Get to know Danielle Ruban - IFBB Fitness Pro and Coach
Get to know the ATP Lab supplement brand and the athletes who represent our lifestyle through our new exclusive interviews.
ABOUT THE ATHLETE
Danielle Ruban is an IFBB Fitness Pro and Mindset & Wellness Coach in Kitchener, Ontario. She is a mother, wife and entrepreneur who has a passion for teaching people how to use their mind power to excel in every area of their life including fitness. During her professional athletic career, Danielle was gracing the most prestigious stages in the world of competitive fitness and bodybuilding. As a top ranked IFBB Fitness Pro she competed in several Miss Fitness Internationals, also known as the Arnolds, and qualified to compete in three Olympias. Danielle decided after her most successful year, in 2014, to step away from the stage and pursue the new dream of starting a family. Today, Danielle empowers women to honour the truth and authenticity of who they are. Teaching them how to create a body (and life) beyond your wildest dreams through radical self-love, acceptance and choosing to feel good as a primary intention.
www.danielleruban.com Instagram: DanielleRuban Facebook: Danielle Ruban
WHAT IS THE ONE WORD THAT DESCRIBES YOU BEST?Danielle: Tenacious
WHAT IS YOUR TOP-3 FAVORITE ATP LAB SUPPLEMENT PRODUCTS?Danielle:
I can’t believe what a difference this product makes for me for a number of reasons. Ever since I started taking it, I found myself way less affected by my monthly cycle. I have next to no cravings, way less bloating and I no longer experience cramping. I also found it helps me maintain a weight I feel good at. This is truly a miracle product for me!
Sleep is such a fundamental key to feel, perform and look at our best. Optisom helps me to regulate my sleep cycle and ensure that I get the kind of deep and quality sleep I need to show up and create the best possible results within my body and life!
SbP or NzW... don’t make me choose!
I live a fast-paced life being a mom and entrepreneur, so protein shakes are such a great way for me to save time. It is also an easy way for me to get in great nutrition everyday! I love to know that I am choosing a clean and pure source of proteins with no harmful additives not to mention every protein powder by ATP.
When did you start your career as an elite athlete?Danielle: I have been an athlete my entire life and I started coaching at the early age of 13. I haven’t stopped since!
I earned my IFBB Pro Card in 2011 and have worked with hundreds of people towards achieving their fitness goals. I have shifted my focus from working primarily with competitors to helping ordinary people achieve extraordinary results within their mindset and fitness.
IF YOU COULD CHOOSE ANOTHER CAREER OR SPORT WHAT WOULD IT BE?Danielle: I don’t think I would! Every day, I truly feel like I’m living my purpose and passion doing what I do. However, since I’m such a performer, I have always wondered what it would be like to be an actress.
What or who made you want to pursue an active and healthy lifestyle?Danielle: Growing up I always admired athletes. I was just so amazed by not only what the human body can do but also how we can build, sculpt and shape that body. It is this fascination for training our bodies to look and perform in a particular way that led me to compete in fitness competitions.
In Pro Fitness, which is the only category in bodybuilding with a performance component, you get the best of both worlds. You are not only judged on your condition and symmetry but also on performing an intense routine that involves demonstrating your strength, endurance and overall athleticism. It was the perfect sport for me considering my background in gymnastics and what I was passionate about.
My biggest inspiration these days is my (almost) 2-year-old son. Having him changed my life completely. I went from pushing my body past its limits and enjoying how far I could take it to now seeking how good I can feel and how well I can treat it!
Today, I do not strive for an extreme look but rather enjoy having a body that feels healthy, vibrant and energetic. I feel amazing from the inside out and that comes with living a more balanced lifestyle.
WHEN IT COMES TO OUR PROTEIN SUPPLEMENT FLAVOURS, WHICH ONE DO YOU PREFER?
Vanilla, Chocolate, Raspberry or Salted Caramel?
Danielle: I love vanilla because it’s so versatile. It’s a nice neutral flavor that goes well and complements anything. But I also love the SbP Chocolate! So rich and satisfying!
WHAT IS YOUR POSITION ON THE USE OF ILLEGAL OR UNCONTROLLED DRUGS IN CERTAIN SPORTS SUCH AS THE FITNESS WORLD?Danielle: Unfortunately, it is was one of the things that convinced me to turn away from the sport. I understand it is a reality of the bodybuilding world and I do not judge anyone for the choices they make for themselves whatsoever.
