Growing up, all I aspired to be, was a professional rugby player. My dream, however, came to an abrupt end when I was told to give up. From the ashes, I have risen and from struggle I came back unconquerable. Here is the story of how I rebuilt myself from the rubble and how I chose power over defeat.
Born in Bucharest, Romania, I ventured into the world of rugby at the age of 10. I pursued this as my hobby till I turned 18 and till I became a professional player. I moved to Barcelona where I played professionally for 2 years; I then moved to France to continue my career in professional rugby. At 21, I moved back to Romania where I became captain of the Romanian Rugby Team partaking in several international tournaments across the world in places like Las Vegas, Portugal, Denmark, and Dubai. In 2012, I was announced Player of the Year in Romania.
My years in Romania, playing professionally, were the epitome of my success and the highlight of my career.
At 28, when I was back in Lyon, I began to feel a sharp and stabbing lower back and knee pain. That is when I was diagnosed with not just one, but two herniated disks and was told by some of the most professional doctors that I will never recover and will never be able to practice my dream again.
I remained strong willed and determined, even though I had hit rock bottom and the lowest point of my career. My option was to undergo surgery, which is a procedure I refused to go forward with, and I began my journey with rehab training for 7 months.
Physically and most importantly, mentally, I began to recover. Fast forward to today, and 6 years after my injury, I have stared defeat in the face as I am now back to my full potential. I have become a professional personal trainer and a body builder despite the doubts that were fed to me.
In 2014, I moved to Dubai where I was hired as a fitness expert and nutrition specialist at the Dubai Police Academy. Chosen for my professional athletic background and my master’s degree in Training and Sports Performance, as well as my certificates in public speaking and advanced diploma in sports nutrition, I received a special distinction from the Dubai Police Academy in 2018.
In 2019, I was awarded as Best Trainer for the Dubai Police between 104 competing coaches. I am now proud to announce that I am coaching the UAE Super Heavy Weight Champion in Martial Arts, Kickboxing.
I am who I am today, thanks to the choices I made when I was told to give up.