Like many women today, Marisca de Beer thought that the path to a slim and toned physique required drastically reducing her food intake.
“It got to the point where I was eating just once a day. That was a bad idea. Whenever I broke my strict diet, I would binge eat to the point of getting sick. As a result, my weight never changed and my energy levels and mood swings were horrendous. Worst of all, I constantly felt guilty for failing.”
Fad diets and other forms of restrictive eating followed, like completely avoiding certain food groups, but the results never changed.
READ MORE: 4 Tips For A Healthier Diet
It wasn’t until Marisca developed a borderline eating disorder that she decided to make drastic changes to her approach.
“I realised that I couldn’t lead a healthy and happy life by constantly going from one extreme to the next. I realised that I should not give society so much power over me by allowing their opinions and their views to dictate my life or my worth. So many women struggle with their relationships with food and their bodies because of what society makes us believe is beautiful.”
Marisca now leads a healthier, fitness-focused lifestyle that aims to nourish her body so that she feels and looks good for herself.
READ MORE: 5 Signs Your Health Sucks
“And that is exactly what I try to teach my ‘angels’.” After overcoming her own challenges with weight, disordered eating and low self-esteem, Marisca felt she could help other women who face similar difficulties and challenges.
That was the spark that ignited her now-thriving career as an online coach and personal trainer and marked the start Marisca’s #FitAngels.
“The #FitAngel movement is all about community and friendship between women. Everyone is on the same journey so no one feels like they are alone while trying to better themselves.”
Marisca’s approach is based on the 80/20 rule. “I tell my clients to eat healthily 80% of the time, following a diet that consists of balanced meals with sufficient proteins, carbs, fats and fibre. The remaining 20% gives you the freedom to enjoy that piece of cake if you feel like it. I want women to realise that you can look and feel your best without restricting yourself.”
The #FitAngels movement mostly comprises 6 Week Challenges that Marisca creates for her clients.
“When I started helping women improve physically and mentally, I knew I had finally found my purpose in this world.”
Called to compete
Marisca’s health and fitness-focused lifestyle also led her to the competitive Bikini stage.
“Once I learnt more about dieting the right way and training, I decided to explore the competitive bodybuilding scene and entered my first show in 2016.”
While she really only wanted to get six-pack abs and a firm butt, as time went on Marisca started enjoying the journey.
“Seeing how I evolved as a person, not only physically but mentally too, empowered me. My confidence grew, my energy levels skyrocketed and my mood completely changed. I became addicted to the lifestyle and have never looked back.”
Marisca adds that competing also taught her how to overcome any obstacle in a positive way.
“It has taught me to remain focused, even in my everyday life. More importantly, it has taught me to love my body, whether I am lean or a little rounded on the edges.”
Marisca’s weekly training split:
I train four times a week – 2 x upper body sessions and 2 x lower body sessions. I usually do 10-20 minutes of cardio on either the treadmill, elliptical or the Stairmaster, depending on the day. I sometimes practise my boxing skills at the studio to become a better instructor.
Marisca’s average diet plan:
I currently eat a high carb and protein diet with some fats. My meals mainly consist of beef or chicken for protein, and sweet potato or rice as my main carb sources. I also include greens and supplement with vitamins and minerals from the new Youthful Living Vitality range.
Marisca’s supplement plan:
- Morning shake: Futurelife with one scoop of Youthful Living Lifestyle Whey
- Youthful Living Vitality Multi-Vitamin Immune Boost Complex
- Youthful Living Radiance from the Vitality range
- Youthful Living Performance BCAAs
- Youthful Living Lifestyle Whey
- Youthful Living Collagen Pro
5 questions with Marisca
When you hear the word “successful”, who comes to mind? My fiancé, Craig Orr. He has endured many obstacles in his life but he always manages to come out on top. He is a chiropractor and bought his practice at the beginning of the pandemic, yet he has grown it into something so much more. He is humble, kind, dedicated and has a heart of gold. He would do anything to help others in need. These are all qualities I admire.
When you’re not training, what do you spend most of your time and your money on? On my off-day on Sundays, I like to avoid social media and my phone and spend time with my fiancé or our families by playing card games or going to adventure golf.
Your best investment for improving your health or physique? I invested in an amazing and knowledgeable coach back in 2017, which has made all the difference in my fitness journey.
What or who inspires you? My Angels and the Missfit members inspire me every day with their commitment and their kind hearts.
How did your affiliation with Youthful Living come about? I was living in Hartbeespoort when Youthful Living launched its first nut butter range. I asked the local gym owner to stock it and a few weeks later I got my hands on my first jar. I instantly fell in love with the brand. Youthful Living then contacted me in 2018 to ask whether I would become part of the team. The rest is history.
- Favourite music to train to? Depends on my mood. My current playlist is the #MB_Beats playlist I created on Soundcloud, which has a large variety of EDM and pop remixes.
- Favourite exercise? Any shoulder exercise.
- Favourite cheat meal? Sushi, pizza or Krispy Kremes.
- What do you do to relax? I go take a long, hot shower, pamper myself, then I watch Netflix and chill with my fiancé.
- What’s in your gym bag? My headphones and earphones as a backup. My water bottle, Youthful Living BCAAs and a sweat towel. Sometimes I have some post-workout sour worm sweeties in there too!
- Born: 24 January 1992
- Lives: Johannesburg
- Qualifications: Personal Training Certificate. Busy completing a diploma through Trifocus Fitness Academy
- Occupation: Missfit Illovo Facility Manager, Boxing Instructor & Online Coach
- Sponsors: Youthful Living, Trifocus Fitness Academy, U Mad Brah apparel, The Groom Boutique
- Competitive achievements: 3rd Wellness Bikini Class, NPC 2018 & 1st Bikini Class A, NPC 2019