August 20th was a typical Saturday morning for me and my family. We got up, took showers, and got dressed. We ate breakfast and headed to our gym, Life Time Sugarloaf. I had no idea my life was about to change that day.
When we got there, Tyler and Sean helped my wife and I sign up for the 60-Day Challenge. After signing up, Sean provided me with lots of information on what I needed to do to lose body fat and have a chance at winning. The information he provided was super helpful in getting me off to a strong start.
My transformation journey was a life-changing experience that never would have happened had my wife and I not signed up for the Challenge and agreed to be supportive of each other throughout the Challenge. My wife was very supportive, and I’m so grateful and thankful for her support. From the beginning, I dedicated this Challenge to my 6-year-old son, Julius, who was diagnosed with Autism a few years ago. When he was diagnosed, I was devastated, in denial, and just really sad. Like any parent, I just wanted my son to be healthy. Nonetheless, I love Julius, and I thank God for him every day. I told myself that I would never quit the Challenge just like I’ll never give up on helping Julius overcome Autism. My heart goes out to all the parents with special needs children.
Motivated and determined, I lost approximately 3% body fat within the first couple of weeks. I was so excited. When I checked the leaderboard, I couldn’t believe I was in the top 25. Over the course of the Challenge, I did lots of research and trial and error to figure out how to get rid of my body fat. I established weekly fat loss goals to reach 5%. Every time I weighed in I checked my actual body fat against my goal/target body fat for that week. I was able to stay on track for the most part. Adversity tried to get in my way throughout the Challenge, but I put all my troubles in God’s hands and kept going. Whenever I felt weak or discouraged, I put my focus back on Julius. Thinking about him motivated me to work harder than I’ve ever worked in my life.
My initial goal was to lose a few pounds of fat while giving it my all for Julius. As the Challenge was coming to an end, many people saw the changes in me and became inspired and motivated to lose weight. That’s when I decided to add another goal to my Challenge: to become a Certified Personal Trainer by July 10, 2017. Even my little boys are eating healthier as a result of this Challenge, and they are running around flexing their little muscles saying, “Look Dada, look at my muscles!” Win or lose, I will walk away from this Challenge knowing I gave it my all. This isn’t the end of a challenge, but the beginning of a new life. I feel like a new man. I don’t even recognize the man in the mirror looking back at me.
Life Time Fitness is the greatest health and fitness experience I’ve ever had. Life Time Fitness helped me achieve these amazing results first and foremost by hosting the 60-Day Challenge. I believe that Life Time Fitness lives up to its motto “The Healthy Way of Life Company.” I’ve never experienced anything like it. From the Personal Trainers, to the Child Center staff, everyone is very friendly, professional, and courteous. Sean, Tyler, and Lorenzo provided me with professional advice throughout the Challenge that helped me climb to the top. The Child Center has convenient hours that made it possible for me to work out early in the mornings and/or late in the evenings. Life Time Sugarloaf is open 24 hours a day 7 days a week which also helped me achieve my results. The LifeCafe has convenient hours and had everything I needed. Whether I didn’t get a chance to eat before getting to the gym or whether I forgot my supplements at home, LifeCafe had me covered. I took full advantage of the LifeCafe, and I was very grateful because it was convenient, affordable, and delicious.
As a result of the Challenge, my lifestyle has changed drastically. Before the Challenge, others used to call me the “clean up man,” “the food disposal,” etc., because I didn’t like wasting food, and I was always eating leftovers off my boys’ and wife’s plates. Not eating leftovers was a challenge because I had been doing it for about 4 years. These days it doesn’t bother me to throw away food, and I’ve learned to serve smaller portions so less food is thrown away. I’m also more conscientious about what I eat, and I’ve come to love certain foods that I never thought I would. Also, I’ve learned to incorporate more cardio into my exercise regimen. Prior to the Challenge I was doing about 90% weight lifting and 10% cardio, but going forward I plan to make both 50% because I’ve realized how important cardio is for fat loss and overall health.
I plan to maintain my changes with a combination of my new exercise regimen and continuing to eat healthy. If I start to gain weight, I’ll implement everything I did during the competition to get me back where I need and want to be.