I walked into a gym and found myself.
Thirty years ago, I was a young man who was physically weak and lacked self confidence. I had always wanted to do something to change my appearance, health, and self-perception. A friend told me about weight training and pointed me toward a gym. After about 12 weeks of consistent training, I was hooked.
It was challenging to drag myself into the gym every day. But as time went on, I could see and feel physical changes. I developed a passion for my exercise routine, which grew to include weight, cardio, and sprint training. Along the way, I hit plateaus that made me question whether or not I should continue. But when I thought about how far I had come, I pushed on.
My parents were a huge support, as well as two other Whirlpool employees who worked out in the same gym. When my enthusiasm waned, those two coworkers would encourage me or suggest changes to my routine.
The self-confidence I developed through my fitness routine now permeates my life. It has helped fuel my career by enabling me to put myself out there for promotions and opportunities. The old me never would have done that. It has led me to do a lot of things in life I would not have attempted otherwise: scuba diving, skydiving, powerlifting competitions, strong man competitions; two years ago I completed my first sprint triathlon at the age of 46, and last year I started training in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.
Exercise is part of my family life, too. I introduced my wife to the gym about 29 years ago and she is still going strong. My wife, daughter, and I all train together now.
You can live any way you choose. You have the ability to shape your life. It all starts with making the first choice or that first step. As I close in on age 50, I plan to maintain my health and performance levels as long as possible. Making a single change 30 years ago impacted everything I do. Because of it, I am healthier, happier, and more action-oriented.