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Champion bodybuilder showing strength by being honest and vulnerable

"It's not perfection, but coming as the best version of yourself."

ST. LOUIS — It isn’t easy to determine whether or not a person is having a problem with their mental health. Someone can display a strong exterior, but be struggling on the inside.

Quyncee Shockley is tough in the gym. The weights and the exercises provide a level of therapy.

“Oh my gosh, it’s helped me in so many ways,” she said.

The training has made her muscles stronger. “You really start pushing yourself to where your potential lies,” she said.

The workouts have helped her not only reach her physical potential but also her mental potential.

“It’s about doing what’s best for yourself. No matter what that looks like and what someone else may think,” she told 5 On Your Side.

Shockley muscled up the courage on social media and despite what others might think, she posted a lengthy post on Facebook. It talked about her personal battles, and it was not an easy decision.

“Just mustered up the courage to put myself up there, out there. Life’s hard. I fumbled. There was feelings of potentially shame and embarrassment with it,” she said.

But she believed opening up about herself would also be therapeutic.

“Until you’re honest with yourself, you’re never going to see those things and you’re never going to be able to help yourself or reach out for help. You’re never to see what’s actually going on,” she explained.

She believes it is making a difference for her. “Day by day it slowly gets better,” she said, laughing.

While Shockley is a champion bodybuilder, she isn’t in pursuit of having the perfect body.

“It’s not perfection, but coming as the best version of yourself,” she said.

She believes the approach that she takes with her physical and mental health can serve an example to others. 

“If you’re able to be honest and vulnerable and open about your experiences you never know how many people that you could help,” she said.

She believes good mental health can be reached through personal awareness, effort and commitment.

“No matter what your situation is, where you came from, how you’re doing right now, if you have a dream, if you have a goal, that it’s possible,” she said.

To learn more about Shockley's approach to mental and physical health, check out her training website.

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