02/18/2016 05:33 EST | Updated 02/19/2016 02:59 EST

Conner Rensch, Bikini Model Who Lost 130 Pounds, Won't Hide Her Stretch Marks

"I really have grown to love them."

A bikini model who lost 130 pounds refuses to hide her flaws.

Conner Rensch of Nebraska proudly showed off her stretch marks for a bikini competition last year — which she won, according to Inside Edition.

"I wasn't ever ashamed, I was always very proud, I really have grown to love them," the 26-year-old said.

She won in the Transformation division at the 2015 World Beauty Fitness And Fashion National competition in Denver, Colo., she confirmed to The Huffington Post Canada.

That was the first time she'd worn a bikini, she told the Daily Mail.

To all who think it can't be done. IT CAN. #hardwork #LETSGO @trainandtransform

A photo posted by Conner Rensch (@crensch) on

Rensch told the outlet she was bullied over her size while in school, and one girl even told her to kill herself.

'I was [a] constant eater, I was always hungry and would want to feel very, very full - it comforted me."

By the time she was 18, she weighed 271 pounds. Dissatisfied with her body, she started a journey to get healthy.

She met with a nutritionist and trainer, she writes on her website, and over the next two years, lost 130 pounds. She maintains her weight loss with meal planning and weightlifting.

"This was a lifestyle change, not just a diet, and now I control those things that used to control me."

Rensch has almost 59,000 followers on Instagram, where she shares before-and-after photos and inspirational quotes.

She was even featured on the cover of People's Half Their Size issue in 2014.

"Every woman has flaws on their body and if we can be vulnerable and show each other that that is okay, I think that is so empowering for women," she told Inside Edition.

CLARIFICATION: A previous version of this story stated that Conner Rensch won the 2015 World Beauty Fitness And Fashion competition in the Transformation division, however, she clarified to HuffPost Canada that she won the competition in Denver, Colo. This story has been updated with her comments.

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