||| About the support series |||
This four part series is going to be designated to celebrating the 4 most supportive aspects of my journey. This week I will start it off by featuring my trainer Weston, since we have been training together from the beginning over 80 lbs ago back in August, before I knew I was going to have surgery.
Each part of this series will highlight a different aspect of how different my life has changed in the last 8 months, because of these people. It is important to me to give each person or group a designated week, as I am forever grateful for the unconditional love, and friendship each has shown me- even when I don't deserve it.
||| How it started |||
I have told this story before on my insta story if you follow me on instagram (shameless plug here: @therealslimschumie or @Chelcschumie), you might have seen it but I thought what better way to start round 1 of the support series than taking it ALL the way back to when I met my trainer Weston for the first time last August.
At the office that day I had decided that I was sick and tired of making excuses for *in my mind* the justification for me not being active. I pulled up to the gym for my fitness assessment that I scheduled on a whim, as soon as I opened my car door- my heart dropped and fear consumed every inch of me. I instantly felt as if people were staring at me. In my head I could hear them saying with their eyes what is this overweight cow doing in the gym?. It took everything in me not to get back in my car, cry my eyes out, and drive away. I want to be clear- these words were never spoken to me, but my own insecurities made up this irrational fear that I was being judged just by existing in the parking lot. Also, I was petrified because at the time I was suffering from a bulging disc in my lower back, making it so painful to exist much less work out.
As I am walking up I notice this really young guy with a man bun walking in next to me- his shirt reads *trainer*. In my head, I was like Dear Lord sweet baby Jesus please don't let this guy be assigned to me. He looks like Kelso from that 70's show, and I didn't know if he would listen to me about my concerns with my back problems. Well- an embarrassing 30 minutes later, after my fitness assessment with one of the brightest souls ever- Leslie, I meet Weston. Low and behold- the Kelso look alike was my trainer- please insert the biggest eye roll possible here.
Meeting W was actually one of the more pivotal moments of my journey, hence why he is first in this four part series- because it all started the moment I met him.
Q & A with W
C: At what moment in your life did physical fitness become a priority?
W: I got my first gym membership when I was 15. I just didn't know what I was doing. It didn't become a priority until I turned 17 or 18. I was overweight in middle school and early high school. I never felt fully comfortable with myself, basically it was years of feeling uncomfortable in my own skin.
C: Why personal training?
W: When I first started working out, I had a lot of trial and error. It too me a lot longer than I wanted it to. I wish that I had someone to help walk me through what I should have been doing. Since I was self taught- getting certified was something that just came naturally out of my desire to help people reach their maximum potential. I just want to help people reach their goals. I also love body building, it gives me the opportunity to always learn from people who have been doing it for a long time. I am always in a gym so I can talk to different people who have the same mind set as me.
C: What part of being a trainer is your favorite?
W: Honestly my favorite part, is seeing my clients get excited when they see results. Either on the scale, how they look, or if they are setting a new PR for lifting more weight.The best is when they get excited about coming into the gym because they are seeing the results.
C: Is there an aspect of being a trainer that you don't like?
W: I would say it is when my clients show a lack of effort, and cancelling at the last minute (consistently). I get life happens, but when I have a client that is a regular offender of cancelling last minute it makes it hard for me to plan. Also- I put a lot of effort in preparing for each session. Its not like i expect my clients to come in- already perfect, but I do expect them to put in effort during our sessions, and in their own workouts.
C: For someone that is struggling to find motivation to change their life style- what is one action or thing that you would recommend they begin?
W: One thing that has helped me, and will help others is setting a small goal. It could be a goal for activity or for eating. For example- walking a mile a day or something small. It has to be achievable. Be consistent with that one thing, and see your results. Seeing results, and seeing yourself achieve will help motivate you versus setting a long term goal that is hard for you to hit. Also, When you are first starting out, you don't have to be perfect- like if you have a slip up or have a cheat meal- don't let it discourage you. Don't let one slip up here or there completely derail you and cause you to lose all motivation. Ultimately, the most important thing that you can do is show up, and put in effort. You cannot get any results from not showing up.
C: What advise would you give to someone who is wanting to get a trainer?
W: Two things. One- make sure your head is right. Make sure that before you make that financial and time commitment, that you are ready to put in the effort. Also it is important to understand that a trainer is not going to magically solve everything- they cannot do anything for you. Yes- they can provide information and the exercises but all of the work and effort is going to be on you. Two- find a trainer that you can get along with. If you don't get along with your trainer- you will start to dread wanting to be there. Not only is that going to help give you motivation, and you will actually want to show up to see them. Also if you get along with your trainer- its easier for them to motivate you and give you their full attention.
I would definitely recommend getting a trainer to anyone who is remotely interested in changing their lifestyle. I did it on a whim, yes- but it turned out to be one of the best decisions of my life. Honestly if I had not faced my fears and gone into the gym even when my gut told me to turn around, I do not know how I would have gotten through everything that I have been through so far. Weston has become so much more than a personal trainer to me, he gives me grace on a regular basis, he is a therapist, a smart ass, a motivator, but more importantly: a friend. It became very clear very quickly that the friendship between us was more than client & PT- it was an obnoxiously genuine friendship. The kind of friendship that everyone stares when you are together because obviously the two of us are having the time of your lives.
The relationship I have developed with W is one that I value more than I will ever be able to express into words. I have said this before and I will say it again- he constantly reminds me that this is a marathon, not a sprint. He has seen me at my absolute worst and chose to be there for me, far beyond his call of duty. I distinctly remember, 2 weeks after surgery, we would be working through a set and I would burst into tears because it was so much harder than where I left things with him mid December 2017, and I felt like I was pushed 10 steps backwards even though the surgery was supposed to be a step forward. To this day- he still shows me grace, and doesn't judge me for the emotional things that I am going through. He knows they are far more complex than anyone would ever chose to handle. It is a constant roller coaster, and I unfortunately am stuck on the ride. Luckily - I have great person like Weston in my life.
We were obnoxious together then, and we are even more obnoxious together now. It is so crazy to me how I have grown over these last 8 months since meeting him. So here's to: me judging you for fitting sour patch kids into your diet, graduating in meathead status, baby giraffes, being super obnoxious to everyone around us, a stupid amount of support, dancing to T-swift, me cussing you out at least 2 times a week, & the best future cheat meal ever.