Inspiring Latina: Actress, Musician and Fitness Guru Somaya Reece

Inspiring Latina: Love & Hip Hop's Somaya Reece Talks Fitness, Inspiration and more

Somaya Reece has come a long way from her rough-and-tumble upbringing. 

The daughter of Salvadorean immigrants, the former Love & Hip Hop star grew up in a one-car garage in South Central Los Angeles as her parents struggled to make ends meet on minimum wage jobs. The Latina refused to become just another statistics, and -- after a scary gang-related incident nearly left her dead -- decided something had to change. Her poverty growing up inspired her to do better and be better. "It makes me want to go farther, go harder. It makes me never give up," she says. "That is what keeps me motivated."

Now, the Latina boasts an impressive career as a musician, model, actress and fitness guru. 

Reece's career began on the pages of Myspace. Her curvaceous body made her an instant hit, and she quickly gained 1.5 million friends and received 31 million page views. The Salvadroean-American actress and model became a self-made powerhouse, earning a loyal fan base that followed her every move. This popularity pushed her to start a motivational fitness movement called "Fitness With Friends" and to write a self-help book, 30 Days to Fabulous. 

"I wanted to touch my supporters one by one, city by city. It's more than fitness. I do it because I enjoy sharing my story of struggles, my failures, and my triumphs," she sys. "I have motivated them to achieve all of their personal goals."

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