When Bob Donica, 51, first joined Life Time Fitness in Fishers, Indiana, he began working out on his own, and soon realized he had no idea how to achieve the results he desired. “I didn’t know what weights to use or what program to follow,” he said.
Hovering around 200 pounds, Donica hoped to drop weight and lower his cholesterol and blood pressure. Sick of getting nowhere, he expressed to Life Time Fitness an interest in personal training and was paired with Chris Powell. “We hit it off right away,” said Donica. “He made everything simple for me.”
Powell, a personal trainer and NSCA Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist, realized right away that if his client wanted to lose weight, he needed to add muscle mass.
“When I first started with Bob about four months ago, he didn’t have a lot of lean muscle mass, or much muscle at all,” recalled Powell. “So we had to increase that to help him lose weight. By simply adding muscle tissue to his body, he became a more efficient calorie burner.”
“His philosophy is that strength is key,” said Donica. “We still do cardio, but part of that cardio has strength in it.”
Donica trusts that philosophy because he has trust in both Powell and his certification. “I don’t know what’s all entailed in the certification, but I appreciate it,” he said. “I ask, ‘why is this working?’ and what it boils down to is, I’m doing what he’s telling me to do.”
According to Powell, being a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist has proved invaluable, for exactly this reason. “The benefits [of the certification] for the client are tremendous, because they have a sense of comfort knowing their trainer has an industry-leading certification,” he said. “It sets you a part. It lets clients know you’re a full-time leader in the industry.”
Donica’s trust paid off. Through increased strength exercises, plus anaerobic cardio, he has lost almost 30 pounds and four inches from his waistline. And according to Powell, Donica’s strength has improved significantly. “Pretty much every lift we do has improved strength wise by about 20 to 30 percent since four months ago,” said Powell.
Thankfully for Donica, the New Year’s resolution to lose weight is one that has paid off through better health, self-esteem and morale.
Donica now considers personal training to be an invaluable expense. “A couple months ago I was going to back off on my personal training sessions,” he said. “But I realized it’s part of my lifestyle and I need that push that Chris gives me along the way.”
By Rachel Zabonick