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kev and fishOn August 25, 2012…. I made a good choice. After watching my amazing wife swim in a life filled with health and wellness for quite some time I decided to quit dipping my toes in the water and jumped into Eupraxia! Lindsay had been inviting me for months and for some reason I just couldn’t take the leap, something kept holding me back. I was doing quite a bit of running and I considered myself “healthy”, so every time she offered I would just smile and say, “not today, maybe someday though”. That someday was one year ago, 229 workouts ago….yes I count them and you should too!

I was a four-sport athlete growing up and had the metabolism to match. I never really focused on healthy eating and I just emptied the tank, competing and staying active. I loved sports and planned my future around them as soon as I could swing a bat 🙂 After a bad knee injury in high school everything changed though. I ended up having three surgeries on my knee and when it was all said and done I really just thought my days of being an athlete were over. I tried to stay active but as the years went on I really just faded out and often times would fall back on the old ‘knee injury’ excuse to not go out and do all the things I wanted. When I finally started college in my twenties seeing all the young active athletes around campus really broke me. I became pretty depressed and really felt pretty bad about what I had become. I knew I was out of shape and really thought there was no hope of getting healthy and strong again. I couldn’t believe how fast it had happened and when I looked at who I wanted to be it seemed so far out of reach.

A couple years ago I started giving it what seemed like the last push. I got my first teaching job, we got Gwynnie (our sweet rescue dog/sled dog/squirrel, bird and rabbit BFF) and she teamed up with Digger (just a guy who loves to chase birds, squirrels, bikes, skateboards, mailmen, bigger trucks and various other things :). Now something about teaching seven year olds and having two awesome dogs will get you off your feet and your blood pumping and that is what happened to me. I started doing a lot of dog walking, some dog hiking and eventually even some dog running. I started stretching out those runs and after a couple half marathons I thought I had found the key to my physical fitness. I felt pretty good about where things were going until I ran my first couple races with Lindsay. She blew me out of the water last summer, every race we ran I struggled to keep up with her! I was spending at least 45 minutes on the trails then and Lindsay was running a little but mostly just getting in her Eupraxia workouts daily. The hard part was that my knees and back were getting destroyed by long runs and my diet wasn’t helping either, I was constantly fighting to stay average. That is when I realized that I was putting a bandaid on a bullet hole here. Sure running was better for my health, but if I wanted to be an athlete again I needed to step it up. Lindsay had been with Eupraxia for months and whatever she was doing was raising the bar, making it possible, showing results and just all around good stuff! That is when I decided to leap and make a splash…. to give Eupraxia a try.

So there I was on August 25, 2012….I made Lindsay sneak me in between classes because I was still toe dipping, I was scared. I envisioned big burly guys asking me how much I benched, mirrors on the wall to remind me of how much I had slipped over the years and if you asked me what a kettlebell was I would have said an alarm to let you know when the soup was done 🙂 I was relieved to find that I was very wrong! What I found was workout heaven. Eupraxia workouts were like nothing I had ever taken part in before. Sorry past coaches, but I had never been pushed that hard or given a program that engaged and supported me so much. I was hooked from the get-go and couldn’t wait to get back on Monday and do it again! And when I got back on Monday I found the best part of Eupraxia waiting for me, the people. Everyone smiled, everyone worked hard and we were all in it for the same reason…to get healthy! The workouts were so fast paced and active that I don’t think I even saw another person do a burpee for about four months and I still don’t know what anyone at Eupraxia benches…nobody cares :). I was surrounded by people of all ages, backgrounds, and levels of fitness. The coolest part was that we were all doing the same workout, all together and it felt awesome!! I didn’t just jump in the pool, I cannonballed into Eupraxia and didn’t miss a single workout for that first eight weeks. I had never been so motivated and hungry to get in the gym and work hard, those workouts were by far the coolest thing I had done physically since high school.

With Eupraxia’s amazing guidance I was also able to embrace a much healthier nutrition plan. The nutrition plan was hard though, there were grocery store temper tantrums, tearful goodbyes to foods that had comforted me for so long and I found it a bigger challenge to eat healthy than it was to get the workouts in. I just kept telling myself that it didn’t make much sense to go bust my butt at the gym and then get home to take 3 steps backwards by having a junk diet. I wanted to see results and after about a month it was obvious to me that eating healthy was just as important as dripping that sweat. It was tough but deep down it made so much sense to just eat good, natural, historic foods…the food that fed the people who made us and made them and so on 🙂 The more I followed the plan and adjusted my eating the better I felt during the workouts. The hard work and commitment payed off and after that first eight weeks I realized just how special Eupraxia’s nutrition advice was. Every minute I spent in a workout was fueled by a steadfast approach to buying healthy groceries, preparing food and getting my body what it needed. It was a lifestyle change that showed amazing results and did everything it promised.

When I saw the pictures from my first day and my eight week test out I think I hurt my face from smiling 🙂 I was finally filled with a sense of pride that I had been looking for, I had done this, reached my goals and it was pretty awesome! Eupraxia had given me the opportunity that I had been searching for, the chance to recreate myself from the inside out. I moved forward after that first eight weeks with a real hunger for the workouts and a constant drive to improving my diet. The whole experience has been nothing but positive and just like it says on the board, “hard work pays off”. That is so true, what I have achieved with Eupraxia’s program is nothing short of winning the “Health Lottery”. The sweetest part of that is that I am not alone. I am surrounded by filthy “health” rich people every time I pick up a kettlebell or grit out some burpees. Want the story to get sweeter? Ok…it does! I now get to help other people go get their dreams too! Recently becoming a trainer at Eupraxia has been a huge blessing. I am so motivated by all who take that first plunge and seeing how hard people work to be healthy ignites a fire in me to work hard and stay passionate about what Eupraxia has to offer!

When my father-in-law, Charlie Harris, passed away, the cross country team back home dedicated their season to him and made sweatshirts; on the back they had this quote, “dedication and commitment are what turns dreams into reality”. Simple words, simple plan, simple message and advice that I am proud to be dedicated and committed to. It is true! For years I thought that my health and wellness depended on what other people saw, an image, a number on a scale….I was wrong, it is all about what I see, what I feel… and I have to say that the view from here is pretty sweet thanks to Eupraxia. Lindsay and I feel great and are expecting our first “Little Bonnar” in January. We are so excited to bring our baby into such a healthy environment and meet such healthy people! I also like to think that somewhere up there Charlie is smiling down on Lindsay and I and is proud that our dreams have turned into reality 🙂

On top of my own family’s success, the real gem of Eupraxia is what separates it from any other health plan or gym: the people. Dr. Czys has worked hard and dedicated himself to creating an amazing opportunity for us all. The motivating and supportive workouts pay off and the nutrition guidance is the most honest and supported health information out there. The program and trainers make working out fun and entertaining. When you get a class busting through Sparty, grinding out Stations or popping that bag in Kickboxing…well that is what athletics is all about, that is “dedication and commitment” and it is so inspiring. Seeing so many people taking advantage of this and improving their lives has been so motivating for our family. We have made so many “Eupraxia Friends” and I can’t be thankful enough for having you all in our lives and just being a part of something so awesome!

Thank you and see you at the gym 🙂