Des Moines Fitness Transformation Winner Announced
On Saturday April 7th, several Des Moines area fitness coaches gathered to select the winner of the second session of FitStart, the low-impact version of our 10 week body transformation fitness program.
Samantha Watson, a student from our South Des Moines location, was selected by a panel of coaches from all of the participating Des Moines area locations. Samantha's before and after photos and transformation story are included below.
According to South Des Moines head coach, Susan Weiss, "Judging has never been more difficult, ever." There were several students with impressive results and amazing stories, and measuring a fitness transformation includes both objective and subjective criteria.
Lance Farrell, founder and CEO, explains some of the differences between the FitStart low impact fitness program and the regular 10 week body transformation program. "Our FitStart program was designed with the physically limited, seriously overweight individual in mind. Before we started developing this adapted program we believed that anyone could manage our regular 10 week fitness challenge. In reality, there are a growing number of people who either wouldn't have been able to safely complete one of our regular classes or simply weren't comfortable with the typical group fitness class environment."
"Many of our FitStart students have either recently had some sort of weight loss surgery or are working to improve their condition to help an upcoming surgery be more successful," explains Farrell. "Things I've taken for granted, like the ability to be on my feet for more than a few minutes or being able to get up and down from the floor, are a real challenge for some, so we include benches and chairs wherever their needed to help our students take their next step toward better health and fitness."
Samantha's Fitness Transformation Story:
I am a 39 year old, single mother. Up to age 16 I lived with an abusive father that would force me to work out in front of him and monitored everything I ate right down to counting the pickles in the jar. When I got away from him I had no concept of what a healthy relationship with food should be. At the age of 19 I lost my mother (my hero, my world) to cancer and found myself with no family, just completely alone.
I have been eating myself into complete isolation and depression. I wanted to hide in my house and not be around people or let anyone in. I had given up on life, hopeless.
When my friend at work sent me the link to the KCCI news clip about this program, I had really hit bottom. I was pushing 400 pounds fast and hard and had really given up caring about it. I figured nothing could help anyway. Yes, I have had a horrible rough life and conquered many, many obstacles. Even drug addiction and smoking were battles I have won, but food, food is my best friend. It is the only thing that has been with me when everyone else in my life left me all alone. I have always turned to food for comfort. Fat and happy was my motto and honestly, I wasn't happy at all. I was sad and desperate and hopeless inside and smiles to the world on the outside.
I came to this class and filled out your survey in the beginning and one of the questions was what is unique about you? To be honest, all I wanted to say is there is nothing unique about me, I am not special, I am a sad person with nothing much to offer anyone. And I fully meant it and I am still battling that feeling every single day. But now I can say because this class has given me something, some spark inside me, some fire, that I am seeing that there really may be a light at the end of the tunnel. I am believing that I just might be able to set some goals and actually meet them, if I put my mind to it.
Your news broadcast introduced me to a world where I wasn’t alone in my struggles with weight and depression! I have never had this feeling of empowerment that I am experiencing. Every workout amazes me at what I have achieved, day by day. I am finding that I can really be proud of myself, not ashamed. I want to see my son become a man. I don’t want to leave him alone too or shut out the world anymore. I want to live! This is my time for me and I am worth it!
Every day is a mental battle in my mind to come to class and i fight it hard all day long. When I am done with class and I am covered in sweat, I don't know if there are words to describe how I feel. I have felt worthless for so long and the last 8 weeks have made me feel so powerful and so strong that I just don't want to give up. I haven't accomplished anything this physical since I was in school sports. This is the first thing I have done that makes me feel like I am worth it and more. It is making me really evaluate my life and sincerely look at some serious personal upgrades. I have not felt worth an upgrade since I lost my mother who adored me completely.
Thank you for creating this environment where I can come and feel supported, wanted and encouraged by people that really just want to be a part of my journey too. Thank you so freakin' much!
Click here to download our FitStart Program Description Booklet