Juan is a 30 year old recent UNC graduate. We asked Juan why he came to Empower to train:
“It all started with preparation for an upcoming wedding. I visited the Empower headquarters frantic one afternoon and told Paul I needed to lose 10 pounds in 3 weeks. I now know that Paul isn’t one to stand on ceremony and immediately connected me to Empower nutritionist Cara Demu. I walked out of Empower with a bag of a 3 week Standard Process cleanse as well as an appointment the following day for a free session with Paul.
I was able to sustain my dedication to my 10 pound weight loss throughout the 3 weeks. During our consultation, Paul measured me as having 19.98% body fat at 165.4 pounds. I’m 5’10 and though the weight measured wasn’t too badly out of BMI for my height, my initial goal was to recreate my body of 10 years prior where I’d see people I hadn’t seen since then. Muscle soreness was relieved by expert massage therapist John Williford who not only restored my strained body but has always answered any questions in a professional and helpful manner.
During those 10 years, I endured a brain injury during a 3 month coma. Once I awoke, I was forced to see physical, occupational and speech therapists daily in order to return to the life I lead before. I’ve lived 5 years since then with rudimentary physical therapy and limited range of motion. Before I entered Empower, my diet was haphazard and random. Now, after seeing the benefits and awareness of what I eat as well as how good I feel every time I meet Paul for a session I don’t think I’ll ever return to my old ways.”
We asked Juan about his results:
“I’ve lost more than 10 lbs. since I started my regimen with Paul and Cara. I’m now at 155.4 lbs. and 16.85% body fat. My waist size has diminished from 36.5 inches to 31 and my hip size has changed from 39.75 inches to 38.75. I see Paul three times a week for an hour.
My flexibility and range of motion has increased and improved dramatically in the short time since I’ve met the Empower team. I’ve been able to move my body more freely and without resistance, e.g. running down stairs and putting pants on without a stationary surface for assistance. Also I feel that my core strength has changed — I’m able to sustain and lift heavier equipment at Empower but my sit-up ability still needs some work.”
We asked Juan how these results have made him feel:
“My natural energy level has absolutely increased. I feel less stress/anxiety since I’ve embarked on the fitness train as my use of anti-anxiety prescription drugs has diminished. My confidence has risen by bounds. I had never really used gym equipment for an extended period of time nor really knew how to use it. Thanks to Paul and the Empower team, I feel like I can do much more than ever before.”
Finally, we asked Juan if he has any words of advice to others that are interested in attaining specific health and fitness goals:
“I never thought I’d be one of those people who cared about fitness or a proper diet. After my time with sustained diet and exercise regimes with Paul and Gina and help with better nutritional skills from Cara I hope I’m on my way to a better me. It sounds cliche, but the skills acquired and developed at Empower has provided me a brand new way of life and outlook. It’s a whole fitness universe out there ready to be tapped and enjoyed with the outcome of empowering yourself.”
As trainers we have people come in quite often with goals that are quite lofty. When Juan came in and told me he needed to lose 10 pounds in a month I had some warning signals going off in my head because many times people have expectations like this without being able to commit to the work. But I was very honest with him. I told him we could do it and wanted him to get started on our three week cleanse as soon as possible and that I’d need him to come see me three times a week for an hour on top of walking every day. He proceeded to follow all the advice we gave him and follow the cleanse 100% strict for the three weeks and, wouldn’t ya know it, he lost 10 pounds.
It’s been a pleasure to work with someone who has been through so much but is so determined to get more fit. I see progress every single time he comes in because of the stimulus we’re putting his body through and the adaptations that are happening. Pushups seemed impossible when we first met. We’ve now worked up to the point where Juan can do a few. Squats took some getting used to but learning them has changed his life. Approximately two weeks after we started working together Juan reported being able to squat down and obtain something from the bottom shelf of a grocery store with ease, something that would have been very uncomfortable in the past.
I’m thrilled that Juan has had such good results from working with Empower. We educated him on what to do in the kitchen and put him to work in the gym. Ultimately he had the discipline to follow through with the diet and my walking recommendation. Through all of these things he’s achieved his initial goal and more.
Paul Piracci, BS CSCS
Paul brings a background of athletics and education to the Empower team. He believes that wellness should be viewed as a blended lifestyle that balances nutrition, a healthy mind, and fitness which incorporates fun recreational activities. For more information about Empower Personal Training please call (919) 401-8024.