January 2018 Member of the Month – Denise R.

By Member of the Month

*We are honoured to ring in the New Year with Denise R. as our Member of the Month! Denise’s incredible story will show you how dedication and JOY can make an impact in your life.

Hello, I’m Gramma Denise, and I’ve been a member at LIVE WELL Exercise Clinic since December 2015.

We Champion Potential! Find the Joy! We are All In! These are all parts of the “LIVE WELL” map. We all need a map and a compass in life; (especially if you’re a pirate!), and maybe support, and perhaps friends or peers to hold your hand once in a while. There is a HUGE difference between my life before seeing the LIVE WELL light and my current LIVE WELL life connection.

We Champion Potential: My husband was the first to become acquainted with LIVE WELL Exercise Clinic. We had both gained weight and had assorted health concerns. At the end of his first year with LIVE WELL, they had an open house and he asked me to join him in a session to “check it out.” Now, I hate gyms. Over the years, I had tried just about every gym and gym-fad going, and none, none of them, I had stuck with. None of them worked. Period. I was impressed with his weight loss and increased health over the year, so, I finally said yes and went along to the open house. I was at a point where I really didn’t know what I could do for myself. My lack of weight management, health out of control, my blood pressure was sky rocketing and I was Type 2 diabetic. I blamed it all on menopause!

At the open house I met the staff who were engaging, encouraging and supportive. This led to a program consultation with Kelly. This was my first encounter with the Champion Potential concept, which is one of LIVE WELL’S core values. For every “rule” I laid down (in an attempt to discourage any further possibility of me joining this ) Kelly positively replied “we can work with that!”

Me: “I’m not going to give up my Friday beer with friends!” Kelly: “OK, we can work with that.”

And so it went!

I was a little stunned to say the least! To all of my roadblocks, she didn’t lecture me; she just said OK, we can plan around that. Her approach was part factual about my health, and part “we’ll work with whatever you’re willing to give us!” – We champion your potential! I was a little taken aback by this approach! As time passed, and I began to feel more and more connected to LIVE WELL, it truly has become my map and compass.

Find the Joy: Joy? At a gym? Are you crazy? - Well yes actually! Not only do we actually have fun (9 a.m. class on “Purple Fridays), but our “Joy Masters” (tough as they are) invent new ways to prevent boredom and failure. We celebrate success, in very different and individual ways and formats. I began to get discouraged that I wasn’t losing weight and struggled to “find the joy.” So other ways of tracking progress were suggested; tracking my blood pressure every time I came into the gym and pushing myself to walk a little further on the treadmill each week. I found that in tracking my blood pressure I was able to see a clear connection between exercise and lowering of blood pressure. I use a phone app to track this and was able to pull up a nice graph to show my doctor these results! Bingo! Something to be joyful about. I find I’m using my fitness App more and more.

I also learned not to be afraid of the gym equipment (I still think the elliptical hates me!), and I haven’t fallen off the treadmill yet! More things to be joyful about. The day I discovered that I could see my triceps was astounding! At my one-year anniversary the one statistic that just knocked my socks off was that my gym attendance was 97%!!!!! I’d stuck with this gym for a whole year!! Now I’ve just had my second anniversary and can add “Half Marathoner” to my list of achievements. Yup! Some of those WIN bubbles up on the clinic walls are mine!

We are “All In!: I am not in a happy place, each and every time I step into the gym! However, every time I leave I’m feeling better. I schedule my gym times for mornings, that way it limits how much I would try to blow-off a session! Every time I show up, that’s a win! Every time Sam challenges me a little more, I win! Every time I walk a little farther, or faster, I win. This is my 30-year plan. I want to be healthy enough to be able to chase after my grandkids!

LIVE WELL is such a phenomenal concept. The 4-path approach provides us with overlapping information and support. We have access to specialists and other medical assistance. And I appreciate that they share this progress with my Doc. I like the goal setting, and feel very much in a partnership with LIVE WELL. I like seeing how the very small changes begin to become BIG changes. Who knew that I could walk longer than to the car and back! Even more than 5K? Or 10K? Never in my wildest dreams did I ever think I’d manage to walk that far – and even further! Not with these arthritic hips! The term “Personal Best” is now a part of my vocabulary!

I love the support of the staff and the camaraderie of the other members. I’ve had some “off days” and been very discouraged, however, Kelli and Sam are such strong rocks of support, they keep me going! They just won’t let me quit! Not just me, I see their support for the other members. They are our “Platex Squad!!” They give us all the support we need, wherever we need it!! For this I am truly grateful.

Who knew that when I went along to that first Open House that it would be life-changing? (Well, my Hubby did!) I really did think that it wasn’t going to work for me – and I’m so very glad I was wrong! And so very pleased to have become part of this LIVE WELL Family.

Thank you to Denise for sharing her LIVE WELL journey with the rest of us. The LIVE WELL Community is so motivated by Denise’s commitment to improve her health, while keeping the JOY!

Member of the Month

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