Massy Arias has become a powerhouse brand.
Massy Arias, now age 29, found herself battling severe depression in 2012. She had dropped out of nursing school, quit her job, and moved back in with her father. She told Cosmopolitan:
“I started to feel depressed because I wasn’t living up to the expectations I set for myself. I felt like I was failing in every aspect of my life.”
Then a friend’s advice to go to the gym changed her life.
Arias said she started on the elliptical, which was the only machine she was comfortable with, but soon chased the psychological release of exercise into full fledged bodybuilding:
“As I kept exercising, I realized that I had to push myself out of my comfort zone to get mental clarity. That’s when I moved on to weights and other kinds of workouts. I didn’t have the money to pay a personal trainer, but I’d ask my personal trainer friend for advice and read a lot of fitness articles.”
Arias made an Instagram account for the usual reasons, connecting with friends and discovering pictures, but when a picture she posted made it onto the IG discovery page, she decided to start an official fitness Instagram account.
Her account quickly gained steam and soon she had DM’s from people asking her to train them. She said that she was not certified as a trainer, but they didn’t care. So she began taking on clients at a rate of $400 for 12 sessions. When the gym caught on and revoked her membership, Arias took her clientele to group classes at Central Park, but the classes grew to over 30 people, and the Park demanded she buy a permit.
So Arias finally decided to obtain a formal education in personal training, and her career took off. She entered bodybuilding contests, became a spokeswoman for a supplement brand, and throughout everything her Instagram following grew.
Eventually Arias married and moved to Los Angeles where she pursued a more professional career
“It’s been hard to establish that I am a businesswoman, not an Instagram star. That’s how people know me, but it’s not who I am.”
She says pregnancy added to her life and brand, instead of interrupting them.
Arias is a fantastic example of a woman who built her own brand from the absolute ground up, and made a life for herself through a love of bodybuilding.
*Header image courtesy of Instagarm