Handicap Stickers … to running shoes.

Lots-O-Big Changes

The idea for today’s blog came to me as I pulled into the YMCA.   (I can’t type that without hearing the old song of the same name in my head–no matter how hard I try–I cannot do the arm symbols).  As I drove past the open handicap spots and moved onward towards the back of front lot to park my car, I remembered when I first started coming to the Y.  I recalled parking in those spots at the front. Yes.  The HANDICAP spots.  That picture at the top of this page was MY placard, for my car.

I remembered the pained call I made to the Y looking for a trainer.  I was terrified to go in … heck I wasn’t just afraid … I was ASHAMED.  I didn’t want to see myself in mirrors.  I knew I would need someone to help keep me focused on training and nothing else.  When I called, I specifically requested they not give me some skinny 20 year old who had NEVER struggled with anything in their life.  I wanted someone who could understand where I was coming from and help me get through it–NOT push me to the breaking point.  Donna is who they recommended.  I lucked out BIG TIME!

Donna is a “Trainer Nazi,” but we laugh so hard that you barely notice the time has passed, other than the obvious

I want to ride this trail from begining to end ... just a hop, a skip, and a short 90 miles to the finish line. 🙂

limpness of your limbs when you wobble out the door.  At the time we started training, I had so many injuries that sometimes JUST walking–without falling–was a challenge.  Add to that, I weighed 263 pounds, probably a little more, but I wouldn’t weigh before we started seeing some improvement.  I think 263 pounds is enough–I’m just sayin’!!  Now, I ride 40+ bike rides, row canoes down rivers, … and I am dreaming of running. 🙂

It was drizzling rain today, when I drove past those handicap spots.  Prior to working out with Donna, I would have been afraid to walk very far in that type of weather; I would have been afraid of falling.  Today, all I thought about was that it would most likely be hot inside … so … who cares if I get a little wet?  It wasn’t until a little later that it dawned on me how far I have come in 2 years of what seemed like endless struggle.  Two years seems like a LONG TIME until you compare it to the 20 some years that I have been battling obesity.  Looking back over just the 2 years that Donna and I have worked together, I am amazed at what all I can do now. I know I have about six months to a year of continued struggling to get my life completely back where I want it, but that is OK.  Three Years is a SHORT jaunt from my perspective.

Donna has been with me in throughout the good and bad times.  She and I worked for a year getting 30 pounds off, only to have a HORRIBLE setback with a change in my medications.  This setback just about broke my spirit.  Donna has been more than a trainer: She has been an encourager of my spirit.  She helped me to press forward.  She has been my cheerleader even when I was struggling so hard and daily losing ground.  Don’t get the wrong impression, Donna is not a weak trainer.  She will make me work HARD … EVERY TIME!  She is –plain and simple–a very caring person.  She is caring with my emotions and careful of my injuries, while urging me forward in those areas just the same.

Heck … if it had not been for her and her wonderful Hubby … I would not be where I am today.  I have been savoring this moment, this 51 pound reduction in my size, and all that it means for my life; it is not hard to see how Donna would come to mind.  I guess I am just having one big mushy, gushy day of Joy.  That joy just naturally pulls my mind to the person who has helped me get where I wanted to be, connected me with the people who were able to turn my life around.  So …  I wanted to take a moment to say THANK YOU to a very special LADY–my beloved Trainer Nazi–Donna Jones!  I am so VERY glad that I met you.  I have to say that you, my friend, have changed my life.

Thank YOU So very much …S

Then .......

Now. 🙂 yeah ... I am Smiling ... Bigger than ever!



15 thoughts on “Handicap Stickers … to running shoes.

  1. Woo-hoo! Way to go… you should burn that handicap placard in the fireplace!

    Awesome story and pictures!! Way to go! A good trainer/counselor is priceless!!

  2. Hey, Mikey!!! What about YOU…….I have changed you too…..you now think that you are Fred Astaire, Junior……..Doc is Fred Astaire, Senior! ha ha ha

  3. Wow! Pictures never lie….GREAT JOB….keep it up….you have been an inspiration to me….some things I cannot control..I can take control of exercise and diet…thanks for the inspiration Shonnie…..and may you only have healthy happy days ahead……Hugs…Nancy

  4. It has been my pleasure working with you and an honor to have you as my friend. I love seeing what I am seeing…….keep working hard; we will get you where you are meant to go! I thought you were a beautiful person then……and I think you are beautiful now!

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