General Health and Wellness
My wife passed away about 3 ½ years ago after a two-year battle with cancer, to include surgery, chemo, radiation, and trials of new medications. She spent the last month in home hospice. I was her caregiver. Skipping forward to 2021 I was getting increasingly depressed, gaining weight, and losing sight of the future. My Sciatic nerve was acting up. My left leg started to receive shooting pains and I had great pain in my leg muscles. I was overweight with a very large stomach, no core muscles, a lousy diet, and a bad outcome. My story is not how I achieved my goals, but how my Life Time team saved me.
I signed up with Life Time in June, receiving my complimentary review with a personal trainer (Grayson W.). He asked what my goals were. A little taken aback, I said I wanted to lose 10 lbs. and get a better core. He also recommended Xochiti S. for a Massage Therapist. Soon I was going to the gym five days a week. I added the sixth day when the 60day Fall Flex Challenge began. I currently work out six days a week, two with my trainer, for a total of 9 hours per week. I have a massage bi-weekly. Grayson also provides “homework” exercises. I immediately incorporated all of the Weekly Habit Challenges into my daily activities, and they are still 100% achieved every day. I found the Life Time Training App to be a great tool to track all of my key data. My trainer focused on my mobility, strengthening my back, core, legs and arms. I had trouble with many of the 60day strength and cardio workouts. Pushups, planks, and many other mobility exercises were very difficult. I gradually improved, added more complex exercises from those he taught me and added weight to simple back exercises to increase my muscle tone. I still do these core exercises prior to every workout. Examples of my progress include squats and deadlifts. Starting out, I could not do 10 half squats without a 3” foam pad under my heels. Recently I completed 8 sets of 5 reps each as front squats and back squats with 95 lbs. on each rep. My first exposure to an open trap bar was the last week of July. My current PB is 305 lbs. I have progressed from a daily regular workout of 3000 lbs. to 6400 lbs. and currently lifted over 8290 lbs. between deadlifts, front and back squats.
My transformation was not limited to physical workouts. Grayson made recommendations on how to better my nutrition. I completely changed my diet. For example: 180 grams of protein/day; no chocolate, sweets, or fast food in the past 60 days; eliminated over 75% of all sugar from my diet; bread only once a week; wine consumption down to one glass of wine/week. I eat egg whites, chicken, Broccoli, Oatmeal, and all the other nutritious items I used to despise; eliminated almost all Diet Soda; snacks are usually a handful of peanuts or an apple with a little peanut butter; no cookies or sweets in the house; and I read articles on health, protein, the importance of exercise for the elderly to build strong muscles and bones. Bodyweight decreased to 213 lbs.; Body fat reduced to 24.6%; Lean body mass increased to 162.71 lbs.; BP is 107/69; and Resting Heart Rate is +/-60.
As I gained strength and confidence, I noticed a distinct change in how I interacted with the other men in my Grief Group, neighbors, and people in general.
I have achieved goals far beyond my expectations. So now it is time to establish new goals. Yes, my goals include continuing a healthy lifestyle, a positive mental attitude, and ever improving my strength, nutrition and my self-view. My trainer says I have much more ahead of me and he can take me there. He pays attention and structures workouts to strengthen weak areas. My Life Time team and the atmosphere provided by Life Time turned my life around. I don’t plan on being limited by a set of goals, but ever striving to make this life the best that it can be.
I am motivated and committed to never become that overweight, out of shape, sickly, depressed old man that started this journey. I take personal responsibility for my development, to do more than the minimum, to make the hard choices about diet and to track my progress as needed. The Life Time team and supporters encourage me. I forced myself to develop good habits during the first two weeks with my trainer. I have a regular morning routine that incorporates a 2.25-mile daily walk, at least 100g of protein, and the gym by 9:30. Regular discussions with my team and supportive friends reinforce my habits. To sum up, my desire to continue this journey depends on my ability to remember my motivation, commit to my ongoing improvement, continue with my good habits, track my progress, and continue to utilize my team to support me. I intend to continue with my trainer and massage therapist for the foreseeable future. It is easy to see the 60day Challenge as the end of the Journey rather than the beginning. I choose to see it as the beginning.