By: NM Crystal Lake & Huntley Fitness Staff
Heather Newman has been a member of the Health & Fitness Center on and off since it was built, but dove in again last summer after she started having some significant health issues. She was in pain almost every day from arthritis and abdominal issues and was determined to find a way to make it stop. She started working from home during the pandemic and cut back on my natural activity of moving around each day. Between her sedentary lifestyle and stress eating, she gained 40 pounds.
“I knew I was going to need some extra motivation, so I signed up for personal training with Tyler Steenrod from the get-go. I’d trained with him before (admittedly during a less-committed stretch), and I think we both privately had our doubts at the start. Getting back to the club was great, but the CDC mask mandate went into effect again after I began, which also tested my resolve. It’s a dilemma for me – I’m immunosuppressed, so being in an environment where people are masked when COVID is surging is important to me, but at the same time I was desperately out of shape, so breathing through a mask was hard. Still, I was determined to make this work, so I signed up for sessions a couple of times a week to keep me on track,” said Heather.
Personal training turned out to be just what Heather needed as her trainer developed a custom fitness plan to address her needs.
“Tyler’s got a gift for precisely adjusting workouts for the current condition of his clients, both fitness-wise and health-wise. He did a terrific job of skirting the significant issues I had while still allowing me to make steady gains in fitness (and loss in weight.) After a month or so, I realized this was going to stick, and started seeing him three times a week instead of two, then four times a week instead of three. These days I see him 4-5 days during the week and work out on the weekends based on his directions.”
Heather has lost all the weight she gained since the start of COVID, and then some. She is lifting more weight than she did when she was actively lifting with friends in college. Her chronic back pain and nerve issues due to pressure in her lower back have vanished, thanks to steady core work that is supporting those vertebrae. She has dropped two shirt sizes, and everything she wears fits very differently.
“The weight loss has been slow but steady, so I have great hopes that it’ll stay off. And when my husband decided he was going to do a 100-runs-in-100-days challenge this winter, I figured maybe I’d join him, but with workouts instead of runs. I’m 103 days in now, with 110 workouts, and I’m not stopping. Tyler even did 200 pushups during one of my workouts to celebrate day 100! We joke about him taking the credit while I do the work, but truthfully, I couldn’t have done any of this without him. He’s been there all along to challenge and cheer me on.”
Workouts are a required part of Heather’s schedule these days. She feel it keenly when I miss them – they help with her focus, her energy, and her stress.
“Those hours in the gym are like active meditation sessions. I can’t really spare the energy to think or worry about anything else, so it does wonders for clearing my mind and helping to refill my energy for the next day. My husband and my team at work definitely feel the difference! The center is beautiful, well-equipped and clean. The staff are friendly and do a terrific job of keeping the place both useful and sparkling. But I give 100% of the credit to why I’m still coming back daily to my trainer, Tyler Steenrod. I feel dramatically different than I did when I rejoined, and he deserves all the kudos for that.”
Interested in membership at the Health & Fitness Center? Please call 815.444.2900 or visit the Member Service Desk.
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