“The defining moment for me was definitely when I was chasing around my 15-month-old and realized that I was out of breath after just a couple of minutes. I knew that I could never be a good, active father if I kept up with the unhealthy lifestyle that I was living.”
Tyler is an LA Fitness member whose re-introduction to the gym completely changed the direction his life was headed. Having served in the U.S Army, Tyler was committed to training hard and staying in shape. With time, however, his activity levels dropped, and he found himself spending more and more time on the couch. In his interview, Tyler shares an honest admission to where he was before he turned onto a different path:
“Anyone who knows anything about me knows that I’ve made mistakes in my life. Sure, I know we all have, but I know I’ve made some very big mistakes. My mistakes have cost me everything from my family, friends, finances, career advancements…you name it, really. I’ve screwed it up.
Earlier this year I found myself in an incredibly dark place. I had lost everything and everyone I cared about. I didn’t know what to do. I buried myself in work, and that didn’t help. It made my productivity even worse. I would come home and sleep. I would do nothing but lay on the couch and sleep.”
Life Changing Moments Can Renew Your Motivation
If you’ve ever been in a dark place, you know how difficult it can be to find the motivation you need to pull yourself out of it. The longer you sit in your discomfort, the more difficult it becomes to find your way out. It becomes a self-perpetuating cycle. Often, you’ll need a wakeup call that strikes a certain chord to help you. This is what happened with Tyler:
“One day I met up with my son and his mom so that he and I could run around and play and so she and I could discuss our options moving forward. As my son and I ran around in front of Starbucks, I noticed that I was literally getting winded from just the small amount of time chasing him around. Now, while I was absolutely no Captain America, I served my time proudly in the US Army. I did ridiculous amounts of PT and kept myself in good shape. Oh, yeah…and then I got old and lazy. I couldn’t believe I was winded chasing around a 15-month-old!
It was at this moment that I decided to try and get back to the gym. Now, if I’m being completely honest, I used a 5-day free guest pass because I almost knew that it would be just a couple day phase and then I’d be back on the couch. I worked out that first day (and by workout, I mean I did the stair-master at a pace that would have been laughed at by sloths). Before I left, I was approached and taken over to a desk to discuss membership options. In all reality, they were dirt cheap. I didn’t pay any enrollment fee, and it was all month to month, so I figured no harm no foul.
I found myself back the next day. And the next day. And days upon days in a row after that. Every time I’d go, I would re-familiarize myself with a machine or a workout that I hadn’t done in...uh….quite some time. It became a personal challenge to myself to see just how long and hard I could push myself. In three months’ time, I lost 3 inches on my waist. I’ve lost 7% body fat and I’ve lost a total of 35 pounds. Most people would say, that’s awesome! For me, it’s not about what I’ve lost. It’s about what I’ve gained. I have gained an entirely new outlook and perspective on life.
Being at LA Fitness everyday has become my therapy. It’s become my sanctuary. It’s given me more mental strength than physical, and for me, that’s exactly what I need.”
All You Need is to Take the First Step
This all took place over the course of just a few months! Tyler made the decision to change his physical and mental well-being in late June of this year. It really came down to the fact that he made a choice and was determined to follow-through. He goes on to say:
“At the end of the day, I say all this, not for a pat on the back or for a “yay me” moment. I’m hoping that if there is anyone who needed to hear these words, that they have heard them by reading this. No matter what you’re facing in life, you can go out there and make it better. You HAVE to keep pushing. Find something that will keep you going. Find your sanctuary.”
Tyler plans to continue his health and fitness endeavors by studying nutrition and learning how it works for everyone individually. He attributes a lot of his success to his mindfulness of his food choices and hopes to expand his knowledge even further. He has also recently added HIIT by LAF to his routine and happily reports “I am LOVING it!”
LA Fitness played a role in his motivation too. There’s just something contagious about the energy of others who are also working hard to achieve their personal goals. Tyler explains:
“I love the familiar faces at my gym. Seeing the same people day in and day out, pushing themselves to their limits to reach their goals helps me keep going. 99% of the people, you never meet, but just seeing their drive on a day to day basis helps keep you going.”
Be Your Own Hero
Tyler has seen his fair share of hard times and knows that other people face similar struggles. His advice?
“Don’t stop. Whatever you do…don’t stop. There are times it’ll hurt. Keep pushing. Sore? Keep pushing. Tired? Keep pushing. Emotionally drained? Keep pushing. Frustrated? Keep pushing. Never tell yourself that you can’t do something. Get out there and keep pushing. Be your own hero.”
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For length and clarity, minor edits – none of which alter the original or intended meaning – have been made to the quotes provided.