We asked some of our past 8-week challengers about their stories and the results that they achieved from the challenge! We let them tell their stories themselves – enjoy reading and get inspired by their motivation and success!
And before you start:
Dear Cameron, thank you so much for sharing your story and congratulations on finishing our 8-week challenge with such great results!
“Hi Guys 🙂
I guess to explain how this challenge has changed my life now, some background might help!
I deployed to the Solomon Islands with 2RAR in 2003 as a 20 year old. When I came back from that deployment, I had PTSD. I just didn’t know it – until 2013 when I was finally diagnosed after 10 years of dealing with something that I had no idea I even had or had any idea about and things would get worse before they got better.
I was admitted to hospital 2014 and that was effectively the end of my 2nd military career (RAAF after Army) and I was med discharged July 2015 and moved to Townsville.
Exercise and I had never get along, I hated doing it and It seemed my body didn’t enjoy it either! I consider it a minor miracle I was able to be a grunt.
By the time I moved to Townsville, I had put on a lot of weight after years of bad diet and no exercise. I still remember seeing Dani when I first went to Strand Fitness in 2015, knowing I needed to do something to fix the issue. At that time I was still a mess and fighting DVA, Dani was excellent and was very compassionate and understanding and I’ve never forgotten the kindness she showed.
I started training again briefly with Jess but I just couldn’t do it as I was not in the right place mentally or emotionally. I did keep my membership though as I knew I would get back into it at one point when I was ready.
10 weeks ago.
Fast forward to about 10 weeks ago when I was buying a new t shirt and I realized I had to buy a 6XL. That was the first point when I knew things had gotten way to out of control and I had to do something. The other was my disgust in myself at weighing nearly 150kg.
So whilst pondering just how obese and unfit I had let myself become, I received a message from SF about an 8 week challenge. Call it what you will, fate, a sign, an omen – my instincts lit up like a Christmas tree at Santa’s house and I knew I would be doing it. I called the gym and came in and spoke to Amanda, who was very helpful and after about 2 mins I knew 100% I was in and this is what I was going to do to fix the damage I had caused myself.
I was shitting myself before the start of it! I hadn’t trained properly for years, I didn’t like being at a gym, I was pissed with myself at my appearance and after years of being mentally and emotionally drained. I honestly didn’t know how I was going to go from the level of fitness I was at (I’m not even sure I had a level of fitness) to training 5 days a week for 8 weeks.
However, it came down to a very easy choice: do nothing and continue to be obese, no energy, unhappy and unable to physically do basic things or man up and hook in. So I made a plan and started week 1.
I don’t really remember week 1, I do however remember my first GRIT class with Henni! I absolutely loved it and I’ve been doing them ever since 🙂 GRIT is one of the main reasons for my having so much success at this challenge. For the first time I found something exercise related I actually enjoyed. And from that I have actually come to love going to the gym! I am loving getting stronger and fitter again, both physically and mentally.
After week 1 I was so incredibly happy, I had done something I wasn’t sure I could still do, but then of course I got the flu that weekend! I felt this was a test from the universe to determine how much I really wanted to fix my weight problem and I vowed to get back to the gym as soon as I could and I managed after 5 days of rest to get in two days work in week 2.
My Turning Point.
That was the turning point for me, it showed me how very badly I wanted to be fit and more importantly, happy within myself again. So from week 2 onwards I’ve given it everything I could, I started changing my habits (6am classes for me are still a huge deal) and working as hard as I could, constantly pushing myself to bring back my strength and resilience.
So here we are with only one week to go and I had already achieved my goal of 10-15kg weight loss in week 5. I am now pushing hard for as much weight as I can get off in this last week.
So to answer the question, how has this challenge changed my life?
My new opportunity.
I would say it hasn’t changed it.. It has given me the opportunity to get my life back, to be genuinely happy again after forgetting what that even felt like.
I honestly am struggling to catch up with just how much I’ve changed in the last 7 weeks, I look back and remember how sad I felt, how I looked at myself and just how hard everything seemed, now I’m happy again! I love being challenged again and I have several things coming up I’m looking forward to doing! And all the things I am doing, wouldn’t be possible if I hadn’t done this challenge.
Thanks to the staff – & thank you Cam!
I want to thank all the staff who have put in the effort to get this up and running and for your continued support! Special mention to a few staff though: Amanda for always having a smile on her dial when I get to the gym! Dani for always being supportive and helpful with technical issues 😉 Henni for doing such a fantastic effort running GRIT class, Jess for being the best PT an old grunt could get! (Still pissed you are leaving though ?) and Jason for always being happy and helpful 🙂
I don’t know how you guys view your jobs, but I can tell you that if you think you just turn up and do your job and go home and it doesn’t make a difference, you are very much mistaken because you have all been a part of getting my life back and everything you guys have done has helped! You do make a difference to people’s lives, so you all should be proud as far as I’m concerned 🙂
Thank you all for helping me get my happiness back ??