Tag: success

Great Things Come in Little Packages

She’s a tiny, lovely, wonderful, amazing, hard working, positive, funny, strong, brave, determined woman who I’m proud to call a client and a friend.

Cookie Laughlin has been a member of the Seattle Athletic Club along with her husband John since October of 2004. She has been a mainstay down in the Pilates Studio as well as the occasional venture into the weight room. In the past few years Cookie has battled a serious illness that has kept her from the club for lengthy periods of time. Since August of 2012 she has been back and better than ever! She trains with Adriana Brown as often as her treatment schedule allows, sometimes it’s twice a week, sometimes once, sometimes it’s every other week. But no matter what, Cookie and John find time in their very busy lives to come into the club and train as much as they can. This is some real devotion, with all that is on her plate and all that she has to weekly recover from, Cookie is doing her part to work towards better health. When she started training again in August Cookie was still walking very slowly, couldn’t do much balancing, was having a hard time with her foot and hand neuropathy and was out of shape due to her lengthy period away from the club and her aggressive treatment. But in just these past few months she has overcome so much she hardly seems the same person! She works hard every session, pushing herself, trying new things, moving more and more weight, and really giving 100% every hour spent with Adriana. As of today, Cookie has come along LEAPS and BOUNDS. She can stand on one leg, she can lift 12.5lb dumbbells (for a woman who can barely feel her hands or feet this is nothing short of AMAZING), her cardiovascular health has improved 10 fold, she can go up the stairs every other step (sometimes every 3rd step, with a little help from her friends), she has done so many things that both her, her husband, and even Adriana didn’t think possible. This is the kind of woman trainers would kill to have as a client. She NEVER gives up, she hardly ever complains (she’s known to be disgusted that she sweats, she hates to sweat), she works hard, she keeps a smile on her face, and above all, she pushes herself each and every session.

With all that she’s up against, with all that she deals with concerning her health, she makes the hour in the gym her one and only priority while she’s training. She could duck out, she could sleep in, she could decide that she’s just too run down (most people dealing with what she does would easily go down that road), but she doesn’t. If everyone had her mind set we’d all be accomplishing our goals big and small every day! She doesn’t do it alone, she’s got an amazing support system, her husband John is always sweating right along side her and always has encouraging words. Together these two could move mountains… I think they already have.

Here’s to 2013 and conquering all the bad and making leaps and bounds to all the good. Cookie, you are a rock star, thank you for your inspiration.

New member loses 35 pounds in 12 weeks with the help of the Evolve weight loss program.

Leela, a new member to Seattle Athletic Club, joined looking for help losing weight. After meeting with the Wellness Director Kelly Callison, she decided to challenge herself with the 12-week weight loss program, Evolve. Evolve is where Fitness, Nutrition, and Wellness come together to assist weight loss. Most diets are unsuccessful because the very word diet suggests that the change is temporary.

During the Evolve program Leela worked with Personal Fitness Trainer Thomas Eagen twice a week and met with Nutritionist Kathryn Reed every couple of weeks. Thomas and Kathryn worked with each other to develop a course of action best suited to fit Leela’s needs. Starting with the RMR or Resting Metabolic Rate, Leela was able to find out exactly how many calories she required to sit in a room and breath. With this information she could work with Kathryn on developing the caloric intake plan. This allowed her to lose roughly 2-3lbs a week by eating throughout her entire day, tracking calories and protein throughout. The simple change of eating breakfast made a huge impact on Leela’s energy levels not just for workouts but day to day activities in general.

“I have always struggled with my weight, but lately it had been getting so out of hand that I decided to make my health a priority. SAC seemed like the perfect choice because it was close to my office, has a wide variety of activities and especially because it has a specialized weight loss program. I really needed the structure and support that Evolve gives me. Thomas and Kathryn have outlined a very reasonable workout schedule and diet for me that doesn’t interfere too much with the rest of my life. I’ve actually been really surprised by how little I’ve had to change. For exercise I workout with Thomas twice a week, do Zumba twice a week and then I have one day to do whatever exercise I feel like. I’ve really enjoyed getting to try out the different classes and programs available at SAC. And I’ve been pleasantly surprised by how little I’ve had to change my diet. I still get to eat things that I like, I’m just much more conscious of portion size and having smaller meals throughout the day. I count calories and really focus on reaching my daily goal for protein. I’ve already started noticing some big changes. My clothes are getting looser, I’m getting stronger and I have much more energy. I’m really excited for more changes in the future. My eventual goal is to get back down to a healthy weight for my height. It’s still a ways off, but I am fully committed to working on my weight and setting up a healthy lifestyle for myself. I want to stick with the eating and exercise habits I’ve developed in Evolve for the long term. And I think with the fairly simple changes I’ve made it won’t be that difficult to do.”

Currently at week 12, Leela has lost 35 pounds, 6 % body fat, and has reduced her measurements around her entire body. Keep up the great work!! If you would like more information on our Evolve weight loss program please contact Wellness Director Kelly Callison.

Mediocrity vs. Greatness

What is mediocrity? The state of being mediocre.

What is mediocre? “of only ordinary or moderate quality, neither good nor bad, barely adequate”

Well, I don’t know how that sounds to you, but who wants to be mediocre? Sounds like a boring existence.

How about greatness? Having greatness in your life does not mean you have to graduate magna cum laude, it does not mean you have to be a professional athlete or win the Tour, it does not mean you have to land on the moon or lead the human genome project…it means that you set yourself apart from the mundane of the day EVERY day and you do something above the best of your ability.

