Posted on 23 April 2018
(SISS) Hi Kayla, where are you from and where are you currently spending your time? (Kayla) Hi! Thank you so much for having me :) I was born and raised in Southern California’s Inland Empire, then back in 2012 my husband and I moved to Las Vegas, Nevada where we spent the last six years of our life, and back in October of last year (2017) we moved back to Southern California, just outside of Temecula. It’s so nice to be back, I missed it out here so much. (SISS) What was one of the hardest things that you had to go through? What advice would you give someone going through the same struggle? (Kayla) The absolute hardest thing I’ve ever had to go through was unexpectedly losing my father in 2014 when I was just 12 weeks pregnant. It’s something you don’t ever get over and in this case, I didn’t even have time to prepare for. Even now, nearly four years later, I just get randomly hit with the fact that he’s not around anymore. Sometimes, I still expect him to answer the phone, or walk through the door at my mom’s. Life is never the same after loss, you just adjust to life as a new normal. My advice to anyone going through a loss would be to just breathe and take it a day at a time. You’ll have mostly bad days at first, then good one’s will follow until they become a mix of good and bad. Eventually, life just goes on, but you don’t ever forget. After a while, the majority of your days are good with a few bad mixed in, but there’s still those times when you have great news to share etc. when out of habit you go to tell them and then you’re hit by a truck because you realize that they aren’t there. I still talk to my dad, and I think about him every day, wondering (well, not wondering because I know he would) how much he’d adore my son, whom we ended up naming after him. Wondering, what he would think of the career path change that I’ve taken, I know he would be proud of my accomplishments, but it’s not the same as being able to see his reaction. (SISS) An Ace Certified Personal trainer, an NPC Bikini Competitor, etc.. but who is Kayla Tocco and what are you most proud of? (Kayla) Yes, I am both of those, but what a lot of people don’t know is that I’m an avid reader (I own over 3000 books) and was always the one in school with her nose in a book, I’ve always been focused on learning things and expanding my knowledge, it’s easy to look at me and see a bubbly blonde with a “nice” body, but beneath the surface, those that truly know me, know that I’m so much more than that. As for what I’m most proud of? That would have to be the family I’ve created with my husband. Every day I’m just in awe of my boys (my son and husband) and I still have a hard time believing that they’re mine lol, but both of them and everything they strive for daily no matter how big or small is definitely something I’m proud of. (SISS) How dedicated are you to fitness? What is your fitness goal? On your body, what is your favorite body part and what is your least favorite? (Kayla) I’d say I’m 100% dedicated, my ultimate goal is to become Ms. Bikini Olympia one day so you have to be dedicated to reach that level, on top of that my goal is just to have a healthy and happy lifestyle with my family. My favorite part of my body would have to be my shoulders, I absolutely love them, as for my least favorite, that would be my legs, which when looking at pictures I think is crazy, but I think it’s probably just from not liking them for so long that now it’s more habit than not actually liking them. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t hate them, they’re just my weakest area compared to my upper body and I look at everything from an aesthetic point of view on my body because of competing. (SISS) What makes you the happiest? What is fun for you? (Kayla) What makes me happiest? You’d think it would be fitness huh? While fitness is one of my passions, the thing that makes me happiest is my family. We built a life for ourselves and have been lucky enough in that while we both work like crazy, we get to set our own hours, get to work together and we can bring our son to the office with us, I never wanted to have to send my son to daycare if I could avoid it because I didn’t want to miss out on him growing up, and this way I get to experience it. I seriously feel like the luckiest girl alive sometimes when I sit back and think about it. We spend almost all of our time together as a family and nothing could make me happier than that. As for what’s fun for me? That’s doing anything with my family, working out or reading. (SISS) How do you deal with disappointment? How do you Keep Going? (Kayla) That’s a tough one, my last show I got last call outs (again) and I remember holding that smile on my face telling myself not to cry and