It’s a real family affair for the McGillivrays – Roy and Sue, along with their sons Simon and Ben, went through the U.P. transformation and are well on their way to becoming ‘the fittest family in the world’!
Moving back to the UK after living in Spain for 12 years, the McGillivrays let the stress that comes with relocating sideline their health.
The transition was particularly difficult for Sue, since she was also caring for her ill parents at the time.
For four years, Sue prioritised her parents’ health before her own, which took a toll on her health both physically and mentally. Over time, she fell out of love with herself and grew tired of how she looked, which understandably was hard for the rest of the family to see.
After losing her mother to diabetes, Sue came to the realisation that she couldn’t continue the way it was.
She had to put herself and her health first, and make sure that she doesn’t go down the same road as her mother.
That’s when Roy and Sue, along with their elder son Simon, decided to ditch their old, unhealthy lifestyles and turned to Ultimate Performance Manchester in hopes for a better and fitter future.
Having witnessed his loved ones’ results, Ben signed up to U.P. Manchester three months later.
Since then, the McGillivrays have collectively lost almost 38kg (84 lbs).
In Roy’s words: “The whole family has never been in such great shape!”
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While everyone in the family has made massive improvements, they all agree unanimously that Sue has seen the biggest transformation.
“Being overweight I felt like a big person had eaten a small person. I knew I was inside there somewhere, I just needed to get back to me.
“I’ve lost more than 22kg (49lbs), and all my friends just cannot believe the transformation.
“The fact that I can now fit in my wedding dress, which I’d not been able to fit into for 29 years, is just insane.
“I’ve got a new vigour and a new zest for life – and it feels great!”
Simon recognises the changes in his mum, calling them ‘incredible’.
“I look at her now and she’s enjoying life.
“She feels so much better in herself and that rubs off on all of us.”
Ben echoes that sentiment, saying “It’s everything about her – her whole outlook on life, her attitude and her mood is just so much better.
“She’s so much more confident now.
“Although she’s always been a really positive person, at times she might have put on a front to look strong, which she has been – she’s the strongest woman I know, but she’s even stronger now.
“She absolutely loves everything that she’s achieved at U.P.
“She can walk away from here knowing that she couldn’t have tried any harder, and she knows that she couldn’t have done it without U.P.”
The efforts and improvements that Roy has made didn’t go unnoticed either.
According to Simon, his dad blew up to almost 100kg (220 lbs) at one point. He says: “It didn’t look good on him.
“Before joining U.P., my dad’s health definitely took a backseat. I didn’t believe him when he first said that he was going to join U.P. with me, but we’ve done it and it’s been great for our relationship.
“It’s more than just the physical difference, I can tell that he feels sharper mentally as well – he’s got that mental edge and sharpness now.”
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Likewise, Ben can see that his dad has gained confidence that he never had before.
“I feel like U.P. has really helped to bring him out of his shell a lot.
“He takes much more pride in elements in his life that he didn’t before… materialistic things like fashion, but he takes real pride in it and he’s really feeling confident – and so he should!”
Indeed, Roy’s health has improved by leaps and bounds.
“This experience has taken the numbers away.
“I feel as good today at 56 as I did at 36… I’m probably fitter now than I was when I was 36.”
Even though each member of the family has dabbled with personal training before, this is the first time they actually achieved the results they set out to.
In Roy’s case, he knew that he wasn’t receiving any value from the personal trainers he had before.
“The personal trainers I had in the past paled in comparison to my personal trainer here at U.P.
“Personal trainers outside of U.P. quite often become your friends, but that’s not their job – their job is to motivate you, to push you, and to help you achieve the best possible results.
“Very often when you’re training with these personal trainers, you just end up on the treadmill rather than training – while your trainer is on their phone.
“Not to mention with these other trainers, you don’t get the same education and knowledge, and that level of professionalism like you do with U.P. trainers.”
Similarly, the U.P. experience for Sue is a huge departure from the kind of personal training she’s used to.
“The difference here is that my personal trainer wants it as much as I do. For me, that’s made all the difference.”
The U.P. experience has not only improved the McGillivrays as individuals, but the whole family dynamics as well.
As a close-knit family, Simon admits that gatherings used to involve takeaways and a few drinks at the pub, “But we’ve found healthier alternatives, such as a healthier meal at the weekend or we go bowling together.
“We still get to spend quality time together as a family, while making healthier choices.”
Even when they’re not training, they’re still able to find time to enjoy each other’s company thanks to our programme.
“We do many different things together – this experience is so much more than just the training.
“Meal-prepping for a family of four is a job on its own – but if you can do it the way we’ve done it, then everyone in the family can get involved and support each other.”
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Roy and Sue, in particular, are enjoying the strong bond they’ve built as a couple throughout the transformation.
“There’s no question that this experience has brought us closer together.
“We’ve had to be there through every bit of it, and you have to help and support each other.”
While the physical changes are obviously great, the McGillivrays can’t deny that the mental and emotional benefits have been invaluable.
Especially for Ben, who suffered from anxiety disorders prior to joining U.P.
“The difference between when I first started and now is worlds apart.
“I feel much happier and more confident about myself. I can walk around with my shoulders back and my head up straight, and feel proud of what I’ve actually accomplished, because not a lot of people can say they’ve done what I’ve done here at U.P.”
For that, Ben credits his personal trainer, Anthony.
“I had a really thorough consultation with Anthony, where we discussed about my mental health issues, anxiety and depression – and we worked on that together.
“With the diet taken into consideration, alongside working out and keeping active, the programme has been so good for me and my mental health.”
As a father, Roy is over the moon to see the improvement in Ben, “He can see that he’s achieving his goals, and that lifts his confidence.”
“When your confidence is lifted, your appearance is improving, and you’re feeling better about yourself, they’re really good qualities to help to combat the feelings of anxiety.”
This journey was not without its hurdles.
Going through a U.P. transformation is no easy task, at times you may need a little extra boost from your loved ones – and that’s exactly what the McGillivrays found in each other.
“There have been many challenges along the way, where someone might have been struggling with cravings, but we supported each other in different ways.
“We came together as a family to keep each other on track through difficulties.”
Families that work out together stick together. Through the transformations, the McGillivrays learned to support each other through tough times and together they’ve come out the other end triumphant.
“Training together as a family has definitely brought us closer together.”
“As a family, we are going to continue on this journey.”
Personal training has changed the McGillivrays’ lives – now is your turn.
If you think you have what it takes to be one of the fittest families in Britain, click here to join U.P.!
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