Updated: Oct 28, 2021
After years of health issues wreaking havoc on my body, my goal was to get into the best shape of my life. At the very least, I needed to reverse some of the damage the medical conditions caused. I wanted to simply feel better. I started looking for a personal trainer near me and decided on trying group training at Pro Push Fitness.
One of those health issues was recovery from a recent triple hernia repair surgery. I really had to ease into exercise and needed guidance. I had never done any sort of formal fitness training consistently. I tried the big box gyms on and off in the past, but without much progress. So, I knew I needed exercise instruction and wanted it in a more private setting.
Just as I was gaining momentum at Pro Push, I had to pause my training to deal with another medical emergency - complete thyroidectomy. This took a toll on me, and it took a while for my thyroid levels to balance out.
Once cleared by my doctor, I returned to Pro Push. Post-surgery, I wasn’t getting any stronger or improving in stamina. I wasn’t building muscle for the work I was putting in or losing body fat. I was fatigued constantly. I assumed my thyroid levels were off again. I decided to discussed my concerns with my trainer during my progress assessment.
After clarifying that my most recent labs reflected good thyroid levels, they had three recommendations:
1) Stop eating so much junk food and really stick to a healthy, balanced diet.
2) Go back to the doctor and get my other hormone levels checked, namely testosterone and estrogen (because of the areas I had concerns). They explained hormones play a key role in just about every function in the body and could have been affected by my thyroid.
3) Switch from group training to personal training to work one on one with a trainer and have completely customized workouts.
At first, I blew off the food advice. I would try to clean up my food here and there, but always cheated and always reverted to bad eating habits. I wanted to eat ice cream every day - so that’s what I did! I didn’t really believe it was the cause of my non-existent progress. I rationalized that because I was going to the gym and my thyroid levels were now normal – I should be able to eat ice cream. They explained I had to have a caloric deficit to lose body fat and eat enough protein to build muscle. Even though I knew they were right in the moment, it would shift in my head when I went home.
Wanting results, but stubbornly holding onto my bad eating habits, I decided to investigate the hormone thing first. I was shocked at how low my testosterone levels were, which then put my estrogen out of balance. And more frustrating, I got pushed around from doctor to doctor. Each one of them recognized I had a problem but essentially concluded that my young age should be compensating for the low levels and should offset symptoms of low testosterone (even though I was clearly having them).
After an uphill battle, I finally found a doctor that understood what was happening and how to help me. I started a treatment plan and immediately felt a difference in my mood, energy, cognition and more! Once my hormones were balanced, I felt a new lease on life and was ready to hit my fitness goals harder than ever.
It was then I switched from group fitness to personal training at Pro Push. I got to the gym at least four days week. And.... I finally cleaned up my food, specifically cut out daily sugar! Plus, I started using a meal prepping service to make the healthy eating easier.
These tweaks were game changers I needed. In seven months, I lost 47 pounds of body fat. I went from nearly 20% to 12.3% body fat. My strength has doubled in every exercise, my stamina is up, and I feel amazing – in and outside of the gym.
I’ve had to buy an entirely new wardrobe because I went down 4 pant sizes and a shirt size! I get compliments every day on how great I look - and honestly, I think it’s because I am carrying myself differently. I have better posture and more confidence. My body feels better, and my quality of life is back.
I am so thankful to be training at Pro Push. I wish I would have been committed 100% from the beginning or at least followed their guidance sooner. I am so grateful for their coaching and patience while I worked through my personal journey. I wouldn’t be where I am today without the Pro Push team! And I’m proud of myself for not giving up! There was opportunity to quit my health and fitness goals, mentally and physically – but I hung in there and fought for myself. That alone is a huge accomplishment worth celebrating.