when I got off stage I just wanted to give up. I got back on stage for finals, enjoyed the hell out of my post show meal and then let myself wallow for a couple days. I knew in my heart I didn’t want to give up, but I also knew that I mentally needed a break so I listened. I took an 11 month off season before going back onto prep last month in March and that was by far the best decision I made. My new coach and I gel really well together and between him and my husband and my mom I feel so unbelievably supported that I have literally never worked this hard or been this focused on my goals before. It finally feels like it’s my time to shine. I can’t control whether I win or lose, that’s up to the judges, but I know in my heart that when I hit the stage this time, I will have given it everything I have and that’s what will keep me going. I think to keep going you have to let yourself feel the disappointment, I see a lot of people bury it and it just comes unburied at the wrong time, it’s better to address it, let yourself feel it and then move on by asking yourself what you really want and knowing that whatever the answer it is, as long as it’s your truth and not a decision being based off of pure emotion in the moment, then it’s the right one for you. (SISS) What is your superpower? (Kayla) I grew a human being in 9 months lol ;-) (SISS) What is your weakness and what do you do to overcome it? (Kayla) Self-doubt and trying to be too structured. They kind of go hand in hand for me, I set a schedule out for myself and if anything doesn’t completely go according to plan then I sort of freak out and feel like all hell is breaking loose and my life is falling apart (a bit dramatic I know, but it’s true lol) when this happens and I feel like I’m losing control, that’s when the self-doubt sets in and I start thinking everything is pointless and that there’s no way I’m going to accomplish my goals. To overcome that? Well, it’s a daily battle, but my husband helps me quite a bit. He’s taught me to not jam pack my schedule, but rather only add a few tasks daily and then if I get those done then I can start working on the next days tasks etc. He’s helped me outline my main focuses everyday, which right now is training. That is the number one priority, everything else comes second (except my family of course) so while I can’t say I’ve overcome it and I’m not sure if I ever will, focusing on a smaller amount of tasks every day has really helped me to focus on what needs to be focused on in that moment. (SISS)
Can you tell us four things people don’t know about you? (Kayla) Four things people don’t know about me. That’s a good one, let’s see: I cannot tumble or do a handstand. I got my BSBA with an emphasis in Accounting in 2.5 years. I have never been out of the country, but I have flown over an ocean. I used to write romance novels and placed in several writing contests and came close to being published at one point. (SISS) Can you tell us where else can our readers follow your daily inspiration? (Kayla) They can find me on Facebook.com/KaylaToccoFitness on Twitter @kaylatoccofit and IG, which I’m the most active on, @Kaylatoccofitness I’m also going to be launching my youtube channel soon which will likely also be under the name Kayla Tocco Fitness and I have a website and blog (though I haven’t posted to it recently) which can be found at www.kaylatoccofitness.com (SISS) What’s your favorite quote? (Kayla) My favorite quote: “She keeps her nose in a book and her head in the clouds.” I’m not sure who said the quote, but I saw it on a cover for an e-reader once and it stuck with me. It’s a reminder to me personally, to always continue pursuing knowledge and, but not to forget about dreaming as well. Both are important toward future success. I have no idea if that was the intent behind the quote, but that’s how I interpret it at least. (SISS) At Smart is so sexy we love to see women who are thriving in their career or business. What are you most passionate about? (Kayla) Fitness and knowledge. I love this industry, but I hate how much false and misleading information is out there. I wish I could single handedly take down all the nonsense, but I can’t and in truth, it’s such an ever evolving industry that I’m always learning something knew or finding out things that I also thought to be true are false. I just do my best to set a good example, to inspire and motivate people and to do my absolute best at educating them to help them reach their own goals. (SISS) Who was the most influential person in your life and why? (Kayla) The most influential person in my life? I’ve never really thought about that because I’ve had so many people influence me. If I had to pick one? Probably my husband. I was only 18 when we met (I’m 30 now) and so