At the age of 53, I decided to embark on a second career as registered nurse. As I continued my science and medical studies, I realized I would have to be in top physical shape to withstand the daily demands of nursing, and to be an effective role model in promoting wellness to my patients. I needed to be in the best shape of my life.
While I had always worked out and stayed in decent shape, I decided I had to do more and started a weight training program in earnest. My program was a mish-mash of exercises I had picked up from magazines, the internet, and just watching other people in the gym. After making some nice gains, the steady improvements began to plateau, and I was constantly plagued by annoying joint inflammation caused by repeating the same exercises over and over again. And, I had a hard keeping my body fat low. It was time to consider hiring a trainer.
When I moved to West Hartford, and asked friends for advice on selecting a gym and a trainer. Excel Fitness was the overwhelming response, and trainer Jeff Roux was suggested as being the best match to my fitness goals. After visiting the Excel Fitness web site, I was impressed with the facility, but a bit apprehensive about working with Jeff, whose impressive background includes success as a competitive bodybuilder.
I needn’t have worried. At our first meeting, Jeff put me at ease as I explained to him that I wanted to be in the best shape possible in 18 months, by May 22, 2010 – the date of my graduation from nursing school. He accepted my goal, did a personal assessment to create a baseline, and designed an exercise program to get me started. From day one, the effect of his training program on my body has been intense and wonderful, to say the least.
Jeff always explains the purpose of each exercise, and demonstrates its proper form and execution. He consistently pushes me beyond my own self-perceived limits, and provides me with fresh approaches to standard exercises and adding new ones. For my part, I am encouraged to train to my real potential each time, and I have not sustained any training injuries, as I had in the past.
The result: I felt I had reached the best shape of my life within 12 months, but in the past six months I have added more muscle, lost more body fat, and I have no intention of stopping anytime soon. I am able to wear clothes sizes I wore when I was in my 30’s, and friends and family have noticed the change in my body, with the comment “You must live in the gym!” Well, I train just a little over an hour three times a week. That’s just a bit more than three hours a week to be in the best shape of your life at any age! My doctor once said I am his most boring patient, as I take no medications, and have never had any surgery.
Getting back to my graduation as a RN on May 22, I was able to walk proudly onstage at the age of 58 with my white scrub top tucked into my pants, in the best shape of my life. And I have Jeff Roux and Excel Fitness to thank for this accomplishment.