INTRODUCING MIRA HEUMAN
One of the main reasons I love to teach, coach and personal train is because I have seen people do some amazing things they could not do before.
One of these amazing people is Mira Heuman. Mira started with me December 2015 and has been with us here at Strive Fitness and Performance in Macomb, MI for a year now. She has been through so many things in this past year. Saying that, I decided to not put it into my own words, but instead, ask her to write about it herself.
Without further ado…Here is the Mira Heuman story
MY JOURNEY TO FITNESS AND A NEW LIFE
” Growing up as a first generation immigrant with old world parents wasn’t always easy. I came to the United States in 1977 as a 6 year old skinny kid. I think that’s the last time I could describe myself as skinny. Through out my childhood and adolescence I could be described as a chunky girl. I wasn’t fat and I wasn’t thin. I don’t think I ever participated in any sports because my parents always thought it was a waste of time and there was more important things to do. We weren’t allowed fast food so when we had opportunities with friends it was like a shark feeding frenzy. It wasn’t very good by any means.
Puberty brought on a new thinner body but I was still overweight because I never exercised. After high school graduation came college and my first attempt to life away from home at Ferris State University. I thought it was great; staying up late, ordering pizza and subs whenever we wanted on top of having a meal plan already paid for. The freshman 15 turned into 30 and for a brief time I took action against the weight gain by taking classes in physical fitness. It worked!!! I lost a whole lot of weight and I thought I was all set. Wrong!! A knee surgery later caused all the weight to return and then some. Not long after that and a failed relationship I returned home for good. I didn’t feel good about myself and the depression from feeling like a failure set in.
What am I going to do with myself?
Travel school…I became a travel agent and I had a job that had me sitting for 5-8 hours a day. I again had no physical activity other than putting a sandwich in my mouth or a burger. The 90’s were the years of the stretchy pants. You never knew when you were gaining weight because the pants always fit. Fast forward to a marriage and 2 kids and I was at my highest weight of 260lbs.
In 2000 I started a new job working for Chrysler that had me working long hours and was very physically demanding. In a matter of months without really even trying I had shed almost 30 pounds. The demands of the job also brought on a lot of joint pain and many visits to doctors. 2007 surgery on both wrists for carpal tunnel, 2009 surgery on left foot for a neuroma, 2010 planta fasciitis surgery and 2015 tarsal tunnel surgery and repair of a torn tendon. I was always in pain one way or another from the extra weight I was carrying around.
In 2013 I joined a gym to try and shed this weight and all was going well until a death in the family caused me to spiral out of control and quit the gym and all the progress I had made was lost again. I never had any real direction so it was easy to make excuses and not do what I was supposed to do. I joined a new gym in 2015 after my ankle surgery in hopes of using their pool as a form of rehabilitation but again I had no direction. I would walk in and not know what to do and just do on the elliptical and go ham on it for an hour. Once I was done I would leave and not do any kind of strength training or use their pool. I felt like I was spinning my wheels. I had the face of a thin person but the body of an extremely overweight 40 something year old woman.
I looked at myself in the mirror one day close to the holidays and vowed that 2016 was going to be different. I was on my phone one evening and an ad appeared in my Facebook newsfeed. These ads I would usually scroll right by but this one in particular caught my eye. 30 DAY KICK START CHALLENGE it said…without thinking twice I filled out the application and waited to hear back from the trainer. Derek and I talked at length about why I wanted to lose weight and what I have done in the past and what I was looking for in the future. I told him, “I want to finally have my body match my face!” After the last surgery I had put on so much weight that when I finally did go back to work I looked like a stuffed sausage or a balloon animal in my work coveralls. I went to the first workout to check it out and to see how things were going to go. What I saw when I arrived was men and women that were just like me. The environment was pleasant and inviting. From the first workout I felt like I found my place. I found my people. The workouts were not easy, we were sweating and panting and it was wonderful. I finally felt alive. After 21 days I had lost 12 inches overall and about 11 pounds. My clothes fit better, I was happier, I looked forward to every Monday and Wednesday night. I felt myself get stronger and more agile but I also knew I was a long way from being done. Derek taught me about nutrition and exercise and how the one can not be without the other.
The ladies I worked out with are some of the best people I have ever met. I have never seen such comradely and everyone being so supportive.
This now brings us to the last few months. At the end of May I had suffered a major injury to my back outside of the gym, that caused severe pain and nothing seemed to work. I stopped working out because it was too painful and Derek and the gang never left me to think I was all alone. After the injury I was also dealt with another blow to my health in the form of a double pulmonary embolism that left me hospitalized for four days. My depression hit and all time low and I thought I was never going to be able return to working out again. After several visits to a chiropractor and physical therapy the pain went away and I knew I had to try and return.
I’m so glad I did because I am now back to where I started and there’s no stopping me. I ran my first real 5K race at Thanksgiving and beat my time by almost half from the previous year when I didn’t train at all. I am running 3 days a week on my own and 2 days a week training with Derek. The positive energy and support I get now is unbelievable. I feel like a new person and I am able to do things I couldn’t even do when I was in my 20’s. I’m 45 years old now and feel better than ever thanks to Derek Ledwidge and the FitFam. I feel blessed beyond belief because for me Derek saved my life in more ways than one.
Such an amazing story from an amazing person.
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