Home Bodies Client of the Month for July 2011 is Mary F. of Central Massachusetts

“My first experiences with working out as a true lifestyle were in my 20s. Before that I had always been interested and had exercised at home or at some of the first commercial ladies gyms or spas. But in my 20s I got to know many bodybuilders and became forever enamored with how great one can feel with regular workouts and routines, in addition to the thrill of becoming fit with energy, and an athletic physique with beautiful shoulders, arms, legs, back, etc.

Prior to hiring Home Bodies I went through the most difficult period of my life. I suffered over 10 years of overwhelming fatigue, body ache, neck pain, and dizziness. No doctors had any answers for me. I recall one nurse telling me I was just depressed. But I knew that was not it. Over time, I gained more than 70 pounds and the seemingly relentless pain and fatigue undermined my every wish to help myself. I only could muster up the energy for working and taking care of my child.

It took many years to get diagnosed with Lyme disease--a problem that is now becoming epidemic actually up and down the east coast, but especially in New England and in central Massachusetts. At the same time as I began to tackle the Lyme I also found Home Bodies. I knew I would only get sicker without help from a trainer who had the ability to also be a coach. It had to be a really good trainer though. I had already been exposed to people in the professional in the compete circuit. So knowledge and approach both mattered to me equally.

When I saw Ashley Arpe's profile I know I had found that special person. Ashley met all of my expectations and more. Having battled disability herself, she was able to share the hope and gentle persistence that I think people with real challenges need.

After starting to work with Ashley and continuing over several months I saw progress in several areas, including: stamina, flexibility, joint strength, tone, and muscle strength. These improvements have affected my quality of life tangibly. The improvements motivate me to continue, as well as have a desire to do even more, which is where I am now.

One of the things I like about the workouts is that they are really tailored to what I need. Because I am in early stage treatment for the Lyme, this is important. I have had to tell Ashley very little as to what I can handle. She is very intuitive that way.

My advice to finding a trainer would be to test the relationship once or twice before making a long term commitment. Look for someone who focuses on form - there's nothing worse than lifting weights with improper form. Keep the relationship professional and while you are training, try educating yourself. It makes it more fun if you learn what the professionals are doing--there are always new ways to achieve fitness coming out.

For me, I this is a new side of training - rehabilitative - and with Ashley, I found what I needed to help me get on track. By staying with her even when it was tough to make time, I am retraining myself to take time for self care...something always difficult to do when you work full time and have a family to care for as well.”

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