ACE-certified Success Stories
ACE-certified Personal Trainer
Founder, Lifestyle Management Solutions
Five years ago, at the age of 34, I found myself at my heaviest weight: 312 lbs! In the prior years leading up that weight, I was finding it increasingly difficult to live a somewhat normal life. Everyday seemed to present a new challenge; from fitting into airline seats to riding roller coasters, my world was getting more and more limited in terms of what I could partake in.
I have been overweight most of my life. I was a heavy child – usually twice as heavy as my classmates. As a teen, I entered high school weighing 160 lbs., and upon graduation weighed almost 200 lbs. It was after 10 years of marriage when I reached my highest weight. I was tired most of the time with myriad health issues as a result of, and/or compounded by, my weight. The thought of my own mortality was beginning to sink in.
On December 27, 2001, I embarked on a life changing journey. I joined a local Weight Watchers meeting to begin getting my diet under control. Shortly following, I started to incorporate light exercise into my daily routine. As someone who completely hated exercising or anything that even resembled activity, this was no easy task. At 312 lbs., my doctor suggested that I simply walk 30 minutes everyday. I complied, and as the weight began to come off, I gained the courage to join a gym.
With the help of a friend who was a certified exercise specialist, we developed a circuit training program for me to follow. Once again, I fully complied. Like most lifestyle changes, the regular exercise became habit and a normal part of my day. Eventually, days didn't feel complete unless I accomplished some form of physical activity.
Finally, in September of 2003, almost two years after embarking on this new healthy journey, I hit my goal weight of 140 lbs. – a total of 172 lbs. lost! I now do things that I never thought I would such as riding my bike to work everyday, and my newest hobby which is learning to fly a plane. I have maintained my weight loss for almost three years and have found the need to help inspire others to improve their quality of life as well. This need drove me to obtain my ACE certification and do exactly that.
After almost 20 years in the mental health profession, I quit my day job (so to speak) to study for my certification. Not so surprisingly, I have found that my training as a mental health professional has certainly helped me in this new career path. I understand that which drives us to make major lifestyle changes is closely intertwined with our emotional and psychological makeup.
On January 30, 2006, I had the thrill of a lifetime when I appeared live on the "Good Morning America" television news program. It was the culmination of the show’s "America Takes It Off Challenge," and I was interviewed about my body transformation with Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York.
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