I still can’t believe it is me. That, at 47, I am in better shape than I was when I was medically discharged from the Army nearly twenty years ago for a service injury related to the Gulf War that eventually caused my right lung to atrophy to 10 percent and my right heart ventricle to diminish capacity and functionality. That, at 47, I can run twelve miles with less exhaustion than I did a half-mile less than a year ago. That after only 8 months and 3 60day events I have lost over 70 lbs. and dropped my body fat by over 75 percent. I still can’t believe it’s me and I owe it to Life Time.
As a road warrior who spends 3–4 nights each week away from home it has not been an easy journey. Constantly faced with the challenge of hotel gyms, client dinners and jet lag, there is something to be said about setting benchmarks and having a strong network of people to support your goal. I had that in spades; both within my local club community, and especially on the road when visiting other clubs whose teams were always there to support my drive to be the best me possible. Yet, most important, I could not have even begun this journey without a strong support network at home. Helping me to take each step every day; reassuring me it is about making life choices and life changes which became a part of my core beliefs.
Believe it or not, my commitment to my fitness goal has also poured over into other aspects of my life, especially my career. Working in sales, my job requires that I often stand in front of large audiences evangelizing my company’s solutions. Whereas before I was self-conscious and would shy away from these engagements, I now feel empowered because I feel more confident in myself which enables me to feel more confident when speaking to other people. This level of confidence has not gone unnoticed in my company as I am asked more and more to be a guest speaker at key events across the country.
They say, “knowing is half the battle,” and that is definitely true when it comes to creating and following any workout program. Knowing what exercise routine best affect your overall goal. Knowing the difference between steady-state cardio and HIIT. Knowing what and how different foods affect your body and the types of nutrients your body needs. Knowing how to eat healthy on the go or in the air when your options are limited. Knowing how to slightly change your program just enough so that your body is shocked into thinking it is totally new. So many things I have absorbed from my trainer, and other trainers across the country, that have helped me achieve my goals. So many life lessons that will help me to continue to make progress well after the results of this latest 60day are finally complete.
Looking back, I still can’t believe it’s me. Beyond the contest, the 60day has helped me discover an amazing person I never knew existed. Someone who is capable to achieve any goal he desires. Someone who is confident in himself and who is not consumed by the failures of his past. Someone who has a strong support group in and out of the gym who root for him every day and are inspired by the changes he has made. This is what I am most thankful for. Looking good in a bathing suit this summer is just a bonus. Ha!