2014 Fall Transformation Challenge Winner
(20.2% body fat to 3% body fat) *
*Results not typical
Lifetime literally changed my life. I’m going to be 40 years old three days after the challenge ends. And I’m not only in the best shape of my entire life, but this is the first time I’ve ever seen my abs—ever! I was a “husky” kid, became a fat teenager, gained the “freshman fifteen” in college, and never looked back. I’ve always been too embarrassed to go swimming. My doctor told me earlier this year that being overweight helped cause my umbilical hernia. And my seven year old daughter recently noticed my stretch marks and asked, “Dad, what are those things on your stomach?” I knew something had to change. I joined Lifetime earlier this year when the first club opened in California, and when I saw the signs for the 90-Day Challenge, I knew it was the kick in the pants I needed. I also knew I needed three ingredients to succeed: motivation, a workout plan, and a diet overhaul.
In all sincerity, Lifetime itself gave me all the motivation I needed to succeed. Let me explain. I’ve belonged to a couple of gyms over the years but couldn’t go more than two (maybe three) times a week. I work a lot and have to watch my daughter because my wife works in the evenings. Lifetime’s Kids Academy and its great hours allowed me to do something I’ve never been able to do before: work out six days a week. In fact, my daughter loves the Kids Academy so much that she actually asks to go on a daily basis, which helped motivate me to get off my rear every day and go too. The trainers are also more friendly and helpful than anywhere else I’ve ever worked out. At least four different trainers talked to me every time they saw me, gave me fist bumps, told me I looked great, and gave me advice. This positive feedback really helped keep me going. Even the locker room attendants motivated me by saying “wow, you’re really leaning out” and “man, you’re getting more ripped every day.” I’ve never experienced this at any other gym. The staff and trainers at Lifetime actually paid attention to me. They recognized me. They celebrated my success, genuinely. This was exactly what I needed to keep moving forward for 12 weeks.
The second ingredient of my transformation was my workout plan. I should mention that my plan was probably very different than many others. This is because I had hernia surgery four days before I began the challenge (notice the bandage in my “before” picture). This was frustrating because I had to complete the challenge in different stages. Luckily, it worked. During Week 1, I couldn’t exercise at all. So I spent this week focusing on two things: my diet and my exercise plan. First, I dropped my calories, got an app that tracked my food, and threw away all the junk food and processed garbage in my apartment. Second, I spent the week reading and researching ways to lose weight without losing muscle.
The last ingredient of my transformation was a radical change in my diet. Before the challenge, and for my whole life, I ate whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted, usually donuts, burgers, frozen burritos, pizzas, cheesecakes, chips, and cookies. If it was processed, had sugar, and/or had fat, I ate it and asked for another. I knew I needed to clean up my diet. But one of the trainers recommended I also try “carb timing,” so I did, and, boy, did it work! On workout days, I didn’t eat carbs, except for green vegetables, all day until right before and after my workout.
From the start, I knew the 90-Day Challenge was just the beginning. The “after” is even more important, not just for me, but because I also want to be a positive role model for my daughter. I know I can embrace the changes I’ve made for the long-term because they are simple: eat right and work out regularly with intensity. In fact, I’ve already made an “exit plan” by mapping out my post-challenge workouts and diet so I can keep this commitment going into the “after.” I need to thank my wife for her support. But, really, I owe Lifetime a thank you as well. This is the best birthday present I’ve ever received, and although I gave it to myself, I couldn’t have done it without you. Thank you.