Divini Rae Featured in The Journal Record
Divine fitness: Former model wants to help other Oklahoma City Women Get Strong
BY: Heide Brandes
Divini Rae said she hates that women look at themselves in the mirror and loathe what they see. She hates that young women around the world are starving themselves in order to fit a mold that is unrealistic and completely impossible to achieve.
A former model and Playboy Playmate, Rae knows firsthand how unrealistic the vision of “perfect body” is. Her voluptuous curves and charming imperfections were blurred out through the magic of air brushing, and today she can see that same deceitful magic on magazines everywhere.
“We aren’t perfect. Nobody is perfect…. There is healthy, and for everyone, that image of health is different,” Rae said.
Now a resident of Oklahoma City, Rae is taking that message to the world. She is launching a system of YouTube workout videos, an e-cookbook, and a fitness blog.
Rae said she suffers from the same body issues that plague others.
“I don’t ever tell women they should love their bodies; I invite them to love themselves as they are now while setting into place attainable health and fitness goals for the future,” Rae said. “I help them discover that when they show themselves love and kindness, the body responds in a positive way. ”
Divini Rae was born in a log cabin in the remote village of Tanana, Alaska. She grew up with no running water. Her family hunted for its own food, and her mother grew fresh vegetables in the garden during the summer. Very rarely, if ever, did she eat food out of a can or vegetables that weren’t pulled up in her backyard.
“I grew up active and outdoorsy and reading everything I could put my hands on,” said Rae. “I was a huge Ayn Rand fan, and all I wanted was to get out and see the world. ”
That wanderlust caused the 19-year-old to leave the University of Oregon, where she studied journalism and psychology, to take a vacation in Sydney, Australia. What started as a short trip became a permanent home.
“I was on a beach when I was approached by a woman photographer who asked who my modeling agency was,” said Divini. “I had no idea what she was talking about. She thought I was a model, and asked if I would be interested in modeling for a calendar she was photographing. ”
Rae wasn’t a fitness nut at the time, but she was active. Australia offered limitless opportunities for hiking, swimming, beach running and white-water rafting.
She dabbled as an actress on shows like Above the Law and hosted The Sports Betting Show. She graced the cover of Inside Sport Magazine and launched her own Australian magazine focusing on Sydney’s social scene and nightlife.
Rae split her life between Sydney and New York City for five years before moving to California, where she was chosen as Playboy’s Miss November 2003.
“It was one of the most positive, eye-opening experiences I’ve ever had,” Rae said. “I felt empowered by it. I’m not a skinny woman. I have curves, and Playboy showed that it was okay to be a shapely, healthy woman. ”
Playboy Enterprises also allowed Rae to travel around the world, where she learned about health, the culture of food and spiritual fitness from cultures in Thailand, Turkey, Moscow, South America and more.
“Along the way, I become more and more drawn to health and wellness of not just the body, but the mind and spirit as well,” said Rae. “You pick up health practices from other cultures, and you see the way different cultures eat, what they eat and why they eat it. ”
She met her husband, Dr. Winston Fong, in Los Angeles, and he whisked her away to his hometown of Oklahoma City. Rae said she fell in love with the city immediately, seeing an “idyllic place that was perfect for raising a family. ”
She also let fitness slide. After having two children, she weighed more than 200 pounds. She wanted to get her strong body back.
“I started to eat with awareness and do what worked with my body. Everyone is different. Feeling terrible isn’t a normal state of existence. It’s not normal for your body to feel tired or awful all the time,” she said.
Most women, Rae said, suffer from negative self-talk, including herself.
“When our self-talk consists of things like ‘Ugh, I’m so fat. I hate my cellulite,’ more of the same shows up in our lives,” she said. “I encourage women to see what happens when they choose inner dialogue that is more like: ‘Every day I get healthier. Every day my clothes fit more loosely and I have more energy. ’”
As she worked to get back into shape, Rae noticed that other women had the same struggles. Her friends began turning to her for advice and input. She started sharing short videos via her phone with her friends, and an idea was born.
“I started a YouTube channel to share my workouts with the women I knew, but then I thought, ‘Why not reach out to all women?’”
Rae already has fans.
“Working out with her doesn’t feel like work. She has helped me learn to love myself, and be my very best self,” said Amber Soliel. “She has been my fitness coach for years, and with her help, I have lost body fat and become a healthier, stronger woman. ”
From that idea was born DiviniFit.com, which is set to launch June 1, 2014.
While all the content is currently offered for free, Rae said she’s building an audience of potential clients.
“Of course I would like to make money. But revenue isn’t my driving force,” Rae said. “My business model is simple: I provide free content of incredibly hard-earned, valuable health and fitness info that most dieticians and trainers would charge hundreds to thousands of dollars for. I do this to build a relationship with my audience and prove that they can trust me. When that trust relationship has been established, they will know they can trust the quality of the e-cookbook and e-video series I will be selling in the future. ”
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© 2014 Dolan Media Newswires. All Rights Reserved.
~ Be Happy, Healthy and Fit in Mind, Body and Spirit ~ Visit DiviniFit.com for daily health, fitness & lifestyle tips ~
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