Gainesville, VA

Christi P.

Hi! I’m Christi, nice to meet all of you! A bit about me… growing up I was stick thin and took dance until I graduated from high school. I continued dancing into college, at one point I was even a Major League Soccer cheerleader! As I got older I started gaining a bit of weight, a cycle that continued into my 30’s. I wasn’t an emotional eater; I ate when I felt comfortable and safe. I love food, especially food that’s bad for me! In my mid 30’s I met my now husband, Jimmy…who also loves food. As my metabolism began to catch up, I continued down the same path with minimal activity…except the weight was now starting to show. As someone who suffers from anxiety and mild depression this started to have a big impact on my well-being. I was happy with my life—but I wasn’t happy with myself.

Before our wedding in 2018 I took steps to make some changes. I started working out regularly with my amazing trainer, Beth Douglas, and watching what I ate. I lost 30lbs and felt great! Then after our wedding I took what I said was a break from working out and watching what I ate; but I never started again. A year later I’d gained all the weight back and there were no signs of stopping. On top of that, my depression was at an all-time high; I’d take three hour naps every weekend and never wanted to go anywhere because I hated how I looked. Around August of last year I stopped being able to sleep through the night; I’d wake up two or three times and often couldn’t fall asleep, and I was getting regular headaches.

I knew that I needed to do something. Even though my husband and I had recently joined the new Life Time in Gainesville, VA, I’d never felt confident working out on my own (everything but the cardio equipment intimidated me). Then Beth (who was now the Member Services Manager at Life Time) told us about the 60day. It was starting the weekend of our first anniversary and we figured why not. It would be a good kick start back to healthier habits.

The day after our anniversary we met with Tommy Lyons, a trainer at Life Time. He’d previously trained my husband before Life Time opened and I knew that I’d feel comfortable working with him.

Tommy talked to us about our goals (to lose weight, have our clothes fit better, develop healthy, maintainable eating habits) and suggested we start with metabolic conditioning and small group training (once a week). He’d identify our heart rate zones through testing at rest and while active and then would email workouts 3x/week that were designed to keep us in certain zones to maximize fat burn. Work smarter not harder, right? Especially since Tommy said we’d be doing our conditioning on the stair master!

As we wrapped up our appointment Tommy told us about some recommended supplements and promotions for the Life Time lab testing available that weekend. With my problems sleeping, the headaches, and the inflammation all over my body–I figured why not try it.  I selected the All In One; it tests hormone levels, cortisol levels, food sensitivities, and other markers. It took eight vials of blood and a few weeks to get the results, but I was excited that I may finally have some answers regarding why I was feeling so awful.

The stair master and I became best friends in the weeks leading up to my test results. I started strength training with my husband. That, combined with Tommy’s small group sessions, started to yield some results. Mid way into the 60 days it was time to review my blood work, and that’s when everything changed. Tommy, my husband, and I sat down for a call with a very patient gentleman named Jacob, one of Life Time’s registered dietitians, to review my results. I learned my cortisol was through the roof (possibly impacting my sleep and inflammation!) and I had a lot of food sensitivities to things like eggs, cashews, tomatoes, and wheat/gluten. I was in shock and felt a bit like my world was ending! Every day I was eating hard boiled eggs, cashews, and tomatoes. What was I going to eat?

Jacob and Tommy discussed new macro targets, caloric intake, and which heart rate zones would yield maximum results. Jacob also recommended additional supplements to help get some of my levels in line and a plan to reintroduce foods I was especially sensitive to after 60 days. Still in shock, I walked down to the café and purchased everything Jacob suggested, had a little pity party for myself, then got to it. I figured out what I could and would like to eat, meal prepped, and began tracking my macros. Before long I noticed big changes! I felt stronger, went to the gym six days a week, and even started branching out into other offerings like group fitness (shout out to Sheed!) and Alpha Strong workouts!

I didn’t think I’d be able to say this but-I’m finally happy with me again. The 60day has completely changed my life. It’s more than what you see in the before and after; it’s a supercharged start to a healthier life!