Name: Laurie Ann Gouley
Why I Got Started
It all started with that awful time of year for any woman. Yup. It was time for my yearly gynecologist visit. Ugh, boy was I dreading it. I knew I had gained weight but when I stepped on that scale and saw my weight was at 148, I died inside. Now you are probably thinking, "148 pounds so what?" Well, I am only 5-foot-2, so 148 is pretty hefty to say the least.
Also, I had just turned 37, and my doctor suggested I have some blood work done. That came back with what I considered "old people diseases" and I was not old. My blood pressure was high, my weight was high, my cholesterol was high and my doctor was recommending blood pressure pills, cholesterol pills and I was already on Paxil and Quetiapine!
Holy cow, I left the doctor's office in a whirlwind within my mind. I was actually talking to myself in the car, "What the hell happened to me and how did I get to this point in my life?"
So, the next day I went to work and talked with a co-worker about my "conditions." She perked up immediately and told me I should go visit this guy named Rocco Boulay at Integrity. I was skeptical at first, and thought to myself, "Really? A gym is going to 'cure' what ails me?" So I agreed to go just to "shut her up" about it.
It kept nagging at me though…maybe I should go … what did I have to lose? It can't hurt to go check it out. At the rate I was going, I was going to be put on more medications. I wanted to be off the ones I was on!
How I Did It
I gathered up my courage and went to the Bedford NH Integrity Location. I was actually the first customer. Integrity had been open in Londonderry NH for many years but Rocco had just branched out with a franchise of Integrity, and Bedford was the second location.
As I walked in I immediately felt like "I should not be here. I'm not fat." but then I laughed to myself and thought,"Umm…yes, you are and you should be here." That intimidated feeling left as quickly as it came. I was instantly greeted by a health coach and Rocco Boulay, the founder and owner of Integrity. They both made me feel so welcome and at ease.
Rocco personally gave me a tour of the club, and I explained my "problems" to him - he listened with much patience. I felt like I rambled on for hours! I told him I wanted to be skinny, sexy and medication-free.
He responded "Ok, here's how." He proceeded to tell me what I needed to do. I laughed and said, "That's it? All I have to do is exercise and eat better?"
He said, "Yep," so I said, "OK, sign me up!" So, I signed up and one of the health coaches took me into a private room where they did an evaluation of my vitals and body fat.
My body fat was a whopping 42.6%, which is considered morbidly obese. Yikes, it was worse than I had originally thought and mentally I was glad to be there. Grateful to be there - I think had I kept going down the path I was going I probably would have suffered a heart attack or stroke or worse.
So my journey began. I had my evaluation done, my workout program was created just for me, and I received advice from the health coaches and meal plans. I slowly weaned myself off the Paxil and Quetiapine. It was not easy to say the least. I suffered from terrible withdrawals. I had many days with tears and anger but I kept at it.
If I needed support all I had to do was call or go down to Integrity and someone was there to support me in one way or another. Whether by the health coaches standing near me as I worked out, or just listening, or even a hug; they supported me 100% with what I was going through. I'll say it again, "It was not easy."
Now it was time, my 8 week re-evaluation day. I was so nervous, but excited to see how well I did. I kind of knew I was doing something right because people were commenting about my weight loss and they were also commenting that I looked refreshed and not as tired.
In 8 weeks, my weight was down to 135 and my body fat was down to 32%. I screamed with sheer delight. In 8 weeks! Only working out every other day, I had dramatic improvements! The numbers were in. I saw results!
Also, I was completely off my meds. I wasn't on blood pressure meds or cholesterol meds. By joining Integrity I have actually saved money. No more meds meant no more co-pays to the doctor's office, and no more co-pays for the drugs!
I had my blood work redone after my 8 week evaluation and all of my blood work is completely within the normal range. Amazing, exercise and good food choices were my saving grace.
With my new found education on food, health, and wellness, I can honestly say that I am making better food choices, which have resulted in my children and my husband eating better in return; it has caused them to be more conscious in their eating habits as well. Live by example!
Where am I now? I'll be 41 in September 2011, Weight 115, Body Fat 21%. No medications what-so-ever.
I feel incredible! I'm more energetic and I can complete tasks in less time. I look refreshed and 10 years younger. I feel sexy! My husband is thunderstruck with my new body.
I could not have done it without the support I received from Integrity. In the end though "I" had to make a choice, did I want to live a healthy, quality-filled life or did I want to be always tired and a slave to medications?
I know I definitely made the right choice in taking charge of my own health. I choose to live healthy and medication free. I choose to educate my children to live the best possible life.
I have also become a Certified Personal Trainer so I can help other people feel as fantastic as I do!
Morning & Afternoon:
Morning & After Dinner:
- NOW GABA 500mg: 1 cap
- NOW Silymarin 150mg: 1 Cap
- 1 cup coffee
- 4 oz can of tuna mixed with a dollop of mayo
- Big salad w/veggies topped with sunflower seeds
- 8 oz water
- 1 cup Greek yogurt
- ¼ cup Ezekiel cereal
- 4-6 oz chicken, turkey or fish
- ½ cup brown rice
- ½ plate broccoli, green beans or salad with dressing
- 8 oz water
Meal 6: Optional
I follow an 8 week workout cycle. Once I have completed the 8 weeks I re-test all my vitals and then I do a sub-maximal strength test. Sub-maximal strength testing is a process that determines the relative strength level of a person without the invasiveness of pushing them to the maximum.
This is done by selecting a weight with which you can easily perform one repetition but will fail at or before ten repetitions. This is what helps me create a new plan for the next 8-week workout cycle.
Day 1: Chest/Biceps/Cardio/Core
Day 2: Rest
Day 3: Shoulders/Legs/Core/Cardio
Day 4: Rest
Day 5: Lats/Triceps/Core/Cardio
Day 6: Rest
Day 7: Core
Suggestions for Others
There is absolutely no substitute for a daily program of healthy activity and a diet consisting of nutritiously dense foods. Give your body and your brain the nourishment it thrives for!
By taking control of your health you will also be contributing to keeping the cost of health care down! You will become more productive personally and professionally. By learning what it takes to become healthy, hopefully you will pass that knowledge down and teach your children how to become healthy as well. The rate obesity is rising in America if we don't start taking our health seriously the human race will be doomed.
For many people out there, getting healthy and fit has been a game of hit or miss. Year after year after year people try health clubs, weight loss centers, fad diets, and many other gimmicks that promise better health, yet fail miserably. The reason why they fail is because they don't have a plan that provides all the instructions of health and fitness to attain ultimate success. People were never taught how to attain good health; instead we are lead to believe that there is an easy way out. There is no magic pill!
If you truly want to live a long and prosperous life then you must be willing to put forth the effort and do the work that it takes to get it. There is no simple way to do this! Everything valued in life is always earned. Whether it is earning a degree, paying off a mortgage or raising a family, it's hard work but always worth the effort!
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