What motivated you to make the change to a healthier lifestyle?
I weighed 265 lbs. and had no energy to do anything with my family or friends. I didn’t even feel like doing simple things as going to my kid’s ball practice or even playing outside in the yard with them. I felt like I was in a state of depression and stuck in the daily routine of work, eat and sleep. I remember thinking “Is this it?, Is this the way it’s going to be till the day I die.” I felt bad for my family, I felt so disconnected from them. I wanted to be more involved but I just didn’t feel like it, I ached a lot and had no energy to do anything.
My doctor put me on medications for High blood pressure and Diabetes.
It was New Year’s Day and my Brother in law asked me to go for a jog in his neighborhood. I think I made it 100 feet and had to walk the rest of the way, but even with just that attempt I felt like I had accomplished something good and it felt good to try.
This was the beginning of a transformation. I wanted off of my medications, I wanted to fight for my family, I wanted to fight for myself, I wanted to be around a bit longer and enjoy my kids. I consider myself lucky that I started when I did and not after a heart attack or stroke.
What does your exercise routine look like?
My routine originally was just fast walking. Then progressed to treadmill work. I did more cardio than anything else.
My workout progressed to doing classes at the BWC, Spin, Boot Camp, Group Power, Swimming, and Running.
Now, I do endurance races and my workout is Group ride followed by Life fit. Some days I do Boot Camp followed by R30. Some days I do Circuit training on the machines followed by a run. I try to combine a couple different things in my routine. On the weekends I may swim and follow with a run or bike ride.
When time is crunched I like the Life fit class because it is total of about 20 to 30 minutes, sometimes longer, but the class will push my limits of endurance and mental toughness. Results are achieved quickly in this class
What are some benefits you have noticed about being more fit?
The benefits are too many to mention. Just feeling like a person who has been given a second chance at life is enough. The renewed energy and feeling of wellbeing has brought me close to my family again. I interact more with my family and they seem happier by it.
On the medical side my blood pressure is no longer an issue, my cholesterol is at normal levels, and my blood sugar is at normal levels and stays regulated. Triglycerides are normal, I lost 65 lbs. and feel great! No more Medications!!!!!! Now I maintain my weight and sugar levels by healthier diet and regular exercise. I still treat myself to the goodies but I also go back to my routines.
Any secrets to sticking with it?
I set short term goals that are challenging but attainable. I like to enter running events and triathlons year around. This keeps me focused and consistent in my routines. Reflecting on how hard you have worked and the second chance you have been given keeps me from wanting to go back to my unhealthy ways.
What is your biggest obstacle and how do you push through it?
Time is the biggest obstacle. Having kids that are involved in sports and activities can make it challenging to make it to the gym sometimes. This is when you drop your normal routine and go at whatever time you can. You may miss a class at a certain time but there are many other things you can get into at the gym.
Go even when you don’t feel like it. Be consistent in your workouts, the results will come. Patience is needed because there is no real quick fix to get you there but healthy diet and exercise.
If you could tell people one reason why they should start exercising what would it be?
Don’t get to the point that I reached- you may not be so lucky. Do it for yourself, your family. You’ll feel better about yourself.
What accomplishment in regards to your health/fitness are you most proud of?
Having lost the weight and getting off of medications. Having the energy to interact with my kids and family. Having been given a second chance with a lower risk of heart attack or stroke or complications with diabetes.
Also, looking back to my first jog that New Year’s day where I only got about 100 feet to now having just completed my first 140.6 mile Ironman event in Florida and looking forward to doing more. Patience, be Consistent with your exercise, the results will come!