Working Healthy

Healthy Tech: Sarah Mason

Sarah Mason, a nail tech in Cape Cod, Mass., instantly became a workout fanatic after diving into the fitness scene in an effort to tone up before her wedding two years ago. With a bodybuilding competition under her belt, Mason is putting extreme fitness on hold while she develops her mobile nail business, but health is still at the forefront of her priorities.

Tell us a bit about yourself and your career.

I have been a nail tech for 12 years. I studied cosmetology at a local technical high school and got my nail license when I was 17. I’m now the founder and owner of Massachusetts’ first mobile nail salon, Cape Cod Nail Company. I also work in the salon at a women’s fitness club, where I teach P90X classes twice a week. I love to lift and debuted in the bikini category of the Organization of Competitive Bodybuilders in April 2016, where I placed second in my debut class.

Tell us about your health goals.

I first began my fitness journey to lose my baby weight (I’m now a mom of two) and tone my body before my wedding in 2012. After I had my second baby in 2013, I got really serious about it. I tried CrossFit, weight training, kickboxing, and even flag football. I truly love it all. Last year, I decided to switch things up and train for a bodybuilding competition.

What has been your plan of action?

While prepping for last year’s bodybuilding competition, I followed a very strict diet that consisted of egg whites, chicken, white fish, veggies, black coffee, a gallon of water a day, and one cheat meal a week. My workouts consisted of teaching twice a week, lifting six times a week, and cardio four to five times a week. When not preparing for a competition, I’m a bit more lenient, although I still eat clean and exercise frequently. At the moment, I’m taking a break from competing to put 100% of my focus and energy into building my mobile salon, but I would love to get back on stage eventually. Until then, I’m focusing on staying healthy while finding a balance among family, personal life, and business.

What has been your greatest challenge of your healthy lifestyle?

It was difficult to conquer my fears and pursue the goal of being a body builder. Another challenge is my diet. I’m either 100% committed to prep before a competition, or struggling with cravings. I have the worst sweet tooth, which I combat with cookies n’ cream whey protein, Quest bars, and Halo Top ice cream. I try to surround myself with like-minded, goal-oriented people. I have such a great community at the gym, and it truly is my second home.

How does your job as a nail tech affect your plan?

Working in the salon at the fitness club has reinforced my passion for fitness tremendously. When I started my mobile nail salon, I was just starting to prep for my competition. Every morning I’d be on the bike as I was also researching, emailing, and building my business. They seemed to fuel each other. At the club, 90% of my nail clients are gym members. We often go from working out together right into the salon for a pedicure.

What’s your advice for other nail techs?

My best advice is to take that leap of faith. Challenge yourself. Don’t be afraid of failure because there is no such thing. Working out can make you feel more powerful physically, mentally, and emotionally. Fitness has taught me patience, persistence, and self-love.

Are you a healthy nail tech? Every month, NAILS features one nail tech in a monthly column devoted to shining the spotlight on your health and fitness success. If you would like to be featured as a NAILS Healthy Tech and share your health-related story with NAILS readers, email [email protected].

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