We had the good fortune of connecting with Mindee Le Diehl and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Mindee Le, how has your work-life balance changed over time?
I started bodybuilding/competing in 2014. At that point, I was working 24hr shifts in the hospital and served my last year in the Air Force Reserves. After that, I moved into state corrections, followed up with federal corrections (both working rotating schedules, both on for 8hr shift/5 days a week). This was all while I was still in Colorado, prior to moving to Texas in 2017. I also completed my master’s in psychology in December of 2015. I had already a good foundation when it came to discipline, and priorities. Adding competing into the mix made it a little more complicated at times but definitely not horribly rough. These first few years, I learned how to properly meal prep, eat my meals on the run, how to get my needed training and cardio in, while trying to function properly on the job. Needless to say, there’s a lot of early mornings and a lot of late nights. Having competing and the journey of prepping for a competition in the mix made me very aware of how much I could not slack, and how important sleep is for the entire equation. In 2017, I moved to Texas and by summer 2018, I became a Dallas firefighter. Here lied a new maze of obstacles to get through with 24hr shifts and the probability of being up all day and all night. My first year of firefighting was the first year I had taken off of competition in general to focus on my job and getting certified. My second year, I started competing and as a firefighter, the process of balancing work and life showed me many new hills to conquer. All in all, balance in key mentally, physically, emotionally and spiritually. You cannot excel at one without being balanced at another. Priorities are key, and excluding many social aspects does unfortunately happen but it’s all for the end game goal of winning, and for me, working to become an IFBB pro within the next year while excelling in my career.

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I have been a Dallas Firefighter/EMT since July 2018. It has been a very memorable journey so far with my not so noteworthy 2.5yrs on at this point, but I am excited for the many years to come. I was recently certified as Urban Search and Rescue (USAR), which is one of our special ops in the department and I luckily have a chance to work full time in a USAR station (there are 2 in the department), where the learning is abundant and the crew is pretty great.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Doing what I do, I have not been able to get out and do as many things as I sometimes have hoped to do, but I have had a friend and my sister come to town and here are a few things that we did. I was able to take them to Deep Ellum and the Arboretum. I took them to my favorite Greek spot in Richardson, Ali Baba, and spent time at BSR Cable Park in Waco. Introduced one of them to Emporium Pies, and of course had the Lord of the pies (this definitely during a time when I was not in prep for a bodybuilding competition lol). I also took my sister to drag brunch. One of my closest friends hosts various drag brunches, and it’s always a must to attend whenever I get some time away since that’s very far and few).

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
The one person that deserves some credit and recognition in my story is my coach, Heather Grace IFBB Pro. I had met Heather in Denver in 2014, and she has been my coach ever since. From her mouth, it’s the client (me) that does all the work and stays compliant to the process. For me, it was not her coaching or training that always stands out to me but that she the first woman I noticed in the bodybuilding world. She is very strong, and very intelligent. Through her, I was introduced to the world of competitive bodybuilding, and she has opened (and continues to open) my eyes to nutrition/health, training, and anything else that sparks one’s cerebral interest.

Instagram: @polynesianpriincess

Image Credits
Doug Larson Daylon Johnson EG Pro Photo

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