By Member of the Month
We are happy to announce Stacey from our Surrey-Guildford location as the our Member of the Month for September. Stacey’s story reminds us not to give up and that perseverance and hard work pays off!
I was referred to LIVE WELL Exercise Clinic in July 2017 by my sister-in-law, who has been attending the program for four years. I have severe Psoriatic Arthritis in my hands, wrists and feet, which made simple day-to-day activities a challenge for me. I also had high blood pressure,and have been on medication for 20 years. When I arrived for my LIVE WELL consultation, I had little expectation that there was any form of exercises I could do with my arthritic joints, but was assured by LIVE WELL staff that there is ALWAYS something I could do. I decided to give LIVE WELL a try, and am I ever glad that I chose to do so as I now reach 14 months of attendance. I feel that I have gotten my LIFE back, and it all started with walking through the doors of LIVE WELL.
From the first session I attended, it has been an absolute blast! They came up with a program that was customized and could be done with all of my limitations, modifying as needed as we went along. When I doubted my ability to do an exercise before trying it, the LIVE WELL staff encouraged me to try it anyways – and though there were some hits and some misses, without the support of the staff, there would have been only misses. When I first started, my arthritis was so limiting that taking the stairs up to my bedroom was so much of a challenge I would opt to instead sleep on the couch. I can now go up the stairs with ease and continue to improve each day. I was unable to go for walks with my husband and beloved Corgi (soon to be 2), now they are the ones trying to keep up with me. In October 2017, I achieved something I never thought I would, which was a 1 km walk (uphill I might add) and I plan to try a longer distance of 5 km later this fall.
I recently had my 1-year progress evaluation in the Surrey-Guildford clinic. My assessment showed me that my lower body strength has almost doubled over the last year. My grip strength, which was a major limitation for me, has increased to 25 kg (on each side) from my starting grip strength of 9 kg. With the careful monitoring of the LIVE WELL staff, I have also recently been authorized by my family doctor to come COMPLETELY off of all of my blood pressure medications. My latest readings without medication are the same as my pre-LIVE WELL readings were when I was medicated!
Coming to LIVE WELL is the best thing I ever did for myself. My husband and I dream about growing old together and sitting on the front porch in our rocking chairs, I am now confident in my health and know I WILL get to sit on my rocking chair next to the one I love at an elderly age. Not only is the progress I have seen amazing, there has also never been na dull moment with the various “fun days” they offer and the wonderful community that I get to work toward my goals with each week. It is flexible, fun, and inspiring – I can’t see any reason I would not continue with my LIVE WELL program for many years to come.
Thank you to Stacey for sharing, we are so excited to be on this journey with you. The whole LIVE WELL family is looking forward to continuing to CELEBRATE your WINS !