7 years ago, Cody Harman walked down the aisle as a blushing bride in a breathtaking size 6 gown. Then, he was trapped in a body that he didn’t feel was his. He was pursuing a life that he didn’t want just to make his parents happy. Fast forward to present day, he’s making a splash on the bodybuilding circuit. And along the way, he’s teaching the world about what it’s like to transition.
Harman talked to The Sun about his lifetime of suppressing who he was.
“I knew I was attracted to girls but because my parents were very religious they made me think it was a sin, so I dated guys instead,” he shared with the publication.
To fend off rumors of homosexuality, he met husband Adam through an online dating service. They wed in 2008 despite Harman’s lack of attraction for him. He moved with his husband to Germany where the reality of a lifetime in the wrong marriage and body settled in.
“I just wasn’t the person I was meant to be. I used to run for eight miles per day to cope,” Harman told The Sun.
Working as a chef, he moved back to California in 2011 for a two-year cooking class. Harman promised Adam he’d return once the class was complete. During that time, their marriage dissolved, resulting in divorce.
Freed from the constraints of his marriage, Harman came out as a lesbian in 2012. A year later, he came out as transgender.
His full physical transition went underway in 2014. While taking hormones and after having a mastectomy, he got heavily involved with CrossFit and kept up his running routine. While recovering from a hysterectomy, he started light weight training. It was then that he really started to feel like a man. Something clicked and he knew he’d found a new calling.
Last October, he stepped onstage at his first Female to Male Transgender Bodybuilding Competition. Now, Harman is focused on achieving his dream body and jumpstarting a new career as a personal trainer.
Harman will continue to train throughout the year and is planning for the last leg of his reassignment surgery in June. He’s also on the hunt for love.
Much of his story is told in his own words on his YouTube channel, Cody_talks. There, he gets highly personal to inspire others and offer a true glimpse into the transition experience. He has posted videos highlighting his hysterectomy recovery, his dating experience as a trans man and celebrated his two-year anniversary of first taking testosterone.
He’s even gotten specific about his bottom surgery consultations and his bodybuilding journey. His roughly 2,000 subscribers love his messages. But judging by the view counts on many of the videos (some reaching upwards of 18,000 views), there’s a bigger audience out there resonating with his story.
Quite often, the FTM experience doesn’t get as much traction in the media. Harman’s story is inspiring and hopefully encourages an even more inclusive conversation about the trans community.