I found it difficult to go out and have fun in public. I felt embarrassed not only for myself, but for my friends and family that I was out with. Simple social interactions were a challenge for me because I felt as though I could not do normal things like sitting in a chair at a restaurant without discomfort and awkwardness.

The incident that probably had the biggest impact on me was being asked to leave a ride at an amusement park because they couldn’t close the safety bar around me. Having to walk back through the line-up was very embarrassing.

I was 49 years and 8 months old, 4 months before my 50th birthday. I was the big happy guy, always fun but I weighed in at 350.4 lbs. My clothes didn’t fit and I didn’t want to shop at Specialty stores. Some of my friends who were in better shape than I was were being diagnosed with diabetes but I hadn’t yet been told that I was in a dangerous position. 

It was then that I realized that I had to do something to change. I was going to be proactive before I got the notice. 

My family and I had belonged to GoodLife for two years because my daughter wanted to get in shape for basic training with the Navy. I didn’t go for those two years even though I was always going to start on Monday. There were a lot of Mondays because that first step was the hardest.

Once I was finally able to walk into GoodLife, I felt the positivity from the Associates and then the regulars. They created a welcoming atmosphere that encouraged me to return. Then I signed up with a Personal Trainer from the tight-knit group of PT professionals that they have and I knew that I could make the gym a regular thing. While there are a lot of different gyms out there to choose from, GoodLife stood out for me because of the fantastic facilities and that constant encouragement that the front desk staff gives members every visit.

I committed from my first day in – I signed up with Kyle, my Personal Trainer, the first day that I visited and he has always supported me. His encouragement and ability to constantly challenge me led me to believe in myself. He is also now a good friend of mine! I realized that you’re never too old to make a change, so get a trainer and let them challenge you. What is a better investment than yourself?

Kyle wrote me a program so I just had to show up three times a week and do what I’m told. I haven’t missed a Monday, Wednesday or Friday yet that wasn’t a STAT holiday. I am in the gym at 5:45 every morning and I’ll be there a year from now. I learned that you’re never too old to make a change because without health, you have nothing. 

Being accountable to Kyle was enormously motivating. I began to lose weight, but that wasn’t the only positive change that I experienced. I now use a pair of 70-pound dumbbells on the incline bench. I didn’t think I’d ever be able to do that. My chest is also bigger than my waist! I was always strong, but I could never see my strength – until GoodLife showed me. They gave me a place to achieve the biggest accomplishment I’ve ever achieved. 

It is more that I feel as though there is nothing that I can’t do because of GoodLife. I am more determined than ever, even though I have already lost 135 pounds. Those first 100 pounds made it easier on my knees but most importantly, I no longer had the loss of breath and the hyperventilating that kept me from climbing stairs. I couldn’t even lay down for a long time until I got my breathing slowed. I chose to sleep downstairs so I would not keep my family (my wife) awake. That has all changed.

My eating is also much different now too, as I eat to fuel my workouts instead of working out so that I can eat. I am self-centred, and what I mean by that is that it is about me, not about work; and I own my own business! GoodLife is now my sanctuary; and I plan my life around fitness and look forward to every workout.

I have a much more positive attitude now, so the little things that used to bother me don’t mean as much anymore. My transformation is the biggest thing that I have ever accomplished outside of my marriage and my three great kids. I have promised myself to make it a priority that I plan out my schedule so that I can eat right and get to the gym. I don’t like messing with it, so I am working on that. For now I am in bed by 9 and up at 4:15. I’m now experiencing more energy and a willingness to go out and do more, travel and enjoy life. I also now wear a Large Size shirt instead of a 5XL! Life is good!

I go to GoodLife six, if not seven days a week. It is my time. Seeing the constant results. I am very proud of what I’ve achieved but I am not done. There is more out there that I’m going to achieve.

And I went back to that amusement park this past January – just to get on that one ride – and it felt like a huge win!

Now I want to become stronger. Healthier. GoodLife has given me a future.