Torrie Wilson has endured plenty of body slams in her life, and that’s not including her nine-year career in pro wrestling.
The Idaho native struggled with eating disorders as a teenager. At 16, she was diagnosed with hypothyroidism, an under-active thyroid condition that she still takes medication for to this day. In her early 20s, she was told by agents and casting directors that she was either too heavy or too muscular to get modeling work. And then there was that near-decade stint, starting at age 23, she spent traveling around the world as a fan favorite in World Championship Wrestling and later World Wrestling Entertainment, performing in front of as many as 90,000 fans—and millions more on TV—as a sports entertainer. In 2002, Wilson competed for WWE’s women’s title and defeated a young John Cena, then billed as “The Prototype,” in an inter-gender tag-team match.
But life on the road took its toll. The intense travel demands and the punishment inflicted on her body forced her into retirement in 2008 following back surgery.
“I have so many stories from that time, and it’s all such a blur,” says Wilson. “The thing most people don’t realize about pro wrestling is that you’re on the road 300 days a year, and it’s not luxurious. You get your own rental cars, and if the next destination is 300 miles or less, you’re driving there. I was driving around the country with two other girls. It was pretty crazy. I was the sane one.”
Now living in Los Angeles, Wilson is pursuing her passion for fitness as well as doing acting work on the side. On her website, torriewilsonfit.com, she provides workout videos, fitness tips, and motivation for others. And, personally, she stays fit with a clean diet (and the occasional slice of pizza) and five or six high-intensity training sessions a week.
“If I don’t work out, I don’t feel right,” says Wilson. “There’s something I gotta get out at the gym. It’s a big stress reliever. And the endorphins—I need those.”