L.A. blogger specializing in minimalist style and changing the game of fitness.
Michelle Carigma currently resides in Los Angeles, California pursuing the authentic UNDO lifestyle and shamelessly eating too much pasta. Through her passion for style and dedication for fitness, her brand “Modern Fit” has created an empowered community of kindred spirits who share similar health goals while still keeping things fun and innovative. Between her busy schedule of blogging, travelling, and volunteering, Carigma sat down with UNDO to talk about everything from dieting to practicing reckless optimism, in hopes of giving our readers a glimpse into what this fitness journey is all about, and most importantly, how to make it a good one.
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Modern Fit is a blog where I can freely express my love for style & passion for fitness simultaneously, where the perspective on healthy living is reinvented in the realm of fashion. As my journey to an active lifestyle evolves, you will see my blog evolve as well.
Along those lines, what is #WCWoman, and who do you find to be your most inspiring?
#WCWoman is a social movement I created focusing on role models more than models. The name derived from the infamous “#WCW” where we see endless amounts of posts involving girls exposing themselves negatively. I wanted to redefine that hashtag into a platform that our future daughters can turn to for inspiration-which is where #WCW’s Woman Crush Wednesday became World Changing Woman. The goal is to show girls that their self-worth is not determined by pure physicality or the number of followers & likes they have on social media.
My mother is my ultimate #WCWoman. She taught me at a very young age to be independent, emotionally, physically & financially. She has played multiple roles most of my life— both mother and father, but always most importantly, a friend.
What sets you apart from other fitness/fashion bloggers?
I believe it’s not just about taking pretty pictures and putting together dope outfits. I often wonder how that materialism and vanity can affect readers by merely creating a thirst for material things. I’m trying to convey that personal success is great but that there is so much more than external validation, and that it doesn’t even begin to compare to the feeling you get from inspiring and helping others.
What first sparked you to begin such an active lifestyle?
I’ve always been pretty active growing up. I danced Polynesian for years. I got my first gym membership at 18. However, when I lost a loved one, my job, and a committed relationship all at once, I fully committed to a healthy lifestyle. Working out is an outlet that has allowed me to feel stronger not only physically, but emotionally as well.
What has been the most difficult part of your fitness journey so far?
Time management has to be the hardest part. Juggling spending time with my loved ones, working a full-time job, blogging, and partnering with different brands can be extremely difficult. Although I’ve been doing this for quite some time, I’m still faced with the obstacle of coordinating and trying to do it all but understanding that at the end of the day, I’m only human and I can only do the best I can.
What are some ways you’ve seen not only your body transform, but also your life, by maintaining an active lifestyle?
Before getting more involved in a healthy lifestyle, I was living on the flip side: I ate horribly, partied all the time and lacked the motivation to do anything with my life. The lifestyle that I live now keeps me on my toes. I’m always creating and achieving new goals, big or small. It pushes me to be the best version of myself and to reach my fullest potential.
It can certainly be difficult to maintain such healthy food choices, any advice for readers?
It’s all about the baby steps and making small healthy choices like whole wheat bread vs. white bread, brown rice vs. white rice, and grilled vs. fried. A little difference will make a huge impact in your diet! Also, don’t feel discouraged if you don’t see quick results. Gaining weight didn’t happen overnight, and losing weight won’t either. Progress takes patience, and everything counts!
What’s one guilty pleasure you can’t live without?
PASTA. I accept all kinds of delicious noodles equally, Top Ramen included.
Are there certain exercises or types of fitness you gravitate towards more than others?
I generally resonate with exercise that involves lifting weights, but it was a personal goal of mine to do the unthinkable; run a half marathon. After completing the Nike Women’s Half Marathon, I kept lifting weights, but I added yoga, and lagree workouts to my routine. But I’m always down to try different types of exercise; it confuses & challenges your muscles!
Many followers look to you for diet and health advice. With such a large following on social media, do you ever feel a certain pressure to act as a role model?
I rarely feel pressured, because who I am on social media is a real extension of myself. I don’t act, I simply live. That’s the only way to sustain it–it really has to be the way you live out your life.
Where do you find yourself seeking support on your hardest days?
I keep a close circle of friends who I can seek support from and who are always there for me. I’m fortunate to have such ambitious & driven people in my life. Even though we’re usually busy grinding, we can always count on each other for words of encouragement.
Is there a particular goal you’ve been able to accomplish recently that you never dreamed of achieving prior to being involved in an active, supportive community?
Being able to work with the brands I grew up with and working with people who have been the biggest inspiration to me in the first years of creating Modern Fit. It’s such a blessing to be able to do collaborations and curate new ideas with well-established brands while simultaneously hitting my fitness goals. It’s surreal.
UNDO strives to push the boundaries of the ordinary. What are some ways you accomplish that in your own life?
I always try to do more than what is expected of me. I think it’s really surprising to the people I grew up with, because I could have easily settled for that full-time job that I have zero passion for now, or I could strive for something that makes me feel like I have purpose in my life. I chose the latter, and now I’m hustling more than I ever have before because my dreams don’t work unless I do.
Carigma has the instinctive knack for understanding and balancing the sometimes impossible nature of fitness, and transforming it into a collaborative journey of enthusiastic hard work and genuine well-being. Growing into healthier bodies, along with healthier souls, requires an accurate feeding of each, as Carigma and her followers commonly practice. Possessing a passionately authentic mindset for fitness and style, they are creating catalysts of health and optimism throughout whole Southern California communities, entirely aware that this is just the beginning.