Our Member of the Month for September is Nanette Johnson. If you want to talk about overcoming obstacles, her story is sure to speak to you, especially if you struggle with your weight, in addition to, a disability. Nan’s story is one of a battle since childhood. In her youth she was overweight and, as a result, was called names. It did not help that she also never really had an interest in physical activity. She also suffers from a debilitating injury from a sledding accident, which semi-paralyzed her entire right arm at the age of 19.
Fast forward to 2019. Nan has now been married for 40 years, recently retired as an IT Manager, has 2 grown children, and 4 grandchildren – 2 in which she is their caregiver.
As previously stated, Nanette had always struggled with weight. She stated that she has tried every fad diet in the book, and many different tactics including weight watchers, and the like with yo-yo like results, damaging her metabolism each time. Adding to that, she became disabled at the age of 19. Nan was sledding behind a truck, which hit a hill sending her high into the air. As a result, she landed on her neck with her right arm behind her. This pulled her brachial plexus nerve out of her spinal cord, which was only discovered a year after the accident. While she was in the hospital her weight significantly dropped. She said she felt good but after the years and babies but always tried to control her weight through diet never exercise. She was in the mindset that, because of her arm, she couldn’t exercise.
After retirement, Nan came to the point where she woke up one day and had a revelation. She thought, “this ain’t working for you honey. You better find something that does.” This lead her to a search online for gyms and she found SNW Fitness. After researching the website, snwfitness.com, Nan decided that it looked like something that might fit her comfort level. She decided to start with 3 months of personal training with Heidi. Her biggest motivation at the time was to get healthier so she can keep up with and continue taking care of her grandkids. Her parents also both passed away from heart attacks.
In the last month of her personal training, Nanette and Heidi sampled different classes. They did this so she could not only get a feel for the classes with a friend, but also to work on modifying moves that might not work for her and so she would know what to expect in each class. Now she is taking classes, making friends and is comfortable knowing that she has back up plans for each move. She relayed that she is most proud that she has lost 18lbs and that she can do the classes. Nan was shocked that she’s actually motivated to keep coming to class.
Nan is still doing great and being consistent and said that she has no intentions of changing that anytime soon. She indicated that if she hadn’t done something when she had, she wouldn’t be able to keep up with her grandkids or be able to take care of them. Nanette left us with some words to consider, “If what you’re doing right now is not working for you STOP! Consider coming (to SNW Fitness) and trying for 3 months with a personal trainer and if that doesn’t really change you, then go back to what you were doing.” Makes sense. Cut and dry. What an inspiration to us all! Way to persevere Nan!