Congratulations to Clodagh who won the Ladies Captains Prize at Hermitage Golf Club.
Clodagh has made great strides since joining ABC and we are absolutely delighted with her recent success on the golf course…….
But that is not all she has achieved.
Here is what Clodagh had to say:
“Before I joined ABC – I said the craziness of being a secondary school teacher was exercise enough – but I was playing a little golf. I found 18 holes long and arduous and I was often out of breath. Yet, I justified it by saying golf was exercise and thus I was being active.
There is no way i would have been capable of even completing 18 holes in the heat like there was on Sunday, never mind have the fitness and concentration to win the Captains Prize. I could not have done that without the fitness i gained at ABC Gym.
I was cheating myself previously. I know that now.
I live on the same road as the Fleming Family. Over 2 years I watched Molly transform herself – and I admired from afar.
One day playing golf – a hot day – I felt physically unwell and couldn’t complete the round. I didn’t feel this was normal – and thus began my series of health checks. Bottom line – I was diagnosed with hypertension and put on medication for life.
I was deemed overweight, lacking in iron and folic acid and basically my physiology was not as it should be. Step number I was to get fit and lose weight.
On my way home I passed Molly…….
I knew her brother Rory was a trainer in a gym. I knew Molly had obviously benefited from it – but another gym?
I had gone to Crunch Fitness years ago – gave that up – went to SanoVitae – gave that up. Never liked the craziness of it. Lots of machines – lots of beeping – and never felt part of anything.
I did lose weight at times but never sustained it.
I did one on one personal training but never connected – and to be honest I used to dread it – rather than feel any other health benefits.
It never made sense to me that my mental health was suffering for want of better physical health. I felt the two should be hand in glove.
I asked Rory to come over to my house to talk about his work – which I now knew was in a place called ABC gym. Of course he came over and we sat in my kitchen the first week of January 2018– the best week of the year for resolutions I know. But I was now worried about my health. I was going to be 49 next birthday and something had to change in my life. I had to reduce this high blood pressure and keep it down. I know now – Rory represented everything that ABC was to become to me in the next 6 months – interested in me and how I was doing. He stayed for nearly an hour – when I know he probably had 1000 other things he would rather have been doing.
But it was that meeting – in my kitchen – when we discussed what I needed to do – that I felt something change in me. A new determination. I was going to give this a go. I had never ever had that kind of personal intervention before – a genuine caring for my health and wellbeing.
He called it a lifestyle change and he reassured me that I could do it! I wasn’t a ‘member’. I was a ‘friend’ and he wanted to help me. What became even more remarkable was that Enda, Andy, Noel and now Niamh – all feel the same.
So what is it about ABC that is different? It is from the moment you step inside the door. Always from somewhere the trainers will say ‘Hi Clodagh’. It stunned me from the get go how quickly they learned my name and never forgot it. It continues to stun me how all the trainers know how much I am lifting – my difficulties with certain movements – the continuous praise when I do something well. The care is omnipresent.
One example sticks out in my mind. I was training with Rory. Andy was training across the room with another group. I was on the TRX doing chin ups. I managed the required reps and without prompt or without being under his direct care – he called ‘Getting Stronger Clodagh – well done!’ from across the room.
It made me feel so good – and I wanted to do more. That’s what it is about. I want to do well – but not just for me now – but for everybody from the trainers and other members in ABC who have made me feel part of something. I feel you need to be rewarded for such genuine care and dedication.
Enda was concerned one day about my lips turning blue and talked to me about it -gave advice to me about it – and followed it up with me. I have sorted out that problem too – but it was handled with such discretion. It is really going beyond the call of duty.
What would I say to anyone sitting on the fence about joining ABC gym? Jump off that fence. 6 months ago I was overweight with hypertension – poor circulation, shortness of breath and living an unhealthy lifestyle which I justified by saying others were worse than me. I am a full time secondary teacher, Programme Coordinator and mother of two teenage boys.
My days are full – how could I possibly fit in three gym sessions a week? The greatest gift to myself was to find the time. My days are so much better now that I go to these 3 sessions a week. Sure there are some days I feel I don’t have the energy. I battle through and I am all the better for it. My working day has taken a new lease of life. I have more energy in the classroom – tasks are less onerous – I am more alert to what I eat without being obsessive.
In fact the diet element merely fell into place nicely beside the gym. I don’t want to undo what I gained in my sessions. But I still enjoy my food and deny myself very little – but all in moderation now. I can now officially say that I have lost 16lbs since January and my blood pressure has decreased from 150/100 to 119/78 last check. As a result my medication has been reduced from 40mgs a day to 20mgs and it is to be reviewed again in September. While I have no expectation that I will come off medication completely – ABC has me on the right track.
So finally – can I take this opportunity to thank all at ABC for making me feel okay about being out of my comfort zone. It is not easy putting yourself out there. But my small and steady progress is celebrated. I am on a journey. I am still only at the beginning – but I can’t think of a better group of people I want to take this journey with. ABC is my GPS!! And Rory is welcome in my kitchen any time!
Thank you all again – its been a long time since I felt this good. Take a bow ABC.