But I found it very disheartening to compete against competitors who choose to take drugs when I proudly have always been a natural athlete.
For me, taking performance-enhancing drugs has always been totally against my core values and I really felt the pressure to take them in order to level the playing field with the others.
I have heard that a Natural Pro Show was added this year which was great news. Clearly, I’m not the only one who feels this way and it made me consider returning on the stage.
If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
Danielle: That’s such a hard one! I’ve worked so hard on self acceptance and now you’re asking me what I want to change?!
Haha! I believe our challenges are our best teachers. If I didn’t have these things I found challenging about myself, then I wouldn’t have the resistance needed to grow into the kind of person I meant to be.
I wouldn’t change a thing. But if I could have a superpower it would be a photographic memory for super memorization powers!
WHO IS YOUR FAVORITE SPORTS HERO?
Danielle: My long-term sports hero is Oksana Grishina, four times Ms Fitness Olympia. She was already my hero long before she reached the height of her career.
Oksana has had such a powerful influence on me, and I know I wouldn’t be where I am today without her inspiration and loving guidance.
Seeing her perform live at the Arnold’s in 2010 is exactly what inspired me and lead me to go get my pro card and share that same stage with her one day. The very next year I did just that! I made my pro debut at the Miss Fitness international along side with her. Crazy story!
In which way do you bring your badass attitude to the coaching profession? In other words, what does your clients gain from this approach?
Danielle: I love that question!
I suppose my badass attitude came forward when I decided that my path is my own and I don’t need to do what the masses are doing or see things the same as everyone else. The badass attitude comes from the fact that I believe we should create a fit lifestyle and body that feels great for us and not compare to anyone else’s.
There is no one superior approach to fitness. Eating is what makes us feel good in alignment with who we are and the life we live.
What I love to do is helping people find what’s best for them.
I can tell you that what will work better than any strategy and create lasting results in someone’s fitness is embodying and transforming into the kind of person they worth to be. Lead them to prioritize themselves and their health before anything else.
When you have a healthy respect for yourself and show up for yourself every day it’s only natural that you are going to be the kind of person that has a healthy and happy body.
It’s not about the program that you follow as much as it is about the person that you become!
What is your favorite song to listen while training?
Danielle: This is embarrassing! But you will most likely not find anything on my playlist produced after 1980!
Currently there is a lot of Queen in there and I always used to listen to “We are the Champions” before every competition.
IF YOU HAD SUPER POWERS, WHAT WOULD THEY BE AND WHAT WOULD YOUR SUPERHERO NAME BE?
Danielle: Like I mentioned previously, I would love to be able to remember everything! Can you imagine? I just realized how this may not be so good for the things you would like to forget.
I would love to be able to time travel. I think that would be the coolest most amazing superpower of all!
My super hero name... Rubina! The time traveling, never-forgetter-girl! Empowering others to master their mindsets and bodies to live the life of their dreams! (It’s already half true.)
WHAT IS YOUR GUILTY PLEASURE OR FAVORITE CHEAT MEAL?
Danielle: I worked super hard at this because I don’t think having guilt around food or framing it as cheating is a healthy mindset whatsoever.
I believe in making food choices that come from a place of self love and mindfulness. To me that looks like choosing foods that nourish and energize me more often than not, but also not denying myself anything or feeling restricted in any way.
My favorite foods that I enjoy with moderation are red wine, pizza and New York style cheesecake.
What are your personal health goals for this year?
Danielle: This year I’m really focusing on mobility and flexibility. I would love to get back closer to where I was when I competed in gymnastics.
My other goal is to simply keep honouring and listening to my body’s signals and doing everything I can to maintain and sustain how great I feel now!
What is your favorite motivational quote and why?
Danielle: Have you seen my social media accounts? I love quotes! I draw so much inspiration and wisdom from them.
It’s so hard to choose one but I love “Whether you think you can or you think you can’t, you’re right.” - Henry Ford.
I love this because I am fascinated with the power of our mind and believe that everything we create in our reality is first born in the belief that it is possible.
Therefore, we can achieve anything that our mind can conceive! (That might be another quote) but it’s the truth.
