“I began my journey with the Balanced Habits KICK START program in the middle of January 2018. I was in a bad place physically. Though I am taller than the average man, my 6”1’ frame was holding too much weight. Hitting my heaviest at 295 lbs, I knew that I needed a change. With my 29th birthday less than 6 months away, and a family history of type 2 diabetes, I knew if I continued on my current path, I would be riddled with health problems. I researched gyms in the area, but I knew I needed more attention than the average gym-goer. I grew up in the south, and my family is Italian, so eating is what I knew. I had always been overweight, and my parents and grandparents also struggled with their weight. I decided on Arena Fitness because of their focus on the person as a whole. I also saw an opportunity for the 28 day Kickstart and decided to challenge myself.
At first I thought “What have I gotten myself into?” I had no idea what I was doing when it came to any kind of physical exercise, and the only thing I really thought I knew about nutrition was that “carbs are bad.” Luckily, my nutritional expert Stacey Garcia, took the time to explain the importance of a balanced diet. I was amazed when I heard that carbs were not only necessary for energy, but also good for you! I had just been eating the wrong carbs. When my 28 days were up, I had lost 16 lbs. I was stunned. I also knew I could easily gain it back if I didn’t have the help, so I spoke with Stacey and I joined the Balanced Habits LIFE Program. This is where I truly hit my stride. With the help of the LIFE program, I was able to continue my exercise and really focus on my weight loss. The weekly meetings really helped me stay motivated. I also learned that mistakes happen and that it is okay to indulge occasionally. I was able to plan ahead for business dinners, birthday parties, and family get togethers where I knew the food would be plentiful and tasty, if not the most nutritious. With the help of the LIFE program, I was able to lose 50 lbs before my 29th birthday. I never thought it would be possible, and if I hadn’t found Balanced Habits, I truly believe it would not have been.
I am now down over 60 lbs total and I am still working on my nutrition every day. I just signed up for the Fall KICK START for an extra boost and I have been very focused on my new unit measurements. I am excited for the continuation of my journey, and I hope to begin a new strength program soon after. I never thought I would see a day where I stopped focusing on weight loss, and started focusing on strength building.
I want to thank everyone at Basic Habits for their continuing work in educating people like myself. As cliche as it sounds, this has truly been a life changing experience. If I could give a piece of advice to anyone thinking about joining, it would be this; Just do it. I’ve been there, I’ve made the excuses, I’ve felt the muscle soreness, but six months from now none of that will even matter. You’re not going to remember the struggle, or the pain You’re going to see the results and be reminded of how far you’ve come.”
– Matthew T.