We’d like to extend a HUGE congratulations to the 190 Athletic Club’s August Member of the Month, Michael Evans, who has recently transformed himself physically and mentally! Michael’s starting weight in January 2016 was over 200 pounds. At the end of July, he had lost a total of 25 pounds and reduced total body fat to 11.1%!
We sat down with Michael and asked him to share the high points and challenges he experienced along the way to his success; here’s what he had to say.
Why did you begin working out at 190 Athletic Club?
My daughter, Ainsley, has Angelman Syndrome (AS). AS is a severe, neurological disorder. Ainsley cannot speak, has seizures that are difficult to control, and has challenges with motor coordination and balance. You can learn more about AS by visiting www.CureAngelman.org.
Ainsley needs assistance to perform everyday tasks and I was having a very difficult time giving her the support she deserved. I felt weak, tired and concerned about how long I would be around for her. I felt I needed to join a gym to focus on cardio and strength so that I can provide the appropriate care for my daughter.
How has your workout experiences changed since you began?
I joined the gym to focus on cardio and strength initially, but as I started to see muscle gain and weight loss, my goals changed. I started because of my daughter and she is my inspiration every day, but going daily is easier when you see good progress.
What does your nutrition consist of?
- High protein, some fat (good fat) and low carbohydrate diet
- Protein with every meal, including protein shakes between meals
- 2 tablespoons of a good fat (coconut oil and almond butter) daily
- I keep the carbohydrates low, choose good carbohydrates and only eat them early in the day
- I completely cut out soda, sugar and caffeine
What were some of the deficiencies you noticed with regard to your health and overall fitness?
Working out alone and keeping the exercise challenging and interesting is difficult. I also found it hard to work areas like core and legs. I started with a trainer to focus more on cardio and core. As I saw the benefits, better balance, stronger abs, less pain in hips, I added legs. I then felt I wasn’t getting the muscle gain I expected for working out 5 days a week, so I worked with the trainer to change up my daily weight routine. The routine is now much more intense and interesting.
When you inquired about personal training, what were your expectations from 190 Athletic Club and with your trainer, Shante?
When I decided to use a trainer, I assumed it would improve my workout experience. Having someone to talk to while working out. Having someone to help work difficult areas. I never thought it would completely change how I work out and achieve amazing goals that I never thought were possible.
Shante helped me go well beyond my expectations. I am not winded doing everyday tasks, I do not get tired in the afternoon, I have less pain in my legs and hips since they are now stronger. I lost 25 pounds. I reduced my body fat by 15%. I can now easily assist my daughter and I now feel healthy, so I will be around as long as she needs me.
What do you enjoy most about your workout experience to this day?
I actually enjoy the workout. Seeing gains definitely motivates you to go daily, but having a routine that changes and stays interesting makes you look forward to your daily workout.
What has been the most difficult part of your experience? The most rewarding?
- The most difficult part is working out areas that are very weak.
- It is very easy to give up and move on, or completely skip, but having a trainer helps you push through it. Seeing gains in these areas is then very rewarding.
- The most rewarding is being able to assist my daughter without pain. Being able to support her walking or being able to carry her up stairs if she is tired. The feeling that I am healthy enough to be there for her for a very long time.
What lessons did you learn that you can share with others? What tips/advice would you have for the average gym goer?
- To stay with a workout program and a diet, it needs to become a natural part of your day.
- Work out at the same time every day so it becomes part of your standard routine.
- Diet by eating smart.
- Eating foods you do not like or starving yourself can’t be maintained. Find proteins, good fats and good carbohydrates you like.
- Work out with a trainer at least one a week. It will keep you motivated to go daily, keep things interesting since the workout will continue to change and will help you achieve your goals.
- Once you see you are reaching your goals, you will set even more difficult goals and be even more motivated and might even get to a point where you enjoy going to the gym daily.