Bring greatness into your life by smiling at everyone you see on the street one day…imagine what others will feel as well. Bring greatness into your life by doing 8 reps in your workout with PERFECTION instead of just trying to hammer through 12 them. Bring greatness into your life by not giving your best… give more…go above…go beyond. You can, we are capable of much more than we believe and the human brain has more capacity than you can imagine.

So, set out today and do it right. Mediocrity MIGHT get it done…GREATNESS gets it done with purpose, pride and perfection!

XXXL and Shrinking… Mark Dyce’s Success Story

Maybe you’ve heard him and his workout yells and sighs. Maybe you’ve seen him in the mornings, hard not to since he trains almost every day. Maybe you’ve noticed a continually shrinking man. Let me introduce to you the SAC’s super star client Mark Dyce. Mark’s weight loss story started when he had just returned from his annual pilgrimage to Hawaii in 2010. He was sick and tired… well, of being sick and tired. Mark had always been an athlete, but was starting to become frustrated not being able to do things he enjoyed – like playing basketball. His weight would no longer allow him to fake to the left and drive to the right… he couldn’t even tie his shoe.

Mark had been a member of the SAC for several years and continued to pay the monthly dues, he just could never get motivated to get back into shape and lose weight. Often he would think, “Just accept who you are – a fat guy, a jolly guy, play Santa at Christmas and just accept you are this way.” But as he kept seeing photos – from Hawaii, from Thanksgiving, from the office – not having that Santa beard, he didn’t like what he saw. Mark was now buying size 42 pants and the only shirts that looked good were the Tommy Bahama XXXL. He was over it. He asked the universe for courage and made a call to the SAC. Mark had known their Fitness Director, Jacob, through playing basketball – and told himself, “I’m simply going to ask for help. If I can’t do it alone, there must be someone at the athletic club that is willing to help me.”

Mark was finally ready to make a decision that would be an investment… financially yes, but more so physically, mentally and emotionally. Knowing it would be a tough journey on his own; and that he would need encouragement, guidance, a routine, and most of all someone to be accountable to, as well as some tough love, Jacob introduced Mark to personal fitness trainer Adriana Brown. It was a match made in… the gym. Adriana immediately understood Mark and was more than willing to help… yet she wanted to work with someone that was ready to make that commitment. The relationship started off with a no BS meeting between trainer and client, discussing the game plan, talking strategy, laying out guidelines, talking about expectations, and setting goals. The goal-setting session really helped Mark to understand what it would take to get to where he wanted to be, how to stay on track, and how to keep a positive healthy mind set.

At the end of November 2010 Mark tipped the scale at 301 pounds – the most he had ever weighed; gaining over 75 pounds in the past seven years. In a year’s time Mark has lost 35 pounds, dropped five pant sizes, wearing just XL shirts of all types and kinds, he is now playing competitive basketball in the Puget Sound Basketball League, gained a tremendous amount of muscle, and has conditioned himself to a place he had only dreamed of a year ago. Not to mention that Mark has also met some wonderful friends during this entire wellness process. Even his doctor was impressed with the changes Mark has made.

His yearly blood work improvements:

  • • Total lipids dropped from 190 to 177 (should be under 200)
  • • HDL (the good one) had gone from 40 to 42 (should be over 40)
  • • LDL (the bad one) had gone from 115 to 105 (should be less than 130)
  • • Triglycerides dropped from 269 to 151 (should be less than 150).

Measurement Changes:

  • Dropped ~3% Body Fat
  • Lost 35 lbs
  • Measurements
    • Arms went down 1 in
    • Chest went down almost 2 in
    • Waist went down 3 in
  • Went from 42 pants to 37 pants
  • Threw out the XXL shirts for XL shirts

Mark works out hard, he pushes himself, he learns new exercises, he faces challenges head on, and for 60 minutes of every workout he puts his best foot forward. Mark continues his regular workout schedule with Adriana to keep his weight loss progressing each month with this schedule:

  • Monday – Band Workout
  • Tuesday – Basketball
  • Wednesday – Men’s Circuit
  • Thursday – Boot Camp
  • Friday – Men’s Circuit

He has made exercising so much of a lifestyle now that on his most recent vacation to Hawaii he sought out and hired a trainer… of course they didn’t hold a candle to Adriana but it kept him working towards his goals.

The other piece of Mark’s weight loss puzzle was not just exercise… it was watching his diet and realizing it also plays a significant role in weight loss. Mark has committed to working harder on his diet in 2012, and has changed his thought process about food; being very aware of all foods he is eating now to just “stuffing his face” as he did in the past.

What has Mark learned most from this experience? “ANYTHING is possible – and if I can do it, ANYONE can. Thank you to Jacob and Adriana for all their help and support – and to all my new friends at the SAC who have been incredibly supportive and a lot of fun!”

To date Mark has dropped the weight, decreased his blood pressure medication, started playing competitive basketball again, has gained unfathomable amounts of lean muscle mass, and gone from a 42 pant size to at 37! He’s a true inspiration, he’s a fighter, and above all he’s a continual success. Way to go Mark, keep at it! If you or anyone else you know needs help with starting their weight loss adventure please take that first step and ask any fitness trainer on staff or contact the Seattle Athletic Club’s fitness director Jacob Galloway! When you are ready to make that lifestyle change we will be here to guide you.