To prepare for her Flex photo shoot with renowed fitness photographer Per Bernal last November, the "Total Divas" star amped up her already intense workouts, slimming down her physique while cultivating lean muscle.
"Per actually photographed Triple H for the cover of Flex, and I wanted to do WWE justice in doing this shoot," Natalya told WWE.com. "I've dreamed of doing a fitness magazine since I started working out at the age of 14, and I wanted to be sure I was in the best shape possible."
Never adhering to the same workout routine, Nattie attributes much of her transformation to Olympic powerlifting, introduced to her by 14-time World Champion John Cena.
"Olympic powerlifting actually helps me out a lot with my in-ring performance as well," Natalya said. "For me, it's very cardiovascular, because its 'go,go,go.' I keep the pace up, which keeps my heart rate up. I also do hot yoga in Tampa with Kofi Kingston at Kofi's yoga studio, Chi Yoga, and I do a lot of long-distance running."
In addition to revamping her training regimen, Natalya has remained intensley focused on her diet, which consists of nutrient-rich fare such as fish, chicken, fruit, vegetables and nuts.
"I stick to foods that come from the earth - things that aren't processed," the former Divas Champion explained before adding, with a wink, "but that doesn't stop me from having my caramel macchiato at Starbucks."
As the February Flex hits newsstands, Natalya hopes to empower readers and challenge mainstream misperceptions of what it means to be beautiful.
“I want people to come away seeing that Nattie is not a supermodel and she’s not a twig. She’s got curves, and you know what? She has earned those curves,” she affirmed. “People need to be proud of what they have. There’s nothing more sexy than confidence. If you own whatever it is that you have and embrace it, there’s nobody that can touch you.”