I am constantly working on upgrading my beliefs because depending on what they are, they are either holding me back or propelling me forward!
As a trainer, having worked with many people and with the experience you have gained, why do you believe it is important to improve the mind as much as the body?
Danielle: If I expand on what I was talking about previously, it’s because our mind can be our biggest obstacle or our greatest asset when it comes to body transformation or any kind of achievement, truly.
If you have a running dialogue in your mind about why it’s so hard for you to get in shape or how you have no control when it comes to food, it doesn’t matter how great of a strategy you have if you don’t have the mindset to execute it in the first place. You will stay stuck with your current beliefs (and body) and never reach what’s possible for you.
Every major athletic victory I achieved, I had to clearly see it at first in my mind. And some of those things were hard to even imagine, but once I saw they were possible and finally decided they were happening, they did.
You and I are not built any differently. We all have unlimited and infinite potential... the only question is, how tenacious are you?
The other part of working on your mindset is getting your subconscious mind on board with your goals. We will not let ourselves change and transform if we believe that what we want is in some way unsafe or that we aren’t worthy of it.
For example, you can say you want to lose 40 pounds, but you may have an unconscious belief that if you do, your family and friends will treat you differently or judge you. That fear of separation is enough to sabotage you from the start!
Can you see how it’s so much more than just diet and exercising?
When you learn to work with your mind, and harness its super powers, you can make progress faster and go so much further!
As a mother, how do you balance your life as a parent and fitness athlete?
Danielle: When I have taken time to do the things that light up my heart, then I know I showed up as the best mother, wife, coach, etc. Working on my fitness and athletics is a big part of what fills my cup and brings me joy.
I am so fortunate to have a sitter Monday to Friday, so close by that I can dedicate the time I want to my workouts and my business.
Because it’s such a non-negotiable part of both of our lives, my husband and I make sure we take turns watching our son so that we can each get our workouts done on the weekend.
Part of having balance is recognizing when you are off balance and knowing what to do to bring yourself back. That comes with consistently checking in with yourself and making sure you feel good in all areas of your life.
Do you believe that women are well represented in the sports and fitness industries?
Danielle: It’s all about perception. Some women may be totally fine with how women are represented, and others may be outraged. To be perfectly honest, what I see is a mix between female empowerment and objectification. As an individual, it’s up to me to speak up about how I wish to be represented... ATP Lab does a fantastic job of representing their female athletes!
WHY ATP LAB?
Danielle: Someone tell me why NOT ATP!?
They put so much of their heart into developing and producing effective products, sourced from the purest and highest quality, to support people of all ages in their unique health and fitness goals, empowering them to improve their overall quality of life!
They don’t only produce the best quality products in the industry, but they are so passionate and care so much about the people they serve.
The ATP team and the amazing product line supported me through so many seasons of life. From preparing and training my body to places it never been before; through healing from adrenal fatigue and leaky gut syndrome; through my first pregnancy; to where I am today just enjoying feeling healthy, vibrant and powerful in my body and leading others to do the same!
They haven’t just been there for me, but also for my clients, friends and family. ATP has played a major role in their success and well-being.
They are simply the best in every way. I’m so glad you asked ;)
What advice would you give to fans who seek a healthy lifestyle?Danielle: I would make sure you have a compelling vision of what your ideal level of health and fitness looks and FEELS like to you.
I would advise them that they are unlimited and have the potential to create whatever they want for themselves, but they must be crystal clear on what that is and why it is paramount they achieve it.
Having a casual interest in changing your life isn’t enough, you must invest a lot of emotion and meaning into what you want to create and experience.
Also, when it comes to being physically active, it’s very helpful to find activities that you enjoy! Do you like lifting weights? Running? Swimming? Cycling? What about a dance or martial arts class? Do you do better on your own or in a group atmosphere? Find what suits you!
I believe that we are so much more likely to stick to exercising and healthy eating habits if we are taking care of ourselves mentally, emotionally and spiritually as well. A healthy routine is not just about food and training, it’s about quality of thoughts and relationships too.
If you truly want to master your mind and body, you will make much faster progress and get more results with at least one person acting as an extraordinary source of support for you. Make sure that you are receiving support in the area(s) of strategy, accountability and mindset.
Let us know in the comment section if you have a special question for one of our athletes?