A local woman appears to have moved one step closer to being on the cover of Ms. Health & Fitness 2021.

Voters pushed Taryn Pitre Boudreaux through to the quarterfinals in the ongoing cover competition, according to latest counts when polls closed earlier tonight. If successful, Boudreaux will be the magazine’s cover model, will have a featured article and will earn a $20,000 cash prize.

Boudreaux said to have so much community support in the past few days has been one of the most fulfilling things she’s ever experienced in her life.

Locals have flooded social media in recent days urging their friends to vote for Boudreaux. That support is what has powered the woman into this round.

She expects to officially learn of her place in the Quarterfinals tomorrow morning.

“There’s not enough words for me to express how grateful I am for the support and love I’ve received so far within my community and even from strangers abroad,” Boudreaux told The Gazette tonight as she officially advanced in voting. “It’s very overwhelming. I cannot believe this is happening, and I am beyond blessed and humbled to be supported by so many. No matter the outcome of this incredible competition, I feel I’m already a winner. The words of encouragement I’ve received, the kind and motivating messages, the support — that is priceless.”

Boudreaux entered the competition on a whim.

She said friends sent her the link to apply for the contest, and she decided to do it — not expecting anything to come of it.

“Two weeks later, I was contacted that I was hand-selected to compete,” she said.

For Boudreaux, the competition is part of a bigger story, and it’s one that she hopes to share with others.

Today, Boudreaux works at Peak Performance Health & Athletic Club as a part-time personal trainer and Les Mills BodyCombat Instructor. But it hasn’t always been easy for her in her journey.

Growing up, Boudreaux said she was not popular in school and was not fit. She said she was bullied and had a rough time.

“I hated school,” she said. “I dreaded every day waking up to go. I didn’t apply myself like I should have. I was far from athletic. I didn’t participate in any after school activities or sports at all. I got teased a lot. I got laughed at for my curly hair. I was overweight. I wore glasses later on in school, so I got teased for that, too.”

But then she said she found her calling through health and fitness and she’s turned those rough times and that tough story into a life of helping others. Each day, Boudreaux works to help locals become more physically fit. Their goals become her goals. And when they’re achieved, she said it always is a feeling unlike any other.

“Here I am today inspiring others and lifting them up,” she said. “Picking up the pieces of the broken because I was once broken. My favorite quote is, ‘We rise by lifting others.’”

The results of this competition, Boudreaux said, is not just for her, but also for all of the people who have that inner fire to do great things.

“I hope my journey inspires others to wake up every day and feed your fire to be the best version of you and that nothing is impossible,” Boudreaux said. “I just hope to make my hometown proud.”

In the quarterfinals, contest organizers will advance the top person forward from each group to compete against one another. And whoever wins from there will earn the cover.

Voting will begin at 10 a.m. tomorrow for the next round. People can vote free once per day or they can purchase additional votes with proceeds going to Jared Allen’s Homes for Wounded Warriors, which provides handicapped-accessible housing for veterans.

Vote for Boudreaux online: 

https://mshealthandfitness.com/2021/taryn-boud