I was just discovering how to maneuver in the world, he’s five years older than me, but had been a professional athlete since he was young so he’d experienced the world quite a bit more than me. He helped me to learn to push my comfort zones, to not allow myself to settle for good enough, and to believe in myself most of all. (SISS) Where were you five years ago? What advice would you tell your five years younger self? (Kayla) Five years ago I was living in Las Vegas with my husband, we hadn’t even started trying to have our son, and a career in fitness wasn’t even on my radar though I did enjoy going to the gym on occasion. I’d tell my younger self, probably the same things I tell myself now. It’s okay to slow down and enjoy your journey, life isn’t a race, you don’t have to rush things, tell your loved ones that you love them and don’t take anyone or anything for granted because in an instant, it could all be gone. (SISS) Can you take us through a typical day? From Waking up to going to bed, Can you give us a play by play of a typical day for you? (Kayla) It’s pretty jam packed that sometimes I wonder how I do it all, but hopefully it’ll inspire others to pursue their goals no matter what as well. I have two different schedules depending on if I meet with my coach or not Most days: 7am: wake up, have coffee with my husband and wait for my son to wake up. 830am: get ready and have breakfast. 930am: head to the gym. Noon: work. 6pm: get everything ready for my next day (meals, clothes, supplements, etc- this is key to insure an easy morning the next day). 7pm: work on stuff related to Kayla Tocco Fitness (social media, coaching clients, youtube videos, photo editing etc.). 830pm: I relax with my family until bedtime. 10pm: bed. On days I meet with my coach (twice a week) it’s slightly different: 5am: wake up and get done and make coffee to go. 6am: meet with coach and train. 830am: home to get done for work and eat breakfast. 10am: work. 5pm: work on stuff related to Kayla Tocco Fitness. 6pm: get everything ready for the next day. 730pm: relax with family until bedtime. 10pm: bedtime. It’s rare that my husband or I take a full day off work, rather we choose to work shorter 5-6 hour shifts and have time for each other every day in the morning and the evening. If we do have something where we want to take a day and go somewhere or do something, then I just adjust my schedule a bit for the entire week to reflect taking a full day off. (SISS) What is your favorite meal? What is your favorite book and/or the latest one you’ve read? What is your favorite song? (Kayla) My favorite meal is a cheese enchilada, shredded beef taco combo form Miguel’s in Corona, CA. My favorite book- you can’t ask a book lover their favorite book ;-) that’s like picking a favorite child lol. In truth my favorite book is usually whatever book I’m reading at the time. I choose to only read books I’m enjoying, life is too short to waste my time otherwise lol. Anything by Nora Roberts is usually at the top of my list though and I almost always stick to the Romance genre because you are guaranteed a happily ever after lol. My favorite song is once again, cannot pick just one, but play anything by *Nsync or Britney and I’ll be your BFF for life. (SISS) When do you feel the sexiest? (Kayla) When I’m in a cute coordinated gym outfit with my hair in a cute ponytail and have make-up on. I’m one of those girls that wears make-up in the gym, not because I don’t like myself without make-up, but because make-up makes me feel good and when I feel good and confident I have kickass workouts and am super laser focused. (SISS) Is there someone on social media that inspires you and is a great follow? (Kayla) The person that inspires me most on social media is probably Gary Vee. He just tells it like it is and gives me wake up calls when I need them and somehow he always seems to know where I’m at mentally and can get my booty out of a funk if I’m in one lol. (SISS) What does Smart is so Sexy mean to you? (Kayla) To me, Smart is so Sexy means that it’s okay to look beyond just face value for beauty, being pretty is great, but so is being intelligent. It’s sexy to have a wealth of knowledge hiding beneath the exterior of a male or female and doing whatever you need to do to learn about that person to find out just how much they know. It’s like you’re constantly putting together a puzzle that adds 5 more pieces every time you match one up. Smart is so sexy because it’s surprising. You can look at someone attractive and automatically think sexy, but intelligence has to be uncovered, little by little, and knowing you’re smart and that you are more than just a “body” gives (at least me) a huge sense of power in myself. (SISS) Thank you so much Kayla for sharing with us!