Name: Meredith Evangelisti
Birth Date: 11/15/1975
Birth Place: Lowell, MA
Current Residence: Boston, MA
Height & Weight: 5’7″
1. What made you want to compete?
My whole life I was a competitive skater, I was dropped by my partner and sustained a lower back injury. This injury caused some major imbalances in my body and over time the disc between my L5 and S1 degenerated. At times my sciatic nerve gets stuck between the vertibrae. As a Bikram yoga teacher I have been able maintain the flexibility of my spine, but I still had some pain.
When I hired my coach about a year ago, my main goal was to gain some weight in a healthy way. One of my main concerns was always compromising my lower back. After about 2 months I started feeling really strong and my pain started to subside. I started lifting heavier and when I started seeing results I decided to set the goal of competing instead of just putting on weight.
2. What do you do to stay inspired?
I am part of a pretty amazing team from Canada called Active Protocol.
All my teammates inspire me everyday with their pictures and posts.
Also, I own and design my own line of fitness clothing called Hotdrop. As one of the models of the brand I need to maintain a look that I am proud to show!
3. What shows have you already been in or plan to be in in the future?
My first show was the Boston show in June. I loved it so much!!
I plan on being at the WBFF Worlds show next year.
4. Who got you started?
I have always been an athlete. Growing up, my father was a weight lifter as well as my grandfather. Both of my grandfathers taught Phys Ed to high schoolers. I would say fitness is in my genes!!
5. Who do you look to for help now?
First and foremost, my coach, Jean-Jacques Barrett, WBFF Pro. He is such an amazing coach. He always encourages me to be my best. He compliments the positives and points out areas of opportunity always in a way that is helpful!! He is such an inspiration.
I also get help from Jean-Jacques’ wife, Michelle MacDonald, also a WBFF Pro. I know Michelle through the Bikram yoga world since she too is an instructor. She is so knowledgeable about the body. She is also a trained chef so using her recipes has really kept the dieting part interesting.
Lastly, I recently hired a posing coach -Madalena DosSantos, WBFF Pro. Since my team is based in Canada the posing and walking portion was a piece I was missing. I am so happy with my choice to work with Madalena. She has a such a positive vibe and I know with her direction I am going to shine!
6. Where do you usually workout?
I live in Boston and workout at the Sports Club LA and I also practice Bikram yoga at Bikram Yoga Boston/Back Bay/Harvard Square.
7. Do you use any suppliments? If so, what ones (brands, names, etc)
I do not use any supplements.
8. What are your most noticeable results?
The change of my glutes is my most noticeable result. Because of my low back injury my posterior chain was really weak. I had what I liked to refer to as a “pancake butt” not it is shaping up to be more of an english muffin!!
9. Has fitness changed your life? If so, how?
It has, I have had a lot of people tell me that I have inspired them. I love being told that, as a yoga teacher I aim to inspire people everyday in my class, but I never thought I would inspire people to eat clean and change their lives in this way.
Also, the fact that my lower back isn’t hurting anymore has changed so many things. To live pain free is amazing, but to also not be afraid to do things is life changing. I used to be afraid to squat heavy weights or do deadlifts, NOT anymore.
10. What personal fitness goals have you set for yourself?
I always want to be better than I was the day before. My fitness goals are just to maintain a healthy fit lifestyle and continue to compete.
11. Describe your diet.
I eat a very clean/balanced diet and that goes for 365 days a year. I follow a lot of Michelle MacDonald’s recipes. Just because you are training for a show doesn’t mean your food has to be bland. The meals I eat are very flavorful and I always feel satisfied. I find that this is a huge key to staying on track and not having cravings.
12. What does your workout schedule look like?
Right now leading up to the show I am on a 6 day a week schedule. Heavy lifting, but no cardio!!
Plus I maintain my Bikram Yoga practice of 4 times a week.
13. What do you do for a living?
I teach Bikram yoga in Boston part time. My full time job is my clothing line Hotdrop Apparel.
I absolutely love designing these products and seeing them go from an idea to actually being on a body. Since I am so passionate about fitness it is a dream job!!
14. What are your personal non-fitness goals?
Since Hotdrop is only 2 years old a lot of my non-fitness goals tie into work.
I am constantly working to build brand awareness and grow the company more and more.
15. Have you participated in any other sports?
I was a competitive roller skater.
People always ask “Roller Derby”? AND no. ….
Figure skating on wheels!!
16. Here you can mention your family/thank you’s.
My husband Marco has been such an incredible supporter through this. He has watched, videoed, critiqued my walking and posing. He has dealt with my diet changes and even has joined in (since I do the cooking he really doesn’t have a choice). He even has stepped up his gym routine, because really, who wants their wife to have bigger muscles?
17. What are challenges that you face that may keep you from reaching your fitness goals?
I don’t like to see things as a challenge but more of an opportunity. An opportunity for me would be to budget my time better. It always seems as though I don’t have enough time to do everything I would like to do. I at times get a little overwhelmed. Writing out a schedule for each day helps me keep on track.
18. What obstacles have you overcome to be where you are?
Since my back injury I always had the mind set that I there were just things I would not be able to do. I had to get that out of my head and I think it took meeting the right coach.