Vernon Hills, IL

Stephen K.

Stephen’s Story

I used to be the guy that walked in to McDonalds and they knew me by name. Now I’m the guy that walks into Life Time and am greeted by my first name. Weight loss has always been a struggle of mine, from high school to college to the professional work place my lifestyle became increasingly sedentary and I just kept gaining weight. I tried the occasional diet and would lose a little bit of weight just to see it all come back on when I went back to eating the way I always did.

I was the guy that talked about getting healthy, would go for a walk a few times a week trying to lose weight but never took the steps to challenge myself physically or mentally. I ate garbage (10 cheeseburgers a night with the boys) and then wondered why I was exhausted and blamed my metabolism rather than owning my part in where my body was. I knew I wanted to find a gym and toured a few in the area, and from my first visit and tour with Sean, I knew Life Time was it. It wasn’t just about walking into a gym and burning off calories, it was about a lifestyle change. From the competitions, classes, personal trainers, and nutritionist, I learned what being healthy entailed from a whole person perspective.

Sean shared with me about the 60 day challenge on my tour and after seeing the improvements that people were able to make in just 60 days by sticking to a program, I figured the biggest thing I had to lose by doing the competition was a lot of weight, so I jumped in.

I completed the D.TOX program, learned about what my body needs to thrive, and what it feels like to be properly fueled by nutritious food.

I had the pleasure of participating in the BMW DRI TRI at Life Time because one of the trainers (Drew) believed in me that I could do it and challenged me to try. I had no idea if I could run 2.5 miles, ride a bike 6 miles, and row 1,000 meters – all that my body was capable of before this was walking. Drew took the time to support me through training and not only did I complete the DRI TRI, but I learned a lot about myself in the process, what my body is capable of and that if I start something and put my mind to it that I am capable of a lot more than I thought I was.

I began Sunday afternoon yoga classes with Werner, learning how to focus on the present and move on from the things that happened in the past helped keep me balanced throughout the program. Using the tools, stretches, and poses, helped me increase the flexibility of my ankles and helped me gain balance as I moved past the physical damage of previous football injuries. I even brought my sister in on a guest pass and got to see her surprise the first time that she saw me do a handstand.

Through the process of the 60day I learned what it is like to feel my age again, to have the energy to play with my nieces and nephews, dance in the hallways after a workout with my sister, and feel physically alive. I learned that a lot of the times when I thought I wanted to eat I wasn’t actually hungry, I just wanted to eat out of habit.

I learned that I could achieve a lot more in 60 days than I thought I was capable of. I lost 52lbs and 6.8% body fat, and made some great friends at Life Time along the way. I was able to make large shifts in my personal life style habits to support my long term health goals. I’m excited to continue on this health journey and bring along family and friends as I strive to continue to challenge my body physically and emotionally with the fuel that it needs to thrive.

Thank you to all of the friends and family that encouraged me and supported me while I ditched meals out at restaurants or brought my own snacks to outings, those that came to the gym with me and especially to those who held me accountable to my fitness goals and supported me on this first step in my fitness journey.