Two years at Vision Personal Training Stanmore, training with Jonathon Palmer and my life is so different that sometimes I have to stop and pinch myself and wonder if this is really me, living this life and having all these amazing opportunities. I really was a shell of the person I am now trapped within obesity and I used to always be the friend holding the bags watching others do what I wanted to be doing. All I needed was the right method and right Trainer to give me a helping hand to find my way, to believe in me before I could believe in myself, and to continue to challenge me to make changes. This I found training with Jonathon and my future will now be all that I imagined and so much more.
Last year, I lost 50kgs and 'found' myself in boxing and running. They have helped me face my fears and understand who I am and how my body works. Both have taught me patience and showed me a strength I have inside I never realised before. These sports helped me find a balance I never knew that was missing. Jonathon helped me work within my limits but at the same time he has constantly helped me to push myself past these. This was no easy task as coming with that obesity there was a lot of fear of injury, breaking things (both myself and the machine) and the emotional barriers to break through.
I'm proud that in that first year I trained for and completed my first half marathon and capped the year off by sky diving. This year I have raised the stakes higher by setting myself 50 goals that challenge this 'new' me and lets me really understand what I do and don't like to do in this brand new world. This is important because for the first time in my life I know that these changes are permanent and these goals help me reinforce how far I have come and ensure I never go back.
2014 will be the year for me that I will remember as the best and toughest of my life. 2014 is the year that I tackled my first triathlon, learnt to swim in the ocean and compete in my first ocean race, became padi open water certified to Scuba Diva (which is probably the best thing I have ever done!!!), ran 10km in under 1 hour, fell in love with trail running, completed a half marathon and successfully completed the 100km Oxfam Walk in New Zealand. I also took on some fun goals including The Giant Swing, my first water slides, jet boat riding and sailing lessons. All of this in the first part of the year before my world was turned upside down with the discovery of some large growths that needed surgery quickly and subsequently some ongoing complications that I am still fighting.
Never did I realise how critical having my health and fitness would be which was reinforced time and time again in the preparation for and quick recovery from major surgery. Working with Jonathon took on a whole new energy as we focused on my fitness in preparation for the removal of the growths and body parts they had destroyed. The ongoing complications have been challenging both physically and emotionally, and it has been my regular training sessions and Jonathon's ability to adapt my program that has allowed me to continue. Not just to continue, but to focus through the associated pain and fear and work my way towards my first full marathon (Oct 2014) and my first boxing fight (Nov 2014). I am now a marathon runner and I love how that sounds ;-)!
I will never be able to put into words the amazing feeling I have had since completing these events, the buzz, like I am flying. I often find myself looking back and smiling, sometimes laughing out loud, as I remember each of these events and the training leading up to them. Focusing on achieving 2 massive goals for me has helped me deal with and manage the emotional side of my surgery, making some tough medical decisions and the ongoing fears and pain I need to manage. It's true that if you can't deal with and address these fears on a long marathon training run then you may never be able to and I have found comfort and clarity in working through and analysing what I faced as I lost myself by the water running or in the beautiful rhythm I find in boxing.
I am no longer the woman that holds the bags and sits at the window watching the world go by. I now live life to the fullest and I wake up each day with an energy that I find hard to describe. I still have some weight to lose but that's okay I am happy with where I am and where I am going. I love being able to challenge myself and I love the energy and opportunity that I can now share with others. Everyone asks me what's next: so I feel like the Summer of 14/15 is mine to take on and I am looking forward to building up my ocean swimming, scuba diving with grey nurse sharks, and training for my next goal The Great Wall of China Marathon in May 2015.
I am the happiest, healthiest and fittest I have ever been and I wish everyone could feel even half of what I feel now. The hardest step you will ever take is asking for help but if you do and you stay true to the Vision process and trust the people you have asked to help you then you too could be sharing this adventure with me. Asking Jonathon and the Vision Personal Training Stanmore team to help me was the hardest decision I have ever made but it was quite simply the best decision of my life and I can't wait for all the opportunities ahead.