An influencer opened up about her journey from battling an eating disorder to becoming an elite international powerlifter who can lift over 400 pounds.
Ru, a full-time weightlifting content creator from Los Angeles, has 278,000 followers on Instagram and 2.6 million followers on TikTok, where she calls herself Little Beast.
And while he’s capable of lifting at least twice his body weight, which is 123 pounds, it didn’t always used to be this way, Ru told the Meet your power podcast.
she said she took figure skating when she was 11, what she describes as a ‘beautiful’ but ‘toxic’ sport, and she competed for about 8 years.
She had a figure skating coach who first introduced her to calorie counting.
Ru said: “Initially, she was the one coming up to me and saying ‘get rid of this’ and she would just pinch my body and say, ‘Get rid of this for next week.'”
‘And I was like, I don’t know how. I’m literally in seventh grade. I’m maybe like 11, so I’d ask her and she’d tell my mom to put me on a 400 calorie diet.’
Ru, from Los Angeles, is a full-time weightlifting influencer and content creator with 278,000 followers on Instagram and 2.6 million followers on TikTok, where she goes by the name Little Beast.
Ru would be training in the ring for around 27 to 30 hours a week on top of school and said her trainers would tell her, ‘If you had less legs, less glutes, less stomach, you could land this jump clean.
As her eating disorder continued through her years, she was so malnourished that one day she fell to the ground, left with two stress fractures, spelling the end of her figure skating career.
This was what prompted her to make the decision to go to college, even though that was not her initial plan. She attended USC and said that at the time, the beauty standards were “washboard abs” and “thigh gaps.”
She then moved to Memphis in Tennessee, where she had “culture shock” because beauty standards in the South meant you could have more “meat on the bone.” Ru said that if you looked skinny, they would encourage you to eat, something she hadn’t experienced before.
She said there weren’t many hobbies available where she was, so she joined a gym and started out as a “typical cardio bunny” spending “hours on the treadmill.”
Ru then started watching female powerlifters on YouTube, which piqued her curiosity, so she walked into the free weights section of the gym one day and hasn’t looked back since.
She then joined a gym that was predominantly filled with powerlifters who saw her talent and encouraged her to compete.
But Ru said she didn’t want to worry about having to micromanage her food intake. Then they convinced her that weightlifting is not about aesthetics, but rather about performance.
Ru often posts empowering photos and videos of herself squatting, deadlifting, and benching an incredible amount of weight.
She said: “It’s liberating and you can just focus on moving as much weight as you can.”
She then won her first powerlifting competition, which saw her go to nationals, where she amazingly broke a couple of records.
Ru said: “I’ve just reached the peak of being able to focus on what my body can do, it was a big factor in being able to transition from seeing food as something I need to punish myself for through exercise to seeing it as fuel.
Ru is now an international elite powerlifter, which means she is one of the best lifters in her weight class.
She often posts empowering photos and videos of herself doing squats, deadlifts, and lifting incredible amounts of weights, often including quotes encouraging others to be the best versions of themselves.
She recently posted a video of her deadlifting a whopping 405lbs with the caption, ‘We did it for the 4-plate club fan ahhhh!’
She also uploads stunning videos of her dancing, which her fans love to watch.
One commented: ‘Obsessed is an understatement.’
Another wrote: “You motivate me to work out and now this… I definitely want to learn how to dance like this too.”
A third said: ‘This brightened my day. Thank you!!’
If you are concerned about your own health or that of another person, you can contact Beat, the UK eating disorders charity, on 0808 801 0677 or visit beatingdisorders.org.uk