Whether a New Year's resolution, a traumatic event, or simply wanting a change, committing to get healthier is daunting.
Over the last 2 years, I have gone from weighing 285 lbs down to 197 lbs. Seventy of these pounds were dropped prior to joining FFC by cutting portions, eating smarter, and running as my form of exercise.
Before January came around, my weight would fluctuate between 215 - 230 lbs because I ran off and on as I started to find it boring and/or started eating a lot of junk due to stress (or whatever reason I told myself); each time telling myself that I would get back on track eventually.
However, that track started feeling further and further away, so in mid-January I decided I needed to commit to a gym and invest in a personal trainer to become the healthier person I wanted to be.
After getting a tour of FFC Halsted & Belmont, I was sold and knew I was going to sign up. I made it known that I was interested in personal training sessions so we did an evaluation based on my goals. I am terrible at creating goals - especially fitness goals - as I am more of a "get it done" type of person. So when asked what my goal was, my reply was “to get in better shape.”
Of course that was super broad, so I had to really think about what I wanted to accomplish. I decided I wanted to build strength/flexibility overall, but focus especially on my lower back and abdomen area along with weight loss (because everyone wants that, right?) In short, based on my feedback, I was matched with a personal trainer. My introductory session was scheduled and things became real in my head -- I was actually going through with this.
I was anxious before the first session because I didn't know what to expect from my assigned trainer, Kati Murray. Was she going to be a trainer that didn't know what she was doing? A trainer who gave everyone the same boring motivational speech and didn’t really care? Or was she a trainer who wanted to inflict pain and enjoy my misery during my workouts? After the first session I could tell Kati wasn't any of these (well, maybe a little bit of the last one, on occasion. Just kidding!).
Working With a Trainer Has Made All the Difference
She wanted to help me achieve the goals I set out for myself and help me succeed going forward with maintaining this healthy lifestyle I wanted. I asked her to be blunt with my progress and if I was doing something terribly wrong, which she did and still continues to do months later. Kati immediately incorporated Pilates into my training which has definitely improved my lower back/abdomen strength along with my flexibility. I would have never thought that I would enjoy Pilates or yoga and I actually love doing them both.
Kati has been a very knowledgeable trainer and continually and persistently educates on me keeping proper form to get the best workout while avoiding injury. She also gives me a variety of workouts to keep things interesting. She may appear super sweet and not very intimidating, but appearances are deceiving and she will be sure to give you a workout that will kick your butt and make you sore for a few days – which is exactly what you should want from an amazing trainer.
I know Kati genuinely cares about me, whether through the workout she is torturing me with, reminding me to keep up on my nutrition log, or just chatting with her on a day I run into her at the gym. Kati's training method and fun personality has been the perfect match for me – she makes me work hard while being able to joke around and makes me feel like the gym is a second home.
Since starting to train with Kati, I am now down almost 20 pounds. I also have seen an increase in muscle, have better mobility and increased strength and flexibility. I am at my lowest weight since high school and as active as I have ever been. I know I am a big part of my transformation by deciding to show up at FFC and putting the work in every week. However, Kati deserves a good amount of credit for my success, as her vast knowledge and fun/caring personality makes me want to show up to achieve my goals every day. I am grateful for her and thank her for being a phenomenal trainer.