Livin’ life after ‘Made’
A Year Ago This Week Series
Published: Friday, January 31, 2014
Updated: Friday, January 31, 2014 00:01
This week last year, Brooke Dragon, 6th-semester nutritional science major, had just finished a dramatic physical transformation. Dragon became a part of the popular MTV series “Made” that takes young adults and turns them into the person of their dreams. During her time on the show, fitness trainer Tianna Ta turned Dragon from a physically inactive snacker, into a toned, disciplined and confident young woman. Since her experience on the show, Dragon became a spokesperson for Bodybuilding.com, participated in countless bodybuilding/modeling competitions, and turned her body into something she can be proud of.
In an earlier article, Dragon expressed interest in becoming a registered dietician, and since then she has made large strides of progress. After completing all the required courses for her major, Dragon has started volunteering at the UConn Nutrition Office of Student Health Services, teaches a Bodywise fitness class, and has even created meal plans for her friends.
It’s been over a year since Dragon’s MTV appearance, but she is still busy. “I competed at Connecticut State Championships in June where I placed top 5 and continued onto Team Universe, a national, last July. I placed in the middle of the pack, 16 out of almost 30 girls,” Dragon said. “I wasn’t worried about the placement because for me, it’s not about the trophy or the placement. It’s about showing your hard work on a stage in a bikini in front of hundreds of people and feeling fully confident, nothing that I would have been able to do in the past.”
Through her experience with the show Dragon landed a spokesperson position for Bodybuilding.com, whom she is still sponsored by. “Bodybuilding.com has flown me to Ohio and Las Vegas last year for the Arnold Sports Festival (Arnold Classic) and the Olympia to work in their booth in the expo,” she said. “They equipped all the athletes with signing cards, which I thought was weird at first, ‘Who would want MY signature?’ I thought. Come to find out, a lot of people!”
As for her relationship with her former trainer, Dragon and Ta still keep in close contact. “She’s my girl! We bounce ideas off of each other sometimes about different dieting techniques and value each other’s opinions,” she said. “I know in the show we have some really rough times. There were times where I couldn’t stand her and wanted to end the whole process. I had to learn to trust her and realize that she wasn’t doing this for anyone but me.”
Being a Bodybuilding.com spokesperson, featured on MTV and a full-time student has only made Dragon more confident, which is seen in her forward momentum with her bodybuilding and dietician career. She plans to compete in at least three shows this year, including the Powerhouse Classic in New Haven on April 5.
Above it all, Dragon is still working out. Hard. On an average day, after completing a round of cardio in the morning, she will attend the gym later in the day for a session of heavy lifting. Saturday is her only rest day, and throughout the week she meticulously works out every muscle group.
The life Dragon explains before her involvement on “Made” which was comprised of chicken wings, pizza and apathy toward the gym, is a far cry from where she is today. “To me, its not another part of my agenda, its part of my free time because I’m doing something I seriously love. I never look at an opportunity to lift as a ‘job’; I just do it because I love it.” Dragon said.