943 S. Centerville Road Sturgis, Michigan 49091 Phone (269) 503-7095
One hundred fifty-one pounds & 85 inches: Gone for good! I didn’t put it on in a day, so it didn’t come off in a day either. Since 2008, I have worked out at least 3 hours each day, 5-6 days per week, taking classes as well as pursuing a very active lifestyle outside the gym. I’ve overhauled my eating habits, discovering new ways to make healthy choices. But by perseverance, the grace of God, and the encouragement of friends and family, I’ve finally reached my goal.
I began my membership at Fit Zone in 2008 at the invitation of a friend. I weighed 316 pounds, and because of all the activities I wasn’t able to enjoy I felt defeated and unlovely. I was ready to make some serious changes in my lifestyle. I enjoyed the atmosphere at Fit Zone and met many other ladies who were also on a journey to gain or maintain health and fitness. I received a lot of encouragement while making new friends and learning a lot.
I spent several months just moving—using the cardio equipment and circuit weight-training equipment. At that time, 3 minutes on the elliptical felt like an eternity, and I was sweating and out of breath afterward. That was not good. But I began to get stronger. A little at a time, I was able to work harder.
One day, I was climbing a big hill on the treadmill when another member came over and said, “Diane, you’re ready! You’ve been doing the same things since I’ve been here. You need to start taking the classes!” I doubted what she said, but if she thought I was ready, maybe I could at least try. I had a good idea of what to do because I had been enviously watching from the sidelines for a number of months.
So the very next time a kettlebell class was offered, I tentatively walked out on the floor and joined in. I was not at all certain I would even be able to perform the exercises. It was a long hour, but I actually completed the class! I sobbed! I couldn’t believe I really did it!!!! It was a very significant day for me.
I started trying various classes, increasing the intensity of my workouts. I conscientiously changed my diet, going back to the basics of measuring serving sizes and journaling everything I ate. I used a website to log my exercise each day as well as my calories and water consumed, but the best part is I started to truly see results.
Now I am able to enjoy hiking, taking walks, and bike riding with friends and family, even riding the Kal-Haven trail from Gobles, Michigan to South Haven and back (47 miles)! I also participated in (and won!) an 8 week spin-bike competition, where I pedaled 2,637 miles–basically the distance from Sturgis to Alaska. I am so thankful for the strength in my body to enjoy activities and not feel limited. I can truly live my life.
In May of 2013, I finally reached my original goal weight. One hundred fifty-one pounds and 85 inches —gone!!! I went shopping with my friend and was so surprised by the size of clothes that fit me!I was also thrilled to find that I fit easily into my wedding dress from 33 years ago (something I thought was never going to happen).
I have appreciated the friends who have walked, biked, and sweated with me as well as helped me re-learn how to shop somewhere besides the plus-size department. I am thankful to my family, who have encouraged and supported me, sacrificed time together for my workouts, and cheered me on. I’m thankful to the Fit Zone trainers and other members for their help, encouragement, friendship, and love.On the hard days, their kind words were what kept me going. But most of all, I’m thankful to God, whose grace is sufficient for me. He has been by my side every moment and helped me continue taking back the ground in my life that Satan meant to claim for evil. God is a redeemer and a God of second chances.
is impossible with God! I really can eat, not starve, and be healthy by living my life just one better choice at a time. I know first-hand what it takes to work hard to achieve goals. This gives me understanding and compassion for others who need to make difficult changes as well.
About the same time I reached my goal weight, I felt led to pursue a group-fitness instruction certification. The idea of encouraging others to work toward healthy lifestyles and increase their enjoyment of life through nutritional awareness, losing weight, and strengthening their bodies appeals to me because it is something that can truly make a difference. I have been able to use the things I learned at Fit Zone to change my own life. I want to pay that forward and encourage others to do the same.
This is a lifetime thing. I may have reached my goal weight, but my day-to-day goal is to keep working on it, a day and a choice at a time.
Thank you, Fit Zone, for helping me get my life back!!!