Zhesi C.

Oklahoma City, OK

Zhesi’s Story

I found myself nearly middled aged not recognizing the person in the mirror.  How did I get here?  The last twenty years was a blur of immigrating to a new country, getting married, building a business, and starting a family.  In the process, I lost something, my health. It was the wake-up call of my last pregnancy where I was diagnosed with Placenta previa and percreta, nearly dying giving birth, when for the first time in my life I was confronted with my mortality.  It never crossed my mind before.  I survived, but at the cost of a wrecked and scarred body that was obese and pre-diabetic.   All I felt was anger.  How did this happen!  I often look to proverbs to find wisdom and this one stuck with me, “Time is like a river – it flows by and doesn’t return.” What happened, happened, I cannot go back.  Moving forward on a better path is my only option.  The only problem is I had no idea what to do.

I needed to figure out how to correct it in the future, but how?  In the past, I have tried to diet, but always failed. Athletics? Ha, I’m an uncoordinated klutz. Joined a gym or two, but I had no idea what I’m doing or how to use the equipment, so gave up.  I’m a novice trying to solve a problem that needs an expert.  Lucky for me a good friend of mine on a whim suggested I try her gym.  Life Time.  Fitting name I thought, I have spent that ignoring my health. So, I go and attend a Dance Jam class with my friend.  It was fun, didn’t even feel like working out, except for the exhaustion and Olympic size pool of sweat dripping off my body. Then I was introduced by my friend to Jia, a personal trainer, and after hearing my story she encouraged me to sign up for the 60day Challenge.  Jia asked me what my goal was.  Half-jokingly I said to be on ninja warrior to raise awareness for my son’s condition, Hurlers Syndrome.  Her reply was unexpected.  Instead of laughing at my absurd proposition, she said, she couldn’t get me there in 60 days, but we could start and with time and some hard work we could. I was sold. From there my journey began.  I set an obtainable first goal of reducing my body fat percentage to 30%, losing 15 lbs and a long-term goal of 20% body fat at 120 lbs with an appearance on ninja warrior.  We got to work.

I felt like I was in college.  We did body scans and set up the app, which tracks progress that you don’t see on the scale.  This was a massive motivator to me.  I can’t recall how many times I quit because the scale didn’t move.  I had so little muscle mass I gained weight at first, which would have been discouraging without the information provided by the body scans and the wise counseling of my trainer.  My weekly Saturday Sweat Sessions I began to look forward to.  Not for the workout, but the encouraging community.  I wasn’t alone.  The friends I made kept me going.  I learned about macronutrients and proper portion control from the classes offered.  Meal planning, who does that? Me! Well now anyway thanks to the resources provided by Life Time. My trainer taught me that diet is the most important part, and it isn’t about eating little but eating right.  The biggest game-changing amenity that allowed me the freedom to do this was the childcare options.  I can drop my three kids off at the kid academy and they have a blast.  Now my kids ask when the next time they can go to the club.  I’ll just jump on the Life Time app and schedule me and my kids a class. The entire 60 days I had my coach by my side helping and encouraging me.  The last two months have changed my life.

My entire family goes the club now.  I didn’t even ask them; they saw how my life changed and just did it.  We even plan athletic events outside the club. We are going on a Mud run in a couple of weeks.  Unbelievable. With my newly acquired knowledge of fitness, a new world has opened for me and my family. I have learned that fitness isn’t something you just do occasionally to lose a bit of weight, but a lifestyle.  You must eat clean and stay active but have fun, so we meal plan as a family and plan some active activities.  Set some realistic goals to work towards and don’t overwhelm yourself.  After two months I have more energy, am more relaxed, and sleep better than ever.  I don’t want to go back to my old habits anymore. The atmosphere of Life Time is so inviting and the community and staff encourage and motivates you the whole way.  It is unlike any other club I have been to. My friends and I signed up for group training and personal training with Jia.  I have my friends and family all on this journey helping us keep each other accountable. My journey toward my ultimate goal will be long and difficult, but for the first time, I actually see a path.  I see this not as a 60day Challenge, but the first 60 days of my journey towards being healthy for the rest of my Lifet Tme. See you on Ninja Warrior!