Monday, February 28, 2011

Changing One Life at a Time

I recently went to Whole Foods in South Beach, a place a used to frequent daily, when I lived within walking distance of it, a few years ago.  Now I usually stop in on occasion when I am in the Miami area taking care of my few "special" clients that I am willing to keep and make the drive from Fort Lauderdale to help.  On this occasion my partner and I were shopping for something healthy  for my weekly competition "Yummy" meal.  Some call it a "cheat meal", but the negative connotation lives me feeling guilty for something that is supposed to revitalize you. As we were shopping we stopped to speak to a guy handing out samples of a new wine.  Of course I couldn't try it, but I happily got a sample for my girlfriend.  I vaguely recognized the guy, but couldn't place the memory.  After a brief conversation we moved on.

I was finishing my grocery shopping when the guy from the Wine Sample Table came chasing after me, "Are you Melissa?" he said.  I looked at him curiously and before I could answer he continued "You used to train at Crunch on Washington Avenue?"
 "Yes!" I answered excitedly remembering my stint as a Personal Trainer at the gym before moving on to expand my career.
He went on to make many wonderful exclamations as he reintroduced himself as Seth and explained that I had been his trainer at Crunch and had changed his life.  As he began to tell me his story I began to recall the vague memory.  He obviously looked completely different now, fifty pounds lighter than the last time I had seen him.

Seth came to me when I was working at Crunch for advice and training after being very sick.  Due to his illness the doctors had prescribed steroids to help him get better, but unfortunately the drugs had caused him to gain over 70 pounds in the previous year.  He was unhealthy and unhappy and unsure where to begin.  I coached him through proper training techniques, gave him nutritional advice, guided his eating habits, and worked with him to maximize his workouts for better, more efficient results.  These simple little steps are things many of us take for granted and think are so easily accessible and achievable.  But without knowledge most people are lost like Seth was.

I moved from Crunch and soon forgot about Seth. But Seth did not forget about me.  He says that he took everything he learned from me from when we worked together and kept applying to his life and training.  He said I changed his life.  He looks healthy and happy and had lost an additional 50 pounds since the last time I had seen him which had been over a year ago.

His story sent chills down my spine and brought tears to my eyes.  This STORY is the reason why I LOVE my career and what I do.  I am in the business of saving lives and changing them forever.  I am not God, but in many ways we as fitness professionals have the power to touch people and the ripple effect will be felt long after we are gone.  I touched one life and that one life will multiply into something greater.  I feel blessed to have the ability to help, inspire, and teach.  Do ever second guess the little things you do that make huge differences in other peoples lives.  I was just doing what I would do for anybody and the reward is amazing!
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