Michael and I met about 7 years ago. He came to me after learning about my background with yoga and rehabilitative work. Michael is a soft-spoken man but direct. He knew what he wanted and what he didn’t. On our first meeting, I listened to his story with compassion. At 57, he had already had two hip operations (including a hip replacement), had broken his wrist, had circulation problems in his left leg. His main goal was to work towards improving his bone density to prevent further fractures. We spoke about his nutrition habits and after he explained to me he would eat out for breakfast and lunch then he would often rely on frozen meals for dinner, I learned quickly that Michael was a bachelor. Convenience foods were a staple and the act of going out for a meal fed a social need as well as a nutritional one.
Over the years we have worked extensively on his posture and strength. He went from doing the same strength routine using machines in the gym for 11 years to adding in function movements including deadlifts, medicine ball work, cables, TRX, Kettle bells and battle ropes. Tracking his progress was remarkable to see the changes. But Michael was one step ahead of me. With his analytical tendencies Michael would create charts to record every detail.
We have had many interesting conversations over the years. Sometimes reserved and on other occasions, an open book. Michael takes in foster cats periodically, nursing them to health before finding their forever home. This is where his softer side came out as he showed me pictures of the cute little friends. He is passionate about golf, playing up to 100 rounds per year, with many memorable ones in Ireland. Michael has traveled around the world twice and has some amazing stories to share. After our last workout as he left he said to me, “What we do here is very important to me. I have never felt my body is more capable than it is now. “ Michael was kind enough to write this testimonial for me and it warmed my heart. I had assumed that he appreciated our time together considering how long it has been. But hearing it in his words brought a tear to my eye and reminds me of why I do what I do.
“I started with Karen because I wanted to do more strength training to address recently-diagnosed osteoporosis. I did get significantly stronger and I am very pleased. I couldn’t have anticipated all the other good things she brought forth from that deep well of insight and optimism. I now have radically better posture, better diet and nourishment, increased knowledge and way more confidence. She listened, encouraged, prepared and supported. I rediscovered past pleasures and am still achieving personal bests. I learned that there is always another technique to achieve a good result or prevent a bad one, and that one good thing may lead to many others. I look forward to what’s next.” Michael, age 63