The Infuriating Reason A Bodybuilder's Photo Was Left Out Of A Competition Gallery

After working hard for the last two years to become a bodybuilder, Jana Roller was understandably excited about participating in her first competition. That excitement, however, turned into confusion when she realized that her photo was left out of the official competition gallery.
When she contacted the photographer to ask why her photo was omitted, he told her that he assumed that she would be "embarrassed" about her picture.
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"When I asked for [the photo] and asked why it wasn't posted in the competitor gallery he sent me it via private message saying that because my physique wasn't as great he decided to err on the side of caution to avoid me asking him to remove it or edit the photo," she shared in a submission to the GRRRL Instagram page. "He assumed I was embarrassed."

Chase your dreams GRRRLS and don't give any Fks about the opinions of others!! You are limitless!! Jana 😍 Keep aspiring & inspiring GRRRL! 😘 @janababefit 👏👏👏 __________ "I'm posting one of the stage shots from one of the stage photographers but here is the story behind it. When I went through the gallery from the photographer my photo was missing from my category. When I asked for it and asked why it wasn't posted in the competitor gallery he sent me it via private message saying that because my physique wasn't as great he decided to err on the side of caution to avoid me asking him to remove it or edit the photo. He assumed I was embarrassed. Look. I get it that I wasn't stage lean. Maybe some of the competitors didn't think I was serious about my presence there. I worked for 2 years, lost 140lb, went through prep just like everyone else. I stuck to the plan, did hours of cardio, 5 am sessions. I worked just as hard to be told that I wasn't good enough to be showcased amongst every one else. It's a good thing I have thick skin, and I will be working towards getting stage lean. This show wasn't about that. This show was about how far I've come. As a full time professional photographer myself who shoots athletes I can tell you and as we all know we all have a story. And every story deserves to be captured, documented, showcased and respected the same. This is just the beginning for me, and I won't be told that I should be embarrassed of this photo. I'm proud of my loose skin. As someone who has battled body image for years, to stand up there next to beautiful physiques took a lot mentally. I'm so proud of this photo. Not of the photographer who took it. See you at the #popeyesfallclassic when I bring my bad self to the stage again. Just because I'm not "there" yet doesn't mean I won't be. They call it #transformation for a reason and I think when it comes to bodybuilding shows we don't give enough credit to the journey and what it takes for athletes to get there. Every step of the journey deserves to be honored, not just the end result." #Iam1stPhorm #legionofboom #figureprep #figurecompetitor #womenwithmuscle #weightlosstransformation #inspire

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But when Roller saw the photos, she wasn't embarrassed at all — nor should she be.
"Look. I get it that I wasn't stage lean," she wrote. "I worked just as hard to be told that I wasn't good enough to be showcased amongst every one else."
For her, she wrote, the show wasn't about getting her body to look the way everyone else's does. It was about celebrating her accomplishments and how far she's come.
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"I'm proud of my loose skin," she wrote. "As someone who has battled body image for years, to stand up there next to beautiful physiques took a lot mentally. I'm so proud of this photo. Not of the photographer who took it."
She may not be able to change how the photographer feels, but Roller is fighting back by posting and sharing her photo where she can — because she's happy with her body, and that's all that matters.
"When I saw it, I was like, this is amazing," she told People. "When I look at it, I see the progress that I’ve made, but also I can see what I can do to improve in terms of where I want to take myself in competition. When I look at that photo, I see one small step in a very long journey. It was really important to have that to see it, and it made me really excited."
Roller also said that while it was disappointing to not be included, it isn't going to stop her from competing again.
"See you at the #popeyesfallclassic when I bring my bad self to the stage again," she wrote in her Instagram post. "Just because I'm not "there" yet doesn't mean I won't be. They call it #transformation for a reason and I think when it comes to bodybuilding shows we don't give enough credit to the journey and what it takes for athletes to get there. Every step of the journey deserves to be honored, not just the end result."
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