2015 Fall Transformation Challenge Runner-Up
*Results not typical
I always assumed that being tired/sluggish, especially in the afternoon, was just the
“norm;” that it is something we all go through as we get older. Because there are so many energy drinks and supplements on the market, it was easy for me to blindly accept this as truth. I never really considered nutrition as a factor. In fact, before I started this journey, I ate whatever I wanted thinking it would be okay as long as I went to the gym to work it off. I had good intentions of eating well but would usually end up consuming processed food because of its convenience. I had heard a lot about the 90-Day Challenge and how participants’ lives were changed, that they felt younger, stronger and more energetic. Tired of being, well, tired, I decided to take some action. I began by talking with a Life Time Trainer about the 90-Day Challenge. He was very professional and patient to answer every question I had. He convinced me it would be worth it to join. He assured me that he and the Life Time staff would be there the whole way to help me succeed. This was the motivation I needed.
I knew very little about nutrition except my (incorrect) preconceived perception that if food tasted bad and was not enjoyable, it was probably good for me. I decided to attend a Nutrition Workshop on Try-It Tuesday. The nutritionists educated me about what the body needs to be healthy. They showed me foods that are not only healthy but, to my surprise, delicious. I was a sponge. I spent as much time as I could reading all the articles on nutrition I could find, mainly through the 90-Day Challenge resource tab and nutrition emails. I knew in order to succeed I needed to make some drastic changes. One of the greatest tools I acquired was learning how to read labels. Looking at calories was all I ever knew; the lower the calories, the healthier it is for you, right? WRONG! I learned that calories are broken down into 3 groups: Carbs (1 gram of = 4 calories), Protein (1 gram = 4 calories), and Fat (1 gram = 9 calories). This was a revelation clearly stating that all calories are not equal.
Well, I started eating only healthy foods ( more about that later) but thought I would cut my calories way back (about 1500 calories) to speed up the process. I went to weigh in on week 2 feeling confident (and hungry) expecting some big losses, but to my shock my body fat went up. Very discouraged, I again talked with my trainer who looked at my meals and suggested I was not eating enough and how that can have the opposite effect on the body. I really wanted to throw the towel in but his encouragement helped me. Along with his great advice he told me about Life Time online health resources. I created a profile on Life Time’s “myPlan.” That helped me track my nutrition online. It was easy to follow and allowed me to log the food I ate. My Life Time online Health Advisor, Steve Misvaer, answered any questions I had. He provided great nutrition advice, refining my plan to make sure my body was getting all the nutrients it needed while enabling fat-burning. He was a big part of my success and will continue to be a part of my post 90-Day success plan. I focused on increasing my protein by eating more chicken, fish, steaks and protein shakes along with healthy complex carbs such as brown rice, sweet potatoes and green vegetables, healthy fats such as coconut oil and avocado, and essential amino acids and multivitamins. As my diet changed, so has my quality of life. I cannot remember when I have felt more energetic and alert. The healthy way of eating has now become my lifestyle. There is no more 3pm slump.
My workouts were intense for this 90-Day. I was at Life Time almost every day, waking up each morning at 4am and starting my workout by 4:30am. I spent 90 min on back and chest every Mon., Wed. and Fri., and Tues. and Thur. on legs. I would then do 30 to 60 min of cardio. I attended spin class every Tues. and Thur. after my leg workout. Special thanks to my spin instructors Sydney and Don for their commitment to excellence. At lunch I exercised smaller muscle groups followed by a brisk walk. On weekends I would go on hikes, bike rides or runs. With Life Time’s help I was able to accomplish my goals. I lost body fat and gained muscle. I wake up every morning with a new energy and am driven to maintain this healthy lifestyle.
I want to first of all thank my Lord and Savior for giving me the strength to finish the race he gave me. My wife for her support and unconditional encouragement. To the staff of Life Time who make a lasting difference in people’s lives one person at a time. Life Time gave me the tools to succeed and for that I will be forever thankful.