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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


UA student inspires through fitness

Cole Malham
Cole Malham / The Daily Wildcat Natasha Hertzberg working out at the University of Arizona Recreation Center on Tuesday.

Ten months ago, a fitness-focused UA student made it her goal to not only get in shape, but also get on stage.

Natasha Hertzberg, a junior studying arts, media and entertainment, began her journey with the dream of competing in the National Physique Committee as a lean bikini body builder.

“I am 30 pounds down from where I started. One day I woke up and I didn’t want to look like that anymore, so I made a change,” Hertzberg said. “I have always had a positive mindset, and by following hundreds of other athletes on Instagram, my newsfeed was filled with inspiration and it really moved me to be the best version of me.”

Hertzberg’s dream has now become a reality. She has competed in two NPC competitions and is currently training for her third. She stays active six to seven days a week, and her workouts typically include weight lifting, boxing, cardio and dance. Hertzberg said she takes pride in never having a rest day.

“My New Year’s resolution was to compete in the Tucson Terminator with 167 other athletes. I did whatever it took to be on that stage,” said Hertzberg. “All the hours of training, comp[etition] preparations, sacrifices and dieting paid off.”

After she competed in the Tucson Terminator, she also participated in the NPC Arizona Open national qualifier competition.
Students who know Hertzberg said she has motivated them to improve their fitness and well-being.

“I have always felt uncomfortable in my own skin, but lately she has inspired me to better myself,” said Jennifer Sutton, a nursing junior and one of Hertzberg’s roommates. “My goal isn’t to lose a specific amount of weight. I just want to improve my self-confidence because I feel that no one can really love you unless you love yourself.”

Rielly Bingham, a public health freshman, said she sees Hertzberg as a role model.

“She has literally changed every view of mine,” Bingham said. “I look up to her so much. She helps me with working out, eating well and even boy issues.”

Hertzberg said her next goal is to imbue more people with a passion for fitness and self-confidence. She said she has been offered positions to teach at the Student Recreation Center, as well as supplement and apparel promotions; however, her ultimate goal is to be a trainer for brides-to-be.

“Right now I have my own training sessions that I offer, mainly for women,” Hertzberg said. “I hope to eventually host bridal boot camps. I want brides to be able to feel and look their best on their wedding day … I’m a strong believer in love, and nothing makes me feel better than helping a woman realize her worth and beauty on her wedding day.”

Along with keeping herself in competition shape, Hertzberg said she has made it a point to be an inspiration to others. With just under 5,000 followers on Instagram, and her own YouTube channel, she said she attempts to preach positivity on a daily basis.

“I had a lot of people who didn’t believe in me, and I had a lot of discouragement along with being bullied,” Hertzberg said. “I took the initiative to really push myself to achieve this passion. Here I am today with countless emails and notifications from people letting me know how much I inspired them and how much I have changed their life. I live for those moments.”

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