Susan has rebuilt her health and fitness after a tough couple of years which ended with the death of her mother.
Reeling from her mother’s passing, 51-year-old Susan was heading towards depression.
A heart-to-heart with her husband made her face the truth – she needed to prioritise her own health and wellbeing.
She had made caring for her ailing mum the focus of her life, but now needed to focus on herself.
Susan was worried about her family history of diabetes and wanted to avoid going down that path.
So together, the family decided that a transformation programme at Ultimate Performance Manchester would be just the thing.
So the family all signed up together – Susan, her husband and her two sons.
Susan spent 25 weeks at U.P. Manchester and transformed herself completely – both inside and out.
She lost 21kg and gained back her health and an incredible new figure, and now even fits in her wedding dress from 30 years ago.
“When you get dressed, and people give you compliments, that’s nice, but ultimately it’s about how you feel and being able to look at yourself in the mirror and like what you see.
“I feel like a different person. I just feel like I’ve gone back to who I was. I just feel like I’ve got a new vigour, new zest for life.”
For Susan, U.P. was a way to deal with grief and to find something to take her mind off her emotions.
The last few years had been spent on survival mode, and Susan and her family decided that getting back control of their bodies and fitness would help them in more ways than one.
“Being overweight made me feel that I lost myself. I felt like a big person had kind of eaten a small person. I knew I was inside there, and I just needed to get back to me.”
Susan knew she was at a real crossroads in her life, especially where her health was concerned.
“I’ve gotten to a point in my life where I needed to make some big changes. I’ve got a family history of diabetes.
“I think after the death of my mum, and again because it was related to diabetes, it was really important for me to get myself sorted and not go down that same track.
“This has been so helpful because it has given me a real focus on myself and get myself healthy rather than focusing on grief.”
The U.P. programme was unlike anything she had experienced before.
The training was demanding and she had past injuries she thought might be a barrier, but her expert trainer, Anthony, helped completely redefine the limits of what she believed she was capable of, and helped remedy some of her long-term complaints.
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“Before coming to U.P., I had a whole range of injuries. I struggled over the years with back pain, neck pain, knees, ankles, wrists… You name it, everything hurt.
“And when I actually started this journey, I wasn’t sure that I was even going to be able to do it.
“Because when I’ve tried doing the gym in the past, things like an injury have stopped me.
“Here we’ve worked around my neck pain, etc. I was having physio for my neck, injections for my neck – well, all of that is now finished. I feel so much stronger.”
Susan was blown away by the standard of personal training at U.P. Manchester.
The expertise and level of finesse were like nothing she had ever encountered and having her trainer there supporting every step of the way gave her the confidence and motivation to achieve something truly special.
“U.P. is so different from when I’ve done training in the past.
“It’s not like that you just pay your money and you do what you do and then leave it there.
“I think the difference here is that the trainer wants it as much as I want it, and I think for me, that has been the real difference.
“You don’t feel like you’re on this journey alone. The trainers really do get into your head, and I think that does help to keep you focused and motivated.”
Doing this transformation with her husband and two sons was extremely special for Susan.
Not only did it add a dash of camaraderie to the journey, but it also gave them time to bond again after a tough couple of years.
“The fact that we’ve done this as a family has been amazing because, obviously, we’ve all been in the same boat at the same time.
“You come here, and it is hard. You work really, really hard then you go home, and everyone just understands your moans and groans.”
What was really special was being able to capture the results of their hard work together in a fitness photoshoot.
It’s something the whole family will look back on with pride.
“We did the photoshoot as a family. I was kind of dreading it, but I was so glad that we did it because we had so much fun. I don’t know whether ever in the future we’ll all be in that same situation at the same time where we’re all doing something together. So it’s great to sort of look back on as well.
“I think I do feel that as a family, we are going to continue with this journey, you know I think about where we were and where we all are now.
“This whole attempt to improve our health seriously and exercise seriously – it’s been huge for us as a family.
“We’re just so much healthier as individuals, and we’ve all learnt so much.”
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