about myself in general. It has made me more aware of what I’m eating and has given me the knowledge of better workout and muscle building methods. It has created a confidence comfort level within myself that I had never before experienced. Most importantly, it has inspired me to inspire others. I now find true joy in answer people’s questions and helping them get on the road to obtaining results that they want. My passion for health and fitness grows each and everyday I engage in it! In fact, because this journey has made me love it so much, I am planing on getting certified in personal training so I can help others love fitness as much as I do.

10. What personal fitness goals have you set for yourself?
My most important goal right now is to (after Sunday when I indulge in everything I haven’t been able to eat these past few months) maintain a healthy and clean diet and get right into a new workout routine so I can keep this body and confidence that I have worked so hard for.

11. Describe your diet.
My diet consists of 5, well-balanced meals a day of lean protein, complex carbs, green veggies, healthy fats, and at least a gallon of water a day.

12. What does your workout schedule look like?
Although I like to change my workout around pretty often, generally it includes 5 days a week of strength training (usually one day is back and biceps, one day is chest and triceps, one day is shoulders and abs, one day of legs, and one day full body) and cardio 6 days a week. I like to really mix up my cardio routine throughout the week to keep it interesting. I do a variety of workouts like spin class, plyometrics, zumba, long-distance runs, and interval and HIIT training.

13. What do you do for a living?
I am currently studying to be an Occupational Therapist as well as a Certified Personal Trainer which I’d like to do throughout my schooling as well as in conjunction with my as an OT/R. During school I work as an Activities Assistant in an Alzheimer’s unit.

14. What are your personal non-fitness goals?
My personal non-fitness goals are to finish up this year of school with a 4.0 and get accepted to my top choices for graduated school (University of Utah or University of Southern California). I’d also like to save up some money and take a trip to Europe in between!

15. Have you participated in any other sports?
Not since high school where I participated in Track and Cross Country.

16. Here you can mention your family/thank you’s.
I would like to thank my mother and father. This sport is hard for other people to understand who don’t compete and although my parents may not have completely understood why I love this so much, they have been amazing supporters. They helped me through the toughest times and reminded me why I started in the first place.

I would also like to thank my cousin Ashley, who is more like my sister. She is absolutely amazing and has been my number 1 supporter since I started this training. She is always reminding me how proud she is of me and all the progress she see’s. When I feel tempted to cheat on my diet or miss a workout, she is right there reminding me of how strong I am and how worth it it will be once I’m on stage. I couldn’t imagine my life without her!

Thank you to my coach Kayla Faith and her stunt-double Nicole Costa. These two women have the most passion for their work that I have ever seen. They have huge hearts and take true joy in helping people reach their goals. They have reminded me and my team everyday that it’s so much more than the body you want. It’s about gaining strength in every aspect of your life, both physically and mentally. These girls are the ones to have by your side when your facing something challenging. They have made this journey so much fun.

Lastly, of course, I have to thank all the girls of Team Body Rock. We have all come so far and I couldn’t have done it without them. I have been inspired by so many of them and have seen amazing goals reached! They are what made the all the hard parts of competing so worth it! I’m so proud to say I’m a part of Team Body Rock.

17. Do you have any hobbies?
Aside from workout out, I enjoy going for long walks, spending summer days by the beach, reading, and spending time with friends.

18. What are challenges that you face that may keep you from reaching your fitness goals?
What really challenged me throughout this training was the diet. Although I enjoy the foods I am able to eat, I have a sweet tooth and a rough time staying away from the ice cream and cookies! Keeping a clean and balanced diet after this competition is definitely the biggest challenge I’ll have to work on.

19. What obstacles have you overcome to be where you are?
I definitely had to overcome a lot of shyness. When I first started working out I was so intimidated to be working out with all of the big strong guys. I had to make the decision that I am doing this for me and nothing is getting in my way. After much practice I finally started feeling comfortable at the gym. I had to learn methods for motivating myself to stay true to the diet and workout plan on days when I just felt like giving up. I learned that it definitely takes a lot of time and practice but after a while it becomes easier. Going to the gym has become a habit for me now and I don’t think twice about adding into my daily routine!