The following is written by Kay Wodetski, about her story of change, her living with intention for a better life…we think Kay is a true inspiration to all of us.
As a certified personal trainer now and someone who knows the struggle to maintain one’s commitment to their body and their healthy lifestyle, Kay has great insight for what works. Ask Kay’s advice! Thanks, Kay!
…Like too many of us, I have struggled with weight issues most of my life. While never obese as a child or teen, I was always a little plump. Schools back then didn’t offer organized sports for girls and PE was just a class to avoid. I was blessed, in a way, with a Mom who was a great cook.
So diets became a part of my life. But each time I lost weight I just gained it right back, and then some. As the pounds crept ever higher I developed more health issues, not to mention low self esteem, my blood pressure climbed to a dangerous point, requiring me to take medication. With a family history that includes my father, who passed away at the age of 53 from a heart attack and my mother who had heart disease and diabetes, I knew something had to change. At the end of 2006 my weight had climbed to 240 lbs. and I was pre-diabetic. My doctor and I agreed I needed go to Weight Watchers but he told me he would have to start seeing results, and fast.
I joined in Jan. 2007 and quickly learned that life doesn’t wait while you diet. The kitchen remodel still needed to be finished, a new and better job meant more and more work and, sadly, I watched my Mom finally succumb to the health issues that her weight and other problems had caused. But even the saddest of events can have a tiny silver lining. I became determined to succeed and I did. That first year, I lost 40 pounds.
Encouraged by a friend from Weight Watchers to start exercising I joined a gym in Jan. 2008. Having essentially no experience in exercising, I realized I would need a personal trainer to get me started. Twice each week he taught me how to exercise correctly and burn the most calories possible in an exercise session. That training, combined with Weight Watchers, proved to be the key. That year I lost an astonishing 70 pounds. My weight was the lowest I could recall since a very young age and because of the resistance training I was fitting into sizes I didn’t even know existed before. Once, in New York, I found myself waltzing into Prada, not to buy, but just to realize they would fit! I gained strength, confidence and whole new outlook on life.
At the end of 2008 my job in the financial industry evaporated like so many others. Faced with trying to find another job in banking made me think about what I was truly passionate about. I decided to study and become a personal trainer myself. I passed my trainer certification exam in May of 2009 and started working for 24 Hour Fitness. I am now working in the same club where my own personal transformation took place.
Known as the “mature” trainer, age does have some benefits; I attract a clientele of mainly baby boomers needing to lose some weight and get in shape. Many have not exercised in years if at all and do not feel comfortable in the gym. Since I started from the same place I am able to relate and help to put them at ease.
My new life is so rewarding. I get to meet and work with people from all walks of life. I no longer cringe when asked to do anything that involves activity, in fact, I hate to sit still! My doctor is thrilled and I now look forward to a much longer life. I no longer take blood pressure medication and my blood sugar is normal.
Sometimes I look in the mirror and wonder who that thin person is who’s staring back? Whoever it is, I suspect they would tell you how much of a difference exercise and good nutrition can make.
As we all know, life keeps changing. In 2010 I knew that my marriage was over. This was a hard and painful decision but I knew that I deserved more happiness in life than I had at the time. This would not only mean ending a 25-year marriage, but also going back to a job in banking in order to support myself. I started a new job as commercial underwriter on November 1, 2010 but still continue to work part time as a personal trainer. And of course, I still am dedicated to fitness and eating healthy. I bought a house and moved out of the home I shared with my husband at the end of January 2011. The last year has brought about so many changes and another totally new life. There have been challenges and lots of ups and downs in the past year but I know I am a stronger person for all of the hard times. I once again have a whole new life and look forward to what comes next.