Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Barbara's Story

Barbara had never been inside a gym before, but she's been going strong for over a year now, losing over 20 pounds.

I had two surgeries over the last five years. At my age, that seemed like a slow slide to a blanket on my lap in the old folks home. I liked to think of myself as robust and full of energy. Well, it seems most of my energy was being spent reading and cooking. The reading turns out to be sedentary, and my cooking, not to mention baking, was putting more calories on my plate that I needed to maintain my youthful figure. So, I was slowly turning into a round, though still wonderful version of myself. My cholesterol, blood pressure, and resting heart rate were on the rise.

I wanted to make a commitment to a positive change in myself, but had no clue how to go about successfully using a gym, and changing my eating habits. It all seemed overwhelming. I had the feeling that anybody who was successful at diet and exercise had started decades ago. I read about the Total Body Turnaround on the gym web site. I liked the idea of meeting a group of people who were setting out on similar fitness goals. I liked the idea of being part a group that encourages each person to meet their own goals for fitness and diet.

I started to keep my exercise journal. I enjoyed the way the TBT created simple workout routines that gave me real purpose when I was in the gym. I didn’t try to do too much. I didn’t get stiff and sore with every workout. I did discover the satisfaction of focusing on an exercise and working to improve my ability to complete repetitions and increase the resistance I used. Some exercises came easier than others. Some made me sweat a lot more than others.

The results of showing up six day a week started showing the first week. The changes were small, but they kept coming. There were little successes every day. Making the gym part of six days of the week was one of my big successes. I keep a gym bag in the car, and made the gym part of my trip home.

I now know how to adjust exercise equipment for my size, and understand how to select exercises that efficiently work my heart, upper and lower body. I dare to run during my aerobic workouts. I started with one minute during my interval workout. That slowly built up to the full twenty minutes, and running Greenlake.

I also discovered that the tensions of the workday just fade at the gym. I focus on my balance, breathing, and the improvements I’m seeing in myself. I also followed up with the doctor. My cholesterol, blood pressure, and resting heart rate are greatly improved.

I’m glad I found the TBT program. I know that each day I’m in the gym is a day I am taking the time to take care of myself.

- Barbara