Thuy Casey

Thuy Casey is the quintessential Modern Woman. Born in Vietnam, her family immigrated to the United States after the war. It was here that Thuy, like so many immigrant families, was taught that she could do anything that she set her mind to. After working as an executive at Price Waterhouse, Thuy married, had kids and began working on something entirely different: her body. We sit with Thuy and talk about her amazing transformation.

Can you tell us a bit about yourself? Who is Thuy Casey?
I am one of you. I am a daughter, wife, mother, and an accomplished corporate woman, who in her 40’s discovered a new hobby, a passion for fitness and an appreciation for the sport of Physique and Body Sculpting.

I am a Vietnamese-American woman who grew up in a family of five girls. My family immigrated to the U.S. post the Vietnam War. We watched as my parents worked hard to raise five college-bred, independent, and accomplished women. They instilled in their five girls unrivaled work ethic and a belief that they could accomplish anything they set their sights on. Those values, I carried with me every day for the past 41 years of my life.

In my 20’s my focus was on graduating at the top of my class and landing jobs with the most prestigious companies in my field. I enjoyed a rewarding career and made directorship with the premier public accounting and consulting firm of Price Waterhouse (now, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP). I met my wonderful husband, Joe at Price Waterhouse and in my 30’s set my sight on starting a family. We have two wonderful children, Dylan and Josie. They are my pride and joy and they are the center of my universe.

As the kids get older, they gain a little more and more independence from mommy and daddy. Their growing independence has allowed me a little extra time to pursue my personal passion. So, in my 40’s, I set out to train and compete as a fitness athlete in National Physique Committee (NPC) sponsored competitions across the country.

I first started training for a competition in December 2010 and did my first competition in April of 2011. I completed the last competition of the season in August of 2011. I was humbled to bring home six accolades for the season, with five 1st places and one 3rd place at a National competition.

When did you decide that you would transform your body?
I first began taking it seriously when my former trainer told me that I had the genetics and body symmetry and could do very well in the sport. I told him I did not prefer the very masculine, hard-ripped muscle look of most women body builders. He indicated that there were many categories in this sport and not just the traditional hard-core ‘body builders’ types. He suggested I consider the category of fitness bikini, which requires a proportionate, athletic and conditioned physique.

At the time, I chuckled at the thought, for I had never viewed myself as an athlete of any sort, much less at 40. And growing up, my parents always stressed the importance of academics. I never had the opportunity to pursue sports of any type. I’ve always had a competitive spirit, though, but it was never fully realized until my recent calling.

My moment of inspiration to compete came about after watching a local body building competition. I was intrigued when I saw men and women athletes of all ages, ranging from 20’s through the 70’s. These people were not all career body builders. Many were working professionals who enjoyed working out and decided to set competitive goals to motivate themselves towards the next level. At that moment, my competitive drive kicked in.

I also thought about my kids and how doing this would allow them to see mom set a goal and keep at it until she reached that goal. I knew I had to do it as much for myself as for setting the example for my kids. I set out to attain the assistance of a competitive coach/ trainer to map out a nutrition and exercise plan to get me to that first competition to compete in the fitness bikini category.

It was December of 2010 when I met with my coach from ‘Xtremelyfit’. I vowed to myself that no matter what, trophy or no trophy, I would be a winner the day I felt prepared to step on stage to present the best physique I could possibly present.

How many hours do spend working out per week?
The time I dedicate to working out per week is not much more that what is required for a non-competitive athlete. It is less about quantity of time as it is about quality and consistency of time.

During my regular maintenance season, four times a week, I strength train for 30 intense minutes. Then 5 to 6 days a week, I do about 35 to 40 minutes of early morning cardio. As I get close to competition, I crank up my metabolism by adding an extra 30 minutes of cardio in the evening.

So as you see, about an hour a day of ‘me’ time for five days out of the week is all one needs to stay in great condition. To be honest, the trade-off I make in my life is giving up an hour or so of television for time at the gym.

You are such an inspiration to those of us who really want to do the right thing for our bodies, but just can’t get the motivation to do it. Where do you find your motivation, your inspiration?
My inspiration came from that one ‘gotcha’ moment as I sat in that auditorium that one day, watching my first body building competition. I saw women and men, in their 30’s, 40’s, 50’s, onto even the eldest woman and man, in their 70’s, get on stage and proudly present their physique while having a ball of a time. The interest to pursue this sport became real to me when I realized these men and women were not career body builders. They were men and women from all walks of life and careers who had chosen to pursue the passion for this sport as a hobby and means for staying fi t and healthy.

I have always had a competitive spirit. But because I am very petite, I always felt a disadvantage in most sports. In a sport where proportions, symmetry and hard work reigned, I feel I have a decent fi ghting chance to be good at something for once!

First and foremost, my motivation comes from my desire to be an inspiration and role model to my children. I wake up knowing that whatever I set out to do, the act of doing and continuing to do is the real life lesson I want my children to see and learn from. Th ey are currently getting a great lesson in health and fitness; what it means to eat clean to provide fuel/ energy for their bodies and how to exercise correctly for proper growth. Secondarily, and just as important, they are getting a lesson in setting goals, working hard against the grain to achieve what they set out to accomplish and always reaching for more.

I am humbled that my journey has led to having my family, friends and colleagues take note, become inspired and motivate themselves to join the bandwagon. Not everyone will choose to compete and that is okay. It is not for everyone. I just hope my story will motivate you to get out there and set those incremental small goals that will one day, lead to a bigger goal. One day at a time…and one person at a time, is all I say. When we can reach out and touch just one person and that one person reaches out and touches another, in the end, we all will be on board the same life journey of health and fitness.

Should a person seek professional help with their workout regimen, or is it feasible to do it yourself?
It is possible with good research, understanding of the human body and “stick-to-it-ness”, a person can do it on their own. However, I would highly recommend consultation with a trained professional who understands body types, nutrition and exercise to effi ciently and effectively develop a program tailored to your body, enabling you to get quick, targeted results. I highly recommend the Xtremelyfit team. (www.xtremelyfitjasonfuller.com).

Dieting is also such a huge factor, can you shed some light on your eating habits?
People think I eat nothing in order to stay in the shape I’m in. On the contrary, I actually eat more meals than I used to before I started on this journey. Th e diff erence is in the quality of the food I am fueling my body with. My nutrition consists of just about two handful of ‘macro nutrients’. I eat 6 meals a day. Each meal is comprised of a balance between proteins and carbohydrates. My protein sources are fish and lean meats such as tilapia, cod, salmon, filet mignon, protein shakes, peanut butter and almonds. My carbohydrate sources are natural grains such as brown rice, oatmeal, red potatoes, sweet potatoes, fruits such as berries and bananas. As fi llers, I always have some type of green such as spinach, salad, green beans, asparagus, etc.

View Comments (4)
  • Thuy is the real deal. I’ve seen her train at the same gym I go to and she is committed to her goals.

  • You are a truly amazing product of a woman. I have much respect for you. Keep it up and I’m sure you inspired a whole new realm of women. Kathy destefano

  • A friend of mine forwarded this to me and I thank her for doing so.

    I’m so proud of Thuy & am inspired by her determination & diligence in her fitness endeavors.

  • Thuy is an inspiration. She truly exemplifies what an ideal modern woman should and could be. She demonstrates to us all that through careful planning, execution and balance, one can have it all. Go Thuy!