Can you give a brief example of what you were like before beginning this fitness journey
It is pretty safe to say that I was not the picture of health. Due to a number of poor choices I was pretty much living to work. I went in early stayed late weekends, holidays that had become my life. I pretty much ate fast food for lunches at my desk and my waistline was on the way to match my height. If there was a couch potato organization I would have been the poster child.
It was fortunate that my department was absorbed by another department which required physicals as part of getting health benefits, because being a typical male the only time I went to the doctor was if I was missing a limb and then I would have called it a flesh wound and tried to walk it off. The doctor told me all the stuff I either knew or suspected: overweight, high blood pressure , bad cholesterol and so on, but this doctor was new and actually suggested the Trimgym program which was a combination of exercise and nutrition. I thought about how I wanted the rest of my life to go and made the decision to change things. My first contact with Trish was an email June 18, 2009 I met her June 23 1:30 p.m at the U of C in the kinesiology department for my fitness assessment and from the emails and meeting her I thought to myself what a pleasant young lady maybe this won’t be so bad.
What happened after the TrimGym Program??
The initial weeks of the program were challenging to say the least at the time Trish was big on sayings her favorite then was "pain is only weakness leaving the body" and I had a world of weakness. Slowly I got into some semblance of shape and was beginning to see positive changes but the program was coming to an end and I knew I needed to find a way to continue working out. There were two trainers within the program but Trish was the only one who was vocal and she didn’t sugar coat things if she thought you weren’t giving an honest effort she told you so. As the program drew to a close one incident made me realize that I wanted to continue to train with her. This program was run out of a former doctor’s office so there was really very little in the way of equipment. There were no bikes or other machines to warm up the muscles so usually it was a walk jog or run around the buildings outside. Trish would sit by the door and tell each person as they went by what she expected from them, for me she usually held up her index finger which meant a lap around the buildings. One day she held up two. Not life changing but to me that meant she was judging peoples progress and cared enough to try and push them to be better. That has been proven again and again when over the years occasionally she would drop little challenges such as participating in at least one of the Blitz events or one year she challenged me to do back to back duathlons. ------ Richard actually did this and raced even better on day 2. Challenge successful.
What keeps you motivated after 6 years of training at least twice a week sometimes four?
People will give you all sorts of advice on how you can change or why you should change but the only way for a person to truly change is to embrace it for themselves and to find a path that works for them. For me it has become part of my lifestyle, the regular working out and eating healthy. I like being able to run up a flight of stairs and not worry if I am going to lose a lung. I try to create a balance in things so I don’t end up on the 'living for work' path again.
Did you have any specific goals when you first started training? How have these changed? What are you current goals?
My initial goals were to lose weight and get the other health concerns under control. As that was accomplished and time passed the goals were added on to whether it was doing Blitz events or other runs. Now as I am getting older my primary goal of health and fitness still remain. Other goals are more fluid. I am working on flexibility and I may do one more duathalon if Trish can spare me from the parking detail.------haha, yes Richard you can get out of parking duty if you register for the 2016 Blitz Duathlon.
What do you like most about the sessions.
The things I like most would be the variety Trish has, different exercises to work the same muscle group so you don’t end up doing the same exercise every time you show up, and also it ends up being a full body workout with cardiovascular conditioning worked in.