My life before Vision is hard to remember. I started in 2013 and I remember saying to myself "you have to do something about your weight" and never doing anything about it. Setting myself up to fail.
I would go out for lunch a lot at work and I was very disorganised with my food. Thought I was active but wasn't. Not motivated and didn't care about my appearance much. Didn't wear the right clothes for my body and looked at myself in the mirror with disdain.
This is what I wrote back in 2014 when I was a "Client of the month" and it pretty much sums up my feelings of life before Vision.
"I am a trained PE teacher who hasn't taught for over 15 years so I knew the basics of weight loss but struggled by myself for years and ballooned out to 81.5kgs. Previously I had trained with three other PTs and worked hard during the sessions but still was not getting the results I wanted. Feeling unattractive, uncomfortable, out of shape, hating myself when I looked in the mirror while getting dressed every morning and having lost all my confidence I just knew I had to do something therefore I bought a Living Social deal. I did a few one on one sessions and really enjoyed them however after going to one of the seminars I was impressed with the simple message about weight loss and working out. I signed up in October 2013 on my birthday as a birthday present to myself. With Vision, I achieved ever goal I have set, big or small and it has been so easy because Vision makes you accountable to yourself, no excuses. I love walking into the gym and get greeted by name by every trainer. I am not working with just the one Personal Trainer I have five on my side and all of them are interested in "my journey". When my plan was originally set up my lifestyle was taken into account and I loved how the expectation was very achievable, not over the top and as a result weight was falling off me and it was easy to stick to. I am a person that really responds to ticking things off a list and moving on to the next challenge. Having the app on my phone helps me account for my exercise and food intake and is so simple. Even with my previous knowledge and experience I have learnt new things about eating and exercise. The better the results the more determined I became. I would never have thought I would run; as my mantra was "there is no fun in running" however I run around the Tan by myself at least twice a week, signed up for fun runs and my next big challenge is the 14km City to Surf in Sydney in August. Vision has taught me to set achievable goals and challenge myself. I have never felt more happy, comfortable, confident and focused. I now plan my life around my exercise and my exercise around my life, and now live with the mantra "you never regret going and keep moving".
What Results have you achieved?
The results I have achieved have been many, it's not just the weight lost, it's the confidence gained, the healthy lifestyle maintained and the ability to set a goal and achieve it, believe in myself.
My best weight lost has been a touch over 18kgs. I am current 12.5kg down from my starting weight. I have squatted more than my body weight and leg pressed 210kg. I have gained muscle definition in my arms which was one of the things I wanted to achieve all those years back.
I have maintained a healthy lifestyle for over three years now and go for a 2 hour walk every Sunday with a friend. We committed to each other just after I started at Vision and only miss when we are away on holiday.
I have ran the City2Surf in Sydney the last three years and signed up again for this year without hesitation.
I have worn a dress for my sister's wedding that I never would have dreamed I would be able to pull off; it was also bought on-line sight unseen and it fitted!
How has life changed for you?
Routine, routine, routine and being accountable. As I have said I am a person who responds well by ticking boxes. I prepare my food daily and make sure I exercise at least 30minutes per day. I am accountable for my actions regarding my health and wellbeing.
I am happier, more confident and comfortable with who I am. I feel I am fulfilling what my body is made for. I have a stronger mind and realise your body and mind are amazing things and can achieve anything you want to achieve.
Recently I lost my mother and having Vision to go to and work out and look after myself rather than sit on the couch in self-pity and eat chocolate and cheezels, has helped me be mentally strong for this sad period in my life.
Making friends throughout the journey has been a bonus.
What is your favourite thing about training at Vision?
Training at Vision has become a part of my life, like putting socks on in the morning. It is just what I do now.
Why has it become like that - well it's the people, the challenges, the ease in which goals are set, achieved and rewarded.
The community, we are all in it together and we have the same goals, struggles, bad days, good days, achievements and we all help one another and inspire each other. Seeing other people's results amaze me and makes me want to reach my goals again and again.
It's the routine and the fact you are open on public holidays and are there for the clients.
I love the fact that I have made friends with clients and trainers.
One of my favourite things about Vision is when I realised that the Trainers are not just about fitness and healthy eating, that they live a life and have the same struggles as we do, they are human but they have a balance and that is the most important bit to learn when you are on a "life changing" journey and not one just to lose weight for a particular one off event.
And as I said back in 2014 being greeted when you first walk in by Trainers and other clients makes you feel like you are part of something bigger than you and the struggle you have with food and scales.
What are some of the defining moments during your journey?
Running the City2Surf for the first time was amazing, never dreamed of being able to run that far and hated running but now strangely I enjoy it (when not injured)
Hitting my first weight loss goal and smashing all the others
Maintaining a healthy weight for over three years
Breaking down during a fun run and thinking I had failed because I walked half the distance. I was so determined not to stop during runs, but I finished the run injured. I then competed in the same event two years later and achieved my goal.
One of my first memories of doing group class was that I never thought I was fit enough and I always paired up with the injured person. I was then asked by a client who I considered extremely fit to be their partner and at that particular moment I knew I was fit enough. Small but very significant in my mind.
What advice would you give someone in a similar situation to where you were, and is thinking about making a change?
The old cliché - "Just do it"
It does change your life if you want it to.
It is up to you - no-one else can change your life but Vision can help you along the way by providing tips, support and encouragement.
"You never regret going" is still my motto and over the last three years I have not regretted one session, one run, one bit!
Best birthday present I ever bought myself!